One of the lead producers for Square Enix’s Dragon Quest team, Ryutaro Ichimura, has left the team. Supposedly he is leaving the studio to pursue a more “high-risk environment” as well as more opportunities with a wider variety of games and development structures. He made this heartfelt announcement on his Twitter page, saying that while he does love Dragon Quest as a franchise, it’s time for him to move on.
一緒に仕事してくれた たくさんのスタッフのみんな、そしてユーザーのみなさま、本当にありがとうございました！#スクエニ #卒業 pic.twitter.com/OQEthv83UC
— 市村 龍太郎 (@RyutaroIchimura) March 31, 2023
Ryutaro Ichimura’s Tweet Translated
The translated version of his Tweets had this to say:
“Motivation for applying: because I like Dragon Quest. Born in the year of the dragon, joined the company in the year of the dragon, was assigned to Dragon Quest department, and became a Dragon Quest producer; it felt like something destined. Square Enix presents a big opportunity and has given me a lot of challenges. I can only thank you [from the bottom of my heart]. It took a lot of courage to leave such a wonderful place, but this is the conclusion I have come to. I am 47 years old this year, and I am starting to count down how many more games I’ll be able to make in my lifetime. Now it takes three or four years to make one, so in order to die without regrets, I have to think carefully about each one. I’d like to leave this blessed environment and push [himself] into a high-risk environment to find out what comes out of it. ”
More of the translated Tweet goes on to say that Ryutaro Ichimura would like to continue making games, even if they aren’t Dragon Quest-related. He goes on to thank his fellow colleagues at Bird Studio, Amor Project, Sugiyama Kobo, and a few others. He also makes a note to thank the players themselves and the dedication that allowed the games to gain popularity in the first place.