Atlus 2023 Aspirations, Change of Internal Plans for Persona Team [Update]


Update (2022-12-28): The article has been updated with a short message via 4Gamer from Atlus producer and director Eiji Ishida, who worked on Soul Hackers 2Shin Megami Tensei IVTokyo Mirage Sessions #FE and Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey Redux.


Famitsu has published their annual feature for next year aspirations of Japanese creators in the game industry, discussing their keywords, aspirations, and things they’re paying attention to in the year 2023. This time, 141 Japanese creators were interviewed.

Two of these developers are directors and producers from Atlus: Shinjiro Takada (1st Production) and Kazuhisa Wada (2nd Production, Persona Team). Notably, Atlus director Katsura Hashino (former Persona Team, Studio Zero) is absent this year. He had been in every annual interview since 2016, discussing Project Re Fantasy.

Takada and Wada previously talked about their favourite games of 2022.

Shinjiro Takada (1st Creative Department)

Shinjiro Takada is the product manager of Atlus’ 1st Creative Department, which handles the “Shin Megami Tensei” series. In 2022, he worked on releasing Soul Hackers 2.

Keywords for 2023

Pave the way for the future.

Aspirations for 2023

Thanks to the long-term support of many people, the Shin Megami Tensei series celebrated its 30th anniversary in October 2022! Shin Megami Tensei V has sold over 1 million units worldwide, and it has received a lot of attention not only from Japan, but also from overseas. In 2023, our 31st year, we hope to be able to express our gratitude to our fans in some way.

Latest Report

Thanks to everyone who played Soul Hackers 2. We have read all of the impressions, both from those who enjoyed it as well as the critical ones, and we’re taking them seriously. We will do our best to ensure that feedback is reflected in future developments.

What to Look for in 2023

I’m really looking forward to The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, which I’ve been looking forward to for a long time.

Fellow Soul Hackers 2 producer and director Mitsuru Hirata recently mentioned an undisclosed third title that was being developed at the same time as Shin Megami Tensei V and Soul Hackers 2.

Eiji Ishida (1st Creative Department)

Eiji Ishida is one of the producers and directors behind Soul Hackers 2. He has also worked on Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey Redux and Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE as director, as well as the art director on Shin Megami Tensei IV.

<Question 4> What are your aspirations for 2023 and what is your message to 4Gamer readers?

I’ve written a lot of things down, but I believe I will continue to make games next year, so please continue to support us.

Kazuhisa Wada (2nd Creative Department – Persona Team)

Kazuhisa Wada is the Creative Producer and Chief Director of the Persona Team. Following the remaster Persona 5 Royal, currently on sale, the remastered versions of P3P and P4G are scheduled to be released in 2023.

Keywords for 2023

Stepping into a new stage [of development]

Aspirations for 2023

We have prepared what we need to, for the time being. Now we will push the accelerator pedal with 70% of our original intention and 30% of our current ones. I see this year as being more solid than 2022.

However, anything can happen in game development. Uncertainties, anxieties, external factors… And these are all in flux. I should be able to take positives out of this experience. I hope we can solidify each one [of these uncertainties] and deliver to everyone.

Latest Report

The remastered version of Persona 5 Royal has been released for all platforms worldwide, but in 2023, Persona 3 Portable and Persona 4 Golden will be released simultaneously worldwide on January 19th. Even if you’re new to the game, I hope you’ll give it a try!

What to Look for in 2023

For better or worse, we’ve started to see movement out of a certain period of stagnation. We’re observice to see how the entertainment industry will be affected.

The movies I’m interested in are the latest Indiana Jones and Do Not Say Mystery. I’m curious to see how they’ll be put together.

In Wada’s end-of-year 2019 interview, he talked about how it had been a tough year that did not go as planned. This would likely be related to the difficult period of development after Persona 5 was released. Wada sought to “retry” and his aspirations for 2021 and 2022 were to carry out the original intention as well as make it past any obstacles that arise.

After the “Persona 25th Anniversary” celebrations, Wada released a statement that made it seem that some things did not go as planned. With plans being altered but with “70%” of the original intention moving forward, it is possible we’ll finally understand the meaning of that in 2023.


Former Atlus composer Shoji Meguro is also one of the creators interviewed, and he states that his latest report going into 2023 is that while developing Guns Undarkness, he continues his music production work with his former employer.

The Famitsu 2022 developer aspirations from Atlus developers can be read in last year’s post, featuring Shinjiro Takada, Katsura Hashino (Studio Zero), Naoto Hiraoka (Atlus Managing Director), and Kazuhisa Wada.