With the release of Ninja Gaiden II is the the news that head of Team Ninja Tomonobu Itagaki is leaving Team Ninja and Suing Tecmo with allegations of “unlawful acts” and a decision not to pay bonuses as part of a letter by Itagaki.
“I, Tomonobu Itagaki, hereby announce that on the 14th of May 2008 I filed a complaint in the Tokyo District Court against Tecmo Co., Ltd. for unpaid completion bonuses, and against the President of Tecmo, Yoshimi Yasuda, for such unlawful acts as unreasonable and disingenuous statements made towards me, claiming damages in total of 148 million yen. I also announce that this complaint was delivered to the defendants on May 22nd of the same year. In addition, I hereby announce that I have today submitted a letter of resignation to Tecmo Co., Ltd. stating that I will resign as of the 1st of July, 2008.
As for “his fans” he had this to say:
“I truly feel sorry to all the fans of the games I have made. Ninja Gaiden 2, which will launch on the 3rd of June will be the last Ninja Gaiden I will create. I will also never be able to make Dead or Alive 5. I regret the circumstances that have forced me to leave Tecmo, where I had worked for so many years, and I regret the disappointment this will cause my fans. However, I can no longer continue to work with President Yoshimi Yasuda, a man who chooses not to honor promises even when he is able to do so. I truly hope that nothing like this happens again in the future.”
What ramifications this has toward the greater well being of Xbox in general is rather interesting. Where does Itagaki go from here? He’s been one of the biggest Xbox supporters inside of a Japan that very much seems to be against Xbox with reckless abandon as opposed to other platforms. Can Xbox continue to receive support from other Japanese publishers with it’s greatest supporter in flux?
-William “thewilleffect” Bell-