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Cyzo's Business Journal website interviewed minori producer Nobukazu Sakai ("nbkz") about the current state of the bishōjo game industry in an article published on Sunday. Sakai noted that it takes about 30 million yen (about US$300,000) to make a title of a certain level of quality. However, the budgets of minori's own Supipara and ef titles exceeded 100 million yen (US$1 million). He explained this is mainly due to CG costs, particularly due to users' higher screen resolutions and PC specs. His company releases only one game per year.
Sakai said that in the last decade, a super hit sold 100,000 copies, a big hit sold 30,000, and a regular hit sold 20,000. However, a game would be a hit now with only 10,000 copies — with Japan having a population of 100 million over the age of 18, that means only 0.01% are buying these games. To explain the declining sales, Sakai said that this is the age where entertainment has diversified with YouTube, Niconico, social games, and multiple game systems such as the PlayStation 3, PSP, and Nintendo 3DS.
As a result, Sakai estimated that staff members in the industry earn 3 million yen (US$30,000) on average. Even minori was seriously considering dissolution after its Supipara game sold only half as expected. The company was able to recover with its next game, Natsuzora no Perseus (pictured above).
[Via My Game News Flash]