Takahashi: Japan 'a zombie that wonâ??t die'

Takahashi: Japan 'a zombie that wonâ??t die'

By Rob Crossley

November 23rd 2010 at 12:52PM

Katamari Damacy creator says the oft-criticised dev nation â??needs an injection of lifeâ??

One of Japan’s most popular game developers has launched an imaginative and damning analysis of his native development nation.

Katamari Damacy maestro Keita Takahashi described the Japanese sector as “a zombie” that needs to die, but won’t.

His piercing analysis comes in the wake of ex-Capcom boss Keiji Inafune describing the nation’s dev sector as “dying”.

In an interview with consumer magazine GamesTM, Takashashi said: “I think the Japanese industry is like a zombie. We don’t know what to do until we’re at the very bottom, and only then can we start looking at where things are going wrong.

Takahashi appeared to suggest that, in fact, it would be of Japan’s long-term benefit if the sector collapsed completely and underwent a transformation.

“When we go down, we see new technology like PlayStation Move and things pick up a bit. We never hit rock-bottom, and it’s like a zombie that never dies. It needs an injection of life,” he said.

“I think in Japan there’s too much a focus on sequels. There are too few genuine original games being made and, for me, that is why Japanese gaming is not doing so well at the moment.”

Takahashi walked out on Namco Bandai in September after describing the publisher as “so-so”.

He now works without a regular income with his wife at Uvula – the studio he co-founded. He is also studying English, and last year told Develop he wants to partner with a western studio.