Capcom aims to shorten development cycle

In order to better capitalize on its franchises and increase profits, Capcom feels it needs to speed up its development cycle. According to statements in the most recent earnings report, the developer hopes to turn out games roughly a year faster than its current pace.

"We want to reduce the time needed to develop major titles from the usual three to four years to only two and a half years," said CEO Kenzo Tsujimoto.

"Speeding up development will probably raise the cost. But creating quality content will be vital to Capcom's ability to survive by overcoming intense global competition. We will make substantial investments to develop this content," he promised investors.

Tsujimoto also said the company will be introducing new franchises, and will exercise patience while a new franchise builds up support. "Low awareness of new titles among consumers means that the first release is unlikely to be a hit," he said. "But we plan to steadily develop these titles into new sources of earnings." Plus, the company will be extending the life cycles of new and franchise titles with DLC--though probably with a few lessons learned.

On that note, Street Fighter X Tekken sold 1.4 million units across three territories in fiscal 2011 -- as compared to Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City, which sold 1.7 million units across two territories (Europe, North America), and Monster Hunter Tri-G, which sold 1.6 million in Japan alone.

Capcom says SFxT sales have "fallen short of our plan" and attributes it to "cannibalism" due to other games in the genre launching in such a short time. It sees Raccoon City as a success, though, making the company confident in its decision to use western developers for its properties.