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Grassroots Movements Vs. Gaming's Corporate Inevitability

Please tell me the answer, is fate unchangeable?

Editorial by Jeremy Parish, .

Yesterday, I spotted an intriguing thread on popular gaming message board NeoGAF: "Suikoden on Steam and GOG campaign by Suikoden Revival Movement," which details a grassroots movement to get cult favorite RPGs Suikoden and Suikoden II onto Steam.

It's not a bad idea, even if I do question the group's intended tactic of bombarding Konami's social media channels. Unlike many port requests, this one seems feasible. The first two Suikoden games were released on PC years ago in China, so Windows-friendly renditions exist. Converting those versions to use the existing English scripts for PlayStation wouldn't be a massive endeavor. Plus, Steam has proven to be quite a friendly format for Japanese RPGs, creating financial incentive for publisher Konami to jump in. Grassroots movements can make a difference, and even if Konami has been raking in record profits since moving away from video games, it's not unreasonable to think they might be open to making even more easy money.

Still, I can't help but feel a bit ambivalent about the name "Suikoden Revival Movement," because it hints at ambitions that seem unlikely at best and counterproductive at worst. It's one thing to lobby for wider availability of games that have been out of print and climbing in price for a decade — that's the lord's work right there. But while the group's website doesn't state it outright, it appears their long-term goal is to convince Konami to begin making new Suikoden games. After all, it worked for Shenmue III, right? So anything is possible, at least in theory. But even if Konami could somehow be convinced that returning to the high-stakes, high-risk, low-profit video games business was a good move (good luck with that), do we really want another Suikoden game?

I mean, yes, wow, how amazing would that be? Another Suikoden after all this time? Great as it sounds in principle, though, I have a feeling that dream has something of the monkey's paw to it. Yes, an essential element of fandom is an insatiable desire for more, more, more... but I've come to accept in recent years that another part of loving a creative work comes in being able to let go and say, "This is enough."

If by some miracle Konami suddenly felt a profound need to continue to Suikoden series, what are the chances that a new entry would live up to the original trilogy? The creative passion of writer Yoshitaka Murayama drove the first three games to excellence; he acted as the creative force behind its fascinating world and all the rune-based creation myths that fueled both the plots and mechanics of the games. Murayama left after Suikoden III, and you could immediately, and profoundly, feel his absence: Nearly all fans consider Suikoden IV the worst of the series, and while Suikoden V righted the ship somewhat it also felt like a chore to play thanks to its technical issues. Konami attempted to distance the series from Murayama's vision with Suikoden Tierkreis for Nintendo DS, a game that has its share of fans but feels like Suikoden in name only (much like its Japan-only follow-up, and the final entry in the Suikoden franchise to date, The Woven Web of a Century for PSP).

Suikoden Tierkreis wasn't terrible, but its draggy pace and oblique premise felt nothing like a true Suikoden adventure.

Konami could make new games with the Suikoden name, but they'd do so without Murayama's guidance it's doomed to feel ersatz. Meanwhile, Murayama has reportedly been working on his own off-brand spiritual successor to Suikoden, Blue Moon — but even if he nails the feel of the earlier RPG series, it will lack a narrative connection to his previous works. And that, ultimately, was the appeal of Suikoden: The progression of standalone stories that together formed a tapestry of a world and its history. The True Runes, the immortal characters, and the growing sense that each new Suikoden tale pushed these universal elements closer toward some ultimate endgame — more than anything, those were Suikoden's greatest strength. The reality is that the story's creator and the franchise's owner are two different entities, and they've been estranged for more than a decade now. Realistically, they'll never get back together, and that means Suikoden fans will never get the follow-up they want. Murayama can create a follow-up in spirit lacking true connections to the original, and Konami has demonstrated that the best it can do is drag along a hollow corpse of a brand. But they'll never make that crucial connection that would make a Suikoden sequel truly desirable.

In no way is this state of affairs unique to Suikoden. On the contrary, it's practically become the defining nature of modern popular entertainment. Almost everything you love is owned by corporations, and it's rare that an individual creator's vision outlives the desire to sustain a brand. Corporations are not your friend, and they don't have any particular interest in creative integrity. Their friends are their board members, and their interest is in growing profit margins.

Given that video games want to be movies but have more in common with comic books in terms of creative maturity, perhaps it's fitting that the creative-versus-corporate model that most closely resembles the one video games have fallen into can be found in comic book movies. So, too, is the gaming industry's treatment of the people whose ideas drive it. The Marvel film franchise is worth billions to Disney, yet many of the men who helped create the characters that have become global film icons have struggled in poverty and failing health for decades. DC's Bill Finger more or less defined everything about Batman, but he ended up dying poor; Warner, however, continues to make billions from the character. Writer Alan Moore revolutionized the comics medium with Watchmen, a standalone saga that DC has stretched in increasingly crass directions thanks to its beloved status among comics fans. Moore has spoken at length about his distaste for the company's treatment of his work, but he's powerless to do anything about it.

Alan Moore's not even dead, and still he's rolling in his grave.

Anyone who follows comic books from major publishers inevitably has to come to terms with the fact that some writers and artists do great work with the property, but those people eventually move on, and whoever replaces them may not turn out such satisfying interpretations of those characters or premises. Likewise with other media; you can be guaranteed that anything bearing JJ Abrams' name will take a nosedive once he steps away. Consider Alias, or Lost, or the current run of Star Trek films, all of which suffered once he moved along... and all of which loom as an ill omen for future Star Wars films after the success of the Abrams-directed The Force Awakens. Then again, Star Wars is now owned by Disney rather than by George Lucas, and the company wasted no time in concocting a plan to turn it into a conservative, sustainable, serialized franchise. In fact, shortly after I wrote this paragraph, rumors hit the web suggesting that Disney has ordered reshoots on Star Wars: Rogue One in order to make it less dark and more conventional — a perfect case-in-point example.

That's the Disney way: Safe, predictable, sustainable, and quite possibly dead the moment things start to take a downward turn. Hence the death of Disney Infinity at the first sign that its profits might diminish. Certainly you'll never see Disney's Marvel films take bold, controversial steps like the comics' recent decision to reveal Captain America as a lifelong secret villain. Which isn't altogether a bad thing. Chances are, most people won't complain — they'll find the cautious, steady Disney approach superior to the comics' new Captain America continuity, or the Lucas-helmed Star Wars prequels. But while taking a middle-of-the-road approach means we'll almost certainly never see another scene as terrible as Anakin Skywalker attempting foreplay by lamenting the roughness of sand, it also means we'll never see the shocking, boundary-breaking creative highs that gave us Star Wars in the first place, either.

At some point, we have to ask ourselves, "What is it that we actually love about the things we love?" Do we love the property or the creators who gave it life? Sometimes, talented people can keep a concept fresh long after its original creator exits the scene. In my Mega Man-a-thon streams, I've spoken quite a bit about the role designer Akira Kitamura played in defining the series — but even after he left, the franchise continued to hit new highs. Mega Man 3 was excellent. Mega Man X was even better. Mega Man Legends was spectacular. Yet Capcom cranked out plenty of terrible Mega Man games over the years. And now, Mighty No. 9 — created by people who had a direct hand in some of the finest Mega Man entries ever — looks like a major letdown to many fans of Inti Creates' previous work. (Publisher Deep Silver's legendarily wretched trailer for the game certainly didn't win any hearts, including that of the game's producer, which offers as perfect a summation of the one-sided relationship between corporations and creators as you could hope for.) On the other hand, Capcom isn't doing anything in terms of new Mega Man games, and hasn't for half a decade. When Mighty No. 9 launches in a few weeks, hungry fans will be forced to ask themselves a soul-searching question: "Is this, in fact, better than nothing?"

Submitted without comment.

Controversial writer Devin Faraci recently lamented the "broken" state of media fandom, and there's some truth to his remarks... but the angry, violent corner of fandom he paints as the entirety of fandom ultimately represents a minority. Certainly groups like the Suikoden Revival Movement don't radiate that sense of malevolent selfishness. They might be a bit overzealous in their approach, sure, but they appear motivated by positivity and earnestness rather than entitlement and resentment. Is there actually anything to be positive about, though? The nature of corporate ownership over creative media seems unavoidably geared toward destroying the properties that fans love. Look at how overstuffed and garish the X-Men movies have grown compared to the 2000 original. Consider all the promising TV series that have descended into trash once the showrunner leaves — or when the original showrunner is forced to stretch a premise across far too many seasons. Look at the way music labels exploit musicians before strip-mining their work.

Certainly corporate ownership over media properties has its benefits. I never imagined as a teenage nerd that the biggest film franchise in history would be based on the comics I was reading 20 years ago, movies graced not only with massive budgets but also big-name celebrities and, miraculously, meticulous inter-film story continuity. Yet here we are, with one of the world's largest media conglomerates using its resources to somehow turn even C-listers like Ant Man and Dr. Strange into box office gold. Or consider Final Fantasy XV, which has seemingly found redemption with an infusion of new blood in an attempt to solve the development troubles it suffered under one of Square Enix's best-known and most successful directors.

A smaller company might have simply let the troubled Final Fantasy Versus XIII wither on the vine, but Square Enix turned it into a flagship release. We'll know soon whether or not that was a good idea.

These seem more like exceptions than the rule, though. More often, the relationship between corporation and creator tends to be one of friction: The latter comes up with a great idea, and the former squeezes and twists it in directions that were never intended until at last the creator leaves in frustration and the corporation wrings out every last drop of integrity and profit (usually in that order). This, then, has much to do with the appeal of independently published games. There are many things to love about indies, but perhaps most of all is the guarantee that those creators make their own choices. OK, maybe there are entirely too many Five Nights At Freddy's games at this point, but at least the glut exists as a result of creator Scott Cawthon's own choices. If we ever see sequels to Shovel Knight or Axiom Verge or Stardew Valley, it will be at the discretion of their respective designers rather than at the demand of shareholders or a board of directors, and you can be certain Sean Velasco or Thomas Happ or Eric Barone will be involved in their creation.

In other words, as the media world increasingly comes to be defined by board rooms smothering the life from creative concepts through endless sequels, spin-offs, and remakes, independent creators have become essential fonts of creativity and inspiration. Just look at the stunning lack of hype leading into this year's E3; the wild-eyed speculation and excitement that once defined the show has fizzled away, because there's so little potential — so little room! — for genuine surprises at the event. Those moments seem reserved for smaller events now, at the indie booths of EGX or PAX.

In any case, I strongly encourage everyone to support the Suikoden Revival Movement's campaign to get those PlayStation classics onto Steam. Getting wonderful RPGs in front of a wider audience is never a bad thing. But at the same time, keep your fingers crossed that Suikoden never makes a true comeback. The series gave us some excellent games, but the environment in which those classics came into existence no longer exists. New games absent the saga's original visionary would only cheapen our memories of the long-ago days when Suikoden meant greatness.

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Comments 25

  • Avatar for VotesForCows #1 VotesForCows A year ago
    Fantastic stuff.
    Always good to be reminded of that original article too. I sometimes find myself pining for more Metal Gear, a 2D Castlevania, or maybe a Demon's Souls sequel - but to what end? What we have are good as they are.
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  • Avatar for Jesna #2 Jesna A year ago
    Honestly Jeremy, I'm not sure what your point is here. There are plenty of pitfalls with corporate ownership of interesting IP, but the continued use of a videogame IP doesn't seem particularly problematic.

    So why should I "keep my fingers Suikoden never makes a true comeback," unless its out of some irrational fear that a bad new entry will retroactively make the old games worse? This is simply not a problem or possibility in most situations, especially in the case of a niche JRPG that the mainstream audience doesn't even know about. Nobody is bemoaning the existence of the sequel to Catch 22, even if lacked any of the qualities that made the first book so captivating. The original is still hailed as a literary classic no matter how bland the sequel ended up being.

    Suikoden is my favorite videogame series, and I'd love to see them take another shot at the franchise, even if it ends up a failure. Honestly, I'd argue that Suikoden V is the best in the series, so Murayama's influence isn't so vital that a sequel has no chance of success. Another failed entry from a new director won't make me dislike the other games I found enjoyable.

    Anyway, interesting article overall. Its not like Konami will ever make another Suikoden regardless, no matter how passionate those fans are.
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  • Avatar for SatelliteOfLove #3 SatelliteOfLove A year ago
    It's odd as my thirties grind on after experincing the emotional angst of a multitude of beloved series, genres, and their creators careers wither, murdered, or mutated into something I wouldn't touch with someone else's 10-foot pole, and seeing this despondant anger over beloved properties get grabbed up by those younger than me or them not realizing that people not used to liking a media outside the mainstream affect changes when they begin to like an outside media.

    "Oh my sweet summer child" and all that.

    And I really can't stand the connotation that empassioned fans are by default raving depersonalized rageholics that Faraci's article alludes to. Feeds back into this extremist artillery match that passes for history on media subjects/politics/social issues/etc lately.

    @Jesna

    We have evidence to the contrary, though. They're in the article. It's certainly what we weren't asking for back when for Genso Suikoden 6 and got Zombie Suikoden.

    Rather, I would ask that people drop money on living high-quality series that are treated right by fans, treat the fans right, and the powers-that-be treat their creators right.

    You know, before they join the NOLFs and Breath of Fires of years past.Edited 3 times. Last edited June 2016 by SatelliteOfLove
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  • Avatar for mobichan #4 mobichan A year ago
    Wonderful article! I have often tried to pinpoint the reasons for liking old games and I think it always comes down to a combination of the creative team and the time in your life when you experienced their work. maybe that is just nostalgia, but I like to believe it is something more. Every time a reboot or remake happens I can't help but get a little sad that the spirit of the original work is somehow going to change for the current generation of players. Do I want people thinking the new Strider is what they should check out when people fondly mention that franchise? How about Rocket Knight, Double Dragon Neon, etc. They were "ok" games, but I truly wish they just released under their own new IP's and not tried to pass themselves off as being part of someone else's creative work.

    The new Monsterboy game has me curious, since it involves Wonderboy's creator, but I still can't help but feel like what we have to play already is more than enough.

    As for Shovel Knight, I sort of hope there is no sequel. It is a beautiful gem on its own.
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  • Avatar for Jesna #5 Jesna A year ago
    @SatelliteOfLove That's not a bad stance to take about new media, but the evidence of bad continuations and cash grabs is mostly irrelevant in my opinion. I can list hundreds of pieces of media that have had less than stellar sequels but are still beloved.

    No number of terrible Shakespeare adaptations render the originals worse for their existence, and good ones like Tom Stoppard's Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead are considered masterful works of literature themselves. In Suikoden's case, Tierkries sucked, but Suikoden II is still a great game and a new sequel could still be just as great. We've managed to have successful entries into the DOOM and Wolfenstein series in just the last couple of years. They were in a similar quagmire, albeit with a much more powerful brand name in a more popular genre.
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  • Avatar for jeremy.parish #6 jeremy.parish A year ago
    @Jesna I feel like you got hung up on the last sentence of the article rather than responding to the overall piece. Like I said, it's good to ask yourself what it is you love about the things you love. The name? The concept? The original vision? Those are all different things, and anyone who refers to something as "an IP" can give you the former all you want, but probably not the latter.
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  • Avatar for Vonlenska #7 Vonlenska A year ago
    Fantastic article! The gradual shift of "nerd culture" from, "making stuff inspired by things you love," to, "buying branded garbage," has been interesting to watch. Even though a lot of the Nerd Canon doesn't do anything for me, Final Fantasy and Squaresoft's IPs had a huge impact on Microlenska. It's been...well, sad to see Square-Enix's handling of those IPs continue to be more or less what you'd expect from Enix, while most of Squaresoft's actual former creative staff have struggled with being independent developers without benefit of branding.

    Continuing with comics parallels, I'd point to Vertigo as a good example to follow: creator-owned works with decent funding and options to merchandise/brand without letting the original works get completely diluted in a barrage of nonsense tie-ins. Except that Vertigo's currently experience some turbulence, and nothing else looks ready to fill the void. It took Karen Berger to build that house, and without her, it's just a cave full of IPs to strip mine. There's the double-edge of creator control in a corporate culture: it takes irreplaceable individuals like Berger or Miyazaki to fight for creators and artistic integrity, but the money-minded milk machine is a many-headed hydra.

    Sometimes it feels as if creator-owned art is fighting a losing battle. Uphill. In the rain. Barefoot. Both ways. Same as it ever was, perhaps; art has a long history of depending on patrons' whims. For myself, I try to pay attention to the actual humans who make things that speak to me, and follow/support them. I encourage others to do the same, but no one ever really cares.

    To follow the example in the article, nobody cares about Murayama. He doesn't have any branding, and branding's all that matters. Here's hoping more indie games find success.
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  • Avatar for almidakubiak #8 almidakubiak A year ago
    Deleted September 4000 by Unknown
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  • Avatar for Jesna #9 Jesna A year ago
    @jeremy.parish I was actually thinking about the line "Is there actually anything to be positive about, though? The nature of corporate ownership over creative media seems unavoidably geared toward destroying the properties that fans love," when I commented, my thoughts just dovetailed nicely with your concluding paragraph as well.

    I don't even disagree with the overall premise that artists should own their art, or that corporations often detrimentally value money over the creative vision of their work. It just seems to me that there exists as much evidence against your points as their is for, especially in an often mechanics-focused industry like videogames. Iteration and reinvention demanded by corporate needs has produced just as many classic games as it has bloated, soulless cashgrabs.
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  • Avatar for SatelliteOfLove #10 SatelliteOfLove A year ago
    @Jesna

    Shakespeare's been dead for centuries. Stoddard wasn't aiming for "Shakespeare 2: The Quickening" at the behest of his bosses. This changes things.

    @jeremy.parish

    Its worse when it involves arguing that a series is sliding downward from various forces or the lack of following the creators as people as they go do new ventures, or giving the same creators doing something different a chance.
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  • Avatar for kevinbowyer34 #11 kevinbowyer34 A year ago
    This is why i primarily follow creators, not series
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  • Avatar for alexb #12 alexb A year ago
    Entropy is the natural state of the universe, games not excepted. Still, when I look at what became of most of my old favorites, I can't help but feel a bit glum. Yeah, there will be new things in the future and I'll probably like some of them, but those new things don't replace the ones that were lost. But what are you going to do?

    A good article, another in what appears to be a series on "Midlife Crisis as a Gamer." It's an under-used angle given all of the bright-eyed '90s kids hanging out on the Square Net forums and writing in at the GIA didn't just evaporate. Most us are still here in some fashion, slouching on toward the inevitable. This sort of rumination on how it all eventually turns to shit (so enjoy it while it isn't and accept that it must end) is kind of like group therapy.
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  • Avatar for docexe #13 docexe A year ago
    Corporate ownership is a double edged sword. Many of the entertainment products we love and enjoy today exists due to the bankrolling of some corporation behind them. But the fact of the matter is that, yes, corporations primary concern is the bottom-line and too often artistic integrity is sacrificed in the name of profits.

    It’s easy to become cynical about corporations due to that common tendency, but the thing is that caring about profits shouldn’t have to lead only to the desecration of every piece of entertainment that we love. I mean, economical logic would dictate that if you want your business to be successful and thrive on the long term, you need to treat your customers and employees with a modicum of respect, not to mention put out consistently quality products. In that sense, it would actually be more profitable in the long term to not be just a soulless, greedy, nonchalant corporate asshole. Yet, long term strategies are also... well, long-term and require a lot of continuous effort, hard work and resource investment. And the sad fact of the matter is that it’s scientifically demonstrable that if human beings can take a path that let’s them avoid hard work, they will indeed take that path.

    That’s, IMO, the true problem with corporations: Too often, the people running the show don’t care about what will actually net them the most profits in the long term, but about what will net them the most profits in the here and now and with the less amount of necessary effort and resources involved. Thus why they go with all those troubling strategies that yield good money/savings in the short term, but very likely at the expense of long term sustainability (“avoid risk taking, go with the safe and predictable”; “churn out as many installments of the same popular franchise as quickly as you can, quality be damned”; “who cares if the employees are being treated like crap, they can always be replaced”, etc., etc.)

    Still, I don’t want to be completely pessimistic about this. As much as the people at the top of the corporate ladder tend to drain the life and joy of things I love, there are sometimes people in that same corporate ladder that either have a strong creative vision and enough political ability to see said vision come to fruition, or who recognize the creative strength of the people under their charge and have enough foreknowledge to give said people the necessary freedom to put their talents to good use.
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  • Avatar for donkeyintheforest #14 donkeyintheforest A year ago
    @Jesna I agree with you completely. A couple other objections to the article:

    "video games want to be movies but have more in common with comic books in terms of creative maturity" - this is a sweeping and false assumption. Even using the article's own examples, Alan Moore's Watchmen demonstrates far more creative maturity than any of the Marvel films. If you move out of the realm of superheroes, things get even more creative, varied, and interesting.

    "...you can be guaranteed that anything bearing JJ Abrams' name will take a nosedive once he steps away." ("the current run of Star Trek films, all of which suffered once he moved along") - Star Trek into Darkness was directed by JJ Abrams. He provided the nosedive.

    I would like to take from this article the idea that we should be more happy to support creative works by auteurs, and damn those money grubbing corporations, but it seems to be more a rationalization about being ok with not getting good sequels to media we like.
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  • Avatar for capedconstable #15 capedconstable A year ago
    I feel like this is a wonderful take on the relationship between creator and creation as much as it talks about corporations and creators. Sometimes creators themselves hold on to their creation too long and run it in to the ground just like corporations do. With Suikoden 1,2,3 their was a vision that held itself throughout all the titles but could, probably would, have ground itself out within the vision of the creator. Lethal Weapon is one of my favourite movies but the director ran the vision into the ground with three extra sequels: 1 good, 1 alright, 1 terrible. Sometimes letting a story be is the best way of it existing as much as a fan such as myself would love more of what I love the interest or the creativity would eventually be lost. All things end, especially the things we love.
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  • Avatar for Natabuu #16 Natabuu A year ago
    Konami: "We heard you loud and clear. Suikoden is back!
    ... as a F2P mobile card collector with Gacha mechanics."
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  • I think it's fairly straightforward: Konami is DONE with games. What people would like to see them do, therefore, is license out that IP to developers who can actually create capital for them. If done well, it works for Konami's favor (the IP remains relevant and valuable without any hard work from their end) and for the licensed developer (they make a product with a built-in audience.)

    As for the rest of it, well, I'm a huge fanboy of everything Disney, so I'm probably the last person to talk to about the pitfalls of corporate ownership. Walt got swindled out of Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, and it taught him the book on how to do some swindling himself. I'm not one to get super active or teach myself awareness of this stuff, mostly because I accept art as a commercial product like any other and don't see it as deserving a higher "purity" or anything like that. That's why I'm also a steadfast 'no' when discussions come up about video games receiving government culture grants.Edited 2 times. Last edited June 2016 by UnskippableCutscene
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  • Avatar for Pacario #18 Pacario A year ago
    If only these companies would be willing to "loan" out their discarded properties to fan/indie developers who still have the passion to perhaps makes something great with them. Assuming the game they made was good enough to sell on Steam (and beyond), the indie developer would receive the majority of the profit (having essentially financed the game itself), with the rest going to the parent company as a sort of royalty.

    This already happens on Amazon with certain fanfiction projects - writers can choose from a selection of IPs to craft stories around, and should those stories sell, both the author and original creator share the money. The program is called Kindle Worlds.
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  • Avatar for docexe #19 docexe A year ago
    @Pacario Mmmm... Wasn’t that more or less the point of Square Enix’s The Collective? What happened to that by the way?
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  • By the way, I'd like to mention: Stan Lee made Spider-Man, but a huge majority of the best Spider-Man stories weren't written by Stan Lee. He wasn't on board even by the time Gwen Stacy died, that story was written by Gerry Conway.

    You don't HAVE to be the person who originally created a thing to create a great vision for that thing.
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  • Avatar for jeremy.parish #21 jeremy.parish A year ago
    @UnskippableCutscene Of course! I never said other people couldn't do good work with someone else's toys, and I even mentioned Mega Man as an example of great things happening after the original designer's departure. Some of the best work with properties comes years later. But, those do tend to be the exception... for every Batman Year One, there are usually a whole lot of No Man's Lands.
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  • Avatar for jihon83 #22 jihon83 A year ago
    These are truly dark times if Abrams' name is a mark of quality.

    That said, the piece does make valid points, nevermind also that fans can easily fracture when asked about what made something great or why they loved it. That onky becomes more true and annoying as time passes, because that love for something in the past is changed as a fan likes and loves new things, and becomes lost in those thought experiments of, "man, I bet Suikoden would be even more amazing if they took x from y."
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  • Avatar for Monkey-Tamer #23 Monkey-Tamer A year ago
    Still waiting on Chrono Trigger to hit Steam as well. If all the old school JRPGs were on PC my wallet would be empty and my marriage in shambles.
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  • Avatar for DrCorndog #24 DrCorndog A year ago
    Crap, Jeremy. Just when I thought I might be able to convince myself that I like The Force Awakens, you remind me why that's probably impossible.
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  • @DrCorndog It's hard to like TFA because the one place it succeeds in landing the drama of Empire Strikes Back is the part people hate for aesthetic reasons. In a certain way TFA's villain is succeeding at evil in ways Anakin/Vader didn't, but it's hard to recognize that in a real world culture that is so against "emo kids" that those similarities are the only ones people see.

    Kylo Ren is a legit point about Vader (if he didn't have children/family, who could have stopped him?) but it's lost among Abrams focus on showing him being emotionally unstable not in an affably psychotic way, but in a laughably dangerous way that makes sure he never is confused for cool or smooth the way Vader was.

    Somewhere along the way Abrams got lost and started directing "The Dirties" In Space.Edited June 2016 by UnskippableCutscene
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  • Avatar for DarkGamer007 #26 DarkGamer007 A year ago
    Suikoden too is my favorite videogame series, and I'd love to see them take another shot at the franchise, even if it ends up a failure. Honestly, I'd argue that Suikoden V is the best in the series, so Murayama's influence isn't so vital that a sequel has no chance of success.Edited July 2016 by DarkGamer007
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