The developers initially wanted to make a game in the Tenchu series before this game became its own thing.
From what we’ve seen of Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice so far, it looks quite great. It’s setting of Sengoku-era Japan and its focus on ninjas and what have you seems very reminiscent of the Tenchu games. And indeed, From Software have talked in the past about how they took cues from Tenchu while conceptualizing Sekiro. As it turns out, though, they were initially planning to make a new game in the Tenchu series, which is what ultimately evolved into Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice.
The developers initially wanted to make something that was different from Dark Souls and which was Japanese themed. When they started thinking about shinobi and ninja based gameplay, Tenchu seemed like a perfect fit. However, as the project evolved past this initial stage, they decided not to make it another Tenchu game, and instead gave it its own unique identity as Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice.
Speaking to Gamesindustry.biz, From Software’s Community Manager Yasuhiro Kitao explained, “When we originally set out to create something different from Dark Souls and our previous titles, we thought it would be interesting to make a Japanese themed game. So from that we started going in the direction of the shinobi and ninja, and of course Tenchu was an IP with that history; that was the original impetus for this project. But as we developed and as we partnered with Activision, and started building it together, it started becoming its own thing and the game we wanted to make was no longer just Tenchu, so it really evolved into its own thing.”
Sekiro : Shadows Die Twice is set to release for the PC, PS4, and Xbox One on March 22, 2019.