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              In my initial response upon the announcement of Dash 3's cancellation on my site,  I stated that fury should most properly be directed towards Capcom's Financial Board of Directors (BOD), and not the developers.  In response, #20 laid a short essay where he insist that everyone (though not in equal parts) are to blame, and anger should be directed to all for the cancellation.    While his statement is most certainly a reaffirmation of "self-determinism", I still stand firm on my opinion. But rather than have my explanation of this hide in the comments section, I'm presenting it here.

            The problem with #20 assessment is the assumption that the board of directors are like some benevolent judge who always give nice straight and direct guidelines and provides very specific rules and requirements to direct their decisions.   Also that executives always follow through with their word.  As such, #20 claims that it is most fundamentally the shortfall of the Dash 3 Project Dev. room and us fans for not fulfilling the "requirements" set by the board of directors in getting them to green light the development.  The reality of the matter of the matter is that they aren't like that. Not at all.  Quite the opposite in fact.
              Much of the reality of the corporate world is that they are to this day still heavily ruled by the whim's, assumptions and prejudices of the people in charge.  And likewise, these people are not exactly open to new ideas, or even willing to learn or accept their faults AFTER being proven otherwise.  In the case of Capcom's BOD, that point is quite literal and specific.  In a recent interview with Famitsu, Inafune Keiji revealed that Capcom's functioning operating practice was NOTHING BUT SEQUELS to currently known financially viable series.  (This explains all the EXE/Shooting Star sequels the last several years, as well as the Street Fighter and Biohazard titles).  That is the say, the BOD did not dare push the development of a new game for the risk of the financial repercussions if the game were to fail.  Dash 3 would for all intents and purposes be a new game, sadly something that the executives would not be that willing to take a bet on.
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               But how about Capcom's most recent new successful IPs, Lost Planet and Dead Rising?  Doesn't that defy that statement? Well surprise surprise, they were produced under Inafune and from that exact same interview, Inafune revealed that the development of those two was completed via corporate defiance and manipulation on his part.   Inafune expected the prototypes for Lost Planets and Dead Rising to not get green lighting, which they didn't. So underhandedly, he exceed the development cost of the Prototypes for the games by some "400%", meaning the game will actually be much further along in completion, and forcing the executives to be unable to "cut their losses" and see the game through to market.  As it sounds, it was a risky move by Inafune, who mostly likely would of been fired if not for those games turning into the successes they now are.

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                Wait, if the BOD were proven wrong, wouldn't they have learned by those examples?  OF COURSE NOT. That's why our beloved Megaman Universe was taken out earlier this year.  Inafune pushed for that product, explaining that it would a good method for developing the downloadable game market of Capcom as well as giving them a framework to develop a Downloadable Content market.  But soon after Inafune's departure, the BOD were right back at not risking money on the "new 'idea of DLC, and Universe was out.

               And the one thing I will love the point out about the last two paragraphs, Inafune's place in those projects were all from the seat of a DEVELOPER.  He was in quite the similar seat at the people in the Rockman Dash 3 Project Development Room. The exception being Inafune having quite a bit MORE seniority and power in comparison to Eguchi et. al.   And even then, Inafune barely skated by until he was unable to take it anymore and resigned.  So how much power do you think the Developers have? Ultimately they are bounded by finances to get stuff done, which the BOD hold on to firmly with an iron claw.

              If we were to take the BOD at their word, we would at least be expected to see the Prototype version released to the public, and sales of it should of been the determining factor for Rockman Dash 3's completion. But did they follow on their word? NOT AT ALL.   So tell me, how do we lay blame on the Developers again and not the BOD?

 


Comments

07/21/2011 7:28am

Other games that are not sequels, Dragon's Dogma, Asura's Wrath, Nazo Waku Mansion, are managing to get made somehow. Legends 3 is a sequel, though a questionable one, and it did not make it. I guess my question is, why can these other titles pull off a budget approval and Legends 3 couldn't?

I feel that the communication was mis-managed. Not that GregaMan isn't an awesome translator, because I think he is, and he did an excellent job of taking the messages sent from Japan to the West. But that doesn't mean all of Kinako's messages about food and weather were helpful to what we were actually trying to do. Some of the messages were just small talk with I guess the only purpose for the Developers to seem more friendly. Instead, I would have appreciated reports of a more intimate business nature, which almost certainly would have been more revealing as to what criteria we were all supposed to be meeting. The Devroom communications were half-hearted, because fans were second-class developers. Which was fine with me when it meant being surprised by all the plot twists and turns, but not when they make the decision to cancel the game completely without us, and without feeling the need to try and justify it to us. It was a very tenuous experiment, and I think in some ways the experiment could certainly have been improved.

If the Devroom had 1. released the Prototype when they said, and 2. just said how many times it needed to sell, the hardcore Legends fans would have each bought the thing 10 times over if not more (within the first week since we know Capcom prefers short-term figures over long-term ones) to keep the project alive. I don't know why they canceled the Prototype after the date was already set, but I suspect this was a development team decision, and not the board's decision. I have no proof of that, any more than there is actual physical proof besides speculation of what forces truly spelled the end of this project (that knowledge is forbidden to us, and I do blame the BOD for that). I can not say that the decision to delay the Prototype killed the Project... but I can see that as being a factor on why the Project was not meeting a business criteria.

On my blaming the fans, I suppose I should clarify, lest I be lumped in with the backpedaling going on @CapcomEuro. I don't think hardly any of the Devroom members suspected just how much trouble Legends 3 was in. We all heard them say "we can't do this without you!" and fans went there and we had no idea it wasn't enough, despite them saying how much they needed the hype and repeating how much they needed to recruit new members. We still thought things were going smoothly, and judging by everyone's reactions there, we were all basically shocked when it was announced canceled.

In hindsight there were clear indications, but we missed them. Not to say that everyone missed them, but enough where we got to where we are today. I feel that Capcom's development team didn't stress clearly enough to us how tenuous the project really was, or these same fans who are making the biggest fuss now and giving Capcom a PR nightmare, would have made this kind of effort before when it might have counted for greater. Our only failing as "the fans" is to not connecting the dots and reading between the lines better, which we are trying to make up for now, but it may well be too late. I don't think putting all the blame for Legends 3's project on any singular entity is an honest approach. Developers can and make mistakes, as any human beings do, and just because they were on "our side" as far as wanting to get this made, doesn't mean their mistakes shouldn't count. I don't have the inside knowledge to judge where exactly they went right or wrong. For all I know, this was the foregone conclusion as soon as Inafune resigned. Maybe he mis-sold it to them in the first place, promising a huge turnout of fans that was unrealistically greater than ever there could have been. But until the picture is clear, I will not place blame on one entity, the evil BOD, the developers, the fans, anyone. We all played our parts in this dance. But if blaming them as the ultimate evil gets you through the day, go for it. I honestly can't say that you're wrong!

I still think they could have made a great game that I would have been happy to buy twice (one for both regions, as I have been doing for most of their titles since the early 2000's). I hope hope hope something miraculous happens with all these fan protests and revival efforts. Sadly, if you're right about these board folks' pure irrationality, then the BOD is probably an entity that's not going to change its mind.

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08/06/2011 11:20am

"All Intensive Purposes"

Better grammar check, buddy

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Wrongtot
08/09/2011 3:51pm

Noted and fixed. Thanks for helping me sound less stupid than I actually am~

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