TGS News

Tecmo's Team Ninja Speaks On The Post Itagaki Era
Posted By: Raymond Padilla - Monday, November 03, 2008 4:03 PM

Gamasutra has an interesting interview with two producers from Tecmo's Team Ninja (best known for the Ninja Gaiden and Dead or Alive series). As many of you know, Team Ninja's Tomonobu Itagaki left the company amidst scandal and controversy. The move was particularly unusual for a Japanese developer, where brash and outspoken personalities are definitely not the norm. Gamasutra talks with Hitoshi Hasegawa and Yosuke Hayashi about the post-Itagaki era at Team Ninja, development philosophy differences on the three major consoles, and its experiment on the Nintendo DS. Here are some interesting tidbits.

On what Team Ninja has been up since Itagaki's departure, Hasegawa said:

"We've been taking some time reformatting and reorganizing our team around, but one thing for sure is that we know what our focus and our concentration and our team goals and objectives are. We've been using time recently in order to make sure that that's what we want to do, and continue to work on existing and future projects."

On Ninja Gaiden: Dragon Sword's tepid reaction in North America, Hayashi said:

"As a product from a development, concept, and content standpoint, the team is very happy and satisfied with what we were able to achieve and put in the final product. However, we do feel that we fell a little short in trying to communicate that, and have more gamers play what we were able to put in that final product.

It just wasn't the right sort of natural chemistry. It wasn't enough. But we're up for those kinds of challenges, to provide a new and unique way of playing for a given console. Ninja Gaiden: Dragon Sword was a perfect example of that, in providing a hardcore action game experience on a portable machine. That was our challenge at the time, but we'll continue to look at similar challenges in the future."

On developing games exclusively for one console, Hayashi said:

"I agree that if we work exclusively with one console that the final product will be a better game than if we were to create it simultaneously for multiple platforms.

Each system has its own philosophy behind it, so it's a matter if you can concentrate and focus 100 percent to adapt to that, or if you're going to have to balance that out with other titles."



Posted by Ulrichgaming - Tuesday, November 04, 2008 6:42 AM
kind of left out this part...

"Yeah. The cooperation that Sony has been lending to the developers has been good so far. We're very satisfied.

For any developer that's been working on all of the platforms that are available today, I think they would agree that the PlayStation 3 is the most powerful system out there."


"The developers have been releasing products, but there is a bigger potential. There is greater potential, and we see that possibility the most in the PlayStation 3. It's going to be up to us developers and Sony to make sure that that does happen."

Posted by gambitjuggalo - Tuesday, November 04, 2008 12:12 AM
just give me more ninja gaiden. i must have more ninja gaiden.. greatest game ever

Posted by macgyver77 - Monday, November 03, 2008 11:03 PM
so what about ng3 i need a ng3 bring back team ninja so they can work on ng3 and doa i wish microsoft pick up TN and work on ng3,they should do that

Posted by drangel_jam - Monday, November 03, 2008 10:16 PM
I trust Tecmo will maintain the quality they are known for. And even it saddens me deeply, the absence of Itagaki may help them trying new things, and/or give a twist to DoA and Ninja Gaiden series that actually makes them even better. The same goes for Itagaki, I suspect he has received a phat [sic] offer from a big house, and is probably already working on his next (master?)piece.

Best regards for both, since Ninja Gaiden and DoA4 are two of my very favorite X360 games.

Posted by Letters2Kay - Monday, November 03, 2008 7:09 PM
Just tell me what's going on with DOA, Tecmo!!

Posted by r_pad - Monday, November 03, 2008 4:50 PM
@gurei These guys are from Team Ninja -- the development side. Decisions like the one you're talking about are handled by the publishing side.

Posted by gurei - Monday, November 03, 2008 4:46 PM
and no word on what were the 3 titles they were supposed to have presented at TGS? come on!

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