Things have gone from bad to worse for Japan's game industry, according to a recent survey.
The survey, conducted by Mirko Ernkvist of the University of Gothenberg, was mailed to every CEO with a company with at least 3 years of business experience. Only 25% of the CEOs contacted responded, and some neglected to fill out the survey in full, but the picture painted by those who did respond is grim indeed.
Of the companies that responded, only 52% claimed to have made a profit during 2011, and 89% reported that they'd outsourced parts of their own projects.
Of course, 2011 was a pretty tough year for most Japanese businesses - tsunamis and nuclear meltdowns do not, as a rule, stimulate the national economy - but the software industry was hit particularly hard. Software revenue dropped by 8% during 2011.
Almost 58% of respondents reported using third-party graphics engines in the past three years, which Ernkvist argues is a sign that they're less technologically sophisticated than their western counterparts. Only 36% of respondents reported using a commercially available AI program, and 41% admitted to using a third party physics engine.
You can browse the entire report, which is actually quite stimulating for a document that uses the word "median" more than once, here.