I don’t have any interesting stories or witty well written remarks to tack onto the beginning of this editorial piece. So with that being said, I’m kicking the kitchen door down and serving the meat and potatoes to whoever is in the vicinity of this write up.
To the citizens of the internet: Quit with the blind hate for Capcom.
Now before you skip to the end of the article in a desperate attempt to locate the comment box so you can come up with a creative way to call me a fanboy, please use the eyes on your face and notice that I said “Blind Hate” and not “Hate”.
If I said, “quit hating Capcom” then that would mean that I am asking you to relinquish your well thought out and reasonable opinion for not liking Capcom. It would be like saying ”hey, I understand why you hate Pasta, I respect your reasons, but still, you should eat Pasta…” I think we can all agree that I would be full of tomfoolery if I was to suggest a person should do that.
However, I am saying “quit blindly hating on Capcom”, which means I am asking you to stop fanning the hate flames just because all the cool kids are doing it. Stop looking at certain situations and quickly coming up with your own hateful conclusion without properly considering what is going on. The problem is, nobody will admit they are blindly hating, so I’m going to attempt to make you realize that you probably are. A bold statement, I know, but it’s something I wouldn’t even dare endeavour in if I wasn’t passionate about it or didn’t have the confidence to. I also predict that most people won’t care about what I say and cuddle onto their opinions like its their one and only child. Just know that its pride and stubbornness when illuminated by truth and facts, that prevent people from changing their mind-sets to a more sensible/educated conclusion. Believe it or not, an opinion can change. There is a myth floating around that once you have an opinion, that’s it. Your mind is incapable of being opened up to new ideas or ways of seeing things.
A common guideline in the “Hate Capcom Fanclub”, is to mention how they have nickel and dimed the customers to hell. Which they have, to an extent. Personally, I have always been against paying for characters. I’ve always preferred the concept of paying for DLC that serves only personalisation purposes. Things like costumes, titles or any extra in game item that does not increase gameplay in any way at all, are all fine with me. It’s when we are made to pay for things that potentially means we are missing out on gameplay if we don’t buy them – that annoys me. However, in recent events, many people are having freak out sessions over Capcom’s decisions. Case in point: “Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3″.
Trust me, I had a “WTF!” moment when I first saw the news, but then I REALLY looked at the situation. This is why I say people need to stop “Blindly Hating”. Yes, ‘Ultimate’ was announced only 6 months after the release of ‘Marvel vs Capcom 3′ and when it comes out in November, it will mean that we bought two Marvel games within one year. Sounds incredibly stupid. Now, take the time to actually look at what we are getting in that game and then ask yourself if the people who plan on buying it are just Capcom zombies. 12 new characters and almost every single old character is getting new moves/tricks. You have probably heard that being said many times but simply put, the 2nd question you should ask yourself is; “is that not worth it?” (Whilst remembering it’s not full retail price and asking yourself how many other fighting games give you 12 new characters in an expansion?) If you don’t eat troll food for dinner, I’m sure you will see that it is indeed worth it. The main problem seems to be that it’s just coming out too soon, which is something I also agree with. Aiming to have it out by at least by February a year after the original release would have been more sensible, especially because I still think the current game had a lot more to be explored. A lot more. But then you have to look at it from more angles than just one.
There is a growing interest in fighting games now. (85,000 viewers at EVO is proof of this) To maintain that growth, there needs to be a constant and steady injection of fighting games into the hands of the gamers, now that there are more gamers who are willing to play than compared to 10 years ago. Whether it’s ‘Call of Duty’, ‘Battlefield’ or some other FPS game, there is always something being spoken about within that genre, be it a new game, a patch, an expansion or a trailer at E3. Maintaining growth is very important, and shooters do that all day long with new shooters coming out so frequently. Fighters right now, are trying to provide more games for the increased numbers. Just look at the amount of fighting games scheduled to be released soon and then compare to how many were coming out before ‘Street Fighter 4′ existed? From Capcom alone we have “Ultimate Marvel 3, Street Fighter x Tekken and 3rd Strike Online. Clearly they know what audiences they are catering to and they are trying to do the best they can to bring in more players. Street Fighter X Tekken is attempting to fuse the Tekken community and the Street Fighter community, since the two have the biggest fanbases. It’s a no brainer to get them both playing the same game. 3rd Strike Online is pure fan service which is never a bad thing.
Now, understand that ‘Marvel vs Capcom 3′ did not sell that well compared to ‘Street Fighter 4. I believe Marvel stands at about 1.5 million. Street Fighter did just over 3 million. ‘Ultimate Marvel 3′, is a second attempt at getting more people to get into it as well as a result of listening to the fans and trying to make them happy by answering their cries, (better balancing, Strider Hiryu) while trying to bring in more players at the same time. You can’t please them all, but I think that it was a sensible business move that will hopefully do a good job at compromising current player needs and the need of more sales.
There is also the fact that Capcom has been doing this since they were born and have been releasing full updates in the form of a full game since the original Street Fighter. Which goes to show that either many people have chosen to forget that fact or that many of those complaining where born in 2001 and Street Fighter 4 was their first fighting game.
I won’t get into fields that I don’t know too much about, such as Resident Evil 5 stuff or whatever else that you can find in this picture here: http://www.gamingsurvival.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/capcom-mistakes.jpg but I will say that most of that stuff is just clearly trying to nit pick and blow up every little thing they have done. How the hell is the new ‘Devil May Cry’ game being developed by ‘Ninja Theory’, a bad thing? How is it bad on the company that the 2nd Miles Edgeworth game and the Phoenix Wright/Proffesor Layton cross over title, are not being released in the west as of right now? There was a time when we thought we would never have got ‘Tatsunoko vs Capcom’ in the west, but it happened in the end. Why is ‘Megaman Universe’ and ‘Megaman Legends 3′ being cancelled, on that list, when CLEARLY, ever since Inafune left the company, things just went pear shaped with anything Megaman related. Obviously, there has been some internal issues and ricochets that we may never know the truth of and has nothing to do with us, so why is it a bad thing? It baffles me.
The next problem I have is probably the one that infuriates me the most.
Capcom are one of the rare breeds of companies that are almost unnecessarily in touch with their fans. How could you hate on that? In fact, how dare you hate on that? How many people are quick to say that companies should not be defended because it all comes down to money and that all they want is whats in your wallet? What I’m doing here is not blindly defending Capcom. (Blindly is the keyword of today’s lesson) Instead, I am defending them on the fields that they DESERVE to be defended on and being so in touch with their fanbase, is one of them. Lets think, which other huge studio is known for their closeness to the fans and have so much of a following that they could probably invade Africa if they wanted?
You guessed it – Blizzard. Even if you don’t care for Starcraft, WoW or Diablo, I urge you to have a look at their forums to see how busy they are reaching out. Or, you could look at the fact that they have their own convention called Blizzcon. They don’t even NEED to go to events like E3, TGS or Gamescon. They have their very own. Just like how Apple doesn’t really need to go tradeshows like CES. The only reason why Blizzard is the beast they have become is because of the fans. They know that. So does Capcom. They understand that fighting games is still a niche market even though it is a growing niche, so they understand that they need to keep their fans happy whilst doing what is necessary to be as future proof as possible and to avoid what happened to them 10 years ago. How many companies do you see with this much fan appreciation? The big dogs of the Capcom staff were all at EVO2011, getting involved, not just acting like empty suits with nothing to share with anybody. All you need to do is watch Seth Killian on commentary to really understand how much love is there. The dude knows nearly ALL the names of both top and soon to be top players. It’s as if he doesn’t even really work for Capcom and instead uses his time to keep up to date with all the going ons in the community. People do not appreciate this. Even if you have adamant, legitimate reasons for hating Capcom and prowl for scraps to attack their credibility as a company, you should still respect the connection they have with the very people that allow them to feed their families.
My final issue that I have with these people might strike a few personal chords, but it must be said.
Some people just can’t handle the fact that because Capcom fighters are the most played/popular, their own favourite games are being overshadowed and are not getting the attention they deserve.
Now, I can honestly understand that feeling. The flow chart of the mind-set is: “There’s this thing that I want to be more recognised because it really deserves it, but there’s this other thing in the way that’s stopping what I want from happening. The thing that’s stopping it isn’t even as good as the thing I like. People only play it because it’s popular and it has “such and such” in its name.”
If that is the stigma you have against Capcom, then you ironically need to redirect your hate to the company of whatever game you want to succeed and wish that they would do more to make it succeed on higher levels.
It is not Capcom’s fault that they work so hard to deliver games and other developers within the same genre, do not. It is not Capcom’s fault that other companies are not as in touch with their own communities. It’s not Capcom’s fault that other organisations do not have the initiative and resourcefulness to work with other big names such as Marvel and Namco to get better results and more interesting games that can attract more people. In fact, if this is a reason for your negativity, you should actually thank Capcom because other fighting games can ride the wings of success protruding off Street Fighters back. Fighters are slowly starting to become one whole unified gaming scene, as opposed to separate games constantly in competition with each other.
My thing is, if you really, truly, understand and know what Capcom have done for the fighting game industry, you would never hate them, even if your beef with them was only based around Resident Evil or Devil May Cry. It’s like being eternally angry at the man who invented the car just because he sprayed terrible graffiti around your neighbourhood. Or because he made other things that weren’t as good or cost too much money. Either way, you should still respect that he created the car. I won’t get into a long list of things Capcom has done and all the iconic characters/games that they have under their belts. That would be a heavy task and I suggest if you haven’t, that you go do some research and watch some documentaries to really understand the influence they have had on gaming as a whole. When I put it like that and read it back to myself, I can’t help but feel that the random/trolling hate I’ve seen all over Twitter, forums and some podcasts, is just a classic example of hating on Mr.Popular just for the sake of hating on Mr.Popular. Just like how its cool to hate on ‘Final Fantasy 7′ without a solid reason other than “because that’s all anyone ever talks about”. That’s bullshit.
We are all gamers and we all love games. We should be happy that there are so many different genres within gaming. Let’s all rejoice. It makes no sense to hate the very people who helped make gaming a diverse medium by being responsible for the creation of the fighting game on a 2D plane, which has continued to live on till this day. I bet everyone who is reading has at least 3 Capcom games they loved to play. Or has a Capcom game as one of their top 15 games of all time. It’s funny to think that in light of all that, a few business decisions and apparent wallet robbing, has turned them into the world’s worst enemy.
You don’t have to like their games. If you don’t like’em then you don’t like’em. I just believe they deserve to be respected for what they have done (and continue to do) for this industry.