Tecmo Koei’s Team Ninja Being Reorganized Into Two Groups

By Ishaan . March 25, 2013 . 9:00am

Tecmo Koei are reorganizing their corporate structure, and Team Ninja will be one of the teams affected by the change, the publisher announced today (via: Hachima Kiko).


As part of the reorganization, Team Ninja is being split into two development groups—the Ichigaya Development Group 1 and Ichigaya Development Group 2.


Current Team Ninja head Yosuke Hayashi will lead Ichigaya Development Group 1. Meanwhile, Ichigaya Development Group 2 will be headed up by Fatal Frame producer Keisuke Kikuchi. Prior to this change, Kikuchi was a senior manager at Team Ninja.


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  • Solomon_Kano

    Oh? So basically Team 1 will be handling NG and DOA while Team 2 does…?

    • Mr_SP

      …Fatal Frame?

      • Solomon_Kano

        How often do they put those out these days? I know one just came out last year, but does TK still make those often enough to split Team Ninja for the series?

        Edit: Actually, after looking for a sec, TN hasn’t handled Fatal Frame anyway, it’s handled by other TK development staff. So it’s doubtful that’ll Team 2’s new job.

    • Zarx

      Making…new Fatal Frame games? (I wish)

      • Solomon_Kano

        New? Pfft. They’ve still gotta remake Fatal Frame 3! You know that’s what’s next lol.

        • Zarx

          And have it not come out in NA again lol.

          • Solomon_Kano

            Don’t worry though, they’ll localize the next spin-off lol.

      • CirnoLakes

        Ah, Fatal Frame.

        This, Dynasty Warriors, and Atelier games are the best which Tecmo Koei has.

        I miss Fatal Frame games.

    • I wonder which of the two is handling that Ni-Oh game that seems to have disappeared again.

      • Lexaus_the_Alchemist

        That Ni-Oh title is almost as bad as FFvsXIII (or FFXV or whatever the hell it’s being named today). I wonder if that teaser they put out still applies to their original concept or did they restart everything…

        • Solomon_Kano

          Worse. Easily worse. Even though we’ve seen precious little of Versus… well, we’ve seen Versus. Trailers, gameplay snippets, development updates, etc. Ni-Oh’s only update was that TN took over, nothing said before and nothing said since.

          • Lexaus_the_Alchemist

            The only reason I said “almost as bad FFvsXIII” was that Ni-Oh doesn’t have the established name like a FF title. But that’s to be expected. You’re right though, it’s been in a development hell worse than FFvsXIII, and it’s surprising that I can say that sentence and be completely serious.

          • Solomon_Kano

            Who’d have thunk anything could be worse than Versus development? lol

        • ShadowDivz

          Wait Versus has been renamed? The hell?(sorry off topic)

          • Lexaus_the_Alchemist

            Rumor. Though there’s little evidence that it was changed, it’s still a rumor for now.

          • ShadowDivz

            As long as they don’t make it P4 exclusive. I don’t care what they call it.

      • Solomon_Kano

        Holy crap. I completely forgot that TN was supposed to have taken over Ni-Oh. Seriously, who the hell is working on that? TN has done NG3, DOA5, NG3:RE, and DOA5+ since it was said that they took over development. At this point, I just don’t believe Ni-Oh exists anymore lol.

      • KnifeAndFork

        What is Ni-Oh?

        • It was a project that was in development at Koei and development later shifted over to Team Ninja. Something to do with samurai if I recall correctly. Google for it on Siliconera… we covered it a few times. :)

    • Lexaus_the_Alchemist

      New IPs? Or supporting other devs on their projects, like Spark and their Yaiba game? That’s my $0.02.

      • Solomon_Kano

        I forgot about Yaiba. Considering what TN’s been doing since that was announced, I’d imagine they aren’t doing much for that from a manpower standpoint. Probably just overseeing it.

        New IP is certainly possible but, I mean, the last new IP they were supposed to be working on still hasn’t materialized.

  • Didn’t Team Ninja have several different sub-teams already? Is this new division along the same lines?

    • This sounds like two independent teams.

  • benhofb

    You know, while Techmo is re-organizing their internal structure, they should really hire a good PR staff that doesn’t only promote Dead or Alive and Ninja Gaiden but also their more niche titles (*COUGH* Atelier Totori Plus *COUGH*).

    • Tecmo Koei US is in between PR staff, which is why Totori fell through the gaps. It was just unfortunate timing.

      • That… Explains quite a bit. A real shame. I’m very much enjoying Totori Plus. A lot easier for me to go at when it’s portable.

        • benhofb

          Oops, and I agree with Linka. That does explain some things. Hopefully the US issues with Totori won’t happen again once the new PR staff gets their feet on the ground.

      • puchinri

        If I may ask, how much of an understanding do you have on how TK US and EU work? I felt there was a lot of weird stuff going on with Ayesha in how information was released and who was saying what.

        Are they very differently structured? Why was EU the only one to be saying anything, but it didn’t seem like they were allowed to call any shots (so to speak)? The Totori thing kind of made it look worse/even more weird for TK US. I’ve noticed that their Twitter and forums have been dead for a long time too. It’s kind of worrisome.

        Sorry to bombard you with questions, Ishaan. It’s just that it all really boggled my mind and was really questionable.

        • To my knowledge, the two divisions are independently run, just like most other publishers.

          TK Europe in general seem to be more willing to communicate with fans, owing primarily to Chin, who handles their Twitter feed and Facebook on occasion as well. He’s very passionate about their games so he’s always trying to reach out to their fanbase.

          I don’t really know what’s going on with America. All I know is that the PR person we used to be in touch with is no longer with them and that they’re in between PR folks at the moment, which is why things seem chaotic.

          Also, not sure how related this is, but Tecmo Koei Canada went through some trouble lately. Their Toronto studio was recently closed down: http://natpo.st/X5HSp1

          • puchinri

            Ah, okay. Yeah, EU’s willingness (eagerness, even) to reach out to fans was very nice, and I felt kind of bad for Chin with how the Ayesha thing went (that was a lot of backtracking for them).

            That is really weird. Huh. I hope it doesn’t stay like this much longer, anyway.

            Wow. That sounds worse. Thanks for the info, Ishaan. This is one of those situations where I feel like a couple of more questions popped up, but at least some things were answered~.

          • Sorry I can’t be more helpful!

          • puchinri

            No, that’s okay~. I mean, after a while, there isn’t much more to know given how tight-lipped they are about whatever is going on.

    • Solomon_Kano

      That’s on their US branch. They’re reorganizing their development staff, as near as can be told from this news. So complaints about Atelier’s (lack of) promotion should be taken up with the US branch.

      • benhofb

        Yeah, my bad. I thought (for some reason) that the Japan branch had something to do with information or something.

  • sunK1D

    They should have gotten rid of hayashi while they were at it. Oh well :/

    • d3v

      Why get rid of him considering that DOA5 saved the series from the pits that was Itagaki’s vision for DOA4.

      • sunK1D

        DoA 5 saved the series according to who? You?

        DoA 5 isn’t a bad game by any means but neither are all the Itagaki DoAs. The difference is that Itagaki was a perfectionist, Hayashi is just a deadline guy.

  • Why? Why not just let Ichigaya 1 still be Team Ninja and give the second studio a whole new name?

    R.I.P. Team NINJA (1996-2013). I hope the name remains for the PS3/360 version of Razor’s Edge.

    • Lexaus_the_Alchemist

      3013?! Holy crap, the ninjas found a way to prolong their life force!

  • Ni

    Team 2 need to make a new horror IP for the others plataforms

  • They pumped out like 5 games in the last 6 months, and I’m pretty sure Itagaki long ago said there’s two teams. Now it’s just more official. I highly doubt they’ll kill the TN brand

  • Visa Vang

    I hope to see possible Fatal Frame titles in the future.

    • l777l

      Same here.

    • ffboi7

      Same here, but the question is will Nintendo even bring it over?

    • Ricardo C

      Reggie (president of NOA) is a jerk so I doubt it :(

  • Stranger On The Road

    When I saw the headline, my first thoughts were:
    Team 1 to handle Ninja Gaiden and Dead or Alive;

    Team 2 to handle Dead or Alive Xtreme, Dead Or Alive Paradise and a new IP to compete with Dream Club or Love Plus.

    But I guess it not happening; the pervert inside of me is disappointed :-(

  • ShadowDivz

    They should have just given them 2 different names it would sound better.
    But i don’t think that really affects developpment.

  • Tom

    And which team will bring Fatal Frame 4 to the west?!

  • Sergio Briceño

    For a minute there I was hoping this reorganizing meant Hayashi had finally left the team… I know he has been there for like, forever, but as the head it only took him about 5 years to take everything I loved about Team Ninja that Itagaki had been working on in 10…

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