Japansoft An Oral History

Alex Wiltshire

An innovative and beautifully designed history of the nascent Japanese videogame industry, as told by those who were there, Japansoft takes readers inside the games, companies, and human experiences which forged a whole new culture.

Comprising interviews with game developers at companies including Sega, Enix, Capcom, Hudson Soft, and Nihon Falcom, Japansoft: An Oral History offers fresh and diverse perspectives on many of the defining games of our time. A deep dive into the beginnings of the videogame industry in Japan, this book documents a much-loved era of creativity that defined the industry for decades. Enhancing a book already rich with insightful interviews are anecdotal illustrations by iconic Japanese illustrator Yu Nagaba, as well as never-before-seen period photographs, rare press ads, and an illustrated guide to the key computers and consoles that were landmarks of the early Japanese gaming era.

A reedited digest of game journalist John Szczepaniak's three-volume series, The Untold History of Japanese Game Developers, this book adds specially conducted interviews with figures including Harumi Fujita (Bionic Commando), Noritaka Funamizu (1943, Area 88), Manami Matsumae (Rockman), Nasir Gebelli (Final Fantasy, Rad Racer), and Tomohiro Nishikado (Space Invaders).

Japansoft is a pseudosequel to the critically acclaimed Britsoft: An Oral History, seeing editor Alex Wiltshire and leading design agency Julia return with a multilayered and eclectic publication that offers a unique reading experience through interlinked interviews that can be read in any order.


Alex Wiltshire


Alex Wiltshire is a journalist, writer, and former editor of Edge magazine. He edited Britsoft: An Oral History and is the author of several books, including the bestselling Minecraft: Blockopedia. He works as a publishing editor for developer Mojang, and among many other publications, writes a column about game design for Rock Paper Shotgun. He lives in Bath, England.