With the start of the new fiscal year, Sony has rearranged the organisation a bit – such news at this time of the year is common.
Sony Interactive Entertainment Japan Asia announced that they established an External Development Department. They also renamed three of their departments: Product Development Department renamed to Internal Development Department, Studio Operations Department renamed to Finance & Administration Department, and Creative Product Services Department renamed to Creative Services Department. They also abolished two departments (namely the Product Technology Department and the Business Development Department). They also announced that Kazuo Kato has been appointed Internal Development Department Head, External Development Department Head, and Creative Services Department Head and that Naoaki Aoi is appointed to the Finance & Administration Department.
Sony Interactive Entertainment Japan Studio has been releasing games since 1999 or so. Let’s name a few examples they made on their own: Ape Escape (PS1, 1999), Ape Escape 2 (PS2, 2001), LocoRoco (PSP, 2006), Echochrome (PS3, PSP, 2008), Puppeteer (PS3, 2013), Knack (PlayStation 4, 2013), Knack 2 (PlayStation 4, 2017). If we look beyond the solo developments, the list becomes far more impressive (we mention the main devs in brackets): Ico (PS2, 2001, Team Ico), Rogue Galaxy (PS2, 2005, Level-5), Shadow of the Colossus (PS2, 2005, Team Ico), Patapon (PSP, 2007, Pyramid), Demon’s Souls (PS3, 2009, FromSoftware), Soul Sacrifice (PS Vita, 2013, Marvelous AQL, Comcept), Bloodborne (PlayStation 4, 2015, FromSoftware), etc… so this team is anything but talentless.
We do have to mention the external development department. It means that SIE Japan Studio has been split in half. There will be internal developments (we wouldn’t be surprised if Mark Cerny, the lead architect of the PlayStation 4, the PlayStation Vita, and the PlayStation 5 wants to make a Knack 3…), but there will be co-developments as well. Or Sony might be preparing for the PC ports with this external development idea. After all, Horizon Zero Dawn has been confirmed to get a PC port…
It’s not an April Fools joke, mind you. We can at least consider more second-party exclusive titles (that are not specifically developed by Sony Interactive Entertainment).
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