Game Market 1983 - Chapter 33
“Woah~ It’s miraculous. It’s a system to restore deleted data~ I know. This is easy. I can do it with my toes.”
I lurched at the scene of Chandra engineering the system using his feet, and fiercely shook my head.
This is not that important, so why is he thinking so deeply into this…
“Ah… And I will also put the brief clip into the sequel as well. You can spread it around in the market by using your contacts.”
“Okay, okay Chandra. I understand it 100%. Don’t worry~”
After the Indian native stared intently at the picture and nodded his head, he extended a hand toward me.
He was signalling to give him the retainer fee.
I took a white envelope full of cash out of my jacket and handed it to Chandra.
“Kang Junhyuk definitely has credit. That’s why Chandra likes Kang Junhyuk.”
“Here is your mega curry, esteemed customer~!!”
Along with a sudden vibration, a plate the size of a fruit bowl containing curry was placed in front of me. What is this… enormous amount of curry?
“Excuse me, I ordered the regular size?”
“Yes~ this is the regular size for the mega curry. The super-sized plate is that over there…”
I did a double-take after looking at the plate of the person who was eating beside me. The size of the plate that he was digging his spoon into was at least 1.5 times bigger than mine.
As I sat there with a spoon in my hand strategizing about where to start, Chandra stifled his laughter and opened his mouth.
“If you eat this, you won’t be hungry for the rest of the day~ Pumala eats two of these plates. Eat quickly, Kang Junhyuk.”
Ah… I won’t be eating curry for a while after this…
Due to the expansion cartridges that the Indian natives produced, the price of Dragon Emblem was falling to my desired price tag.
The final price of it was 9800 Yen between the black market exchange. The custom chip inside the cartridge had set the price higher compared to the average game, but, thanks to FamiTong magazine explaining the secret of Dragon Emblem’s unusually high price in an article, the players were able to accept the high price tag.
Of course, there would be a problem if the price had kept increasing but, by using the expansion cartridge, game shops were able to reset the game data.
In the beginning, game shops doubted the efficacy of the expansion package for Dragon Emblem because it was impossible to play as a single unit, but the players that kept their cartridge, after having their data wiped, swarmed all over each other to restore their lost data, which brought in additional income. Thus, there was no problem with continuing the service.
Also, being able to enjoy multiple ending scenarios, after the game was correspondingly cleared, caused the expansion cartridge to start selling like wildfire.
For this reason… Mr. Gunpei, Mr. Shigeru, and I were called upon again by President Yamauchi.
“What the hell is this predicament!!! Our Mintendo is being completely exploited by that Korean developer bastard!!”
At that moment, Mr. Gunpei lifted his glasses up, and he roared:
“But the truth is that the sales for the Family has increased a lot due to the drama caused by Dragon Emblem. That is especially the case when the expansion cartridge came out. I’m thoroughly impressed as a fellow engineer.”
“That’s right. To think that such a method could be used to lengthen the lifespan of a game.”
“Do you think I called you all here to compliment that Korean developer?! Plan a strategy, a strategy!!”
I, who was silently standing there, opened my mouth:
“Do we really need a specific strategy…?”
“What? Then you want to leave this alone? A game that isn’t paying a single Yen of royalty to us is popular as hell, and you want me to just watch that happen with my two eyes wide-opened?”
“There will be no point in planning a strategy at this point since Dragon Emblem has already come this far. To a game that’s circulating around the black market already, rather than flushing the developer out, I think it’s right to protect him instead.”
“You’re saying that we have to protect him instead? Why the hell should we!?”
“What are you going to do if Dragon Emblem switches over to NEGA’s disk?”
In response to my words, President Yamauchi, along with everyone else, gaped their mouths open with a “clup”. It looks like everyone had not thought of this scenario before.
Honestly speaking, as the developer of Dragon Emblem, my comment was no different than a threat to President Yamauchi. Mr. Shige understood my words, and he quickly tried to persuade President Yamauchi.
“N-Now that I think about it, Kang-kun is right. With that marketing ability and developing skill, it wouldn’t be strange at all if he were to move to NEGA in the future. Of course, the first party games made at our Mintendo are excellent, but now, we can’t ignore the third party developers. We can’t ignore the possibility of a boycott from the developers such as Kawata’s Balloon Fight, Real Kungfu, Circus, and especially major league players like Dragon Warrior and Final Frontier…”
“So you’re saying that if we rub a popular third party game the wrong way, our Mintendo’s image could take a hit… Fuck… Damn…”
“Dragon Emblem is already receiving appraisal from other game companies as being the ultimate game. Almost everyone knows it as “a game that transcends its time”; there are totally no benefits for Mintendo to blatantly be in the opposition.”
“Dragon Emblem did not pay any royalties, but the upside to this is that the overall quality of Family games have grown immensely. Just the fact that Dragon Emblem was released through our Family is something worth celebrating.”
“Humph, Mother fucking… Forced to close our eyes like we don’t know anything…”
At that moment, Mr. Shige conversely added:
“How about… advertising it for them instead?”
“Mmn…? Leaving them alone is apparently not enough, so you want to spend money to advertise for them?? What the hell do you mean?”
“Truthfully, with the new requirements for the initial quantity and the increase of royalties demanded, complaints have started trickling in from third parties. If we popularize Dragon Emblem along with other developers, then our image would surely be painted as an understanding and experienced console company…”
A few days after that…
“I’m Ishimoto Junpei, reporter from the FamiTong magazine. President Yamauchi has requested an interview today. You had something important to say to the developer of Dragon Emb…”
“Yes, that’s right. It’s no exaggeration to say that it left the deepest impression to me amongst the recent games released.”
“Ah~!! You’ve also enjoyed playing Dragon Emblem, have you?!”
“Of course. I’ve also greatly enjoyed Dragon Warrior and Final Frontier. Having played Dragon Emblem recently… a thought flashed across my mind.”
“What… kind of thought was it?”
“It occurred to me that most of the games that lead our Family are not first party games, but rather third party games. The game that is currently representing Japan, Dragon Warrior, is a project developed by Phoenix, not from our Mintendo. Dragon Emblem is also the same.”
“That’s right. First party games from Mintendo like Super Marigee and The Legend of Karin are excellent, but the quality of recent games developed by third parties definitely can’t be ignored.”
“Correct. Our Mintendo and various other game companies will have to exist in a symbiotic relationship with the third parties to lead the game industry to a brighter future together. Following this, we have made the decision to cut the initial stock quantity requirement by half and reduce a portion of the royalties from games.”
“This news will be highly welcomed by the game industry.”
“We’ve made this difficult decision with the mindset of letting even more players enjoy great games such as Dragon Emblem. I thank the wonderful developer of Dragon Emblem, and we hope that his future projects will be released through our Mintendo’s Family.”
President Yamauchi concluded the interview with a solemn atmosphere in a completely different tone from his discussion with us.
His last comment in the interview expressed his fear of Dragon Emblem moving to Nega was truly a spectacular scene.
Mr. Shige and I barely suppressed our bursting laughter, and we darted to the back of the headquarters building after we finished watching the interview.
“Wahaha, did you see the president’s face!? Kukekeke~!!”
“Ah~ I almost died from laughter too.”
“But Dragon Emblem is truly incredible too, making our president beg with such sincerity like that.”
“That’s what I mean. Thanks to that, the situation regarding the initial quantity was taken care of, and with the royalties being reduced, the game industry should be rejoicing as well.”
“The competition will become much fiercer. I should also hurry up with the production of Super Marigee 3…”
“The 2nd release was a bit lacking, right…?”
“That’s… I did something slightly crazy so…”
The game of misfortune, Super Marigee 2.
When the fans of the Super Marigee series were asked to choose their favorite release, players had chosen the 1st and the 3rd as the best. However, in retrospect, the 2nd one was ambiguous in their memory. Did it really come out? And if it did, what kind of game was it…?
Actually, riding off of the success of the 1st, Super Marigee 2 boasted a significantly higher difficulty level, and it was dubbed a stress maker.
At that time, Mr. Shige was inspired by comments from players of games being too easy, and he went into producing a mad level of difficulty. There were no noticeable changes to the graphics, and, with the failure to properly adjust the difficulty level, he received a cold reception from the Japanese players.
Meanwhile, the American branch of Mintendo was intently waiting on the release of Super Marigee 2; however, seeing the bland reactions from Japan, and, with Mr. Shigeru admitting that the game was not good enough, he did an incredulous thing to Super Marigee.
He replaced the characters of another Super Marigee-like game with characters from Super Marigee. The rip-off was called Hokihoki Panic, and the gameplay was that of picking radishes in the desert and throwing it at enemies in an Arabian night setting.
In the end, it was released with the title of Super Marigee USA, but players simply could not understand why Super Marigee was killing his enemies by picking radishes and throwing it at them instead of stepping on them, like he did in the first game.
Some rumors, that said that Mr. Shigeru wasn’t involved in the development of the game, even, sprung up due to the glaring differences between the first and the second game; thus, it was remembered as such.
“Well, I don’t have any other projects to work on, so I’ll focus my attention on developing the third one…”
“If you’d want, I can lend you a hand, too.”
“Kuh~ If Kang-kun wants to help, I’ll definitely agree~!! Should we go have some udon for lunch? Let’s talk about the next release while we’re there.”
“Oh? Then you’re buying this time, right? Mr. Shige?”
“… You always have to say the last word.”
“Treat me to some gyoza too.”