An Update on The Last Guardian from Fumito Ueda

Wednesday, February 13th, 2013

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Reports of The Last Guardian‘s demise appear to have been greatly exaggerated.

Taking to his official website, creative supervisor Fumito Ueda released a small update about the game’s current status.

The Last Guardian

Ueda reconfirmed that the game does exist, despite its many development delays. He also stated that he remains involved in development. Ueda also made clear that any announcements are up to Sony, telling fans to watch out for an announcement from them. Ueda left Sony Computer Entertainment’s Japan Studio in December 2011.

Below is the full text of Ueda’s statement:

To All Interested Parties:

As some of you may have heard, I left Sony Computer Entertainment Japan Studio some time ago to pursue my creative passions. Nevertheless, I continue working on THE LAST GUARDIAN as a freelance contributor.

While it’s been a long time coming, THE LAST GUARDIAN remains under my creative supervision and is still in development by an incredibly talented team.

I should also mention that details regarding THE LAST GUARDIAN’s release is solely decided by Sony Computer Entertainment, not myself. Please keep an eye out for their official announcement.

Moving forward, it is my intent to continue my involvement with THE LAST GUARDIAN project, as well as pursue new creative projects with a fresh perspective. As I rekindle my passions as a creator, I look forward to seeing where it will take me, and I deeply appreciate your support during this transition.

Fumito Ueda

The Last Guardian was announced at E3 2009 for the PlayStation 3. It stars a boy and his large, feathery beast of a friend. Since its announcement, there’s been little said about the title, aside from multiple confirmations that it does exist and hasn’t been cancelled.

With Sony’s big event coming up on February 20th, might there be an announcement in the works? Or will it “just” be a PlayStation 4 announcement?

Share your Last Guardian speculation in the comments section.


About Devin Kotani

Devin is a Canadian, and as such, plays hockey (no he doesn’t) and drinks maple syrup (not really) while riding a wild moose (he’s never seen a moose). When he’s not perpetuating cultural stereotypes, he’s playing videogames, which has been, on occasion, very bad for his mental health, problems with which have plagued him for years. Now, at 20, he’s getting his mental health issues under control, and he’s trying to decide what to do with his life. He’s currently debating between journalism and trying his hand at the dramatic arts.

  • grevlinghore

    I bought a PS3 partly for this very title. Can`t wait to actually see it… I hope it`s well worth the long wait.

    • And you’ll buy a PS4 for it as well. Sony thanks you for your support.

  • Allen Clayton

    Wow, I was so sure this game was dead.

    • What? Why? It’s much too high profile to disappear quietly.

    • madmofo145

      Eh, big games have been cancelled in the past, and given that this is always going to be a somewhat niche game, if in fact there had been huge production problems, it could have been cancelled. Just like versus 13 it’s also big enough that a cancellation would likely be done as quietly as possible so as not to draw huge fan ire.

    • I don’t think you fully comprehend the level of hype this game has. There are a good number of people who bought there PS3’s simply to play this one game. This isn’t something that can go away quietly. Or did you forget the massive kerfuffle Sony raised when GameStop robocalled people saying the game was cancelled? This is the equal of cancelling something like a Gears of War. There’s a reason the press has been faithfully covering this for the last four years. I mean, Ico and Shadow of the Colossus both regularly make lists of best PS2 games and most unfairly overlooked games. People don’t want to miss out again.

    • madmofo145

      Yes there would be aw big kerfuffle if this game was cancelled, but it would only come once the games cancellation became official. Much like Versus XIII, another huge game that has been rumored to be cancelled, if they made it official fans would be outraged, but we all know something has gone wrong. At this point both ending up on next gen hardware seems likely, but cancellation is possible. If the game has been in development for years, and it’s no where near shaping up and a company knows that in it’s current form the game will disappoint fans, then they may decide that the continued expenditure isn’t worth it. No amount of bad publicity over a high profile cancellation is worse then the bad publicity that comes from a super high profile game getting terrible scores from every outlet upon release.

    • First off, reviews scores don’t correlate to sales figures; if they did, Prince of Persia, Beyond Good & Evil, the entire Xeno franchise, and Mirror’s Edge would all have sequels by now. Second, it’s far better to recoup your losses by releasing a terrible product than to cancel. You can’t make any money back if you cancel and considering the amount of time and effort sunk into those two games, they’ll want something to show for it. Third, reviews are subjective and a lot of people have already decided to buy the game regardless of any potential score. I mean, we are talking about people who bought a PS3 specifically to play TLG and FFVXIII; to not buy them would mean a waste of whatever money they spent getting it. Last point, if they really have such low confidence in the product, they can just set a review embargo of release date and do a huge marketing blitz of the coolest parts of the game. You know there’s enough cool crap to cut some decent TV commercials for either.

    • madmofo145

      Very true, the problem would be credibility. Look at Final Fantasy XIII, delayed for ever, then released, sold well to those who patiently waited for it, and really the perfect example of the kind of game you mention. The problem is that while financially good for SquareEnix, XIII was critically bashed, and has hurt Squares reputation a good deal, and sales of some recent games seemed to have suffered accordingly. While last guardian would sell automatically, it wouldn’t have the same huge number of sales XIII did, and if it did poor enough that part of Sony’s studio could feel long term negative repercussions.

      It’s happened before as well. True Fantasy Live Online was a huge game with a lot of hype behind it, developed for 2 years (not as long as this, but long for the time), nearly completed, and then shelved, partially because Microsoft didn’t believe that some key features worked well enough, and didn’t want what was supposed to be a system seller to mar there online service.

    • Final Fantasy XIII was not critaclly bashed. On either platform. FFXIV was critically bashed, and it hurt Square’s reputation and cause the sales of later games to suffer. It didn’t have a long dev cycle though, so your point there is moot. True Fantasy Online was a new IP, not part of an established brand (which though tangentially related, The Last Guardian is, being a spiritual successor to Shadow of the Colossus and Ico), so its cancellation is not nearly as big a deal. Even so, it didn’t go quietly in the night, which is and was the whole point. Typically, games in established franchises, particularly Japanese franchises, don’t get cancelled and never quietly. Even if they do, they still can manage to get themselves uncancelled.

    • madmofo145

      Valid points, although the metacritic score for XIII is low for a final main fantasy game, and reception to the game was lukewarm at best, (vs XIV which was considered terrible) even SquareEnix has admitted that XIII suffered internal problems, and you need only look at the most popular reader reviews to see the evidence of these. Personally I think it was XIII’s tepid reception and Squares insistence on sticking with it’s narrative via XIII-2 and 3 instead of shifting focus that is really hurting squares reception now, as XIV, while bad, was a single flop, where XIII is a milder blight, but one that Square won’t let go away. I’d also say True Fantasy works as an example, as per the wiki page

      “True Fantasy Live Online was quietly delayed from its initial
      Fall 2003 release into 2004. From then, little was seen or heard about from the title, and after a surprising absence during the year’s E3 convention, it was officially cancelled by Microsoft on June 2”

      It was delayed and then went unseen for a while, and only after it had some time out of the public’s eye was a press release was issued about it being officially canceled.

      I think that’s my main point and one I may have improperly conveyed. While yes, this game would have been sorely missed, and yes, it is high profile enough that Sony would be unlikely to cancel it, I’m simply saying that if it were too be canceled, it would do so as some thought had happened here. Sony would go quite on the project, shift developers to a new project, let some of the hype die, and then give official word to the cancellation while announcing an equally big project that was near to completion so as to soften the blow to all those who have been waiting. Yes, the eventual news would be huge, but Sony would try to dampen the impact as much as possible, and delay the announcement until they had something that could replace it in the works.

    • I don’t put any stock in reader reviews as they tend to suffer from a mob mentality. For example, I’m certain that a good number of the review for Colonial Marines aren’t from actual consumers, but just people wanting to get in on what’s popular, which in this case is bashing on A:CM (not that it doesn’t deserve it). It’s fun to pick on the big guy, that’s why no matter how good it is, there will always be dissenters to any popular franchise. FFXIII is an example of the hype machine backfiring; its anticipation had become so high that everyone just offhandedly was expecting it to fail. They wanted it to fail and that became the greater narrative. I mean, for a lot of studios, getting an 80+ metacritic and millions is sales is a dream come true.

      Also. wiki is not a reliable source. But this discussion is just becoming a reiteration of the same points.

  • Forgot the game existed.

  • I bet it’ll launch with PS4. That’d be the perfect way to kick off the new system.

  • I bought just for Final Fantasy Versus 13 I Still mad about this game being announced way too soon.

    Square Enix should have wait till E3 2009 to Announced Final Fantasy Versus 13

  • I Wish in Future Games Studio wait till game 90% finsh before announced game to world.

    I Wish Square Enix of Japan just pubic cancelled Final Fantasy Versus 13.
    I Wish Sony of Japan just pubic cancelled Last Guardian.