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Sonic creator Naka has departed Square Enix following Balan Wonderworld launch

Sonic creator Naka has departed Square Enix following Balan Wonderworld launch

Japanese game developer Yuji Naka has left his position at publishing giant Square Enix.

The news was initially reported by Twitter user Nintendeal, who had spotted that the Sonic creator had changed his employment information on Facebook. IGN then verified that Naka had left, before the man himself confirmed the news on Twitter.

No official reason has been given for Naka's departure, though he does say he will be talking about this at some point in the future. He also says that he is considering retirement. There has been speculation that he left due to the poor commercial and critical reception for his recent title, Balan Wonderworld, which launched in April of this year.

"I retired from Square Enix at the end of April 2021 because I would like to contact the media and users," Naka said, via Google Translate.

"I can't talk about the reason now, but I hope I can talk about it when the time comes. As for future activities, I'm 55 years old, so I may retire."

Naka joined Square Enix in 2018, setting up the Balan Company internal studio.

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Alex Calvin is a freelance journalist who writes about the business of games. He started out at UK trade paper MCV in 2013 and left as deputy editor over three years later. In June 2017, he joined Steel Media as the editor for new site In October 2019 he left this full-time position at the company but still contributes to the site on a daily basis. He has also written for, VGC, Games London, The Observer/Guardian and Esquire UK.