Skip to main content

Capcom’s general manager illuminates the company’s “ratings” based development

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Capcom isn’t what it used to be. The company rose to prominence as one of the best game developers in the world with idiosyncratic, innovative, games with lush visuals. In its push for greater global success, though, it’s lost much of its identity. New statements from one of its key managers demonstrate just how hard Capcom is chasing an audience rather than trying to innovate.

“The bottom line is that we think game data is a genuine reflection of gamer habits and attitudes, and thus needs to be given top priority and examined directly,” said Capcom general manager of consumer game development Kazunori Sugiura, “In many ways, the development of online social games is a lot like producing a TV program, while developing games for home consoles is more like making a movie. We always keep a close watch and a place a high value on daily data, which is just like TV viewer ratings.”

The take away is that Capcom is now in the business of letting user metrics drive its game development rather than trying to invent and invest in new projects that might create new audiences. It’s a philosophy that, on a long enough time line, will kill both the business and the creativity that fuel a great developer.

It’s also precisely what went wrong with Resident Evil 6: Capcom tried to make a game that appealed to every audience there is. The game was built by a team of 600, with no coherent focus, no singular creative vision to bring it together. It’s an opulent production, with a ton of content and incredible visuals, but it is also vapid, empty of soul. “We’re making games and we need to have mass market appeal in order to survive,” Resident Evil 6 producer Yoshiaki Hirabayahi said in an interview with 1UP, “How far do we go into horror before we lose the support of the average player? How far are we going to lessen the horror elements at the risk of losing core fans, including Resident Evil fans? The challenge is trying to push as close as possible to the edge either way, so that we can satisfy both groups of people.”

Is this business philosophy working? Resident Evil 6 shipped 4.5 million copies this month, but there’s no evidence to suggest those copies were all sold. We do know this: Capcom sales fell 16 percent last year. It’s time for Capcom to stop chasing audiences and just build the best games it can.

Editors' Recommendations

Anthony John Agnello
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Anthony John Agnello is a writer living in New York. He works as the Community Manager of and his writing has…
Resident Evil 4 Shooting Gallery guide: locations, rewards, and tips
Leon holding a gun in Resident Evil 4.

The fact that Resident Evil 4 remake retains the original's ability to mix horror with campy fun is one of its greatest aspects. One moment you will be gripping your controller for dear life as a swarm of bloodthirsty villagers relentlessly pursue you, and the next Leon's making quips and performing suplexes. There was one small fun diversion in the original game that has been expanded and improved for the remake, which is the optional Shooting Gallery. This time there are multiple of these safe spaces to hone your aim, but also a fully developed system of challenges, scores, and, best of all, rewards. If you want to take a breather from all the horrors that await you in Resident Evil 4 remake, here's where you can find all the Shooting Galleries, what you can win, and some helpful tips.
Shooting Gallery locations

There are a total of five locations across all 16 Chapters of Resident Evil 4 remake, and they all are within the safety of a Merchant zone. Each one, except the last, will introduce a new set of three challenges, but all previous challenges from past Shooting Galleries will be present in the later ones. That means you could technically wait and only visit the final one to take on all the challenges there. Here's where you can find each individual Shooting Gallery in order of appearance:

Read more
Resident Evil 4 Charms: all Charm effects and where to find them
Leon collecting a teddy bear charm.

Everyone loved the attaché case from the original game and was very excited to see that it would return in the Resident Evil 4 remake. This case brings back the delicate balance of managing your inventory space between healing items, ammo, weapons, and other items that you want to bring with you. What's new are the little keychains you can attach to your case called Charms. These are more than minor cosmetic flair, though, as each Charm has a unique buff that can help turn the tides in your favor. However, being brand new, even veterans of the survival horror classic won't know how to get or use them immediately. Leon needs every advantage he can get in Resident Evil 4 remake, so help him out by checking out all the Charm effects and where to find them.
How to get Charms

Since Charms are a new addition in the remake of Resident Evil 4, the way to get them is also somewhat new. Those who played the original might recall a small shooting range Leon could mess around in. In the remake, this mini-game has been expanded quite a bit. There are now multiple shooting ranges and within them multiple challenges. The first one you can encounter is when you find the Merchant in Chapter 3 after going through the Quarry. Whichever shooting range you pick, enter the ornate elevator to be transported to the range.

Read more
Resident Evil 4: All Yellow Herb locations
Yellow herb in Resident Evil 4.

Despite being sent all the way to Europe to rescue the president's daughter, Leon arrives vastly underpowered for the job presented to him in the Resident Evil 4 remake. Not only was he sent in alone, but with just a single handgun (with 10 bullets) and a knife. If you want any hope of completing this mission, you will need to get every advantage you can. Aside from expanding and upgrading your arsenal, collecting as many of the game's Yellow Herbs will be your top priority. Of the three types of Herbs -- Green, Red, and Yellow -- these are the rarest of them all. In total, you can only grab 17 of them in a single playthrough. You will want as many of them as possible to give Leon a much-needed buff, so here's what Yellow Herbs do and where you can collect them all in the Resident Evil 4 remake.
What Yellow Herbs do

Each of the three Herb types in Resident Evil 4 serves a different function. Green Herbs are for healing, Red Herbs enhance the effect of whatever Herb they're combined with, and Yellow Herbs actually increase Leon's maximum health. That makes them by far the most valuable of the three since, with enough of them, you can essentially double the amount of damage you can take once you max out his health.

Read more