Assassin’s Creed developer says narrative in Japanese games is "jibberish"
In an otherwise solid interview with CVG’s Rob Crossley about the development process of Assassin’s Creed III (although I don’t think it counts as a new IP), creative director Alex Hutchinson made some rather unfortunate comments that has caused quite a bit of controversy on the web these past couple of days.
For those of you who don’t know what I’m talking about, Hutchinson basically accused gaming journalists of favoritism, stating they tend to forgive storytelling flaws in Japanese games, while judging the plots of western games to harshly. Oh and if your not critical of this “jibberish”, you’re being a racist.
He would go on to use Gears of War and Bayonetta as examples.
I can honestly say I enjoyed both Bayonetta and Gears of War for what they were (a crazy grindhouse story and modern war story in a sci-fi setting) but I also think both have their fair share of flaws (Bayonetta’s plot is confusing and Gears' has some unlikeable characters).
As far as his claims against the gaming press are concerned, I think they’re pretty unreasonable. If some critics prefer the fantasy aspects of certain Japanese games over the gritty realism of certain titles developed in the west, that’s a little something I like to call “personal preference” not racism. Besides, there are plenty of Japanese games that get criticized for bad writing, like Final Fantasy XIII and Metroid: Other M for example.
As long as critics put their personal preferences aside (well, within reason of course), evaluate individual games for what they are rather than the genre they represent, they can still come up with a fair and accurate score.
Hopefully the Assassin’s Creed brand won’t be negatively impacted by these unfortunate (and hypocritical) comments and we can get back to having fun, enjoying our games of choice, and (if you're a fan) looking forward to the launch of Assassin’s Creed III.
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I don't know....I think he's just mindlessly ranting or something.
argh, the comment section messed up again. I didn't mean to comment to you again, but rather a new comment.
oh well, sorry about that.
If Western developers didn't try so hard to say their game was the biggest thing since sliced bread, and then offer up what amounts to every other Western game in Gen7, maybe I'd be more critical of the Eastern games.
As stated in my other comment, he's not incredibly out of context, but his base of argument is way too shaky. Were he to say how language and regional / national differences influence the creation of games( or something of the like) and how journalists react to such differences, then he might have a more solid base to start with, I live inbetween the USA and Japan and I see gibberish from all sides, including my own. The main difference might lie in what one perceives as fun, and regarding that, comparing GoW to Bayonetta is too big a difference in genre. I find it almost sad to see Hutchinson is apparently capable of coherent thought regarding the matter but incapable of thinking his argument out properly before voicing it. A man in his position should know better. Hey Ben, do you think anyone would be able to to be completely objective when reviewing both Japanese and 'English' games? I'm afraid to say I think it's impossible. We're all way too hardcoded (upbringing and the like) to be completely objective towards other nations or languages..
I don't seem to understand this guy's point. He's getting upset because people have different opinions and values as him about good story telling?
If he's seriously working in the industry and he has a closed mind such as that, it's a real shame to see these type of people dictate how our entertainment is created when it should be celebrated because it has a flavor for everyone.
It would be a real shame to see every game follow the same formula and contrivances, not too un-similar with current Hollywood movies in my opinion. Most western games have been trying to do that lately though and it makes me sad.
Because we all know that Assassin's Creed's story is so brilliant.
Lol sounds like the guy is just butthurt that AC's story hasn't gotten critical acclaim or whatever. Salt.
I'll just pretend this guy never said this and enjoy my Assassin's Creed. Would hate to see one of my favorite franchises tarnished because an asshole works on it...
Gibberish? I beg to differ. I've never played Bayonetta before, but since I've played games like Xenoblade Chronicles, Final Fantasies 1, 4, and 6, and even the MegaMan Battle Network games, you can't call the stories "gibberish" without trying to shoot yourself. It could be because I've never had the chance to play such games, but I think I would've heard of at least one besides Final Fantasy XIII. Oh yeah, if Mr. Hutchinson meant his statement literally, either ask for subtitles, or learn Japanese.
did he really just say that? lemme remind you this is the same company who says no female protaginst in AC 3 because it's wrong to play as a woman (sexist at finest) and having alian as plot twist in AC2 with an apple to kills everyone it touch. Clearly the japanese are the only one who makes gibberish story.