Why did Japan have so much better box art for SNES games? Is that typical for other systems? I know I've seen some alternate cover art and disc art for symphony of the night and a few others.
Compared to the clean design of the Japanese version, the American one seems really cluttered with unnecessary selling points and branding. pic related
Wait wait wait. WAIT wait wait wait wait. You're bitching that Japan had better box art that us, and as your pictured example you choose a game that had THE EXACT SAME PICTURE as the box art for both versions?
Watch this thread quickly turn into anti-moe shitposting.
I wonder why the boxes have always been different for us. NES was obvious, but why were SNES boxes horizontal while SFC boxes were vertical? Why did the same go for N64? Why were GC sold in DVD cases in the west but in mini-disk cases in Japan? Why did GB/GBA games have different size/shape boxes too?
Basically, Nintendo's marketers thought the west wouldn't like change. That's why you have them trying their best to emulate the look of other consumer electronics, especially VCRs and tape decks. As for the box art thing, in the 80s the anime art style was virtually unknown in the west except for Astro Boy and Speed Racer, so, again, they chose not to try to introduce anything new or "multi-cultural." Say what you will, but obviously the strategy worked.
This is a pretty interesting question actually.
West prioritizes the game system over the game itself. That's why even using the same picture the design it's totally different. As you can see in the SFC version you only have a little logo that tells you that's a SFC game, while in the SNES version there's a Nintendo logo, a SNES logo as big as the game logo and the Nintendo Seal of Quality.
Because it's a Japanese console and at that time no western developer really bothered with it. I mean, Europe was busy with it's home computers and Psygonsis provided fantastic cover art, while America... I don't even know what America did!? I think they were busy celebrating there freedom with Asian products.
For the same reason English translations were bad. They knew there had to be changes for the sake of appealing to a different market, but they didn't care/were too stupid/too limited in resources to do it properly.
It must have been an American thing. They probably thought that clueless parents and legit idiots wouldn't know which platform the game was made for if it wasn't for the huge branding.
It was the same thing with the PlayStation covers.
NTSC-J covers: Simple PS logo in the corner.
NTSC-U/C covers: "PlayStation" written sideways in big ass letters just in the case the smaller logo wasn't enough.
OP here. For reference, this is the japanese box art.
At least FF always had decent cover art in the west.
Also about the PlayStation logo, that's what i was saying. In the west the game system it's the most important. You're not buying a game that happens to work in a PlayStation but a PlayStation™ experience.
Differente sensibilities, anon. Anime/manga aesthetics are ingrained in japanese society so there's nothing strange about Rockman looking cute in the covers, specially when the concept is so closely related to Tetsuwan Atom.
On the other side, American media was going through a "cool & edgy" phase at the time, most kids found cute characters to be boring or lame and that just wouldn't sell.
What are you on about? Anime was wildly popular in the US in the '90s. Between power rangers, DBZ, and anime-ish vidya like Chrono Trigger and Megaman, anything Japanese had an exotic appeal to it.
>Secret of Mana
>B-But I was talking about the '80s anon
This entire discussion has been about how odd it is that in the '90s, Nintendo avoided the anime aesthetic and chose a radically different marketing approach for the US than they did in Japan.
Welcome to the conversation. If you'd like to add anything constructive, you're welcome to it.
because americans have no beauty to their culture other than freedom and explosions
find a game that's mainly about freedom and things exploding and it probably has a pretty good cover
the image on the american box art is actually a higher detail image of the same painting though, and the composition is pretty good
that wraparound box art though on the original, god it's sexy
I wonder how hard it would be to steal that thing actually
do you figure it's hanging over at squeenix main offices somewhere?
Chrono Trigger had pretty badass box art in Japan too. The US ended up with a weird picture where Marle is wearing some robe that she never wears in the game. odd.
I guess Japan and Europe and maybe the early prints of the NTSC version of Symphony of the Night all had the same art, but it was changed for later versions of the US release.
I had this version growing up. What an unnecessary, terrible design choice to change it.
>They probably thought that clueless parents and legit idiots wouldn't know which platform the game was made for if it wasn't for the huge branding.
And they'd be right. The retards calling themselves 'parents' still don't understand the ratings system, let alone the difference in platforms.
Even at that japs are better.
And by that you mean that bad art is the right strategy for NA, since they're uncultred swines!?
I like Enix stuff.
Those Enix covers are 100% western and doesn't look bad at all but they feel really generic too.
>The US ended up with a weird picture where Marle is wearing some robe that she never wears in the game. odd.
Don't forget Marle casting a fire spell when she's Ice in game.
It's a completely different character on our cover art.
Market size. The US alone can bruteforce pretty much anything on its own market, even if the products are not as good, and still print a shit ton more money than what Japan will ever be able to.
See Microsoft not giving a shit about Japan, for instance.
Japan seems to have generally better packaging and item quality overall. For instance, SD cards manufactured in Japan seem to work faster and have greater longevity. And most of the games I import come in large, sturdy casing with thick manuals that detail frankly a lot more about the game than their English counterparts do.
My best guess is that because Japan is a smaller country than the U.S., products are being distributed to a comparatively much smaller demographic, therefore manufacturers don't have to cut corners to reduce manufacturing costs.
>Pc and other computer games always had a really good packaging in the west.
Earlier PC games certainly did, but now PC games tend to be distributed in jewel cases without printed manuals, which will instead appear on the disc in PDF format.
Then there's the difference between audio CD distributions. Japanese versions (of non-Japanese musicians) usually get bonus tracks and way better packaging compared to the West. Of course, the Japanese releases usually come much later, which is probably why there are so many extras thrown in.
Well yes, today everything is DVD shitty boxes and no manuals at all, while people preffer to download shit with jewsteam.
I was talking about the 80-90's and those great pc and Amiga big boxes.
Phisical editions like the Psygnosis games had, they look just astonishing.
I'm convinced also that the cost of things has something to do with it. Japanese games cost way more new than the same games in the US.
Also I think there's a different culture of things. There's less treatment of items being 'disposable' in Japan than in other cultures, if that makes sense.
Also I think shipping cost is a big part of it, the US for example is a huge country to ship products across, and that affects how much stuff will be put in a product that's shipped (more weight means more money after all).
I'm not an expert on this in any way though, just throwing out suggestions for what might be, based on things I've either heard others say or have reasoned out myself. I'd be interested to hear anyone with more knowledge of such matters weigh in on them.
Japanese CDs are more expensive too. For example, Blackstar (the new bowie album from last week) is 12 bucks on amazon right now (out of stock) while the same album is 3880 yen on amazon.jp, or the equivalent of about 30 bucks.
Then there's anime blu-rays. Don't even get started on anime blu-rays.
Well, that's probably a holdover from the early days of western music import where they would usually get it afterwards but it would have extra tracks.
Amongst vinyl collects the japanese version of some albums are quite sought after because of this.
Are you being sarcastic? In a sense, yes, that's how it is.
The "culture" here is not culture in general, of course. It's just one facet of culture. One can be an unskilled appreciator of graphic design or whatever yet also a skilled appreciator of something else. It wouldn't be reasonable to claim that Americans are inferior to Japanese people because they can't appreciate this stuff as well. But yeah, they can't appreciate this stuff as well.
That said, there are cases, as people above have pointed out, where it goes the other way. Manga style is sometimes terrible, yeah. Manga-style faces, in particular, often look really goofy and simplistic (rather than elegantly simple, which of course is also a possibility) compared to the boringly realistic faces the American style usually produces. Those realistic faces at least aren't actively, pointlessly ugly (usually). They're just bland (usually).
I think glorious nippon it's just superior but sometimes they fucked up too.
Here's an example of a bad adaptation.
This one always comes to mind. The American cover is almost so cheesy it's good status. Japanese one is obviously better though.
And here's another cheesy one for shits and giggles. It's obvious the guy who drew it knew next to nothing about the series.