Koji Igarashi announced his departure from Konami on March 15th, after a career spanning over more than 20 years. He joined Konami in 1990, as a programmer, before going on to produce titles such as the distinguished Castlevania series. His decision to leave Konami was a difficult one, but he released a statement behind the departure: ‘I’ve decided to break out on my own to have the freedom to make the kind of games I really want to make — the same kind I think fans of my past games want as well.’ Igarashi, nicknamed Iga by his fans, has left to create his own video game studio, where he will create games more suited to his audience.
Igarashi added: ‘Leaving Konami was a big decision, and not one I took lightly — I’ve spent my entire career there, made many friends, and had a lot of great opportunities — but I hope all the gamers and fans who have supported me in the past will join me in being excited about what comes next. Wish me luck!’
Whilst his involvement in the Castlevania franchise took the back seat after 2010, once developers Mercury Steam took over, he’s always been a major factor in it’s success. Igarashi will be delivering a talk at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco later this week, where he will be talking about “There and Back Again: Koji Igarashi’s Metroidvania Tale.” The talk will give a large insight into how Igarashi created some of the most successful games in their genres.