- Ryan Payton
, self-described game hobo, fresh off working on Metal Gear Solid 4 and a cross-country move from Japan back to Seattle, took some time to sit down with me this weekend to talk development, Japan and life.
Payton's move back from Japan to the U.S. couldn't come at a better time for a game developer, as the focus on game development seems to be shifting from former dev powerhouse Japan to the U.S. Japan may still be the center of the gaming universe when it comes to cold hard cash, but when it comes to development it no longer seems to be, Payton said.
"The Japanese public seems to be disinterested in next-gen and high definition gaming," he said, pointing to the 360 and its apparent uphill battle in Japan as proof of that. "There is a stigma still attached to western technology there."
"There have been a lot of good mainstream games built for the Japanese Xbox 360," he said. "But they only sold a small number of copies. I think that kind of drained a lot of expectations."
And yet the DS, with it's relatively dated technology, continues to sell well in Japan.
"It's not about the tech in Japan, it's about the games, it's about nostalgia."
While Japanese gamers still seem interested in the sorts of games coming out of Japan, the same isn't...