Back in the middle of June we got some news that Capcom was now open for a corporate takeover.
I think the time has come and gone for Capcom to be bought being that we haven’t heard anything on it. It’s still baffling to me that the idea of possible purchase even came out. Actually it officially blew my mind. It was like one of your best friends saying “you know what, I’ve been living a lie all these years. I’m going to have to restart my life after all the awful decisions I have made”. And you’re sitting there flabbergasted because this is your close friend who had it all together, it seemed, and you had no clue that was coming!
Capcom was the only company whose video games competed for my time against Nintendo’s own products. Being from the 1985 originals NES era of gaming, if I couldn’t have a Nintendo game, I found that Capcom made exceptional products that fed my need as a young kid. I’ve always been drawn to gameplay, and to go along with that challenge, “quit” has never been in my vocabulary. After getting my first taste of gaming through the likes of Mario, the first Capcom game I owned was Mega Man – and that’s where this love story begins.
Even at that young age it seemed like time didn’t matter like it does today. I played Mega Man time after time, dying, starting again, dying and starting again, rinse and repeat another 200 times until finally beating the game. I was stuck on Capcom after that, quickly finding my next game, which is still one of my all time favorites, Ghost n’ Goblins. If you have ever played the game, especially nowadays if you tried it, well, giving up and never playing it again is the name of this game. I reckon you would compare it to the Dark Souls series of today in the fact that it is relentless and never ever gives you an inch. Upon finally beating it, I would still boot it up from time to time but never quit got that feeling of accomplishment like the first time I beat it.
Doing these oh-so-challenging games gave me a firm foundation in knowing that, if I put my mind to it and was willing to put in the work, I could overcome anything. After playing Capcom’s games I played Kid Icarus, Legend of Zelda, Legend of Zelda II, Super Mario Bros 2 and 3, and so on and so forth on the NES. Capcom’s games gave me as a young gamer the confidence that no game was gonna be too hard for me to beat. I’m still extremely stuck in my ways with games of today, thinking that “yeah, I might fail now, but there is no way this game is gonna beat me.” Just ask F-Zero GX’s Grand Prix mode on master…yeah I got them AX secret tracks, thank you Capcom. Many games today have lost that feeling of “YES I DID IT! I BEAT THE OVERWHELMING ODDS TO DESTROY THIS GAME!!!!”
Upgrading to the SNES Capcom obviously owned me as a buying consumer from here on out (thank you allowance – but man did I hate burning the garbage to buy you, sweet sweet games). We can talk about my cousin and I beating each other in Street Fighter 2 and where my love for Chun Li started. We can also go on about how Super Ghost and Ghouls sucked away hours and hours of my time just like the one that preceded it did. Countless Capcom games had come to the NES and SNES by this time and I had played and beat them all, even Section Z; this time on the SNES is reserved for Final Fight though. If you have been in the forums and seen our top 10 SNES games written by the users, you would know that I forwent all other to put Final Fight at the top #1 SNES for myself. I couldn’t tell you the exact reason why it was so special to me, it just was. At that time in my life it had everything a kid my age could have wanted: long levels, many enemies on the screen for me to beat up, really hard and cool looking bosses, pile driving, weapons to pick up; I mean what young boy wouldn’t have wanted all that? And I played it, it seemed everyday, from when I bought it till the N64 came out, then ended up downloading it on Wii and Wii U.
With the N64 Capcom got estranged from me. At that time, though, there was way to much Goldeneye 007 and Perfect Dark for me to care much. And I didn’t own a Playstation…but my older brother did and that’s where I was introduced to Resident Evil. My brother was outta the house by then and he would come and pick me up so I could come spend the night, or the weekend, and game. Going through Resident Evil with him was a really cool time now that I think about it. Not only was I getting to see the birth of the horror genre on video game consoles, I was getting to kick it with my brother – who was 7 years older than I and I missed him much from being moved out and married, but we have always been super tight. Later on he got Resident Evil 2 and we did the same thing, and while I wasn’t playing the games myself I always think about how Capcom was the only company whose games I would leave the house to go and watch being played, if I wasn’t doing the playing myself.
On to the GameCube, and by this time I was married (20 was my age). My brother and I were the first in my area to even own a GameCube, and what a great little system that was. So I’m playing all the regular games and finding some new franchises I loved like SSX. Then my main company Capcom came back home to Nintendo after I had been gone from them so long in the N64 era. When they announced five Capcom exclusive games for GameCube (I know it didn’t stay like that), I thought to myself, “this is like the NES and SNES with Nintendo and Capcom all over again,” and I couldn’t have been happier. I own still to this day my GameCube along with all the Resident Evil games on it that they had remade or ported over. Obviously Resident Evil 4 was absolutely brilliant and amazing! I struck 2D beat ‘em up gold with Viewtiful Joe 1 and 2 (I know they’re Clover, but it was Capcom, ya know) making me, in a way, feel like with Final Fight all over again – but man, Viewtiful Joe was just in a league of its own in terms of boss battles and mechanics. I felt so strong in that game. My personal bust out hit, though, and what started my love for SUDA51, was Killer7. Now this game was right up my alley: I thrive on unique games that make you relearn everything you thought you knew all over again. It had everything: the style, the different personalities, and speaking for myself, a story that twisted my head off and played with it like a toy (Eternal Darkness would later take that top spot, but that’s for another time). There really aren’t words to describe how much enjoyment I got outta Capcom during the days of the GameCube, but I know I got back to playing and beating hard games and loving the gameplay of them all, plus with style. Capcom was again right where I could reach them and I appreciated that.
Ah, the Wii, the little console that could. Being from old school Street Fighter fame, it was time for me to get back into the fight, and there came Tatsunoko vs. Capcom. Now, I didn’t know any of the Tatsunoko fighters, but it had Chun Li and that was enough for me. I didn’t realize how behind the times I was in how much the Street Fighter series had changed from those old days, but the “supers” and combo breakers and all that whatnots had me thrown off a little. It took some time but it became one of my most beloved fighters on the Wii. I also had to get Resident Evil 4 Wii Edition because, well, it’s Resident Evil 4, and the motion controls just made it that much better. I did find Okami on Wii too and couldn’t wait to get my hands on it, and am I glad I did. Knowing this was Clover and Capcom I had to get this one, and it turned out to be one of the best games I had ever played in the adventure genre. There is so much I can say about it, but just know that if you can find Okami anywhere, for whatever platform, you should buy it.
On Wii U it’s all about Capcom again, and the one game is now Monster Hunter. If you read the recent Monster Hunter article by Mike and Alex, then you will get my thoughts there too, as I hunt with them both on a regular basis. There is so much Capcom there through and through. I could go on forever about this one; and Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate is my first Monster Hunting game and I have love, pure love for the great challenge Capcom lays at my feet. I’m a bow and arrow user on it, and this game feels like it was taylor made for me.
And after all this how did Capcom get to the point where the investors, at first, thought it could be a good idea to open Capcom to a buyout!?! They have literally countless IPs that I believe only Nintendo could rival in number for solely-owned IPs for one company. Over the years they have always had some of the best games: hard games, beautiful games, games that you just love to play over and over. The reason I lay all this out is because, say this was about some nameless company, and you read all this. I would hope you would say “MAN GET OUTTA HERE, THERE IS NO WAY A COMPANY THIS GOOD AND PROLIFIC WOULD EVER BE IN THIS KINDA SHAPE THAT THEY’D POSSIBLY BE BOUGHT OUT!!!” There for a minute, though, the idea was tossed around, and it just brings me to this: Is Capcom really only great-looking from the outside, but rotting inside? Have they mismanaged their IPs so badly that it’s hard to get any money from anywhere? Have they put their talents to use in all the wrong places and severely misjudged the market?
I don’t know, and maybe in the following months we will find out. Until then, though, I’m hoping that Capcom can find the light at the end of the tunnel and bring itself back to the former glory that I remember them as, and always will.