Table of Contents
In this interview, Ibai Ameztoy, the CEO of the Japanese game company Active Gaming Media, analyzes his own career, the gaming industry today, and the future of gaming in Japan.
In recounting the events between his arrival in Japan and the founding of his company, Ibai discusses how he developed an interest in Japan through manga and anime, and how after visiting Japan, he decided to move here. Ibai initially worked at a Japanese game company and founded his own company in 2008.
Ibai then offers his thoughts on the contemporary status of the gaming industry. Two issues have recently come to define the Japanese gaming industry: the focus on characters rather than the structure of the game, and the production of hits as the most important goal. As a result, similar games have flooded the market, which now suffers from a lack of variety. In contrast, a range of high quality games are being produced in the United States and Eastern Europe because the United States enjoys an established environment for freely creating games, and the number of talented developers is increasing in Eastern Europe.
As part of closing the interview, Ibai argues that two important variables are necessary for the development of the gaming industry in Japan. First, young developers must be mentored through the transmission of experiences and techniques associated with game development. Second, Japanese culture must diversify more by accepting people from various nations. Participation by people with diverse backgrounds leads to new ideas. Indeed, Ibai’s company has become renowned both inside and outside of Japan, and the majority of his staff is from foreign countries.