Nagoshi Studio, Sega, Yakuza, NetEase, new studio, developer, Toshihiro Nagoshi

Yakuza Creator Opens Nagoshi Studio at NetEase Games

Nagoshi Studio is NetEase Games’ new game development company established by Toshihiro Nagoshi, the founder of Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio at Sega and the creator of the Yakuza and Monkey Ball franchises. This follows Nagoshi’s exit from Sega last October. Nagoshi will serve as CEO and representative director of the new Shibuya, Tokyo studio as it begins its focus on creating “high-quality console titles that will be released globally.” NetEase adds that Nagoshi Studio will have full creative control to develop games as it wishes.

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The new Nagoshi Studio website details other developers on the team. Former Sega producer Daisuke Sato will continue serving as a producer at Nagoshi Studio, with Taichi Ushioda joining as a director and Masao Shirosaki serving as a game designer. Programmer Koji Tokieda and engineer Mitsunori Fujimoto are also part of the team, while Naoki Someya, Toshihiro Ando, and Kazuki Hosokawa will head up the art department.

The website also shares a message from Toshihiro Nagoshi, in which he talks about how entertainment has changed through the years and how Nagoshi Studio will find its place in the future of video games:

The sea change that began in the entertainment industry in the late 20th century has brought even greater change to the industry in the 21st century.
Changes to entertainment content, how it’s made and the business model driven by technology and infrastructure advances have sparked a paradigm shift, and these changes are continuing to unfold with greater and greater speed.
What only yesterday had been considered the height of cool now suddenly becomes outdated before you know it.
For creators, this makes working in the industry today incredibly challenging.
But no matter how the times change, I believe that what people essentially want from entertainment has not changed one bit.

People see their dreams in entertainment.
People look to entertainment to give them hope in life, to soothe them in times of difficulty, and to add excitement in happy times. People look to entertainment to provide the spark for all kinds of events.
The appetite for entertainment is the same today as it was in the past.
There are obviously differences between the past and the present in how entertainment is consumed, its volume and velocity, but its essence remains the same.
The only way to deliver this essence to the world is if all creators approach the works they create with seriousness and clarity while grinding away to get closer to reaching the ideal.

One of my goals at this studio is to create an open atmosphere.
This may sound like an overly simplistic goal.
But even the most talented creators cannot fully unleash their abilities in isolation.
I believe that the first step to creating high-quality titles and delivering the essence of entertainment with strong motivation starts with creating an open atmosphere in the studio.

This means having open-ended discussions that ignore seniority and hierarchy.
This means not fearing mistakes while also not being afraid to correct them, and treating failures as assets. This means not giving up on reaching the ideal, and fighting to get closer to it.
This may seem so simple, but the simplest things can unexpectedly be the hardest to do, and at the same time the most important.
Nagoshi Studio is committed to creating content for the world to enjoy from this atmosphere.

A report that Nagoshi would exit Sega for NetEase first sprouted at the end of last summer. Official confirmation of his departure arrived a few months later, with Sega revealing that Daisuke Sato would be leaving with him. Today’s announcement confirms the NetEase reporting, but it will likely be a while before Nagoshi Studio reveals its first project.


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