Ever since the 1980s, Capcom has been one of the most dominant developers/publishers in video game history. Starting out as a company that made electronic capsule machines, Capcom has since innovated themselves in making some of the most entertaining game series that people had the pleasure to play. This includes games like Resident Evil, Devil May Cry, and timely classics like Street Fighter and Mega Man. For the longest time, the innovating game developing giant sat on top of the world, surpassing their competition in sales and prominence.
With a high amount of success comes a tantamount surplus of pride, and everyone knows that hubris is the type of pride that comes right before a fall. It looks like Capcom is on the verge of disappearing into the winds of time, but can possibly be remembered underneath the authoritative foot of another company. It is now official that Capcom is open to a buyout.
According to IGN, Capcom announced this week that it will not be renewing its takeover defense. A little bit of back history with the company, the takeover defense was instituted into the company back in 2008. What this defense does is prevent third parties from acquiring Capcom directly through shareholders. If this wasn’t put up, game developer companies, primarily Japanese competition such as Square Enix or Bandai Namco, could own Capcom by simply owning enough of the company’s stock.
The company even made a statement about the possibility of being absorbed into another gaming company when they said:
“[Capcom] will react to take steps to ensure disclosure of the position of the board of directors. [Capcom will also make sure] there is sufficient time for shareholders to examine the proposed large-scale purchase and reach a decision.”
This decision to allow another gaming company to take control comes on the heels when the producer of Street Fighter IV, Yoshinori Ono, announced on Monday that he would be leaving Capcom Vancouver, where he most recently worked on Dead Rising 3.
As a huge fan of Capcom games, this is both wonderful and saddening news at the same time. Personally, I grew up loving games by this company. I supported them and feel in love with many of their franchises. However, every year for the last four years, I’ve been hoping to see Capcom innovate themselves out of stagnation just to be disappointed. Just here on The Inquisitr alone, we reported how the newest character in Ultra Street Fighter IV is a Cammy clone which may be a sign that they are out of original ideas. On a historical front, there must be something wrong when all the biggest names in Capcom leave the company. Over the past decade, the following have left the company.
- Takashi Nishiyama: Creator of the Street Fighter Series
- Shinji Mikami: Creator of the Resident Evil Series
- Suda 51: Creator of Killer 7
- Atsushi Inaba: Creator of the Viewtiful Joe Series and Okami Series
- Hideki Kamiya: Creator of the Devil May Cry Series
- Keiji Inafune: Designer of Mega Man
Those are some big names in the Japanese gaming industry, and they all left Capcom, eventually making their own developing studios which pumped out some phenomenal games. Mikami, Inaba, and Kamiya would join together to make Platinum Games, the company responsible for the upcoming Bayonetta 2. Suda 51 would make Grasshopper Manufacture, which is responsible for No More Heroes. Finally, Inafune would create Comcept, the company responsible for Mighty No. 9 and Soul Sacrifice Delta, a game we gave a very glowing review.
So who will buy Capcom? Shacknews gave their opinions on who’d be best to purchase the company which included Nintendo, Microsoft, Sony, Square Enix, Sega, and Activision. Out of the entire list, Bandai Namco would be the best company. If Disney were to buy them, I hope they give the same freedom they gave Marvel after they bought them.
In conclusion, Capcom will always be a loved (or hated) developer/publisher. At least we can say they aren’t total failures as of now. If there is one thing they do have going right for them, it is the Monster Hunter Series. Unfortunately, the unworldly popularity of that series is not enough to save the flailing company.
[Images via Bing]