Keita Takahashi joins Tiny Speck to work on browser-based, free-to-play massively multiplayer online game.
Last year, Katamari Damacy creator Keita Takahashi left Namco Bandai after more than a decade. He gave no indication where he would be headed after parting ways with his previous publisher, but the developer's next home was revealed today in a post on the blog of his new employer.
In a blog post for the free-to-play massively multiplayer online game Glitch, Tiny Speck cofounder Stewart Butterfield revealed that Takahashi had recently moved from Tokyo to work on the title. Butterfield said he met Takahashi through That Game Company's Robin Hunicke several months ago and said the meeting was instantly like talking with an old friend.
"We played some Glitch together, batted ideas back and forth, and found that we shared the same values: deep beliefs in curiosity, humor, absurdity, and above all a belief in the positive power of play," Butterfield said.
Citing Takahashi as a hero to everyone on the Glitch team, Butterfield said he was saddened to hear the creator was considering leaving the game industry entirely. In the wake of the original Katamari Damacy, he questioned the need for games, saying, "Children would be better off playing outside." Two years later, he confessed to being sick of the Katamari series and said he wasn't having much fun in the game industry anymore.
The browser-based Glitch is a nonviolent game set in the minds of 11 giants. Players must work together to learn new skills and build their shared, persistent world. Although the game is free-to-play with in-game items for sale, it will also have premium accounts tied to a subscription fee. The game is currently in beta testing.