Hironobu Sakaguchi is a legend in the video game industry. Having worked in the industry for over 35 years, he is wrapping up development on his most recent game, Fantasian, for iOS. He spoke with Video Games Chronicle about the project and his future and he made it sound as if he is about to walk away for good.
“I think it is certainly possible that this could be my last project,” he told VGC, “and that was kind of in the back of my mind as we were developing it.”
Sakaguchi is the original creator of Final Fantasy as he directed the first five entries in the series. After the fifth entry in that series, he went on to become Executive Producer on Vagrant Story, Parasite Eve, and Kingdom Hearts. He stepped down and left Square in 2003, which actually caused Square itself to lose quite a bit of company valuation until it merged with Enix.
He went on to found Mistwalker studios with the financial backing of Microsoft, though he was able to negotiate to remain an independent studio. Under Mistwalker, he created Blue Dragon, Lost Odyssey, Archaic Sealed Heat, and finally his last massive JRPG undertaking, The Last Story (which many of you Nintendo fans should fondly recall from the swan song days of Nintendo Wii).
Since that game, he has spent the last decade working exclusively on games for iOS/Android, in a self created series called Terra. However, as he indicated above, he went into his next game, Fantasia, knowing it very well may be his last.
“We’re currently developing the final touches for part 2 of Fantasian and things are finally beginning to calm down, I would say.
To be perfectly honest with you, I haven’t given much thought to the next steps for the company or where we want to go, and I think I could use a bit of vacation time in between now and whatever it is we do next. So we’ll see what happens, that remains to be seen.”
He is 58 years old. No word on what happens to his company should he choose to retire.