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Capcom to develop major new IP primarily in Japan

Publisher speaks of difficulties outsourcing development to overseas companies

Capcom has decided to develop all major new game IP in Japan following the difficulties it experienced outsourcing development of Bionic Commando. Furthermore, the company's president Haruhiro Tsujimoto has said he would drop Western studios entirely if it was possible to do so.

"Our experience with Bionic Commando has demonstrated the difficulty of outsourcing the development of new titles to overseas companies," Tsujimoto said during a Q&A session, reported by Kotaku.

"Nevertheless, we cannot develop a sufficient number of titles without using the resources of these companies," he continued. "This is why we plan to continue using these alliances.

"We are considering ways to separate the roles of activities in Japan and overseas. We plan to develop new titles primarily in Japan. Overseas companies may be used mostly to develop titles for existing game series with well-established characters and universal themes. Overseas companies will also handle certain parts and/or line-ups of such games."

Tsujimoto's comments contrast those made in November by Capcom VP Christian Svensson.

Then Svensson told GamesIndustry.biz the company was "adamant" about expanding the number of Western developers it worked with,

"We're actually going to be doing a tighter integration between our Western operations and Japan's operations, so we'll have producers on both sides of the pacific assigned to pretty much every project, including things coming out of Japan," he said.

"Over the past three years or so we've had a Western product development organisation that was fairly standalone, a bit autonomous. I think we're heading towards more of a global team now."

Swedish studio GRIN, the creators of Bionic Commando, closed in August last year due to an "unbearable cashflow situation". Bionic Commando was released in May but failed to make a significant critical or commercial impact.

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Kath Brice