BitSummit 2017 – The role of a director and the necessity of a producer | Summary of Atsushi Inaba’s Stage

This page will be introducing Atsushi Inaba’s (Platinum Games) stage at BitSummit 2017.

Summary of Astushi Inaba’s stage

Why do we need a producer?

Inaba spoke about his role in the Indy industry, the work of a “producer”, and the sharing of “formless IP”, such as technology and know-how specific to development companies at the BitSummit held in 2016 and 2015.
Inaba thinks it is important for developers to create a network for their own to make users satisfied, but at this years stage, he said, “producers exist for developers.” and talked about the role of a director and the necessity of a producer

Producers exist for developers

Why did he start talking about something like this a at a indie game festival. Inaba said being a director for indie scene is different from that in consumer game development. To be a director for a triple a game, you must compete with others, and compete for that position. However, you will be able to create a seat for the director when making indie games.
He talked about the appeal of being a indie game director, rather than which is better than the other. That’s why he pays attention to indie games, and he said he will keep watching over it.

A director’s image

New directors are being born one after another. Inaba says there’s various types of directors, and used the staff of Platinum Games as an example.

Hideki Kamiya, director of Bayonetta 2 is a psychopath.
Yusuke Hashimoto, who also is a director of Bayonetta 2 is a genius.
He also said he wants Taura Takashima, who is the lead game designer of NieR:Automata, to become a producer, and says he has a dark side along with a humorous side.

Why does he classify them like this? When a new game comes up, the idea of the game is of course important. In addition, Inaba says it is important to know who made the game. This is to allow the director to make planning that makes use of their personality, or to brush up that plan. And in order to accurately image the completed form of the game, it is necessary to categorize the developer’s human image.

Role of a Producer

A producer brings up the plan together with the director, and brings it to the publisher. Inaba says the role of a producer is to be a director’s best teammate.

As mentioned earlier, directors can make their own seat when making a indie game. Among them, the producer has an important role of promoting the idea, or keeping an eye on the idea. A producer’s existence is critical when making a indie game. Producers especially have a large role when making a indie game since they have to figure out how to have their game be recognized by people.

Inaba says that the time spent taking about their game with the director is very important when working on a project.
From random talks to serious talks, every conversation held between the producer and director lets them understand each other more, thus the game will be completed in a more refined form.
But on the other hand, Inaba was worried about the lack of producers who can actually support the director like mentioned.

Producing is also a “Formless IP

Inaba believes that producing is also a part of the “formless IP”, which he has mentioned in the last years stage.
How passionate can you be when working on a indie project?
“I would like to be active and take more part in the indie industry if I can back up indie developers by taking a look at projects, and exchanging opinions with the developers.”
“If the visitor coming here wants to make a game in the future, I would like to gladly help that person.”
“I want to spread the joy of BitSummit and indie games instead of just enjoying them myself.”
As such, he told us about his thoughts.

“The theme for my current activity as of now is to keep training new directors.”
Inaba’s philosophy which committing to the development of the game industry to have the users have fun, hasn’t changes since the last year’s stage. Because he has continuously been offering “formless IP”, he will surely take a part in the game industry.

We have to ask ourselves how we should get involved with “formless IP” to seek new value in a content that keeps being consumed. It makes me think deeply as a game media.

About the Speaker

Atsushi Inaba
Atsushi Inaba was born in Ishikawa Prefecture in 1971. After working for several
game companies, Inaba joined Capcom in 1998, and from 2000 he worked in the
game development division as a producer. In 2004, he was appointed CEO for
Clover Studio, a development-focused subsidiary of Capcom. In 2006, Inaba left
Capcom to form his own company, SEEDS, and in October 2007, SEEDS merged
with the company ODD and was rebranded as Platinum Games. Since this merger,
Inaba has served as the head producer for the development division, where he
continues today.
(Sited from BitSummit official website)

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