Bandai Namco Changed Its Logo And Fans Think It Kinda Sucks

Bandai Namco Changed Its Logo And Fans Think It Kinda Sucks
It's worse. Don't you think? (Image: Bandai Namco)

In 2005, Bandai and Namco merged, and the following year, Bandai Namco was born. To mark the new conglomerate, the company got a yellow, red, and orange logo with the company’s name in white font. It’s not a bad look, and stands out among Japanese game companies. But next year, Bandai Namco is getting a redesigned logo, and so far, the buzz is not good.

According to Bandai Namco, there is a reason for the redesign — namely that the new logo reflects the company’s new purpose.

“Fundamental to our Purpose is the idea of connecting and working together to create things,” said Bandai Namco Holdings president Masaru Kawaguchi Bandai. “Namco’s entertainment connects fans all over the world. By delivering fun to the people everywhere, we put smiles on their faces and help them achieve happiness. That’s why Bandai Namco exists.”

But no fun right now.  (Image: Bandai Namco) But no fun right now. (Image: Bandai Namco)

OK. But your new logo sure doesn’t seem to be making fans happy. Below are a selection of comments from Japan’s largest bulletin board, 2ch:

They really thought this was good?

It’s just letters.

This is so dull.

This looks like something I could make.

I like that it’s simple.

It doesn’t look like a Japanese company.

Looks like Twitch’s logo.

No personality.

When I look quickly at it, I can’t tell it’s Bandai Namco.

The previous one was better.

This for real? It’s so shitty.

The font is fine, but the way it’s bordered is not cool.

It’s too simple. Just glancing at it, there’s no branding.

It’s fine. I don’t really care about logos.

Video games are fun so make a funner logo.

And the orange logo was so nice.

It’s better than before.

Is it really necessary to change the logo?

But what do these folks know? Bandai Namco says there is a concept behind the design. It means something! Here is the official explanation:

The new logo’s speech bubble motif, “Fukidashi” in Japanese, expresses the potential of the brand to connect with people around the world and inspire them with amazing ideas. The speech bubble also represents Japan’s manga culture that has become so popular everywhere. The logo stands for our determination to communicate with fans worldwide, to connect with our fans, and to create entertainment unique to Bandai Namco. The magenta used as the motif colour not only represents diversity, but also creates a bright and fun impression and is easy to reproduce.

The new logo will go into use starting April 2022. The current one is way better.

Comments

  • The old logo wasn’t great, especially compared to the classic logos of the two companies prior to the merger, but the new one just outright sucks.

  • It’s really hard to believe this is what counts as a logo. It looks almost exactly like the kind of formatting used by The Verge and Polygon to highlight parts of their articles.

    • Curious what you do think counts as a logo, you could argue that logos for Square Enix and even Nintendo’s are simpler than the new Bandai Namco logo. While their font choice/design is a bit on the safe side it’s still an expertly made logo, the only major flaw in it is that extra line of text “Fun for All into the future” which looks like an afterthought. A full look into their style guide would tell if the new branding will sink or swim though.

      While the old logo is more fun, it is average on the design front. It does have decent bones though and I am surprised they didn’t leverage it for the new one. Full branding redesigns are usually indicative of larger changes within the company so I do wonder if there is anything else going on with the company?

      • The whole thing makes no sense. The logo literally doesn’t mean anything when spoken out of a speech blurb by a slogan that also means literally nothing.

        Reading the company’s own explanation for the whole disaster leaves a very strong impression of something being slightly off in translation. All your base are belong to us.

        The capitalisation is odd. It makes the entire thing look like a random mess. The slogan at the bottom looks like it’s meant to be dialogue but it’s capitalised as if it’s a proper noun even though it’s a statement, and it looks even odder when contrasted with the allcaps logo above it.

        Also, ‘fun’ in this context is so… milquetoast. Seriously, I have fun watching cat videos. I have fun going down a dip in the road and making my tummy feel funny. ‘Fun’ is such a common currency. Surely they could have used a more evocative word here?

        And, “for All”, as in, we don’t want to miss out on a single market, literally anywhere. How inspiring of the company to know its market – that alone is a total Marketing 101 failure right there.

        You say that this is an “expertly made logo” which is both self evidentially correct and kinda misleading. Brand designers can only work with the brief they’re given. We know absolutely nothing about the spaghetti process that resulted in this being approved in the boardroom.

        Not everything a professional churns out is art, sometimes it’s just a pay cheque.

  • // …and is easy to reproduce. //
    I would wager this is the driving factor behind this change, with all the rest being PR nonsense someone came up with largely after the fact.

    It’s so mind numbingly simple compared to the previous logo, and they’re definitely not the first to drastically simplify or ‘dumb down’ their logo.

    Though they are one of the few who threw their recognition right out the fuckin’ window to instead look like an entirely other company that just stole their name.

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