Katamari Damacy creator working on Glitch

Keita Takahashi joins Tiny Speck to work on browser-based, free-to-play massively multiplayer online game.

Last year, Katamari Damacy creator Keita Takahashi left Namco Bandai after more than a decade. He gave no indication where he would be headed after parting ways with his previous publisher, but the developer's next home was revealed today in a post on the blog of his new employer.

Not done with games just yet.

In a blog post for the free-to-play massively multiplayer online game Glitch, Tiny Speck cofounder Stewart Butterfield revealed that Takahashi had recently moved from Tokyo to work on the title. Butterfield said he met Takahashi through That Game Company's Robin Hunicke several months ago and said the meeting was instantly like talking with an old friend.

"We played some Glitch together, batted ideas back and forth, and found that we shared the same values: deep beliefs in curiosity, humor, absurdity, and above all a belief in the positive power of play," Butterfield said.

Citing Takahashi as a hero to everyone on the Glitch team, Butterfield said he was saddened to hear the creator was considering leaving the game industry entirely. In the wake of the original Katamari Damacy, he questioned the need for games, saying, "Children would be better off playing outside." Two years later, he confessed to being sick of the Katamari series and said he wasn't having much fun in the game industry anymore.

The browser-based Glitch is a nonviolent game set in the minds of 11 giants. Players must work together to learn new skills and build their shared, persistent world. Although the game is free-to-play with in-game items for sale, it will also have premium accounts tied to a subscription fee. The game is currently in beta testing.

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19 comments
EdibleFood
EdibleFood

@Rottenwood Takahashi only made Katamari Damacy and We Love Katamari He wasn't involved in the other ones, namco owns the franchise

Rottenwood
Rottenwood

No offense, Takahashi, but you probably got sick of the Katamari series because you kept re-packaging the same material as a new game. (Anything after We Love Katamari is some kind of recycled filler.) I'm sure a lot of that was the suits, but it did leave something of a bitter taste in the mouth. I'm sure we all remember the 360 Katamari, where the disc contained 30% of the game and the rest was overpriced DLC. Hopefully a new I.P. will get him back on track.

melante
melante

Keita is a genius. Looking forward to his next idea!

parrot_of_adun
parrot_of_adun

@T_K_14 They've been at it awhile. Compared to a subscription service, F2P games are usually much worse, and the premium content isn't nearly worth the asking price. I'd rather pay for a good game than play a crappy one for free. There are few exceptions, but only just barely.

T_K_14
T_K_14

@parrot_of_adun I was never a fan of the Pay2Play trend we've had for 30 years, so I think trying a new method is good.

EdibleFood
EdibleFood

He has made the two most original games of this generation. The control schemes, art direction, gameplay, story, music, etc are all extremely unique in both Katamari and Noby Noby Boy. Btw, i loved Noby Noby, the multiplayer is a blast although the camera controls can be annoying.

MuffintopX
MuffintopX

Haha, his addictive games have created monsters who refuse to go outside anymore and now he feels bad.

franzito
franzito

If he'll bring the wackiness of Katamari on this Glitch, then it'll be a hit (it rhymed!)

comb5
comb5

I saw Glitch and that maybe, just maybe for a second, I was about to read an article about a sequel to Metal Arms. That would make my year.

thelegendlives5
thelegendlives5

Katamari was a great game, give us more of this gaming style :)

Gurzociurlo
Gurzociurlo

This guy is the Captain Beefheart of videogames hehe.

XeonForce
XeonForce

Well I'm all for innovative/interesting new ideas! =P

WTA2k5
WTA2k5

It might be tough to sell people on a game called Glitch.

Ovirew
Ovirew

I can kinda see where he was coming from, but I don't think there 'needs' to be a need for games. Does there need to be a need for anything? He has an inventive mind, and this game already sounds interesting based on the description. Who knows, maybe it will shake up the MMO genre for the better.

Generic_Dude
Generic_Dude

Good to see him back in the game, so to speak. Not crazy about the "persistent payment" model that is being followed here -- in-game items for sale, subscription fees, etc.. Just charge me once for the game and let me be done with it. The last thing I need is another monthly bill, you know?