Hashimoto Jumps Ship To Square-Enix? [Confirmed]

Hashimoto Jumps Ship To Square-Enix? [Confirmed]

If rumours and an official LinkedIn profile are to be believed, one of the key players in Sonic Team, technical director Yoshihisa Hashimoto, has left in order to further his career in RPG developer Square-Enix.

Hashimoto is best known for his work recently in Sonic Unleashed, where he helped create the Hedgehog Engine and was the latest in the studio’s “revolving door” system to take the reins on the Sonic franchise and drag it out of the quality quagmire. Before his Director role he had a hand in many Sonic Team games since 1997, including writing enemy programming for Sonic Adventure, the Chao engine for Sonic Adventure 2 and coding tasks for Sonic Advances 1 and 2. It is believed he left Sonic Team as long ago as late April, to take a position at Square-Enix in a similar technical director capacity.

The rumour mill has been turning since GoNintendo carried the rumour, but doubters suggest that a discrepency in his LinkedIn profile (the incorrect Japanese naming of his latest work, Sonic Unleashed) could be a sign of a hoax. If true, it only throws more weight under the suggestion that Sega are seriously re-organising how they are developing and producing their Sonic titles.

We’ve contacted Sega for comment, and will update when we get a response. Thanks to the SSMB for the heads up.

UPDATE: ArchAngelUK has responded to our calls, confirming Hashimoto-san’s departure:

I can confirm that Yoshihisa Hashimoto has left SEGA to pursue another opportunity and we’d like to wish him well in his future endeavours.

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Dreadknux

Sexy founder of The Sonic Stadium, and creator and co-organiser of the Summer of Sonic fan convention. By day, I'm a super-fantastic games journalist, el professionale. By night, I'm the mother-loving Sonical Batman. I keep the site ticking, look after the TSS Network, and get all excited about Sonic games so that you can too. May contain nuts.

42 Comments

  1. Probably the only guy apart from Jun Senoue we don’t want to leave..
    It’s getting harder to make a great Sonic game as time goes on, and I’m sure if it weren’t for him the titles mentioned above wouldn’t have been as great as they were.
    If it’s true then the door is open for anyone to replace him, but it won’t be easy and critics are harsh.

  2. hey Guys, look on the brightside, imagine how awesome a Sonic RPG 2 would be if he develops it whilst in Square Enix.

  3. I dunno, there’s still no official statement. So i’ll keep my tears until then…

  4. Wow… Looks like people are making quite a big deal out of this.

    But if he helped develop the hedgehog engine, then I congratulate him for pushing the franchise foward, and I wish him well in his new career.

  5. If sega is reorganizing their company I just hope that they make Sonic Team and everybody that develops Sonic Games 100% cooler 😛 just like the old times, we (fans) simply want SONIC GAMES like the old ones and Sonic Unleashed !!!

    My toughts are that Nintendo is saiyng those rumors just to “kill” SEGA like they have done with SONIC CRACKERS that has been canceled.

    I’M A HARDCORE SONIC FAN, I LOVE U SONIC!!!

  6. @Sonic Unleashed (SU): I’m glad that people agree with me about Unleashed. It was the best game since Adventure 2 imo, (although Heroes was pretty good too.)

  7. @Sonic Unleashed: Nintendo didn’t start these rumors. TSSZNews was where this story came from after I ran into his profile through google from an attempt to get an e-mail address.

  8. @Sonic Unleashed: Yeah…like everyone said…

    Also..I really don’t wanna go back to the 2D days ._. Yeah..Unleashed was great and all but the only 2D games I enjoyed was Sonic CD and Sonic Advance 3. Everything else was boring to me ^^;

    yeah…don’t give me that “UR NAWT A TRU SONIK PHAN!!!11!11!1!!!eleven1!” crap…

  9. @Golden~Hedgy: You know something? I agree with you. The 2d games were good and all, but I think a speed based game is more suited to a behind the character perspective. That way you can actually see where you’re going.

  10. @Golden~Hedgy: I don’t think going back to 2D would be a good idea. Now doing a 3D game with the design of the 2D classics, that would be something.

  11. @Humble Fellow: Yeah…I really don’t like how we end up going off the screen then you hear the “death” sound effect. Yeah…it’s fun to go off the screen, try to go fast but… next thing you know it you end up either dying or end up in a glitched part of the stage…. boy has that happened to me a lot… >.>;;; Before I ended up getting stuck in a wall in Flying Battery Zone in Sonic and Knuckles. Then in Knuckles Chaotix, at the Speed Slider stage, I was having fun being thrown about with my partner, Vector. Boy that was hilarious… but the “haha”-ness went away when I went off the screen and realized I was stuck inside a wall in the very far, far right of the stage… It would be nice that I would know where I was going to avoid it but….we can’t really see from behind and look ahead now can we? if we wanna go fast… we need to know where the heck we are going… ._. like driving a car… you gonna push the gas pedal to the floor blindfolded? Haha… not me.

    @DreadKnux: Like Sonic Rush and Sonic Rush Adventure? Those were cool. You talking about remakes? If you are, I would LOVE IT if they remade the classic games. I would totally love Sega forever if they remade Sonic CD… I would like to race against Metal Sonic in 3D for sure!! I can dream ya know? xD I just want them to take their time on the remakes if they plan to do it and not make it like Sonic The Hedgehog GENESIS where something went wrong >.> Bring it to the current gen consoles!!! Mostly Wii please!! ^^;
    If I went off subject, I apologize ._.

  12. @ Sonic Unleashed (SU) : … *blank look on his face* … Nintendo got Sonic Crackers canceled …
    man.. some of these new age fans.. *shakes head in disappointment*

    How do you draw the line between the classics and Sonic Unleashed? You’re asking for a good Sonic game while wanting more Sonic Unleashed… which are you asking for?

  13. “How do you draw the line between the classics and Sonic Unleashed? You’re asking for a good Sonic game while wanting more Sonic Unleashed… which are you asking for?”

    Yeah… good question. What ARE you asking for? The Genesis games and Unleashed are apples and oranges.

  14. Still doesnt feel right in english though without drummond, i refuse to buy the games til hes back which may never happen but oh well…

    For now i rented it and im playing in japanese

  15. @Daniel Butler: You’ll just have to face facts. No matter how much we want them to, the old va’s aren’t coming back. Sega are sticking with the current crop, so you’ll just have to get used to it.

  16. lol well as dumb as it sounds… ive been sorta developing a plot and game for sonic that i think could possibly save the franchise. i dont wanna give out details, but my question is how would i go about gettin this idea to the right ppl?

  17. @Brad Flick: Yeah… good question. What ARE you asking for? The Genesis games and Unleashed are apples and oranges.

    So you can’t say that one is better than the other because they’re two different things anyway. I doubt that’s what you meant, but that’s how you’ve managed to say it.

  18. Lol, “This just in: Brad Flick admits that Sonic Unleashed is as good as the genesis games!”

  19. Umiyuri: I wasn’t alluding to a comparison like “one was better than the other.” The phrases “apples and oranges” implies that the two games are completely different things, gameplay wise. Jix said it first and I just re-iterated it, because I agreed with him:

    “How do you draw the line between the classics and Sonic Unleashed? You’re asking for a good Sonic game while wanting more Sonic Unleashed… which are you asking for?”

    See? Your hidden implication that you magically drew from my previous comment is debunked. It was just a harmless reiteration of a prior comment. I didn’t MANAGE to say anything. I know what I’m typing when I type it.

    Oh, and before I forget… I think Sonic Unleashed is still a piece of shit. Thanks for twisting words, Umi and Humble.

  20. Wow. I read somewhere on the forums here that us Sonic fans collectively really don’t know WHAT we want in a Sonic game/what constitutes our idea of an ideal Sonic game. It was a really funny comment… but these comments make that truth so much more real. It’s just further attesting to me what I wasn’t sure that I whole-heartedly believed. Wow. Just wow.

  21. I agree with you, Suonike.
    ‘cept Brad is just one of those “NEW SONIC GAMES SUCK!! I’M STILL STUCK IN THE RETRO YEARS!”

  22. Brad isn’t “stuck in the retro years.” He’s stated he enjoyed Sonic games up until Sonic Adventure 2 – and it was after that that the series started to decline anyway. Sonic Heroes, Shadow the Hedgehog, Sonic Next-gen… can you honestly say any of those live up to the standards Sonic Adventure and Sonic Adventure 2 set? I don’t think Sonic Unleashed was any better, honestly.

    Brad clearly doesn’t have his mind closed to the new Sonic. He doesn’t think that there hasn’t been a good Sonic game since Sonic 3 and Knuckles. He’s just waiting for them to shell out a 3D game as good as the Adventure series – and so far, they haven’t.

  23. I haven’t had the hardware to play most of the current gen games, but I do prefer the 2D running of the old school stuff and the newer Advance and Rush games to the 3D stuff thrown at us since SA2, which WAS good, although 90% of replay value I got out of that game was from the Chao. Becuase of that, I’m dissapointed to see Hashimoto go. I really miss the Chao raising system.

    However, Sonic Team has been the same lot of people pumping out what are by majority considered more and more mediocre games. Having a new team of dedicated game makers work on the Sonic franchise may help the series, but we obviously won’t know that untill the next game hits. Unfortunately, it’s a case of hope for the best, but prepare for the worst.

  24. @humble:
    you need to start respect other people opinions
    i also like unleashed but i understand when someone doesnt like it, it just has some things what could be better.
    i will qoute here a good Square game:
    Understanding other people thoughts is not hard, it`s impossible.
    But clashing with people can help see why they are thinking that.

    so try to think you are Brad and why he would think so
    and if you cant than just ignore him, or stop trying to make him like unleashed its easily impossible.

    No hard feelings though (=
    so stop arguing and be again sonic fans =D

  25. Oh wow. My hopes for Sonic ever being great again have just dropped. Not by much, since they were always pretty near the bottom anyway ;P

  26. @SuperLink: Don’t get dicouraged. Hashimoto’s left behind a template for future games with the hedgehog engine. All sega needs to do now is make some good level designs, make a good plot, probably put some more playable characters in, (I’m looking at you Tails!) and they’d have the makings of a great game.

  27. @humble
    i think you are right, i dont think after black knight sega can make another bad sonic game
    if they do they are the most laughable company because they cant make a good game for their mascot
    ah and about the more charas, they should be optional for the classic ones or the ones who just want sonic

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