PlayStation fans have been more than a little concerned about how Sony has been handling the Japanese side of the brand of late. SIE Japan Studio, a developer that had come up with some of the best and most memorable PlayStation games over the years, was shut down earlier this year, being reorganized as a larger Team Asobi- the studio behind Astro’s Playroom, who are at work on what they’re calling their most ambitious game to date.
But Sony insists that Japan still remains an important part of the brand’s market strategy. In a recent interview with Game Informer, PlayStation Studios boss Hermen Hulst reiterated that Japanese development and Japanese games are “still part of who [they] are”. In addition to highlighting the expansion of Team Asobi and the continued work of Gran Turismo developer Polyphony Digital, Hulst also said that Sony is investing in external Japanese development, and that that remains “a core part of the PlayStation identity.”
“We’re building out Team Asobi under Nicolas Doucet, so we’re actually investing in that team,” Hulst said. “People forget sometimes that we have Polyphony Digital, which is a team in two locations. We are investing in our external development group out of Tokyo as well, and that’s a team that has obviously worked with the likes of From Software and Kojima Productions. So we are very invested in Japanese development and Japanese development is something that we love… I think it’s such a core part of the PlayStation identity that I can’t ever see us shy away from Japanese or even Asian development.”
Interestingly enough, some recent leaks have claimed that FromSoftware is working on a new Soulslike IP exclusive for the PS5, with development support being provided by XDev. You can read more on that through here.