Indie games have become an enormous part of the PlayStation brand. Whether it’s relatively big titles like Outlast or smaller timewasters like OlliOlli, there’s rarely a week that passes where Sony’s suite of systems don’t receive an independently developed release or two. However, a lot of this content stems from Western studios, and as a result, is not often available in the platform holder’s native Japan. Worldwide Studios president Shuhei Yoshida wants to change that.
“I’ve always been one to love indie games,” he told Famitsu magazine, as translated by Siliconera. “And I also think that seeing you guys at Famitsu and other media focus on indie games is actually a great thing. Since the past, I’ve always felt that there are so many interesting games out there, and it feels like such a waste that we don’t have them in Japan, too, so I’m looking at it in a different light now.”
The likeable executive continued that he’s considering ways in which these types of releases could be made more readily available overseas. “Of course, due to ratings and other issues, it’s difficult to simply make foreign titles playable in Japan,” he explained. “But I’d like to make some platform adjustments, so that they can be made more available in Japan.” The likes of Terraria have already proved extremely popular in the Land of the Rising Sun, so it makes sense.
The big question is: why hasn’t Japan jumped on the low-budget production bandwagon yet? “I expect that it will increase from this point on,” he responded. “From shooters to 2D action games and Japanese RPGs, there are many creators in Japan with such popular genres that have deep roots around the world. If such people participate more in making indie games, then they will surely get attention, and that would be interesting to see.”
And it may yet prove pivotal to the PlayStation 4, as Yoshida continues to see smaller titles as a great stopgap between the big blockbusters on the next generation system. “If we could add indie games to fill in the gaps between big titles, the market and industry would likely be more active,” he concluded. “This is a crucial part of [our indie push].” But do these kinds of releases really keep you occupied, or do you often find yourself hankering for something a little meatier? Let us know in the comments section below.