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 Is Capcom Killing Mega Man? 

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PostSubject: Is Capcom Killing Mega Man?   Sun Jul 24, 2011 12:49 pm

by Colin Moriarty

I like reading about conspiracy theories, but I'm not much of a
conspiracy theorist. As much as I'd like to believe that the U.S.
Government has an alien craft stowed away at a secret base in the
southwest, I know it's not true. And it's funny to listen to people
claim that astronauts never actually landed on the moon, but everyone
knows that those fools might as well be in The Flat Earth Society.

Yet, with recent happenings concerning Capcom's iconic character Mega
Man, I can't help but wonder if a conspiracy is indeed brewing based
entirely on three key events that have occurred since the Blue Bomber's
creator, Keiji Inafune, unceremoniously departed from Capcom after 23 years of service.

It's clear that Keiji Inafune wasn't seeing eye-to-eye with folks at Capcom
towards the end of his tenure, and was certainly left unimpressed with
the state of Japanese game development as a whole. As he famously
remarked at 2010's Tokyo Game Show, "everyone's making awful games,"
concluding that "Japan is at least five years behind" the thriving
western gaming market. These aren't comments that could have sat well
not only internally at Capcom, but with his peers in the Japanese game
development scene. After those harsh comments, it only took a couple of
months for Inafune to bid adieu to Capcom when he left the company in
late October of 2010.

Universe was the first post-Inafune casualty.
since Inafune left, his paramount contribution to Capcom -- the
development of the Mega Man franchise -- has been all but snuffed out.
That's not to say that Inafune worked on and had his hands on every Mega
Man title ever created, because he didn't. But he was in the mix with
virtually all of the most important and most revered Mega Man games, and
that series is what catapulted him to development stardom, where he was
able to work on various other franchises.

The first post-Inafune Mega Man casualty was the strange cancellation of Mega Man Universe,
a LittleBigPlanet-like Mega Man game based in the world of Mega Man 2
(and about as close as we were ever going to get to a Mega Man Powered
Up 2). The cancellation was strange because it was axed more than six
months after Ryan Clements played the game at TGS 2010. Mega Man Universe
was set to come to PlayStation Network and Xbox Live in 2011, and was
to give us a little taste of making our own excruciatingly-difficult
Mega Man stages. The game certainly didn't appeal to everyone, however,
and when taken alone, it is perhaps understandable why Mega Man Universe was thrown into the vaporware dustbin.

Then, earlier this week, Mega Man Legends 3 on Nintendo 3DS was cancelled. What was strange about this cancellation was that Mega Man Legends 3 was only officially announced back in September. And stranger yet, the "Prototype Version" of Mega Man Legends 3 was revealed only a few months ago, in April, which promised a rare view into the development of a game.

Fans waited a decade for this. They'll have to wait longer.
Capcom seemed to blame Mega Man Legends 3's cancellation on the open nature of the game's development.
And perhaps that's true, too. But why cancel a second Mega Man game
mere months after cancelling a different one? What kind of signal is
that supposed to send to fans? Both games were under development when
Inafune was still with Capcom, and both were aimed at hardcore Mega Man
fans, especially the latter. With the exception of the Classic-style
Mega Man games we got with Mega Man 9 and Mega Man 10, there was no
single what-if Mega Man game more requested than Mega Man Legends 3.

It was at this point that things started to feel a little fishy to me.
Okay, cancel Mega Man Universe, the first cancelled Mega Man game I can
think of since Mega Man Mania
never got off the ground. But cancel Mega Man Legends 3, a game fans
have been anxious to play for over a decade? And then the icing on the
cake: excluding Mega Man from the roster of twelve additional characters that would be coming to the new version of Marvel vs. Capcom 3!? Really, Capcom? Really?

The Blue Bomber was a staple in Marvel vs. Capcom 2.
let you be the judge of whether there's more to this situation than
meets the eye. That's why I gave this article an open-ended title. I'm
just trying to put the pieces together as to why Mega Man no longer
seems to be a priority to Capcom ever since Keiji Inafune took off. In a
sense, it's hard not to understand the mentality at Capcom in terms of
Inafune if there is indeed some sort of conspiracy brewing. Not only did
he say hurtful (but true) things about the Japanese gaming industry,
but this was the guy who admitted tricking Capcom into letting him develop some of his later games.

Yet, the other side of the coin is far more compelling. Keiji Inafune
helped build Capcom into the company it is, and gave to it its most
recognizable icon in Mega Man. So why are eager Mega Man fans being
dealt such a disservice as of late? How are we to believe that Mega Man
is in good hands at an Inafune-less Capcom?

Mega Man is one of the reasons I began playing games every day of my life as a child. The FAQs I wrote in high school about Mega Man are part of the reason I am in the industry today. I passionately defended Capcom's decision to make more 8-bit Mega Man games, and even made a case
for a new Mega Man X. That little fictional robot will always mean
something to me. And I know he means something to millions of gamers
around the world.

You wanted Mega Man in MvC3? Too bad.
why does it seem that Capcom couldn't care less about Mega Man today?
And when will we learn more about the future of the franchise, and how
it will be treated at the new Capcom? Because there's no reason for fans
of the Blue Bomber to feel confident after the cancellation of the only
two Mega Man games known to be in development. And leaving out Capcom's
mascot from the roster of one of its marquee fighting games based upon
recognizable characters certainly feeds the fire.

I hope I'm wrong. I hope Mega Man 11, Mega Man X9 and more are right
around the corner. But with everything going on with Mega Man lately, it
makes me wonder if I should be a conspiracy theorist after all.

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PostSubject: Re: Is Capcom Killing Mega Man?   Thu Aug 18, 2011 6:23 pm

Yeah, I heard about this from another website. Sometimes I wonder why important people always have to leave gaming companies... =P

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PostSubject: Re: Is Capcom Killing Mega Man?   Fri Aug 19, 2011 3:12 pm

If they're like any other company then it's probably because the person is sick of putting up with all the bull shit corporate deals out.

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