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Team ICO boss Fumito Ueda leaves Sony – details

Tuesday, 13th December 2011 01:03 GMT By Johnny Cullen

Sony’s confirmed that Fumito Ueda has left the company, ending speculation on the Team ICO boss’s future.

He will now finish work on The Last Guardian as a freelancer, the company told Gamasutra.

Speculation on his future has been rampant since initial reports of his leaving began circulating late last month. That came before it was announced that TLG producer Yoshifusa Hayama left to join London-based Bossa Studios.

Ueda joined Sony in 1997 after working as an animator for Sega Saturn horror title Enemy Zero at WARP.

In his time at SCEJ and Studio Japan, he formed the internal studio Team ICO, creating arguably two of the best games of all time, ICO and Shadow of the Colossus.

Team ICO has not seen a game release since Shadow of the Colossus in 2006 in Europe, but has been working on The Last Guardian since then, which was unveiled at E3 in 2009.

The Last Guardian was due for a holiday release this year, but was subsequently delayed into a TBC timeline in the future.

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12 Comments

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  1. Ireland Michael

    As long as he continues to make good games, I honestly couldn’t give a damn who he’s working for. The quality of his games is all I honestly care about it.

    #1 2 years ago
  2. Phoenixblight

    This will most likely be his last game. No company is going to give him the light of day after this project. He is inefficient and might as well be sitting on his ass collecting a pay check because that’s all he has practically been doing for the last 4 years.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. osric90

    Hopefully the guy won’t try to downgrade it (The Last Guardian) for 360 and end up making a mediocre product. @2 So you preffer quantity than quality? Dude.

    #3 2 years ago
  4. Phoenixblight

    @3

    I never said that but announcing a game and not showing anything of it for the last 4 years. He should look into how Rockstar does it they don’t show anything until they know for sure it will be done within a time frame. Looking from a business perspective not sure how he has had a job this entire time. None of his games are huge sellers to warrant such a delay.
    Look at Naughty Dog they are efficient not only do you get a pretty solid game, they also deliver it within 2 years. I can go further for examples like most of Nintendo’s games.

    #4 2 years ago
  5. Ireland Michael

    @3 The game is licensed and published by Sony. Why would he “downgrade” it?

    Spare me the fanboy dowgrading prattle anywhere. Ico and Shadow of the Colossus are proof enough that hardware means little when it comes to honest quality, and its talent that will make a great game great.

    #5 2 years ago
  6. back_up

    he is nothing without sony
    TLG = GOTY 2012

    #6 2 years ago
  7. KAP

    @4

    Your comment has all types of wrong in it.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. TD_Monstrous69

    Good to know this is confirmed, though I wonder on why it is it took Sony and Ueda-san so long just to be out with this news already? I guess it was for business reasons (they must protect the shareholders). I hope that Ueda doesn’t fall into similar trappings that other once-famous Japanese game developers have fallen into (Keiji Inafune anyone?). Though I don’t think we’ll ever see as great of work from him as he did during his time at Sony/Team ICO. Mainly because of the patience Sony gave him on his projects, that helped to produce some of the highest quality games ever made (even if he only made 2 games). I hope that even though he’s working freelance to get this done, that the spirit of The Last Guardian doesn’t change too much (also, that we finally get a fuckin release date, or a concrete time frame on its release already).

    #8 2 years ago
  9. osric90

    @5 You’re so naive.

    #9 2 years ago
  10. Dragon246

    @osric90, The Last Guardian for 360 HaHaHaHaHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.
    Keep dreaming fanboy , That is not going to happen. Its a sony exclusive made by a sony 1st party developer. Suck on that xbot.
    Also I hope Ueda has some future plans because I do not think any other publisher will give him so much time and money as sony did. Best of luck to him.

    #10 2 years ago
  11. Gekidami

    @9
    …Sony own the IP, i mean i dont even understand why you’d think it would be possible. Its like saying that Halo Reach will be headed to PS3 because Bungie left MS. That isnt how it works.

    #11 2 years ago
  12. Ireland Michael

    @9 Care to explain?

    The *studio* is owned by Sony. They own the copyright to these games, their names and their identity. Not Ueda. Sony.

    If you’re referring to the comment about game quality based on hardware… no, not really. Being on the PS2 didn’t stop ICO or Shadow of the Colossus from being stellar game. The older hardware was the newer hardware once. The only thing *ever* required for a good game is good talent. Not hardware specs.

    #12 2 years ago