By Joseph Leray
Capcom have released its financial earnings report for the first nine months of the 2012 fiscal year, which ends on March 31.
The big-picture news is that Capcom’s sales are up, earning a cool 6.6 billion in income yen this year, an increase of 104.9 percent. Capcom attributes this to strong sales of major releases such as “Resident Evil 6,” “Dragon’s Dogma,” a”DmC: Devil May Cry” and “Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate.”
Sales of downloadable content, a crop of popular social games, on-going subscriptions to “Monster Hunter Frontier Online,” and a “Resident Evil 5”-themed slot-machine game rounded out the company’s income for 2012.
There’s more good news for the company, too: according to Capcom’s statement, “Dragon’s Dogma” performed better than expected, “becoming a million-seller unprecedented among recent new brand games.” It’s no surprise, then, that Capcom would want to follow up on the game’s success with a hefty expansion pack.
Here’s where things get ugly, though: despite selling 4.8 million units, “Resident Evil 6” “failed to achieve planned sales and fulfill its role as a driver of sales expansion,” according to the publisher. “Despite recording brisk sales when it debuted, [Resident Evil 6] subsequently lost its momentum.” Capcom expects the game to hit 5 million sales by the end of the fiscal year.
Call me old-fashioned, but it boggles my mind that a game can be sold to five million people and still be considered a disappointment. It’s hard to know what kind of conclusions we should take from this news, but I imagine we can expect to see more downloadable content for Capcom games, not to mention a bit of soul searching about how to proceed with survival horror’s biggest franchise.
Quality aside, it’s also possible that there are simply too many “Resident Evil” coming out at once. “I think certainly looking at the last year or two, there probably were a few too many,” “Resident Evil: Revelations” producer Masachika Kawata told Videogamer. “I think we learned last year that putting on a lot of titles would not necessarily win over gamers.”
Kawata’s game was released for the 3DS in February of last year, but will head to consoles in May, alongside Dontnod’s “Remember Me,” which -- if the game’s most recent developer diary is anything to go by -- looks pretty intriguing.