Tomonobu Itagaki Establishes New Itagaki Games Studio
posted on by Rafael Antonio Pineda
Game designer Tomonobu Itagaki announced on his Facebook page on Sunday that he has established a new studio named Itagaki Games.
The announcement was originally in a segment cut from an interview with business news website Bloomberg due to space. In the interview, he noted that he is open to an offer from Microsoft for their Xbox gaming platform.
Itagaki joined Tecmo (later KOEI Tecmo) in 1992 as a programmer. At Tecmo, he would launch perhaps his best known series, the 3D fighting game series Dead or Alive, the first installment of which debuted in 1996. The series spawned four sequels (although Itagaki only worked on the series until Dead or Alive 4), as well as spinoffs such as Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball. He also developed the Ninja Gaiden series, based on Tecmo's NES game series of the same name. The first Ninja Gaiden game debuted in 2004, and it spawned two sequels in 2008 and 2012 (although Itagaki only worked on the first and second game in the series).
Itagaki resigned from KOEI Tecmo just before the release of Ninja Gaiden II in 2008. He founded Valhalla Game Studios in 2009, and the developer released its first game, Devil's Third, in 2015 for the Wii U. A PC version titled Devil's Third Online launched in 2016, but ended service in 2017. Itagaki resigned from Valhalla Game Studios in August 2017.