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Blue Dragon, could it save Japan?

Mistwalker has re-released the extended trailer for Blue Dragon, the original RPG from Final Fantasy creator Hironobu Sakaguchi. Many have said that this is one of the titles that will make or break the 360 in Japan. What do you think? Can one title really make that much difference? Check out the video after the break. If you're a Japanese gamer who reads this site, tell us what you think (come to think of it, are there any Japanese 360 fans dedicated enough to visit a site called Xbox 360 Fanboy?)

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Reader Comments (Page 1 of 2)


8-02-2006 @ 12:45PM

Snypz said...

Didn't Blue Dragon make it to #8 on Famitsu's Most Wanted list ahead of Zelda and some other high profile games?

I think if the game is as good as it COULD be it will be a system seller.

Then Microsoft better buy Mistwalker.

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8-02-2006 @ 12:54PM

cap-n-crunch said...

obilivion could save japan.

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8-02-2006 @ 12:56PM

Anastas said...

The first of two epic RPG projects for Microsoft by Mistwalker, the studio founded by Square-Enix's Hironobu Sakaguchi. Blue Dragon features characters by designer Akira Toriyama, and tells the story of a young boy named Shu who has special adventure with hs two friends and a mythical blue dragon.

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8-02-2006 @ 1:05PM

Cage said...

Graphics look sweet (in game engine). Sounds are good. Wont know the gameplay of course until its reviewed. Dont know if its the game but rather whether Japanese gamers can "think outside the box" and give it a chance...

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8-02-2006 @ 1:22PM

Yardarm51 said...

I would doubt this game can "save" the 360 as you put it. I don't know if you could call me a Japanese gamer but I am a gamer who lives in Japan. The trouble is that the 360 isn't even on the radar here. I talk to my students outside of class and they are often suprised to hear that I play videogames (or as they call them terebi-gemu). They always ask what games I have and when I give them some names they look at me funny and say they've never heard of them (Halo, DOA etc). I tell them I have an Xbox, or more recently a 360 and they say the same thing again... "What's that?" Outside of the hardest of the hardcore no one knows what a 360 is. MS has had all kinds of TV ads and such but people still don't get the message. Heck most of the ads don't show any kind of game or gameplay at all. They are "emote" or "cool" ads like the Jump In commercial with the double dutch group. I hate to say it but unless MS can come up with 3 or four quadruple A titles over here within a year's timespan they are sunk. One of the other commenters mentioned Oblivion. There is a petition over here to get it translated and published. That is a good sign because aside from that no intrest has been shown for any ot the other existing properties. It is tough being a 360 fan over here.

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8-02-2006 @ 1:46PM

J.Goodwin said...

I don't know anything about what's going on in Japan, but if they aren't using gameplay footage in commercials, then they're wasting their money.

I'm really surprised that the visuals are so good. They actually convey the sense of Toriyama's art very well. They're not anything like his manga technically, but they have the right feel.

That's an accomplishment in and of itself. I'm very excited about this game.

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8-02-2006 @ 2:14PM

djphatjive said...

Who can save Japan from these crappy Anime games!

P.S. The game does look kind of cool, but still come on japan! We nuked you over 60 years ago. Get over it and start buying American products!

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8-02-2006 @ 2:42PM

puh_fifer said...

Wow, another idiotic/ignorant post by DJphat. You should take away his star and give it to Goodwin there, all of his posts seem to be actually contributing something.

I guess the good news is in 3 weeks middle school kids will be going back, so we won't have to hear from DJphatfuck anymore.

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8-02-2006 @ 3:05PM

soco said...

i think it has the potential to at least encourage a big pickup of sales. as i recall, DS sales weren't so hot until Nintendogs came along, and then like a bolt from the blue, DSes were selling left and right.

however, i think it's probably going to take an amazing showing at TGS this year, and either some creative marketting from MS, or some amazing word of mouth. it's not a portable, so people on the subway can't just point and ask what all these people are suddenly playing a DS for.

if pushed with Trusty Bell, Lumines Live, and even Street Fighter 2 on Live, then maybe they could get the point across.

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Jason Cross10

8-02-2006 @ 3:09PM

Jason Cross said...

Blue Dragon alone won't "save" the 360 in Japan - no single game can. But it can bolster sales, and demonstrate (however briefly) that Microsoft can deliver the kinds of games Japan wants. It's the first big push that can start a snowball rolling downhill, but there need to be others.

Together with Sakaguchi's other RPG, and a handful of other titles, it could actually give the system some decent momentum. The 360 will never "win" Japan, and it doesn't have to, but it can avoid bombing and put in a respectable showing in this generation if there are half a dozen titles of this caliber in Japan between November and May (Biohazard, stuff like that).

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Mark Felps11

8-02-2006 @ 3:19PM

Mark Felps said...

Fuck Japan. Seriously. They want to play JRPGs, and specifically FF and DQ, and Microsoft is never going to be able to unseat those. They like super-kawaii games, which is great, but MS has to sell games in the states, too, where our unibrowed, slack-jawed, cousin-fuckers are likely to shriek "fagget" at anything that doesn't involve shooting someone in the face. Again, MS can't win that market.

In short, MS can't win the Japanese market, but that's okay, because they are rapidly sliding into obsolesence. When India, China, and N. Korea come online, Japan will find itself in the unenviable position of being the smallest Asian market. They should enjoy temselves now, because the next generation will belong to Europe, Australia, and the U.S., all of whom prefer player-directed stories as opposed to programmer-directed stories. And the generation after that will belong to the real Asian powerhouses.

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matt b12

8-02-2006 @ 3:29PM

matt b said...

If Blue Dragon is marketed well and it scores very high 9.5+ then it could help kick off the 360 sales. The key is trying to deliver games that the Japanese prefer and outdo what Sony is doing. Steal their franchises and create new ones that are more exciting.

Put gameplay in ads. The ads here in the U.S. have sucked. The ads that stick out to me are the games that show off a ton of footage (Oblivion, Dead Rising, NCAA 2007). The Dead Rising ads have been the best by far.

Give gamers a reason to buy a 360. The social aspect isn't working. Footage is.

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8-02-2006 @ 3:49PM

Hector said...

Mark Felps is my new hero. Thank God someone agrees with me. Who cares about Japan? Their games suck and if they don't realise how awesome the xbox360 is then its not my problem.

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8-02-2006 @ 4:09PM

JJ said...

Well you dont NEED japan... but if you want your console to win you have to do well in ALL territories.. including the emerging ones in China, India, etc. Having USA and Europe is good but you need them all to be considered the leader.

So they dont NEED japan to survive... but if they want to WIN they do NEED japan. So Good luck MS.

Every country has different tastes, so you HAVE to change your offering for each country, thats the only way to 'win' over each one.

For instance look at multinational restaurants, depending ont he country, they have to change they way they market products or even the products themselves to survive. That's just common sense, one thing want always work everywhere, you ahve to diversify. So in terms of systems, that means some games may only work in japan, or china, or india, you can just assume everything that works here in america will work everywhere. I think thats the one mistake MS makes. They need to cater more to each of their audiences.

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8-02-2006 @ 4:32PM

Andrew said...

"save the 360"... i'm curious but the issue is that MS task, since the launch of the original xbox, is to step up to the table with the established companys. A uphill task from the begining especially with the backwards capability of the ps2 essentially exploding that consoles game library from launch. It's a matter of seeing two new consoles, one with 8 games and the other with 250 titles, all of which are cheaper.

This same concept can apply to a demographic of gamers. Applicable titles being the ones that you would perfer. It's hard selling a 1st person shooter to someone who hates them. Likewise to sell a system that only offers a fewer number of genre games.

so the list:
Perfect dark zero
Kameo:elements of power
nba live 06
nhl 2k6
fifa 06
amped 3
tiger woods
quake 4
tony hawk
ridge racer 6
nba 2k6
Condemned: Criminal Origins™
madden nfl 06
king kon
cal of duty 2

Broken down we have into genres...
genre | #games | % of total(at or near launch)
Racing 3 16%
Shooter 6 33%
Rpg 1 05%
Sports 6 33%
Stunts 2 11%

And now with a petition to get Oblivion to japan can we really say the demographic doesn't buy 360s because it's not a japanese/chinese company? Well, it's just not ONLY that. It's also an abissmal selection of games at least availible at launch that would not tempt someone to spend $400 to play Kameo when they could just slap down less then $200 for a ps2 and a few games or a DS even with larger game librarys and thus larger selections.

Yes it's a culture of loyalty but we would be nieve to think that the 18-26 demographic isn't willing to break potential cultural bonds for a game that looks bad ass and cool. It's about the games people. It always has been and it always will. That's why the PS3 is so dangerous right now. Because the price for development as well as the consumer start up price will shrink the industry and the consumer base. That's why i am proud that Nintendo is going the route they are and that MS is still around to compete with Sony on the field of Graphics and Tech Power.

The PS3 WILL sell out, there will be "shortages," you would be a fool to think otherwise(does anyone remember the ps2 launch?). It's what comes AFTER that will matter. What will late spring and summer 07 bring? Hopefully many deverse games for the 360, pc, and Wii. Hopefully.


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8-02-2006 @ 4:32PM

Shawn said...

Please tell me this is also coming stateside...
Does anyone know if it is? I love Akira Toriyama.

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8-02-2006 @ 5:09PM

bv said...

The only thing that could save Japan right now is Godzilla.

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8-02-2006 @ 5:14PM

LunarDuality said...

@ Shawn
Based on the amount of buzz this game has gotten in this country, (and the likely cost to MS to get it in the first place) it would be shocking if it didn't come out stateside at some point.

Back on topic:
I think that soco may have hit the nail on the'll be games that attract the much larger "non-hardcore" gamers (that YardArm51 is talking about) that will secure a place for the 360 in Japan. They need a game that can transcend video gaming and get out into the culture at large. That's why Nintendo is currently doing so well with the DS and why they are likely to do well with the Wii in Japan -- their mantra is about transcending games and gamers and making games for the "everyman".

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8-02-2006 @ 6:28PM

lazy said...

Lets face it. They need some game with half-naked anime characters on the box art. Dont even TRY to tell me that isnt what wins Japan.

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8-02-2006 @ 6:32PM

soco said...


Japan had a few exclusive games at launch that were not released in the US, and some of the US/EU launch games are just now getting released there. like Condemned and COD2. Kameo and PGR3 both got released in japan a few months after launch. PDZ was the only FPS on launch. they had Tetris and Every party sa well, and of course DOA4 missed launch by like 3 weeks or something. my bet is the MS held off on releasing PGR3 to give Namco space in their home market, and Kameo just because they didn't want a flood of American games, especially ones that didn't showcase live.

within the first 3-4 months they had 2 RPGs (excluding FFXI), that also haven't hit here. also oblivion is apparently released, just not in Japanese, from what i've read, but MS can't do a whole lot about that since they're not the publisher.

sorry i'm just a stickler for details ;D

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