Final Fantasy XV director, Hajime Tabata, has established new studio JP Games. As yet it’s unclear what kind of projects the studio will pursue, but Tabata has revealed he’s planning a January 2019 launch.
"I started up my own company called ‘JP Games, Inc,’ Tabata said via a statement on Facebook (thanks, GamesIndustry.biz). "Right now, we are preparing for a target January 2019 launch. And to everyone who has assisted me until today–I kindly ask for your ongoing support."
Tabata and Square Enix parted ways in October when Square Enix’s financial results for the six-month period ending September 30th 2018 saw operating income plunge 61 per cent year-on-year to ¥10bn (£67.5m). Tabata’s in-house studio, Luminous Productions – which only launched in March this year – was thought partly responsible for this loss. The financial report resulted in Square Enix deciding to "undertake an in-depth review of the business strategy for a wholly-owned subsidiary Luminous Productions", after which Final Fantasy XV’s upcoming DLC was cancelled, and Tabata resigned from both Square Enix and Luminous Productions.
"I was able to gain so much experience with my time at Square Enix. Every title I was able to be a part of means a lot to me," Tabata said at the time. "However, Final Fantasy XV stood out from that group as it was a special project for me which I went all-in on.
"In regards to my next endeavours and near future, I have a project that I truly wish to solidify as my next challenge after Final Fantasy XV. For that reason, I have decided to leave my current position and start my own business in order to achieve my goal," Tabata said.