Japanese game development studio Grasshopper Manufacture has joined NetEase Games, as announced in a press release issued by the latter company and confirmed by Grasshopper Representative Director and CEO Goichi Suda.
Grasshopper Manufacture is known mainly for the No More Heroes series (which recently saw the debut of the third installment) and for Let It Die (the free-to-play game that topped seven million downloads a few weeks ago).
In the press release, Suda explained why the developer agreed to the proposal.
We are now given a unique opportunity to rethink the game development and organization structure of Grasshopper Manufacture Inc. moving forward. While understanding our own advantages and unique position, we were presented with new possibilities in game creation.
As we all know, NetEase Games has developed many excellent games in the past, and I have long been aware of NetEase's creative capabilities. When talking with NetEase about "developing more unique console games together", we resonated. After a lot of thoughts, we’ve unanimously decided to "get together" in the long term through deeper cooperation to create more good content for gamers.
NetEase Games understands the strengths of Grasshopper Manufacture Inc. and is willing to support us, and is an extremely reliable partner. NetEase Games will be mainly responsible for advising on our business planning activities and providing sufficient funding for game development. We will be responsible for the creativity and production of games to ensure that we are able to continue to maintain the consistent "Grasshopper Manufacture flavor" and game quality for which we are known. In addition, we will also receive strong support from the NetEase team composed of thousands of artists and technical experts in terms of game art and quality assurance. We will make the most of this support and strive to offer three even higher-quality "Grasshopper Manufacture Games" to all gamers in the next ten years.
Grasshopper Manufacture Inc., moving towards the brand-new future of game development, is now reborn and will continue to create history. Stay tuned.
NetEase Games shared a statement, too.
NetEase Games is a company of passionate gamers, and many of them are fans of Grasshopper Manufacture Inc. Mr. Suda's games have unique characteristics. They manifest his design philosophy and artistic pursuit in every aspect – from concept to content. Grasshopper Manufacture Inc. has also integrated styles and elements from various media formats, such as film noir, detective fiction, punk rock, psychedelic electronica, cyberpunk, and so on. Additionally, Grasshopper Manufacture Inc. is one of a kind in terms of mood setting, movement design, and narrative rhythm design. Their strong passion for creativity, which has continued for decades, is extremely admirable. NetEase is honored to be the companion of Mr. Suda and Grasshopper Manufacture Inc. on this new journey into the future. We hope to give the studio creative freedom and sufficient resource support in order to empower said studio to create even more sensational works for gamers worldwide.
As a reminder, NetEase has been investing in various game companies over the past few years, such as Bungie, Quantic Dream, and Behaviour Interactive. They've also hired former Yakuza series creator Toshihiro Nagoshi earlier this year.