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DMC Devs Talk Gameplay Differences Between East And West

The East vs. West debate continues to rage, although it's generally accepted that the West is winning the battle, in terms of both sales and quality.

However, rather than addressing the cultural differences and contrasting interests, the DMC designers talked about the difference in how Japanese and Western developers approach gameplay.

In a recent Gamasutra interview (as cited at Siliconera), Devil May Cry producer Motohide Eshiro said one of the biggest differences involves realism of animation.

"The main difference, if we were to really simplify things, is it seems that Western games tend to focus a lot on realism in animation, so that, if you’re walking along and you stop, you should go through a natural and proper stop animation, which tends to look very good.

But, when we’re talking about something like Devil May Cry, the concept has always been letting the user do what they want when they want—cancel things in mid-motion and suddenly turn on a dime, this sort of thing. We had to spend a lot of time getting this concept across, and bringing their way of thinking over to the mind space that we were in, and finding that balance between realism and ease of use."

If you break things down and analyze various East and West games, you will indeed spot small yet distinct differences like this. And for the record, we'd have to expect full freedom of movement and combination canceling and all that in the upcoming DMC, which is of course a reboot. As for other differences between West and East, we're certain you guys can talk about it. ;) Just don't get too nasty.

Related Game(s): DMC

Tags: dmc, devil may cry reboot, ninja theory, capcom, japanese games, western games

9/8/2012 9:22:22 AM Ben Dutka

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Comments (29 posts)

WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 9:57:16 AM
Reply

I've noticed this for a long time now, western devs worry about the means by which the ends are achieved. So running into a wall in Uncharted 3 means you will put up your arms, stop that crash and push off in the direction you meant to go.

In Japanese games the end justifies the means so there is almost no environmental influence, the character navigates their space based on their own rules of how animation works. It gives us a wooden feeling inside the game but also allows for the most amazing action of all time and of course, the double-jump.

Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 9/8/2012 9:57:42 AM

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Beamboom
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 10:23:21 AM

Western games have double-jump too?

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WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 11:36:01 AM

But where did they get the idea and how realistic is the animation of the impossible?

Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 9/8/2012 11:38:52 AM

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Beamboom
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 2:22:14 PM

To be honest I think double jumping has been with us in gaming since the very beginning.
I can remember it all the way back to at least Amiga era platform games, Doom most definitely had it, Quake as well, it's a key move in Unreal Tournament... To mention those I can think of from the top of my head.

But maybe we don't see double jumping as often anymore? Double-jumps are fun! :)

Last edited by Beamboom on 9/8/2012 2:23:52 PM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 4:11:13 PM

lol, you can't even jump at all in Doom.

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Shams
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 6:06:50 PM

I first encountered the double jump in Revenge of Shinobi. Later examples were DMCs. Western examples were R&C, and GOW. So, yes, I also believe Japanese industry first gave us the infamous double jump, although some western devs have picked up on it, along the way.

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Temjin001
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 7:53:27 PM

Yes, Revenge of Shinobi is a classic sprite based game with double jump. My memory gets fuzzy so long ago, but quite a few platformers of the 2D era used this technique. Actraiser 2 was another. I'm convinced this ability would've been adopted by anyone, though. The Japanese so happened to have a massive development dominance during the 8 and 16 bit and arcades at the time. Though, I'd absolutely not doubt it if something Atari, or like era gaming console, had some obscure use of the double jump.

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Temjin001
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 7:56:46 PM

Wikipedia has it pegged in 1984 by Namco. An arcade game named Dragon Buster. It says it's on Wii's Virtual Console.

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Temjin001
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 8:10:03 PM

Haha and speaking of Actraiser 2, the Snes cover is pretty funny. There's this out of place looking square burst with crappy neonish lettering "100% Pure Action and Excitment"
Personally, I enjoyed the god component of the first game, but Actraiser 2 was a badge of action game honor. I beat it, too!

See "dumbing" down of franchises, less slow stuff more ACTION, has been going on for a long time now you FF babies =p

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Beamboom
Sunday, September 09, 2012 @ 12:32:25 AM

You could not jump at all in Doom? Wow... That's not how I remember it! Crazy. Was jumping introduced in Doom 2 then? Or was there no jumping at all in Doom?

Memory is not always to trust. I can just so clearly remember jumping from one flake to another in some lava area while those flying head things chase me! Crazy.

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SaiyanSempai
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 10:06:49 AM
Reply

I really appreciate both! Games like uncharted with the stop animation and turning while running look very smooth. But I also like the responsiveness of the "turn on a dime" approach. Its a game after all.

Interestingly enough, many FPS don't go for that realism approach. Instead opting for unrealistic responsiveness. Remember when Killzone 2 added the feeling of weight to the movement? People almost lost their minds!

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WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 11:45:52 AM

I would love it if the next generation brought with it a bunch of attempts at "realistic" FPS, in that everything is where it ought to be (You don't view the world through your chest) and there are proper human reaction times and stuff makes sense.

In all these years somehow you don't lose any bullets if you dump a clip when it's half empty and load the next. Just makes no sense.

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Beamboom
Sunday, September 09, 2012 @ 5:21:19 AM

So you want a war simulator then World, where one bullet to your leg would cripple you and probably make you bleed to death? And you would have to return to a supply van to resupply after X number of bullets fired?
I dunno, man. I just dunno... :)

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Temjin001
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 10:53:06 AM
Reply

Fighters and action games are usually sensitive about frame timing. Certain moves will be sped up or slowed down in order to keep a strict observance of timing and balance.

Virtua Fighter is one of the least natural moving games of the 3D bunch. But VF is also the tightest most frame balanced 3D fighter I know of.

Splicing together moves to form chain combos I don't know if I'd consider intrinsically East or West, but most melee action games do seem to come from the east. God of War being an acception of course. Yet Kratos can be made to look choppy in animation in mid-air if a player chooses to "switch" weapons mid-combo, especially mid air.

Basically, "cool down" frames are removed to have the character quickly swap into the next weapon for timing purposes.

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Temjin001
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 11:38:06 AM

This also reminds me of Ninja Gaiden. One of the reasons I love NG so much is because it keeps track of acceleration and deceleration, rising and falling, and the trajectory and momentum of making contact with walls. Actual move properties change based on these physics. Hence one of the reasons I believe NG is one of the most dynamic playing action games of the lot. The game also doesn't allow you to swap weapons mid-flight, save it be for the bow and arrow, which adds to a sense of fluidity in movement.

Games like DMC and Bayonetta, especially Bayonetta treat everything as a melting pot of moves. Just keep dropping them in and mash away to your hearts content. The catch: mix it up to get more style and point multipliers. Not suggesting there's no depth, there is, the style is just less appealing to my interests. It appeals to a different sense.

Speaking of choppy animation, DOA is one of the most fluid moving fighters ever. Problem is for this, the game allows you to break your stun animation with a counter hold. The player sort of jerk-pops out of an animation to do a "gotcha hold" It sort of breaks the illusion of fluidity. Yet, its there entirely for game play. Here we see game play trumps motion realism in this instance. I admire it because it helps emphasize low frame pokes and jabs

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WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 11:47:12 AM

Did you ever have a Saturn and Virtua Fighter 2? Felt like I had an arcade in my home at a time when arcade games were still much better than consoles. Ahhh nostalgia.

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tes37
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 11:52:34 AM

Ninja Gaiden is number one in my book when it comes to combat. I get the sense when playing, that the developer knows these martial art styles or consulted someone while making the game.

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Temjin001
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 12:03:26 PM

Yep, World, I owned a Saturn, multiple times ;)
VF2 was a techincal marvel. Rich textures, scaling backgrounds, high poly characters, 60fps. If the Saturn launch with games like VF2, Sega Rally, and World Series Baseball, perhaps the system wouldve faired better stateside. It was a beast of a machine but sadly it took too long for devs to harness its power.

And yes Tes, I know several who have spent a good deal of time with NG, among other genre franchises, and candidly claim it as the best of the bunch combat-wise. It doesn't have the spectacle and whackiness of some games. but game play wise, it's got it where it counts most. And Team Ninja knows fighting games so it's no surprise they can make a great action hack 'n slash(well, at least they did). NG3 suffers from all sorts of things but the heart of the combat still beats strong.

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tes37
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 11:04:36 AM
Reply

I'm not sure this guy completely understands the difference between East and West game development. I'm pretty certain I don't either, but instead of saying our games are based more in realism, he should ask if the game enviroment is more suited to a realistic approach.

Games don't have to be realistic to be fun. I think most Japanese developers misunderstand western gamers.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 11:55:25 AM

It's about realism strictly in the game's animations, not the story or the setting or even the characters. Even a western developed cartoon furry animal seems more affected by gravity and physics than an eastern developed human being.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 12:02:59 PM

edit: not that I'm complaining about that, certain stuff should not be altered. Dante must be able to defy gravity as much as possible.

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shadowpal2
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 11:29:42 AM
Reply

So go ahead and keep doing that - never change!!! Who doesn't want to do some crazy ass moves in mid-air...for GOODNESS SAKE it's a game - we WANT TO DO THE IMPOSSIBLE. More importantly we just wanna have fun.

Western games are reaching a point where they're simply no better than a simulation with some sort of random script behind them which differentiates it with the rest. Just think about how similar nearly ever western game is: hide behind cover, roll, 3rd person shooting, some kind of stealth kill...etc etc... - all brought about by MGS.

But at least with MGS you can do so much more...

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BikerSaint
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 2:19:31 PM
Reply

The more I think about Eshiro's thoughts of choice & freedom on East vs West, the more it also seems to me, to relate to the USA's own history over the last 50 years with our own sorry-a$$ed government these days.

When I was younger(in my 40's LOL), I felt a bit more Eastern, as I could stop on a Dime & then still donate back 9 cents change.

But these days while almost approaching 60, I'm sadly feeling more Western, as it seems every time I stop on a Dime these days, there's some government sponsored entitlement punk who's trying to demand $100 back.

So all I can say these days is.....
"Keep on trying, punks"


Last edited by BikerSaint on 9/8/2012 2:23:01 PM

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Beamboom
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 2:37:33 PM

Hehe - that was one weird mother of a post you wrote there, Biker. :D

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tes37
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 3:13:18 PM

BikerSaint

I'm in 100% agreement with you about us having a sorry-a$$ed government.

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BikerSaint
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 6:20:14 PM

Beamboom,

Not really,

But I guess you'd have to live here in the US to see & feel everything that's quickly being eroded & or taken away from us, ie our freedoms, rights & the deliberate destroying of our Constitution by this "I expect it" generation of Democrats.
BTW, I'm a life long democrat & I hate what the party is doing to turn us into a socialized marxist government that we have to bow down to.

Plus with our "Poser in office", that continues to circumvent the rules & laws set by congress by making hundreds of "Excecutive orders", we really need to fear our government.

Anyways, I felt it has to be said, so I said it.

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Beamboom
Sunday, September 09, 2012 @ 12:35:10 AM

Obama is highly respected here in Europe, as opposed to that trigger happy cowboy you had before him for 8 years.
Not so sure I see that much Marxism going on over at your side, I must say. :D

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BikerSaint
Sunday, September 09, 2012 @ 8:25:36 PM

Beamboom,
Sorry to hear that, like I said you really don't know anything about him & you'd have to live here to see through all his lying & fraud & haterd towards America.
Plus that fact that our liberal media is in his pocket, doesn't help to show how this anti-christ really is.

The list of what he's been doing to undermine America is too huge to even get involved with here.

But I'll tell you what, If you can convince him to take over as Prime Minister there, I'll gladly go without eating for a week just so I can donate my unemployment check towards his plane ticket to get his f*cking a$$ the HE-double-L out of Dodge.

And then I'll start praying for your country too.

(Oh BTW, I agree about the fake cowboy, as I disliked both of the Bush's too, especially the idiot son).

Last edited by BikerSaint on 9/9/2012 8:28:24 PM

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Lawless SXE
Saturday, September 08, 2012 @ 5:35:50 PM
Reply

Definitely true, and it causes a real sense of slowness to be rooted in many Western action games. At the same time, I think that it kind of helps the game because it forces you to be a bit more tactical in your responses, rather than just flicking out of a move when a sword is halfway swung. You have to think and be sure before moving in for a combo, as well as making sure to stay away from walls to stop from getting caught.

That's not to say the Eastern approach is bad. I still love being able to do all sorts of bonkers stuff in DMC and Vanquish was something altogether different with the fluidity of everything. They're just different styles and I don't think I'd like it if one replaced the other entirely. Kind of why I want Ninja Theory to go back to a more Enslaved-style of combat with their next game. Unless, of course, it is a sequel to DmC.

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