Team Ninja has said it currently has no plans for a new instalment in the Ninja Gaiden series, amid speculation that it was looking to revive the action series.
Speaking to VGC in a new interview, series director Fumihiko Yasuda reiterated his desire to one day return to Ninja Gaiden, but claimed that no such plans are currently in place.
He said: “[There are] no plans currently, but I’ve always wanted to make a new instalment in the series, so here’s hoping for that!”
The Tecmo action adventure series hasn’t seen a mainline instalment since 2012’s Ninja Gaiden 3. Yasuda, who is the director of Nioh and its sequel, was a level designer for Ninja Gaiden 2 and directed the series’ third instalment – its first since the departure of lead creator Tomonobu Itagaki.
Yasuda’s Nioh games are partly published by Sony Interactive Entertainment. However, the director and producer suggested any potential new Ninja Gaiden entries would return to Xbox, where the rebooted series made its name.
“There are no current plans for the Nioh series to be on Xbox consoles at this point, but of course the Ninja Gaiden series has had a long history on Microsoft‘s consoles,” he said. “So if there was to be a new title in the Ninja Gaiden series in the future, we’d definitely like that to be on Xbox consoles.”
The Ninja Gaiden series has existed since the late 80s when it debuted on NES. In modern times it became popular with a number of critically acclaimed Xbox exclusives released between 2004 and 2008.
The director of those games, Itagaki, left Tecmo following the release of Ninja Gaiden 2 to form Valhalla Game Studios.
It’s not the first time Nioh director Yasuda has expressed a desire to one day return to Ninja Gaiden. Last year Yasuda told IGN: “The core members of the team that worked on Ninja Gaiden want to make a new game.
“We are aware that some fans wanted Ninja Gaiden more than Nioh 2. Now we see a lot of ninja games like [Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice] as well, and we see a lot of good inspirations in those games, so we hope to deliver some good news one day.”
Although Team Ninja denies that a new instalment is in the works, it was recently suggested that a selection of Ninja Gaiden remasters could be planned for 2021.
Ninja Gaiden Trilogy was briefly listed for release on the website of Game Source Entertainment, a Hong Kong-based distributor.
The collection will reportedly release in March 2021 and include Ninja Gaiden Sigma, Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 and Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor’s Edge.