Yuji Naka, the Sonic the Hedgehog original programmer, has confirmed his departure from Square Enix after three years. His departure comes after the critically and commercially dismal reaction to his most recent creation, the platformer Balan Wonderworld.
Naka claimed that he cannot explain why he quit at this time, but that when the opportunity presents, he will do so publicly. He went on to say that he is pondering retiring because he is 55 years old.
Yuji Naka, Life and Legacy
Yuji Naka served at Sega for 22 years. He was the former director of the Sonic Team and primary developer for the Sega Genesis’s initial Sonic the Hedgehog games. While at Sega, he collaborated on titles like Nights into Dreams and Phantasy Star Online.
Balan Wonderworld was released on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X on March 26. Naka reconnected with lifelong colleague Naoto Ohshima, well recognized as Sonic the Hedgehog’s original character artist, for the game’s development. Ohshima and Naka also directed and produced Nights into Dreams; a critically acclaimed Sega Saturn game released in 1996.
After leaving Sega in 2006, Naka formed the PROPE game creation firm, which he now leads as president and CEO. He developed on games including Fishing Resort, Buddy Monster, and Legend of Coin while at PROPE.
In a tweet below, you can see where he made the official announcement. In a tweet, Naka stated, “I can’t talk about the cause right now, but I hope I will be able to talk about it when the time comes” (the translation comes from Google). He quit Square Enix at the end of April, according to the 55-year-old developer. “I may retire,” Naka said, referring to his age.
When judging the flop, this is our opinion, The narrative is difficult to follow. There are numerous events in the game that are left unexplained. It doesn’t help that there isn’t any dialogue in the game. There is a book, which reads more like a script than a novella, which provides all the background information that is not included in the game. Best of luck to Yuji Naka on the rest of his path in life.