The final Zero Escape game, following 9 Hours 9 Persons 9 Doors and Virtue's Last Reward, has been delayed.
Kotaru Uchikoshi, director and writer of Zero Escape: 9 Hours 9 Persons 9 Doors and its sequel Virtue's Last Reward, announced on Twitter today for his English-speaking fans that his proposal for the third and final Zero Escape game was denied. It will be put on hold indefinitely.
Thanking fans who have played the first two games, Uchikoshi hopes there is a future for the final Zero Escape. At this stage, the series has not sold well enough in Japan to ensure the profitability of a third. Uchikoshi said he was sad about the mangers' decision to deny his proposal, but he understands companies do not approve projects that won't make a profit.
Both 9 Hours 9 Persons 9 Doors and Virtue's Last Reward have gained a following outside of Japan - something which Uchikoshi said the managers are well aware of; however, both games are "in the red" in Japan.
"I am very sorry to all the users who are expecting ZE3," he said. "I feel ashamed of my own inadequacies."
Uchikoshi hasn't lost hope for the conclusion. He may make another title that sells well, which could drum up support for Zero Escape. He has examined crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter, but he believes "the idea is not quite persuasive enough" to meet its target goal. Uchikoshi has not said how much he expects Zero Escape 3's development to cost beyond "a lot." For now, he is seeking out opportunities with executives and investors.
"I believe there is still hope," he declared. "ZE3 will definitely be released somehow, someday!"