Capcom lays out 2007 plans

On Thursday, Destructoid was on hand at a special Capcom gamer’s day in which the publisher not only gave us the chance to see and try out their most important titles of the year, but also hear from the company on just exactly what they wanted to do for the future — some good, but definitely a lot of bad.

The big point Capcom really kept trying to drive home with us was the fact they are no longer an isolated Japan-focused company, that they are putting a lot of time and resources in making sure their games represent the West and a wide range of tastes and play styles. Will they be able to pull it off? Will they become the next Electronic Arts? Time will certainly tell, but from what we saw, it could be a bumpy road ahead.

Hit the jump for the complete breakdown of Capcom’s 2007 gamer’s day presentation.

You know how I like to do it, clean and simple for y’all. Here are the key points in easy-to-read bullet points:

• Mark Beaumont, the executive VP for Capcom, said the company is heading into the future with a mindset of going for strong performances in the West with an increased focus on sales and marketing in those previously-ignored areas.
• Capcom is planning to expand through genre expansion, more studios, and an aggressive license movement. They’re basically looking for new IP and license-driven content from the West.
• Capcom is focused on making sure their games go multi-platform. It seems as if the days of exclusivity are dying fast at the company.
• Keiji Inafune, who is the head of R&D at Capcom, said games like Dead Rising and Lost Planet set up a good framework for moving forward in next gen. He said Devil May Cry 4 is a main centerpiece for this.
• Inafune said Capcom is developing internal frameworks to more easily develop games for multiple platforms.
• Inafune wants Capcom to become more of a worldwide developer and publisher. He says most Japanese developers only focus on Japan — It is important to have a variety of cultures represented in your games, that he wants Capcom to be as open as possible.
• While Capcom does seem to want to become more mainstream, Inafune says the company will continue to take risks with games. At the end of this presentation, he hinted that many BIG surprises would be announced in the months to come.
• Masachika Kawata, the producer of Resident Evil 4 and Umbrella Chronicles for the Wii, said he wanted the serious feeling of RE with the light controls of the Wii. He felt the Wii was perfectly suited for the series with its built-in point and shoot mechanics.
• There were minor adjustments made to RE 4 for the Wii: No laser sight, now just a gun sight; added search knife system; minor tweaks and adjustments made overall.
Umbrella is an all new, original title for the Wii that was built from the ground up. They stressed it was not a port in any way.
Umbrella is an FPS on rails (think House of the Dead, but not as good) and includes three characters. They promised a deeper story.
• Christian Svensson, of Capcom Digital Iniative, said he wants a larger downloadable game strategy for Capcom. He said retail is not ideal for reaching the super niche.
• For online distribution, Capcom is looking to always go cross platform (XBLA, PS Network, PC) and looking at community-driven content.
• For online games, Capcom is developing new and licensed IP.
• Capcom announced these titles for XBLA and the PlayStation Network: Talisman (Winter); Rocketman: Axis of Evil (fall); Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo HD Remix; Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix.
• Capcom now as the rights to Moto GP 07 and will release it on the PlayStation 2 this fall. During the presentation, they were really trying to get the point across that this sport was super popular.
• More Mega Man games coming, but honestly, who cares?
• Shade 2 announced for mobile phone platforms. The game is basically an MMO for cell phone users that is very open-ended and has no level cap. Slated for a Q1 2008 release.
Project Treasure Island Z (working title) for the Wii was announced. Basically nothing but a big puzzle game in which you’ll use the Wiimote to solve everything.
Monster Hunter 2 for the PSP announced for a September release in North America. Capcom made sure to mention that the Japanese version has sold over one million in a span of weeks.
Monster Hunter 2 will have over 250 quests, more than 60 unique monsters, 11 different weapon types, over 700 weapons, and over 1,500 parts to combine for armor. They claim that the game would take over 100 hours to complete if you did everything.
Phoenix Wright: Trials and Tibulations announced for the DS, along with a Harvey Birdman game for the PSP and PS2.
• The PC version of Lost Planet is being created by the original 360 team with a heavy focus on high-end PCs. The game is slated for a June release.

Robert Summa