Would video games be the same without Carl Macek

I posted this on another web page, but I wanted to post this here as well. I'm interested in what you in the Giant Bomb community have to think on this topic.
 
So, Carl Macek, the guy who helped found Streamline Pictures, and who took Super Dimensional Fortress Macross, Super Dimensional Cavalry Southern Cross, and Genesis Climber Mospeda and wrapped it all up into a big package called Robotech, is dead. So, I kinda got to thinking about how he effected the video game industry, by popularizing anime in the US.

First things first. Before anime got started getting mainstream visibility in the US, Video Game Publishers here weren't willing to take a chance on an anime art style either in their games or on their box art. Just take a look at all the Sega games which had an anime art style on their boxes in Japan, that got changed to more traditional western fantasy art in the US. The Shining Force series for example, as well as the core Phantasy Star series, or even the US Box art for Breath of Fire and Valis. Anime becoming popular allowed video games to retain a more anime inspired art style. This is particularly notable with changes in the box art for the Street Fighter II series, and the Street Fighter Alpha/Zero series.

Additionally, because Macek was able to expose new audiences to anime in a less altered form than Speed Racer or Star Blazers (which had some significant edits), and help lay the ground work for anime to grow in popularity, then we were able to get games that were more directly related to anime, such as the Ranma 1/2 games, Earnest Evans, and even the Valis series (though, as I mentioned in the prior paragraph, the box art was altered to a more "Western" style). Certainly, if Anime hadn't gotten popular, the Shin Megami Tensei series (particularly the Persona games) would have never officially come to the United States.

What do you think? Am I over-stating his influence, or do I have it more or less correct?

8 Comments
9 Comments
Posted by Count_Zero

I posted this on another web page, but I wanted to post this here as well. I'm interested in what you in the Giant Bomb community have to think on this topic.
 
So, Carl Macek, the guy who helped found Streamline Pictures, and who took Super Dimensional Fortress Macross, Super Dimensional Cavalry Southern Cross, and Genesis Climber Mospeda and wrapped it all up into a big package called Robotech, is dead. So, I kinda got to thinking about how he effected the video game industry, by popularizing anime in the US.

First things first. Before anime got started getting mainstream visibility in the US, Video Game Publishers here weren't willing to take a chance on an anime art style either in their games or on their box art. Just take a look at all the Sega games which had an anime art style on their boxes in Japan, that got changed to more traditional western fantasy art in the US. The Shining Force series for example, as well as the core Phantasy Star series, or even the US Box art for Breath of Fire and Valis. Anime becoming popular allowed video games to retain a more anime inspired art style. This is particularly notable with changes in the box art for the Street Fighter II series, and the Street Fighter Alpha/Zero series.

Additionally, because Macek was able to expose new audiences to anime in a less altered form than Speed Racer or Star Blazers (which had some significant edits), and help lay the ground work for anime to grow in popularity, then we were able to get games that were more directly related to anime, such as the Ranma 1/2 games, Earnest Evans, and even the Valis series (though, as I mentioned in the prior paragraph, the box art was altered to a more "Western" style). Certainly, if Anime hadn't gotten popular, the Shin Megami Tensei series (particularly the Persona games) would have never officially come to the United States.

What do you think? Am I over-stating his influence, or do I have it more or less correct?

Posted by StarFoxA

Honestly? I have never heard of Robotech.

Posted by Count_Zero
@StarFoxA: This isn't meant to be a slight against you, but out of curiosity, how old are you and if you're in to anime, when did you get into it?
 
I ask because I've noticed that right now, most people who are aware of Robotech are either people who grew up watching it and got into anime because of it, or people who grew up after Robotech, got into anime after it got more visibility (like on the Sci-Fi channel or on Cartoon Network), and were willing to check out some more old-school series like Robotech and the series that have were parts of it.
Posted by StarFoxA
@Count_Zero: Aaaah, it's anime. I have never viewed any anime beyond some various clips.
Posted by Kyreo
Robotech... wut?
Posted by ThatFrood

woah woah woah.
the guy who made robotech died?
well...
fuck.

Posted by Count_Zero
@StarFoxA: That would explain why you haven't heard of it, which is fine. I'm not going to say that Macek was recently influential on the video games industry, but I still say that if, back in the 80s, he hadn't helped push Japanese animation into the mainstream with Robotech (which was widely syndicated), I could safely say that there would be a lot of Japanese games that we wouldn't have gotten in the US.
Posted by august

I'd say his influence was pretty huge. In that he was one of the first Western buisness people to take anime seriously on its own terms and try to sell it in America as drama. Although what probably made anime as mainstream as it is now is some combination of Pokemon and dbz.

Edited by Count_Zero
@august: Kind of true. However, I don't think DBZ wouldn't have gotten popular, if the success of Robotech hadn't shown that anime could work on broadcast TV in syndication with minimal dramatic edits.
 
Just as an example - to my knowledge, Roy Fokker was the first major character on a syndicated animated TV show who was killed off in an episode and stayed dead.