Keiji Inafune of Mega Man fame has talked in the past about his dislike of the way Japanese gaming has stagnated over the years. In a recent interview, he clarified his thoughts further:
Back in the day our Japanese games were used to winning and achieved major success. At some point the winners became losers. By not accepting that fact we have arrived at the tragic state of Japanese games. The Japanese game industry has become very closed-minded. I am ashamed to admit it but whenever I travel overseas I feel as if Japanese games are becoming a blast from the past. They have become great memories and little more.
Harsh words, but I can see where he’s coming from. I also think a lot could be said about gaming outside of Japan. A lot of the popular stuff tends be the “safer” and more predictable choices, which can provide this sense of stagnation. There’s still a lot of innovation if you dig deeper though. But I can only speak to my experience, so I’m not sure what it’s particularly like in Japan.