With the amount of videogames out there featuring giant robot suits that kick the crap out of each other, you'd think that Gundam creator Yoshiyuki Tomino would appreciate the medium. Dismayingly, however, he actually hates videogames, thinks they're a waste of time and that they are, quite simply, evil.
"I think that video games are evil," he says in his CEDEC keynote. "[Gaming] is not a type of activity that provides any support to our daily lives, and all these consoles are just consuming electricity! Let's say we have about three billion people on this planet wasting their time, bringing no productivity at all. Add 10 billion more people, and what would happen to our planet? Video games are assisting the death of our planet!"
"The video game industry is now 30 years old. It is just the right time for the business' company structure and many other elements to become solid. But at the same time, it is also a point where there is uncertainty in its future. In order to overcome this uncertainty, it is important for experienced creators such as myself to talk about their experiences.
"You have to find the median -- that games are not evil, perhaps not necessarily good either, but something that can be considered a pastime. What would make people enjoy a game? How do you make them feel like it is not just a waste of time? ... Has there been anything better than Tetris since it first came out? How many years has it been? This is what I want to tell you: I want you to create a game that does not negatively affect our daily lives and is something that is considered more productive."
I find this man's statements particularly ironic, because I tried to watch Gundam once, and found it to be a most peurile, unproductive and ridiculous waste of time, myself. I'm hoping a lot of this was said with a tongue in cheek, because a man who works in anime stating that videogames are unproductive is hypocrisy of the highest order. Even if some of what he said was lighthearted, he's really in no position to cast judgement on the merits of other forms of entertainment.