The president and CEO of PlatinumGames has announced that he’s stepped down from the company.
Kenichi Sato had held the position since April 2016, but in a statement on the PlatinumGames website he revealed that he left the role last month.
Atsushi Inaba, who was vice-president of PlatinumGames and the head producer of its development division, has taken on Sato’s old role.
Inaba was previously CEO and producer of Clover Studio, the Capcom studio responsible for Viewtiful Joe, Okami and God Hand.
“At the end of December 2021, I stepped down from my position as president of PlatinumGames, and my successor is Inaba,” Sato explained in a statement.
“After I assumed the position of president in April 2016, we focused on the game development business with the desire to bring smiles to people around the world, and realised a capital alliance with Tencent in December 2019.
“We then launched Platinum Games Tokyo as a development base to further strengthen our development capabilities, and started the development of our own IP, which was our long-cherished wish.
“We now need to accelerate our efforts to create new games that only PlatinumGames can create, and I have decided that the best way to do this is to hand over the presidency to Inaba, who has been the studio head of PlatinumGames for many years and has demonstrated his skills in the creative side of games.”
Sato will now support Platinum in a purely advisory role.
In a separate ‘president’s message’ on the PlatinumGames site, Inaba discussed his views on his new role in this letter:
Creating innovative forms of play.
That is the belief PlatinumGames was founded on.
That is something that will never change.
Games come in all different styles for all different kinds of people. At their nature, they are a true expression of liberty: thoughts come together freely to create an idea, to expand upon it, and then, to actually play it. The real enjoyment from games comes from the freedom given to both the creator and user – which is why I believe them to be such an amazing form of entertainment.
Approaching “fun” with complete sincerity has always been important to me. I believe every one of our staff take pride that they are entertainers, always attempting the perfect balance between play and professionalism.
Creating a new, enjoyable game starts with the creator being able to enjoy the game themselves. The creator then has to continually build on their idea until they have something that communicates that sense of fun to anyone who experiences it – that consideration of the user makes all the difference.
Our overarching goal for entering self-publishing has been unchanged since its conception: to invent something new and share it with the rest of the world – showing our sincerity towards creation every step of the way.
People speaking different languages, from different backgrounds, all brought together through a controller. Made to smile by a new type of game.
It connects us, and sets us free.
It’s a job that I’m extremely proud of.
As I move forward towards the new challenges of the future, I hope to provide more and more experiences for all our users to enjoy.
PlatinumGames has a number of projects currently in development, the most notable being Bayonetta 3 which is due to be released in 2022, five years after it was originally announced.
It’s also developing action RPG Babylon’s Fall for Square Enix, which is due for release this March, as well as Sol Cresta, a shoot ’em up sequel to 1980 arcade game Moon Cresta and its 1985 successor Terra Cresta.
And in 2020 it announced Project GG, the studio’s first wholly owned IP. It’s an action game featuring a giant hero, described as the “climax” to director Hideki Kamiya’s superhero trilogy, following Viewtiful Joe and The Wonderful 101.