Project Octopath Traveler is a upcoming 2018 JRPG from Square-Enix for the Nintendo Switch. The game had a downloadable demo where they could gather fan feedback for the game. The feedback was used to improve the game. Fans were able to convince the developers to improve the UI, movement around the map, visuals, and motivate them to improve the game even more. More details in video below.
Recently, Nioh was another previous Japanese game title that also took fan feedback to improve the game and how fans felt about the overall game. The power of fan feedback can have huge effects and will greatly effect how video game development changes in the future. Depending on the success of Octopath Traveler, future JRPG or games could have more feedback demos. Even Star Wars Battlefront 2‘s beta helped induce changes before the release (clearly not enough before the game’s release). Although developers want to appeal to their fans as much as possible, they will not able to please everybody. For Nioh, developers become stress about trying to please every fan. “The first problem we encountered after researching feedback was that many members of our team became too influenced and affected by the opinions of the players,” Team Ninja’s Fumihiko Yasuda writes. “By attempting to consider all of those opinions, we were not arriving at solid solutions, but rather creating more questions” said Yasuda.
Fan feedback can create a good fanbase prior to the game release. Nioh did extremely well for a new IP from Ninja Theory with a 8.5 Metacritic rating. For a new game, developers can build a large interest by taking fan feedback. For a new IP, Square-Enix is taking steps to continue to push new classic JRPGs. Jairus Cambe stated that he is “excited for this since it’s an homage to the old school JRPGs presented in a beautiful way.”