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Team Ninja's Boss Talks Ninja Gaiden 3 and Cancelled Projects

Company already has internal prototype completed. Progressive and Cronus are no more.


Famitsu.com has posted an interview with Team Ninja head Yousuke Hayashi. In the interview, an expanded version of an interview that appeared in Weekly Famitsu last week, Hayashi shared some comments on Ninja Gaiden 3 and also set the record straight on some MIA Team Ninja projects.

The Ninja Gaiden 3 concept art.

Ninja Gaiden 3 was first announced at the Tokyo Game Show as being in development for an undisclosed platform. Tecmo Koei shared a single concept visual at the time (shown to the right).

This visual is full of hints about the direction they'll be taking with the title, said Hayashi to Famitsu. Famitsu asked for what kind of messages people should be looking for, but Hayashi responded "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.'"

Pressed further, he shared a couple of hints: "He seems to be doing something with right hand. Also, there's something not normal about this hand. It's covered in blood, but there's something unnatural regarding the blood."

Hayashi was more willing to share the general direction they're taking with the game. "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."

Even though they're not saying much at present, it looks like the project is pretty far along. "Development is progressing well," said Hayashi. "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."

Outside of Ninja Gaiden 3, Team Ninja is currently working on Ni-oh (in case you missed it, Tecmo Koei announced this surprising development at Tokyo Game Show) and Dead or Alive Dimensions. Based off Hayashi's comments with Famitsu, it looks like Dimensions will be coming first. As for the other two, he said we can probably expect to play Ninja Gaiden 3 before Ni-oh.

Elsewhere in the interview, Hayashi commented on some of the projects that Team Ninja had announced prior to Tomonobu Itagaki's departure.

Project Progressive progressed all the way through what Hayashi referred to as a "plot version." However, five years back, they stopped development and have no plans to continue.

The other mystery Team Ninja project was Dead or Alive Code Cronus. Development on this game never actually started. "It was just at the framework level," said Hayashi. It is "officially cancelled," he said.

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