Phil Spencer talks to Shinji Mikami about the future of Tango Gameworks and the game industry in Japan

    Phil Spencer used the Tokyo Game Show (TGS) 2021 to "talk" with Shinji Mikami, studio director and creator of Tango Gameworks, the first Japanese Xbox studio, which arrived as part of Microsoft's acquisition of ZeniMax Media in March 2021.

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    Mikami is well recognized as the inventor of Resident Evil, as well as the director of RE1/RE2/RE3/RE4, as well as the creator of Dino Crisis, God Hand, Vanquish, and his most recent Tango effort, The Evil Within. Since 2015, the director has preferred to remain in the capacity of Executive Producer, guiding his students (John Johanas in The Evil Within 2 and Kenji Kimura in Ghostwire: Tokyo) to pursue careers in the industry.

    Phil Spencer’s conversation with Mikami provided a lot of insight into that, as well as what to expect from Tango Gameworks as an Xbox subsidiary and the Japanese game development sector. Spencer began by asking Mr. Mikami about the future of the Xbox studio that he envisions with what he’s doing.

    “Tango Gameworks is a studio that gives young directors a tremendous opportunity to showcase their talent, and we already have some projects in the works,” Mikami added.

    Shinji Mikami also stated that it is appealing because he is actively designing games with Japan’s distinct sensibility toward the Japanese gaming industry and development ecosystem. Mikami goes on to suggest that subscription services like Xbox Game Pass, as well as the ability to play games in the cloud, will benefit Tango Gameworks.

    Until now, there have been many big games (AAA), but Game Pass and Microsoft’s support will benefit customers who wish to enjoy single-player yet exclusive games, even if they don’t have a super-ambitious scope. Mikami also cited emerging creators like Kenji Kimura, director of Ghostwire: Tokyo, as instances of continued efforts he will continue to make.

    Mikami then asked Phil Spencer what he believed about the future of the Japanese market and how he would make the Xbox Series X/S more exciting. According to Spencer, Japanese publishers have offered the Xbox Game Pass to over 100 titles, assisting the Xbox community in creating an easy way to play games they’ve never played before.

    Spencer also stated that expanding console supply is an issue that has to be addressed, but with the deployment of Xbox Cloud Gaming in the Japanese market, it is now possible to try out the Xbox easily.