That’s a pleasant surprise.
Former FOX Engine designer Julien Merceron was widely believed to be joining up with the newly reformed Kojima Productions- however, it seems like he will be joining Japanese giant Bandai Namco instead, where he will presumably be helping them with his technical expertise.
“I’m extremely excited to be given an opportunity to make a difference within the amazing Bandai Namco Group, so well-known for its iconic IPs,” Merceron said of the appointment. “I’m looking forward to empower the teams I’ll be working with and accelerate growth, innovation and creativity. The reach of this group goes well beyond games, it is a true Multimedia and Entertainment Group, so I know I will learn a lot too!
“Working with so many experienced people and friends and focusing on a wider range of entertainment forms is the chance of a lifetime! Within Bandai Namco Studios, there is a true opportunity to have a worldwide reach with Original Content.”
No less than Bandai Namco’s CEO Hajime Nakatani chipped in on the appointment as well. “I am very happy to welcome Mr. Merceron as part of Bandai Namco Studios,” he said. “The studio will continue to accelerate its efforts worldwide. In line with the evolution of information-communication technology, innovative services through VR/AR/IoT are being created, and we are facing a chance to create a lifestyle and entertainment that has never been imagined. In such revolutionary times, in order to create the best product for the world, we would like to evolve the studio together with Mr. Merceron.
“Please look forward to the future of Bandai Namco Studios.”
Namco is indeed one of the best places Merceron could have ended up at- the studio’s output is frankly enormous, and they remain one of the few Japanese companies that have managed to transition into the modern era of gaming without issues. That said, their technical infrastructure could certainly use an overhaul, and Merceron will hopefully help them with exactly that.
Let’s hope for a future Tales game with an engine that doesn’t have some inexplicable idiosyncrasies.