Why Xbox failed in Japan


5 years ago

I thought it was good opportunity to put my two cents.

I'm Japanese, and a big Xbox fan. And I truly think this Xbox failure is due to crappy, non-sense marketing done by Microsoft Japan.

First of all, they don't understand that people don't buy a console only for a single title, even if the title is an A-class one. MS Japan made huge campaign for titles like Blue Dragon, Lost Odyssey, Star Ocean 4 and such, but because they concentrate too much on these single titles, these campaign didn't succeed to cause enough traction to attract new users. People 'invest' their money into platform, so it is important to advertise that more games are coming, but they failed to do this.

Also, MS Japan marketing does not understand who their main targets are.
Everyone else knows Xbox's main audience is core gamers. Attracting casual user is second stage. But incomprehensibly MS Japan tries to sell hard core games into casual users first. One of the worst example is this;
Does any of you think this ad sells Gears of War???

PS3 is not as successful as Sony has wished I guess. PS3 has always suffered from lack of titles (due to complicated architecture), but Xbox 360 used to have decent number of (albeit foreign) games. MS Japan should have used this advantage to attract title-hangry PS3 users, but they just kept marketing FPS to non-gamers.

But they have no idea why their marketing fail. Why? Well this is the worst part. They don't play games. These guys rarely turn on their Xbox at home. They are non-gamers. They are not interested in video games. If you are not interested in cars, how can you be a good car salesman? This is what's happening inside.
Yes there are some who love games, but they are minority. I would say most of the staff have Gamerscore of under 1000 after these years.

If I were the boss, I would fire people who has never bought a game console with their own pocket money.

It's very sad, but in Japan, Xbox marketing is done by people who are not at all interested in gaming.
This is why Xbox failed here.

P.S. Don't ask me where I got these info.