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Japanese Culture is to Blame for Hideo Kojima, Konami Issue: Keiji Inafune

Konami treated Hideo Kojima pretty badly, and got criticized for it by a number of reputed and respected members of the industry too. The veteran developer has even moved on from there and announced a much welcomed partnership with Sony Computer Entertainment. However, Keiji Inafune has his own opinion regarding who was at fault in all this.

The man responsible for Mighty No. 9, Mega Man’s Zero, Dead Rising and many more was recently talking to GameSpot where he weighed in on the ordeal. In his opinion, the way Kojima-san was treated should not have happened, but he blames the general culture of Japanese market for that.

He says that in Japan, people know all the major games but a very few of them know about the people who made them – which is certainly not the case in the western markets. He said that the general culture in Japan (not just in the gaming industry) is such that it gives a lot less respect to the creators and much more of it to the product itself.

Here’s an excerpt from his opinion about the Hideo Kojima and Konami feud – or whatever you might want to call it:

It’s not about the Japanese companies, but, [what] I think is that the Japanese culture in general has less respect for creators–the field doesn’t matter–compared to North America or European countries. Even though Japan has a lot of creators in different fields–video games, manga, anime–at the same time, as a culture, it’s really hard for creators to grow because of a lack of respect for creators in general.

He went on to say that the status given to a CEO is always better than a creator (game developers or not) and that “even though you aren’t creating anything, you have social status, money, and your own company–that’s more respected than if you’ve created something from scratch.”

This is certainly a new take on the whole situation and since Keiji Inafune is a key personality in Japanese game making, his opinion about the ground realities has to be given weight.

Do you agree with what he thinks about the whole Hideo Kojima and Konami problem?