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Shadows of the Damned director leaves Grasshopper

Massimo Guarini parts ways with Japanese development house, sets up teaser for next endeavor, Ovosonico.


Massimo Guarini has left Grasshopper Manufacture, apparently to set up a studio of his own. A teaser page for Ovosonico Productions was recently launched, proclaiming the upstart outfit as coming soon "from the director of the acclaimed Shadows of the Damned."

Guarini's last game was Shadows of the Damned.
Guarini's last game was Shadows of the Damned.

A veteran of multiple media, Guarini's next venture will do more than just make games. The studio's teaser site boasts the tag line, "The sound of bold ideas," and a look at the site's source code reveals a second slogan, "Games, Music, Films with an attitude."

Before Shadows of the Damned, Guarini had a couple stints with Ubisoft, where he was involved in the Tom Clancy-branded Splinter Cell and Rainbow Six series, and he later directed Naruto: Rise of a Ninja. The multitalented developer's career has also seen him work as a photographer and filmmaker.

Released last month, Shadows of the Damned tells the story of Garcia Hotspur, who goes on a trip to hell to save his true love, Paula. His travelling companion on the long, hard road through hell is a foul-mouthed demonic skull named Johnson that can morph into a variety of guns but is also effective as a torch.

The game was critically acclaimed but commercially underwhelming. Though Guarini directed it, the names most typically associated with the game were that of executive director Suda-51, creative producer Shinji Mikami, and composer Akira Yamaoka.

For more on the game, check out GameSpot's review.

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