There’s one thing that we all need to remind ourselves all the time; when you’re in a business of making money, the main thing is to make money. These people are not and should not be there fulfilling their own egos and wants. They’re not your friends, they’re people who are there to serve you for a fee.
And then you hear that CAPCOM’s for sale. What drove the company to open their stocks for a takeover is a decade’s worth of bad business decisions and low sales. And those come from bad products and dissatisfied customers, which simply translates to said low sales. All they can blame is themselves. The moment CAPCOM decided to change their business model to follow EA’s model and abandoned their strengths.
CAPCOM was known as one of the most high-profile third party game companies during the silver age of gaming. Their games on the NES were the very shining example of what a licensed game should be. Even on SNES CAPCOM showed how it’s done with Aladdin, thou we can always argue whether or not the Mega Drive games was better.
However, where CAPCOM had always shined was in the arcades. It was the arcades where CAPCOM made their first and foremost impact on the culture and most of their successful franchises have been extremely arcade like from the get go. There is a very damn good reason everybody knows Street Fighter II and why it has been milked to its bones. CAPCOM knew how to make a console game back then, and the moment they decided to move away from what they were known for.
CAPCOM has been horribly managed. The way they changed their company’s image, products and work methods has been documented and news casted on the ‘net rather well during these past years, and when you start looking at the games they’ve produced, you do see a point where they decided to abandon their model of success for another. Abandoning your current customers is never a good idea. Expanding your customer base is and that’s what exactly Nintendo did with the NES, Game Boy, the DS and with Wii.
Whenever I hear a company changing their products to follow another, more successful game like Call of Duty, all I can ask is Why? Why would you want to make a product that has already been made and has managed to satisfied the customer? Unless you are able to surpass and make it irrelevant, completely obsolete, there’s very little reason to dip into the Red Ocean. There was no reason to change Resident Evil into a generic shooter number X. Then again, you can’t do Resident Evil again and again because overusing the same damn things lessen the scare factor or what made the original so liked. I’m almost this close to say that the moment Resident Evil abandoned the cheap live action FMVs and began to itself far too serious was the point of no return for the series, because everybody knows zombies are serious fucking business.
Mismanagement made CAPCOM to go to hell, and another company is allowing another kind of mismanagement to go past them all the time. Nintendo’s very own Aonuma, the man head of Zelda, doesn’t look at sales figures.
I don’t like to lash on one person. However, Nintendo keeps pushing idols as the front of their company rather than the company being the front like it used to be. And so I am lashing at Aonuma for being a selfish prick who needs to be kicked out from his position and that position needs to be given to somebody who cares about the sales. Aonuma wants to create something unique, and yet he has repeated the Dungeon Puzzler model ever since he got his hands on the franchise. He has repeated the same damn thing all over again to the extent of replacing the damn overworld with a mere hub for his puzzles. Zelda has become a pale shadow what it used to be.
Then we have the unprofessional approach Aonuma and their team have. Making something unique makes the developing more interesting? This is your damn job Aonuma, not a field trip. I expect any people I pay money to go to the uncomfortable zone and challenge themselves. That is expected from me as well and that is exactly the reason I have a need to reinvent myself and acquire new set of skills.
It is a well known thing that during a process things change. Not having a set, clear plan is something we do in school projects when we’re just starting to ease ourselves in how professionalism works. Basically what this means is that they’ll show one thing and deliver another. That’s like showcasing a delicious pizza and giving you a dead skunk when it comes to Zelda. Spaceworld 2000 Zelda demo got people into an uproar, and then we got Wind Waker. Wind Waker wasn’t a success. Aonuma learned from this a bit and the demo for Twilight Princess was closer to the final product than what Wind Waker was. Same with Skyward Princess, for what it was worth. However, in 2011 we saw again a Zelda demo that got a very positive reaction. This year we saw another demo, that seems to repeat the Spaceworld 2000-Wind Waker effect, similarly how the Wii U is GameCube HD Edition.
I would question how Aonuma is still allowed to spearhead Zelda games, but seeing how Nintendo pushes Miyamoto, Reggie and Iwata into idol region with their joke fights and all, I’m not surprised how little they care. Or rather, how they don’t care at all.
Aonuma basically breaks few golden rules; Never set yourself before the customer and You’re here to make money, not have fun. Making money and having fun does not exclude themselves, as a local American BBQ master will tell you. And yet Aonuma and his team give two shits what you or any other customer expect and want from your Zelda and just keep doing the same selfish shit they want game after game without looking back at what they screwed up or how their games make lousy sales.
Zelda franchise will end up in similar situation that Metroid and F-Zero are in. I’m surprised that they’re even reviving Star Fox, seeing how the series went down the drain and offered nothing new since the first game. I will not be surprised when fans will rain upcoming Nintendo games with positive comments while sales stay low.
In regards of CAPCOM, there’s very little we can say. It all depends whether or not they will be taken over. It can be a blessing, it can mean the whole company will be absorbed and snuffed out, like Hudson was.