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Christian Svensson explains Japan PC game business

Christian Svensson explains Japan PC game business A lot of people have asked why more Japanese companies don't release their games on the PC platform. While not directly fighting game related, it does cover some ground for people wondering about future Capcom releases for the PC.

Company V.P., Christian Svensson, had this to say.

Why is Capcom the only Japanese company who releases their games on the PC? I also read that Sega said action games are for consoles and not PC, this was lame of them.

Sven: There's likely several reasons...

The PC games business in Japan itself is relatively small. So from a top of mind perspective, it's not often there for Japanese creators or executives. To embrace the PC, it requires a very global perspective, which while a lot of Japanese publishers say they are thinking globally, they're mostly only doing so with respect to the businesses they currently have, which are console focused.

On the second point, from a historical perspective, Sega is right. Historically, action games have NOT been strong performers on the PC. We continue to invest in the PC space because we do believe that if enough content is available there of that type, an audience will grow, especially when our PC versions are typically the best version of the game if you have hardware that's better than a 360 or PS3 (which these days, only takes a couple hundred bucks to do). We also want our brands to reach regions where consoles really aren't prevalent (e.g. Korea, China, Russia, India, Brazil, etc.)

Now the other part of this, is that the PC business is hard. There's increased considerations for optimization, testing and compatibility with regards to development, a non-growing (at best) retail channel (and most Japanese publishers don't seem to be embracing digital broadly yet so when that's all you look at, the decision doesn't seem unreasonable), a number of hardware partners to manage which takes a fair amount of overhead, the need for an OEM sales force which is something that doesn't exist on the console side of the business and increased customer service overhead.

Lastly, where PC is growing the fastest, has been in territories where many Japanese publishers don't actively have relationships (e.g. Russia, Brazil, China, Eastern Europe), thus even if they had the content, they may have some difficulty generating a return.

That said, Sega, and particularly Sega Europe has done quite a bit of PC development (think Total War, Football Manager, etc.). So don't paint Sega all negatively. In some ways, they're ahead of us in the PC space by a good margin.

Source: Capcom Forums.

SNK vs. Capcom 3 not happening in the very near future

SNK vs. Capcom 3 not happening in the very near future Capcom's Seth Killian responded to a question via the Unity Boards, asking if we'd see an SNK vs. Capcom 3 any time soon, his response was:

Not in the very near future, sorry. :(

While this dashes hopes of seeing the game any time soon, with Capcom's interest in revitalizing their old franchises, maybe this is one we'll see again — at some point.

Sabin shares Street Fighter 4 experiences from Japan

Sabin shares Street Fighter 4 experiences from Japan Over the years there's been a lot of myths and some truths spoken about how Japanese Street Fighter players differ from their American (or other country's) counter-parts. To offer his own insight into how things are in Japan, Arturo "Sabin" Sanchez is currently fielding questions from other players on his Street Fighter 4 experiences in the land of the rising sun.

We've grabbed some of the most interesting responses here. Questions and answers have been edited for length and language, but if you can still scope out the full thread on if you want to see the other stuff. We've just grabbed the most noteworthy things here.

To view a larger transcript, click the link below.

Q: So far, where do you think the biggest difference between Japan and the West is? Is it mainly execution, or are they pulling tricks you haven't seen yet?
Sabin: Mostly they are pulling tricks I haven't seen yet... unless you are here to see them. I don't really like when people judge Japanese play based off the match videos because they represent like 1% of Japanese play overall and its like 1 match.

Q: How can players in the U.S. improve when they only really play each other at tournaments?
Sabin: U.S. players don't share information. Japanese players talk about why said player lost and how they can lose, that's the main difference.

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Reminder: Marvel vs. Capcom 2 hip hop mix tape available on PSN

Reminder: Marvel vs. Capcom 2 hip hop mix tape available on PSN PlayStation Network users can now grab the Marvel vs. Capcom 2 hip hop mix tape for free through their service.

The mix tape is also said to be available through Capcom's websites in the future, but no timetable has been issued for this yet.

For more details, check out this older post.

Tatsunoko vs. Capcom guide for Gold Lightan

Tatsunoko vs. Capcom guide for Gold Lightan Heavy site contributor, Nyoronoru, has written a handy guide for how to play Gold Lightan in Tatsunoko vs. Capcom.

Lightan is one of the giant characters in the game, so he doesn't get to choose a partner. This gives him some great advantages though like Super Armor, which allows him to walk through various attacks that would knock other players back.

If you're interested in playing the big Zippo lighter in the upcoming game, this is an excellent guide to prepare you for the experience. Here's a cut.

Gold Lightan has a great deal of Super Armor to blow through attacks, but he can still block like any other character if he chooses. This means that Lightan is not susceptible to the long combo strings that define most players' styles. Lightan's Super Armor is so strong that he can hit people out of their Hyper moves even if he is being struck by them.

To play Gold Lightan effectively, do a lot of jumping while traversing the screen. This threatens the ground Hyper, covers good distance and lets you block things thrown at you in the air.

Always Baroque moves with a lot of recovery time and master the art of the Crouching Light Attack. If you find yourself on the receiving side of a lot of projectiles, do a quick dash through them and begin attacking.

Again a HUGE shout out goes to Nyoronoru for taking a lot of time to write up this outstanding guide for everyone to check out.

Sven impressed by response for Darkstalkers HD Remix

Sven impressed by response for Darkstalkers HD Remix Capcom's Christian Svensson was impressed by how many people voiced their support for a Darkstalkers HD Remix game, via the Unity Boards.

This is a thread that to this day is continuing to draw attention after Capcom gauged how much interest there was in an updated product.

While fan interest is very important to getting new games out there — as shown with Street Fighter IV — what other hurdles do you feel Capcom would have to overcome to get a Darkstalkers game not only created, but have it attract enough people to be a big seller?

Leave a comment below with your thoughts.

ZEN Studios' new Street Fighter pinball expansion out

ZEN Studios' new Street Fighter pinball expansion out ZEN Studios has released a Street Fighter expansion table for their pinball game. If pinball is your thing, might as well give this a look on the PlayStation Network as the expansion is only $2.49 USD.

And that's a heck of a lot less money than Justin Wong reportedly spends playing claw vending machine games. ;)

Famitsu interviews Justin Wong prior to SBO 2009

Famitsu interviews Justin Wong prior to SBO 2009 Justmashu and SF3LP translated an interview (with pictures) Famitsu had with Justin Wong.

The article covers his personal life, if he plays online, his past tournament matches against Daigo Umehara and other experiences. It actually ends up being a pretty good read, although remember this is a translation, so some parts may be a bit off.

He says he isn't too concerned about losing, mentioning losing to Yuuro(?) and Daigo.

They ask about Sagat's counter ultra causing him to lose.
He answers that the HDTV they used had lag and his intended Dash Straight into Super didn't work like he planned.

Famitsu: At EVO 09, you used Abel at first. Why? Didn't you use Rufus in April?
Wong: In April, they only allowed us to use one character, so I chose Rufus. I really didn't want to fight against Daigo's Ryu with him. EVO allowed me to use more characters so I used Abel.

Famitsu: In Japan, they say Daigo is weak against Abel. Is that why you picked him?
Wong: No, I didn't know that. I won 5-1 against Korean champion Poongko's Ryu. That's why.

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Drink and game with the Arkeg

Are you really into arcade gaming, but always felt like it was missing something like say... ridiculously easy access to alcohol?

Enter the Arkeg, an arcade unit with HAPP parts, trackball and other stuff — but most importantly — it comes with a 5 gallon keg and draft system!

This puppy will set you back $4,000, but it's... unique or something. The system comes pre-loaded with a bunch of games, including, Super Street Fighter II CE [sic] via a MAME emulator. Whoever wrote this part of the website was probably "gaming" on an Arkeg for awhile before they added it in, which might explain the typo.

Not often you actually see something like this for sale. Usually an idea like this comes from someone who's had way too much to drink to think properly, but they sober up and promptly forget about it. Not in this case though — here's an image.

Nintendo: Tatsunoko vs. Capcom out before end of year

Nintendo: Tatsunoko vs. Capcom out before end of year In a possible 'oops' moment, a high-ranking Nintendo official, Denise Kaigler, spoke with IGN Wii about the release of upcoming titles this year, and she mentioned Tatsunoko vs. Capcom would hit before the end of 2009.

Relevant parts bolded.

Many of your readers often ask about the "core" games published by other companies for Wii, and I think we have enough titles coming to satisfy even that crowd. Before the end of the year, we'll see Dead Space Extraction from EA, Muramasa: The Demon Blade from Ignition Entertainment, Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles from Capcom, Silent Hill: Shattered Memories from Konami and Tatsunoko vs Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars from Capcom.

While some things do change, Capcom has officially stated that the title will hit this winter, they just didn't peg an exact year down for us.

If the above information is correct though, it sounds like Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars will be available before Christmas.

Breaking down Street Fighter 4's statistics

Breaking down Street Fighter 4's statistics Maj made an interesting post on the forums showing Ultra-related statistics for the Justin Wong/Daigo Umehara Evo 2009 match ups. Here's his breakdown.

Daigo Umehara (Ryu) vs. Justin Wong (Abel/Balrog)
Total number of rounds: 29
Rounds Ryu won: 16
Rounds Ryu lost: 13
Total number of times Ryu lands Ultra: 7
Number of times Ryu lands Ultra and wins round: 5
Number of rounds Ryu wins without landing Ultra: 11
Number of times Ryu lands Ultra and still loses round: 2
Number of times Ryu lands Ultra more than once in a round: 0

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PlayStation 3's price dropped to $299

PlayStation 3's price dropped to $299 You may have heard about this else where, but Sony has finally decided to drop the price of their PlayStation 3 80GB HDD to $299 USD. This is the same price as their new PS3 Slim which comes with a 120 GB Hard Drive.

While some of the Street Fighter community prefers gaming on XBox 360, the PlayStation still has a lot of fans and reasons to purchase the console, and now that it's cheaper, that's all the more reason to pick one up.

For those of you who want a larger hard drive, the 160GB model is selling for $399.99. All these price changes should be in place next time you visit your favorite store.

Good 2D artwork becoming more difficult to come across

Good 2D artwork becoming more difficult to come across Capcom's Christian Svensson was asked about creating a HD 2D engine for their games via the Unity Boards to see if that would save money and possible lead to more titles.

Sven's reply is below via the Unity Boards.

I was wondering if Capcom will develop its own HD 2D engine for multi-platform games similar to the MTframework engine for 3D games you built?

I believe it will allow your company to save money because you wouldn't need to contract the work out to two different companies. For example, Backbone Entertainment developed the HD 2D engine for Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo and Udon re-drew the artwork.

If your company were to develop its own engine you could have games made in-house, like HD remixes of past popular games, while keeping costs down. Multiple games could be made from one engine just like in the past when Capcom developed multiple games on their CPS1-3 boards. What do you think? — The Man

Sven: There really isn't a technology hurdle for 2D games. That said, there is a pretty significant content challenge (read: art challenge). Good 2D animation is an art that is [in] increasingly short supply.

PC Street Fighter 4 voice modification tutorial

Noticed over on the Street Fighter blog that they found a nifty video tutorial on how to change the voices for the PC version of Street Fighter 4.
You can view part 2 here.

Third Strike and Tatsunoko vs. Capcom results from SBO 2009

Third Strike and Tatsunoko vs. Capcom results from SBO 2009 Super Battle Opera (Tougeki) is complete and the final results are in.

Street Fighter III Third Strike 3 vs. 3 results

• 1st: Rikimaru (Chun Li), Boss (Yun), Momochi (Makoto)
• 2nd: Tokido (Chun Li), KO (Yang), Ochibi (Yun)
• 3rd: Kuroda (Q), MOV (Chun Li), ???
• 3rd: RX (Urien), Koushun (Chun Li), Vanao (Ryu)

Here's how the bracket shook out.

Click image for a larger version

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Ono's 'out of the ordinary' SBO announcement is nothing?

Ono's 'out of the ordinary' SBO announcement is nothing? It's Monday in Japan and most of the SBO festivities have been wrapped up. No word of an announcement has come in yet from Yoshinori Ono on a future Street Fighter 4 upgrade, although from every thing we can tell, the title is in the works.

Many people expected a big announcement at this year's Super Battle Opera (Tougeki) because of this statement made by Capcom of Japan's project manager, Shiozawa-san, which was translated through the Japanese Street Fighter 4 blog:

She writes that Street Fighter 4 producer Yoshinori Ono will be appearing at this year's Super Battle Opera (Tougeki) in a video message to the community. Shiowaza says that she has, "no idea," what the message is about but seeing him preparing it makes her feel that it's something, "out of the ordinary," and that, "something's being planned." Then she recommends not missing this year's Super Battle Opera. (link)

That message lead many to believe something would be announced at this year's tournament, and considering the amount of information about the upgrade that was being posted on their blog, it was a logical assumption.

Assuming the above statements were correct, it sounds like something changed in Capcom's plans. It's possible that they didn't want to anger fans who had just purchased the PC version of the title by announcing an upgrade just a month later, and considering the console version was just released in February of this year, the timing probably would have been too close.

And while Street Fighter 4 hasn't been out here in America for a long time, the Japanese arcade release happened back in July of 2008, so an announcement there would have made more sense if they weren't factoring in the overseas audience.

Anyway, while this news will be disappointing for many fans, remember that Capcom is clearly not finished with making Street Fighter titles, so while you didn't hear anything today, chances are you will be hearing something in the future. selling TE FightSticks for $99, Saturday only selling TE FightSticks for $99, Saturday only is having a very special deal, offering up Mad Catz Tournament Edition FightSticks for $99, and this offer is good for today (Saturday) only.

You can get a stick cheaper if you grab it as an in-store pickup, but now this option is only available for PlayStation 3 users.

Thanks to Azianflavor for pointing this out.