Shinji Mikami Is Leaving Tango Gameworks

1 year 5 months ago

Tango Gameworks’ founder Shinji Mikami is departing the studio in the coming months after a 12-year tenure. The news was first broken by TrueAchievements, who received and verified a company-wide email to ZeniMax staff announcing the departure before Bethesda publicly confirmed the news on Twitter.

Bethesda’s statement, posted below, doesn't cite a reason or a departure date but thanks Mikami for his tenure at the studio: 

We can confirm that Shinji Mikami has decided to leave Tango Gameworks in the coming months. We thank him for his work as a creative leader and supportive mentor to young developers on The Evil Within franchise, Ghostwire: Tokyo, and, of course, Hi-Fi Rush.  We wish Mikami-san well in the future and are excited by what lies ahead for the talented developers at Tango. -Bethesda

Mikami is credited as the creator of Resident Evil, directing several entries during his long tenure at Capcom, where he also worked on titles such as Dino Crisis, Devil May Cry, and Phoenix Wright. Mikami co-founded Capcom’s Clover Studio in 2004, the team behind Okami, Viewtiful Joe, and God Hand (which he directed), but he departed the publisher after Clover’s closure in 2007. He and former Clover leads would establish Platinum Games later that year, where he directed Vanquish. After leaving Platinum, Mikami founded Tango Gameworks in 2010, which was acquired by ZeniMax the same year. He directed the studio’s first title, The Evil Within, and served as executive producer on its sequel and Tango’s subsequent games, Ghostwire: Tokyo and this year’s Hi-Fi Rush.

It's unclear what Mikami will do next, but he's leaving Tango in a good place for the future. Hi-Fi Rush, the colorful musical action game that surprise launched in late January, was spearheaded by John Johanas, director of The Evil Within 2, and a team of younger designers. It had perhaps the strongest critical reception of Tango's portfolio thus far, with some calling it an early Game of the Year contender (here's our positive review). Mikami has seemingly done a good job fostering fresh talent and new ideas at Tango before his departure, and we're excited to see what's next for the veteran designer. 

Marcus Stewart