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The Untold History of Japanese Game Developers: Volume 1

(Untold History of Japanese Game Developers #1)

3.67  ·  Rating details ·  147 ratings  ·  13 reviews
This book reveals more secrets about the history of Japanese games than ever before, with 36 interviewees and exclusive archive photos.

Konami's secret games console, the origin of Game Arts and Quintet, unusual events at Telenet, stories on Falcom, politics behind Enix's game programming contests, a tour of the Love-de-Lic and WARP offices (with layout sketches). Every int
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Paperback, 526 pages
Published August 11th 2014 by SMG Szczepaniak (first published August 4th 2014)
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Average rating 3.67  · 
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Robert Fenner
Apr 04, 2015 rated it did not like it
The Untold History... is a fat 500 page volume that suffers from terrible presentation, boasting a sparse low-res cover that looks like it was put together in a paint program. One shouldn't judge a book by its cover, but one will find the book's contents are also rather ramshackle: The book consists almost exclusively of interviews presented with minimal context. This was not a problem for somebody like me, who was already acquainted with most of the people and works referenced within the book, ...more
Quasarion
Literally not one developer I backed this for is in the book. Arai, Nishizawa, Oka, I guess the idea is I should be a sheep and pay 50 bucks for the next book. And the next book after that. The author can claim that he only promised to interview them, not promised to put the interviews in the kickstarter volume, but I think we know that's a fallacious argument.

Truly, there's a lot of good interviews with historic developers here. It's just a shame the writer clearly doesn't respect them enough t
...more
Jeremiah Wood
Dec 11, 2014 rated it really liked it
A rare and in-depth look into the early Japanese video game industry, straight from the developers themselves. This book is the end result of a Kickstarter pioneered by the author, John Szczepaniak. As a donator to the Kickstarter, I had high hopes for this project to uncover a side of the video game world that has little documentation, and the book did not disappoint.

That said, it is not free from criticism. The book certainly shows signs of being from an amateur author and publisher, being rid
...more
David Ashley
Nov 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very specialised and exhausting in it's subject matters and history explored but important for sure. It is an absolute tome to get through with no space left without words or (sadly) black and white images. Their has been a lot of controversy over time that has overshadowed Szczepaniak's undertaking which is real shame, but at the end of the day the books speak for themselves. Exhausting and brilliantly cult.
John
Mar 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Fascinating insights.
Phil
Aug 30, 2014 rated it liked it
Most of the stuff discussed here isn't well known outside of Japan, so don't expect info on your favorite NES/SNES game. The interviews are not well run and the editing is not great, but you do at least get the feeling that everything discussed has been transcribed and presented here. That's the issue with this book: you have to weed through a lot of meandering discussions to find something interesting. For example, the drawings of the office layouts are pointless, but hey, they're there in case ...more
Kalin
Jul 13, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mostly-read, games
While this compilation of interviews will be best enjoyed by aficionados of Japanese games from the 1980s and 1990s, it contains an overview of visual novels that I haven't found anywhere else, and captures the voices of two prominent VN makers: Ryukishi07 (Higurashi, Umineko, Rose Guns Days) and Kotaro Uchikoshi (Never 7: The End of Infinity, Ever 17: The Out of Infinity, Remember 11: The Age of Infinity, 999: Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors, etc.). I'm looking for more like these.
Phil
Dec 14, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tricky. Some of the information here is incredible, like the pre-console history of computing in Japan which is something I never really knew about. However, because if that it is a bit niche and sometime where there needs to be a bit more context there isn't any. Still, it's a fascinating read despite the author's ongoing obsession in getting people to sketch layouts of old offices.
Badcrc
Mar 20, 2016 rated it it was ok
Son entrevistas traducidas (con errores) del japonés al inglés, la edición no me ha gustado mucho.

El contenido ... habla mucho sobre ordenadores japoneses de los que no son muy fan (PC-88, etc...) pero si que cuenta alguna cosa curiosa.

Me leeré la segunda parte que también la tengo en algún futuro....
I.D.
Jan 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
Lots of interesting stories and behind the scenes information on some things few people outside of Japan know about. But what is with the author's fascination with getting people to draw the floorplans of the offices in which they worked?
Victoria Zagar
Paused at 37%.

Interesting information, but not edited or pared down in any way. Leads to a very long dump of information without much context.
Brendan Creecy
Aug 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I really loved this book. So many fascinating people with amazing, inspiring stories. I am glad they are preserved somewhere as without this book they would have probably gone untold.
Eskil
Dec 06, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sakprosa
At times interesting, but often longwinded, irrelevant and samey. Imagine finding a book about Japanese game development that was too niche for me.
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Untold History of Japanese Game Developers (3 books)
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