Remake, Remastered and Cover: the history of the Japanese video game starts from itself
The remake of Final Fantasy VII he only reiterated the return of Japan and the masters of the video game. If it is true that history repeats itself, it must be all the more true for the history of the Japanese video game. The studios, the designers, the intellectual properties they have grown up the generation of children of that time (who are the adults of now). The return of Japan of video games starts from here, from Final Fantasy. And from here he wants to make us fall in love again. Remake, remastered and even some cover, with the aim of bringing that bright past that made video games mainstream. Maybe at the same time rehabilitating that oriental market that is in the last generation become much more niche compared to the western one. Japan wants back his cattred of videogame history, and to do so he relies entirely on the gold of the Japanese emperor.
That the Japanese video game was on the decline I hope was not a mystery.
Several examples could be given to support this thesis. I will limit myself to the most emblematic: PlayStation 4 is the first Sony console to be released earlier in the West than in Japan. With a rather marked advance, given that in our latitudes it arrives in November 2013 and in the Rising Sun only in February of the following year. It is a mission statement that cannot be misunderstood. Sony mainly looks to Europe and America, knowing that the home garden is no longer used to large productions and prefers to play on the go. And the same trend can be traced, even in the previous generation, in hindsight, in the exclusives published on the car. And in first-party studios, mostly Western. In short, if in the 90s Psygnosis / Studio Liverpool had to "pretend" Japanese with the covers of WipeOut, the '10s are the years of western designers of video games.
We think of the great companies in the history of Japanese video games. Let's think about Capcom, in SEGA, in Konami. Nintendo is kept on the sidelines not for a political or partisan choice, but simply because he means the video game in a different way. Nintendo has always pushed the inclusive video game, for all, almost an electronic equivalent of the toy capable of entertaining anyone. In this sense, the Kyoto house is Japanese (and for the taxman) but not at the level of mentality: the philosophy behind its video games is different. Unique, perhaps.
Her mascot is a plumber who lives in Brooklyn, on the other hand.
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Clover Studio: monograph of an (in) success
We were saying, let's think for example of Capcom, which has premature this return of Japan of the masters of the video game compared also to Final Fantasy. From 2006 onwards in Osaka they have in order closed Clover Studio, watered down Resident Evil with a sixth chapter tremendously more in the wake of the action and, even, brought to the west Devil May Cry. DmC Devil May Cry is a 100% Western video game.
It was one of Capcom's darkest parentheses, often unable to convince critics. And when he did, anyway in quarrel with their audience. Because DmC at launch was a chapter frowned upon by fans of the series, which has only rehabilitated over time. And it is anyway a different Devil May Cry, very different from a “numbered” chapter in the series. Devil May Cry 5, not surprisingly, returns to a setting decidedly more in the wake of tradition. And it looks a lot to the player, giving real nuggets of fanservice applied to the series.
Capcom, however, gets up.
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Dei Sepolcri Videoludici: the importance of remake and remastered
And if until a few years ago it was the home of the remastered, which obsessively re-proposed its top series, we can now define it that of remakes. There is a fundamental difference between remastered and remake in video games. The remaster tries to propose the product as is, as close as possible to its original version. Pros and cons, with the problem that the technique ages and that above all the memory tends to idealize, being an unreliable support. It is above all a lazy operation, especially in the declination that Capcom gave it before the last two years: upscale of the playable sections, unchanged movies and menus still in 4: 3. Very different from the work behind, for example, the Resident Evil 2 remake.
That type of operation is what Capcom brought back on the china, re-proposing a great classic, leaving its spirit unchanged but updating everything else. Here is the story of the Japanese video game that returns, different forms for the same substance. Which is the same as a dream. It is something that starts from before, because already Resident Evil VII was trying to go back to the origin, to the survival horror of the first chapters. It is no coincidence that the subtitle is Biohazard, which is the Japanese name of the series. Resident Evil VII breaks with what the series had become after the gamechanger we know as Resident Evil 4, father of the modern third-person shooter but very different from the first three chapters of the franchise.
It is a chapter that marks the return of Japan to its golden age in video games, exactly as Final Fantasy VII is doing now: the difference is that Final Fantasy VII is one of the pillars of the first PlayStation, a product that is part of our collective background. Without wanting to take anything away from Resident Evil, here we talk about an experience shared by all.
But it's not just Capcom: SEGA has also restarted from SEGA
Within a few years sonic went from Sonic Boom in Sonic Mania, arriving this year also in cinemas. And it is no coincidence that the most popular chapter of recent years (but we can say no more in the history of the series) is the second, which takes up heavily from the classic chapters of the series and repackages them into a kind of love letter. It is neither a remake nor a remastered, it is the concept of a musical cover applied to the video game. Something that is investigated and little mentioned, but it is already all around us.
If the night is darker just before dawn, then it's only natural that after Sonic Boom a product like Sonic Mania arrives on the shelves.Pietro Iacullo, 22/08/2017
Why think about it Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night is nothing more than a cover of Castlevania signed by who Castlevania has created it, but cannot produce others because Konami still lives in this Middle Ages of the history of the Japanese video game, and none of its franchises have been the protagonists of a return "to Final Fantasy VII". The same dark century that put an end to Hideo Kojima's journey within the house that has always fed him. Which made Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain the videogame equivalent of the Sagrada Família, a hell in which we went out to see the stars again only with Death Stranding.
But Koji Igarashi is just a name, the name of a successful case. Years earlier Keiji Inafune had also tried the same path with his Mighty No. 9, and if the final result is qualitatively forgettable, one cannot fail to remark the success achieved on Kickstarter. 4 million raised to make what was basically the spiritual sequel to Mega Man: it didn't happen, but the intent was there and the interest of the public, one must say, as well. It is a discourse in which, if desired, Platinum Games can also be included, which beyond the reissue of Bayonetta and Vanquish right on Kickstarter has re-proposed one of his most unfortunate works, that The Wonderful 101 released in the midst of the Japan video game crisis and on an unhealthy sales platform like Wii U.
There's a thread, in all the transactions mentioned up to this moment. It is that of the revival of ideas. Japan is back, and it is doing it riding the very products that made it great: Final Fantasy is just one example among many, the best known. The last stage of a journey that began quietly a few years ago, which we are only becoming aware of now. Then that's this be it good or bad, it is not a speech for those who make disclosure. But those who criticize ...
The fact remains that Final Fantasy has only made clear the return of a Japan that has been pawing for times already not suspicious.