Over the last couple of years – and especially the last few months – there has been a lot of discussion about PlayStation’s relationship with Japan. It is no secret that the company has become very Westernized, and consolidated its efforts across North America and Europe in particular. This also applies to Playstation first-party developers; such as Naughty Dog, Sony Santa Monica, Guerrilla Games and Sucker Punch are now at the forefront of the company’s approach to successful software – and all are based outside of Japan.
However, the head of PlayStation Studios Hermen Hulst emphasizes that PlayStation has not left the country it came from. Speaking on the official PlayStation blog, Hulst said: “I want to make it very clear that Japanese games and Japanese talent remain extremely important to PlayStation Studios and to Sony Interactive Entertainment. Japan and Asia are strongly linked to our legacy: the success of Sony, the PlayStation brand, and many of our iconic PlayStation franchises were actually born in that region. “
Of course, it is also worth mentioning the fact that PlayStation currently has very close ties to some of Japan̵
Hulst continues: “I know the potential of high quality games from Japan and Asia, and some of the best development talents in the world are there. They have the history of innovation, craftsmanship and skill, pride and team spirit. We would very much like to continue these traditions. “
He continues to sing the praises of Japanese studios Polyphony Digital (Gran Turismo) and the much-assembled Team Asobi (Astro’s playroom). On the latter, Hulst reiterates that the developer is still expanding: “We are building Team Asobi in Tokyo, a world – class studio developing a franchise for all ages with a global appeal. Such a creative team.”
What are your thoughts on Playstation’s current relationship with Japan and the Japanese gaming industry? Consider playing through Astro’s playroom again in the comments section below.