Hi all, this is Kenichi Sato, CEO of PlatinumGames.
In Japan, things are finally starting to get warmer and spring seems to be right around the corner. I hope you all have been taking care of yourselves.
It’s interesting how the same temperature can feel so different depending on where it comes in the year – the transition from fall to winter somehow seems colder than that of winter to spring. Typically springtime is where people start to break free from the chains of winter, but this year, the world is still very much reserved. People are approaching spring with more care than before, cutting back on the gatherings that would usually happen this time of year.
We at Platinum, however, are still working towards April.
In Japan, April means the start of a new (albeit fiscal) year. Students graduate in March, then move onward to more school or a new career the following month. We’ll be joined by many new graduates this year. We’ve already preparations for their orientation and joining ceremony.
Last year, we practiced social distancing at our new graduate’s ceremony, limiting the number of attendees and keeping space between them. It was a first for us, but it seemed to go quite well. We will likely do something similar this year.
That, is unfortunate in some ways, as I love bringing the whole company together during these ceremonies. Still, it will be a once in a lifetime moment for many freshly graduated new hires. We intend to make the most with what we can.
Last year, I mentioned a few things we intend to focus on in our future:
-Development of new, original IPs
-Expanding independent publishing
-Hiring more staff for our PlatinumGames Tokyo office
Since it’s been a year now, let’s discuss how each of these steps has progressed.
First, there is Project G.G., our completely original self-published project, which we have already announced. All I can say is that development is moving forward – sorry we can’t discuss more than that at this time.
We began sales of our first self-published title, The Wonderful 101: Remastered as of June last year, and the title is still on sale now. We are working on other self-published titles at the moment as well. It may not be that significant to everyone who buys the game exactly who sells it, but for us, self-publishing it an extremely meaningful step forward in bridging the gap between us and our fans. There are still a lot of nuances we have left to learn, but we continue to expand our efforts daily.
Our Tokyo office opened last year as scheduled. We didn’t get to hold any grand opening for it exactly, but we’re extremely proud of being able to double down our development efforts now, having always been just an Osaka company. We are still looking for new potential candidates to come join our team, so please check the recruiting section of our site if you are interested.
Once we reach April, it will have been one year since Japan’s first declaration of emergency. Since then, not much has changed – we still are required to practice utmost care every day in this ongoing situation. As a game developer, we feel fortunate that we’re able to provide something to everyone spending more time at home. Our thoughts go out to medical workers, those working in travel, restaurant workers, and everyone offset by this crisis. We hope that our products may help bring smiles to everyone across the globe in these uncertain times, as we approach spring again. Thank you as always for your support.
|Kenichi Sato President and CEO
Kenichi Sato was born in Tokyo in 1962.
Though he began working for Isetan Department Stores in 1986, he changed careers to work in the video games industry in 1996 when he joined Sega Enterprises (now Sega) as a member of the Dreamcast marketing team. In 2000 he was brought on board as a founding member and general manager at Cavia (now Marvelous). In 2006, Sato founded ODD Ltd., the company that would later become PlatinumGames. A key member of PlatinumGames from the very beginning, Sato stepped into the role of president and CEO in April 2016.