Capcom & it's arcade business

Shaggy July 31, 2008 5

Since I’ve been busy lately I’m a little late on this as I’ve seen it reported all over the place but Capcom has revealed it’s revenues and one thing that has people talking is the fact about their brick & mortar arcade stores in Japan not doing so well. This seems to mimic other Japanese arcades run by other gaming companies like Namco so it’s not terribly surprising to see the trend spill over to other companies yet I do have to always ask the question – are the arcade stores that are suffering the most offering games people in the area want to play? Are they advertising enough? Are there other issues that might be turning people away other than just blaming it on a ‘bad economy’? It’s always quite easy to blame on problems on a simple answer like a slowing economy or something similar but the fact of the matter is that even in terrible economies smart business people find ways to make money. The source article we’re pulling this from at Gamespot UK does mention that Capcom does hope to see things pick up in their arcades with the release of Street Fighter 4, which I’m sure will have a positive effect on their businesses where it is placed. One thing that has probably not helped Capcom’s stores is the fact that Capcom has been practically AWOL from arcade releases over the past few years until Basara X came along so perhaps as they beef up their own releases in Japan things will improve for them. Time will tell.

[Capcom powers up $10M quarterly profit] [Discuss on the Forum]


5 Comments »

  1. editor August 1, 2008 at 12:26 am - Reply

    Thanks guys – my point exactly, no mention of the AWOL titles (such as War of Grail) that went and disappeared off their release list. Also the issue of the unreliable arcade releases in the medal and crane sector from Capcom!! easier to blame the collapse of arcade than the collapse of business practices!

  2. Molloy August 1, 2008 at 5:46 pm - Reply

    I’m somewhat surprised they haven’t announced an arcade release for Street Fighter 2: HD Remix. SF2 is still a staple of the tournament scene in arcades all over the world. The idea that the most current play balance wouldn’t be available in the arcade is kind of unthinkable.

  3. Old School J August 2, 2008 at 12:14 am - Reply

    Back in the mid-1990s I read somewhere on the Internet, possibly the long defunct ‘fighters.net’ page, that at its height in the SF2 World Warrior and Champion Edition days, Capcom were manufactured somewhere in the region of 80,000 or more circuit boards for world wide distrbution. Back in the early 1990s from what I recall arcades were in decline yet this game’s arrival and its solid marketing and distribution was the initial reason arcades had their second coming and thus prospered.

    With SF4 now being released into Japanese arcades it is staggering that it is not up for international distribution, even as a single cabinet or circuit board, and is rather being used as an advertising tool for the home console release. As you say in the main article its always easier for these compaines to go with the flow and point the blame everywhere else but at themselves and their business practises for justifying the non release of an arcade version. And you’re right, even in times of poor economical growth, smart businesses will adapt.

    However Capcom and Namco, with SF4 and Tekken 6 respectively, have done everything wrong so far. There is an international arcade market for these products but they would rather ignore it and concentrate on home realeses. For this kind of attitude and lazy strategy they deserve to fall in the arcade division. Sure, times have changed and this generation of teenager and 20 something gamer gets their kick playing on a networked PC or console but even then the infratructure for an arcade audience, albeit a small one, is there and could grow with a little bit of common sense and positive marketing and business practises. Are you listennig Capcom?

  4. editor August 2, 2008 at 11:33 am - Reply

    Wow Old School – spot on comment.

    Just to add to that, I have heard that the Namco and Capcom team in the UK and US have been beat-up by their bosses to look again at finding arcade test and distribution – all this bad media hitting home.

    Just for your information I have spoken to a new arcade distributor who promises to bring all the JP games that will not be launched in the US over!! The Stinger has a interview later.

  5. Old School J August 2, 2008 at 7:05 pm - Reply

    Thanks for the comments and the update editor. It is interesting to hear that the UK and US divisions for Namco and Capcom are considering re-thinking their testing and distribution for their arcade games. I think you mentioned it before, player pressure by a group of dedicated and passionate arcade gamers is what it may take for these companies to realise the opportunities they are missing.

    Also, good to hear about the new arcade distributor promising to bring Japanese titles to the US and hopefully UK too. This will probably represent another wake up call to these companies to get themselves in order and realise the potential of an international market and the importance of providing for it. Editor, look forwarding to reading the interview, thanks again.

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