Producer Yousuke Hayashi was recently interviewed in the popular Japanese gaming mag, Famitsu, and had a chance to discuss Team Ninja's progress on Ninja Gaiden 3 as well as some of the company's other projects. According to Hayashi, Gaiden 3 development is well underway, but unfortunately it wasn't all good news with Mr. Hayashi as he confirmed that a couple Team Ninja titles have been cancelled.Playing coy on the direction Team Ninja is taking Ninja Gaiden 3, Hayashi wants to keep quiet on the game's themes so it will come as a surprise to gamers once they do get announced. Hayashi explains:
"We're trying not to say directly. We'd Like to hear everyone's discussions. When we actually share specifics on Ninja Gaiden 3, we'd like to be able to say, 'It's actually like this.'
Ninja Gaiden 3 is a numbered title. We're developing it with the idea of restarting at the beginning, saying 'We'd like to make the action game that's most interesting for the current era.' With this meaning, it's going to be a game that's not bound by the past more than necessary. Of course, we will be valuing the past, but in a good meaning we'd like to make it into a game that's not tied down by the past."
Reading between the lines, it seems as if Hayashi wants to make Ninja Gaiden 3 stand out on its own, now that Tomonobu Itagaki is no longer part of Team Ninja. A working prototype has already been completed and if the company's reactions are any indication, it looks like Tecmo and Team Ninja will be fine without Itagaki.
"Development is progressing well. We've already completed an internal prototype. We held a sampling event for the prototype, and it was well received within the company. It will be a bit longer before we share info with everyone."
When asked about other projects that the company has had on their plate for quite a few years now, Hayashi had some disappointing news. Dead or Alive: Code Cronus development had never started, and is now cancelled. Additionally, Project Progressive was in a state referred to as a "plot version" (perhaps this means storyboards were still being created?) about five years ago, and has not since progressed. The company has decided to give the axe to the project and focus on Ninja Gaiden 3.
Bummed out you'll never see Code Cronus or Project Progressive? Do you think the absence of Itagaki will hurt Ninja Gaiden 3? What do you want to see in Ryu Hayabusa's next adventure? Hit us up in the comments section below.
Ninja Gaiden 3 is currently in development, with no announced platform(s) or release date.