Ex-Sony and Team Ico exec sets up new Tokyo-based developer UrCase

Last Guardian producer Yoshifusa Hayama goes indie

The former executive producer on The Last Guardian and vice president at Sony Computer Entertainment has formed a new indie studio in Japan.

Called UrCase, The Tokyo-based developer is currently working on several new projects, which will be announced in the coming months.

Revealing the news exclusively to Develop, Hayama said the new independent studio would staff a small team of developers, and had no plans to scale up to a large company.

He stated that one of the main reasons he founded the new studio was so he could work on fun and enjoyable projects, as well as offering a space that allows developers to express their creativity.

For its first project, UrCase is working with a UK-based technology company.

“I’d rather expand this sort of new collaborative development with new partners rather than expand my company to a massive-sized empire,” he said.

Having previously worked in the UK at studios such as Sumo Digital and Bossa Studios, Hayama said he wants to combine the best of both UK and Japanese development cultures at his new company.

He explained that despite fast moving consumer trends in recent years to new technologies, many Japanese developers had been trying to work under the same development structures of years gone by, rather than adapting to new business models.

“Consumers and trends have changed so quickly in the past five years, and even quicker these days,” he said.

“I imagine some Japanese games are made by the same developers in the same structures as before, with the same managers for the past ten years.”

He added: “However, I know there’s a great side to Japanese game development, so I hope I can be the one who makes something new and unique that people will like and remember.”

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