Speaking to Gamasutra, Shane Kim, corporate vice president of Microsoft Game Studios, says that Microsoft is "very realistic" about its prospects in Japan. Kim notes that Microsoft's approach was never to "win" Japan, but rather to do better than the original Xbox. Part of this strategy, of course, means recruiting Japanese talent like Hironobu Sakaguchi, who is creating both Blue Dragon and Lost Odyssey for the console. Kim says the importance of Japan is motivated by more than financial numbers, but also by the amount of talent in the Japanese development community. Titles like Dead Rising and Lost Planet, says Kim, are illustrating to Japanese developers that Japanese titles can be financially successful in the west. Finally, Kim asserts that Microsoft's aims in Japan remain "realistic," and while Blue Dragon and Lost Odyssey will be moderately successful in Japan, they will be successful in the west as well.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.