Home / Tech News / Featured Tech News / Shinji Mikami’s departure partly led to Xbox’s decision to shutdown Tango Gameworks

Shinji Mikami’s departure partly led to Xbox’s decision to shutdown Tango Gameworks

Last year, Shinji Mikami left Tango Gameworks, more than a decade on from founding the studio. Less than one year on from his departure, Microsoft announced that it was shutting the studio down. Now, it seams that Mikami's departure may have had more to do with the shut down than expected.

Everyone was confused when Microsoft announced it was shutting down Tango Gameworks. The studio was its only foothold in the Japanese market, and it had just shipped a hit game, Hi-Fi Rush, the year before. However, Shinji Mikami and his protege, who directed Ghostwire Tokyo, Ikumi Nakamura, both departed the studio. Xbox's head of Game Studios, Matt Booty, has alluded to these high profile departures being part of the decision to close down Tango Gameworks.

As spotted by Eurogamer, Booty was interviewed by Variety for the Strictly Business Podcast. Without giving away any “nitty gritty details”, Booty said: “I think the thing to be considered is that for us, it's as much a forward-looking situation as much as it is looking back at one certain game… There are a lot of things that go into success for a game. What leadership do you have? What creative leadership do you have? Is the team the same team that shipped something successful previously?”

Booty said Microsoft has to look at those things and decide if they are “set up for success” going forward. The implication here is that Tango Gameworks was not set up for future success. For whatever reason, Microsoft had a lack of faith in the remaining team at Tango Gameworks and rather than trying to juice up the studio with new hires, it instead decided to cut costs.

I think it is also worth noting that Japan is a bit of a tough market right now, as the Japanese Yen has tanked in value. That may also have played a role in Microsoft's decision to scale back on its Japanese studio ambitions for now, while their economy recovers.

Discuss on our Facebook page, HERE.

KitGuru Says: Tango Gameworks shutting down was a shock but with Microsoft's reputation in Japan, and Xbox's low fan base in the region, it is unclear if Microsoft would have been able to draw in top Japanese talent to lead the studio after Mikami's departure.

Become a Patron!

Check Also

AMD lists new Ryzen AI 9 HX 375 APU with enhanced AI performance

It looks like the upcoming Rryzen AI 300 series is getting an extra SKU. AMD's …