With Capcom now being open to outsider buyout due to the ending of its takeover defense, let me give you my opinions on who should buy/get exclusive rights to Capcom’s major franchises, should companies start to buy majority stock in it.
Franchises Capcom would keep: – All of its fighting games and Ace Attorney
Series like Street Fighter and Marvel vs Capcom would not be for sale. If there is one thing Capcom knows how to do, it is fighting games. They practically pioneered the genre with Street Fighter II, so to that end, none of its fighting games would be going. They are arguably the best in the business when it comes to that genre and it makes sense for them to keep it. As for the Ace Attorney series, I don’t see any other company really doing anything super interesting with the formula. Again, Capcom know how to make a good Ace Attorney game so it’s better to stay with them.
All of Capcom’s platformers (Megaman, Ghosts ‘n Goblins, Bionic Commando): – Nintendo
This is the obvious one, right? If there is one thing Nintendo knows how to do, it is 2D platformers. Based off the love and attention that went into Megaman’s design in Smash 4, you know that it would be in safe hands. Imagine a Megaman X game made by Retro Studios? Or the actual return of Megaman Legends 3? With Nintendo’s new push to please the hardcore, no doubt these games would be on the way should they buy up bits of Capcom. Plus, a new take on Ghosts ‘n Goblins would be pretty cool and a proper Bionic Commando without Rad Spenser’s arm being his wife would also be great.
Monster Hunter: – Sony
We could possibly see the Monster Hunter MMO come to the West if SCEA got its hands on the rights.
This is more for exclusivity rights, rather than Sony buying the entire franchise. The reason I would give Monster Hunter to Sony is that it has the online infrastructure and assets to make a great online experience, as well as the install base to make it huge in the West. As much as I love what Nintendo has tried to do with the series, it simply does not have the online capabilities to really make Monster Hunter succeed. So, I would keep all the dev team from Capcom working on it, but I would have Sony work on the online side of the game as well as the marketing. Plus, with a Monster Hunter entry running on the current generation hardware, just imagine the new monsters and landscapes they could think up.
Dino Crisis and Lost Planet: – Microsoft
With Microsoft’s penchant for shooters, it would make sense that these two franchises would go to them. Take teams from Black Tusk and 343 Industries to help collaborate on the shooter side of the experience, while getting some team members from Remedy to help on the survival horror side of Dino Crisis and you could have the makings of two really good Microsoft franchises. It’s in need of a few.
Resident Evil: – Red Barrels
This is a bit of a wildcard choice but stick with me on this one. Resident Evil has long since been a survival horror so to try and get it back to its roots and give it to the studio who created one of the most popular survival horror games in years. It would be interesting to see what the team who made Outlast would do with the Resident Evil series if they got it. Would they turn it into a proper ‘survival’ horror and make it in the vein of a game like Outlast, or would they keep it combat focused? Resident Evil is in dire need of a reboot, so it would be nice to see how a studio who has made a decent horror game would deal with this long standing franchise.
Viewtiful Joe, Okami, Devil May Cry: – Platinum Games
We all want to see how the trilogy ends. Come on Platinum, give Joe the ending he deserves.
This is another no brainer. Send these franchises back to the people who made them and let them continue their work. We know Platinum can do spectacle fighting so giving them back Devil May Cry makes sense and the fact that Viewtiful Joe ended on a cliffhanger gives Platinum the opportunity to properly finish the trilogy. Also, it would be nice to see how Platinum would return to a more laid-back, less crazy action game with Okami and would give them room to experiment with the adventure genre again.
Dead Rising: – Volition
Now, Dead Rising is an odd franchise which tries to walk the line between sometimes serious zombie story and ridiculous undead murdering action. To be honest, the game is much more successful when it goes for the ridiculous (I mean, look at the latest Dead Rising 3 DLC) so why not give the series to the masters of mental sandbox games? A Saints Row/Dead Rising crossover game would be great fun, with people having the ability to ride chainsaw dirtbikes while blasting the undead with weaponised dubstep. What more could you want?
So there are my ideal choices for people buying up franchises now that Capcom is open for sale. For the franchises I missed, feel free to share your thoughts on where they should be heading in the comments below. Of course, it won’t actually happen like this in real life, it will most likely remain business as usual for a long time, but it will still be interesting to see who starts whacking out the chequebook in the coming year or so.