Top 5 Games of 2020 for 4 Atlus Producers and Directors


This week’s issue of Weekly Famitsu magazine #1674 (January 7 – 14, 2021 double issue) features a questionnaire that was given to 132 Japanese celebrities and game creators to rank the ‘trendiest’ games of 2020.

Among the Famitsu editorital team and the Japanese game creators and celebrities, the top 10 most popular games are:

  1. Ghost of Tsushima (Sony Interactive Entertainment / Released July 17, 2020 / PS4)
  2. Animal Crossing: New Horizons (Nintendo / Released March 2020 / Switch)
  3. Final Fantasy VII Remake (Square Enix / Released April 10, 2020 / PS4)
  4. Sakuna: Of Rice and Ruin (Marvelous, XSEED Games / Released November 11, 2020 / Switch, PS4, PC)
  5. Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout (Devolver Digital / August 4, 2020 / PS4, PC)
  6. Ring Fit Adventure (Nintendo / October 18, 2019 / Switch)
  7. Momotaro Dentetsu: Showa, Heisei, Reiwa mo Teiban! (Konami / October 19, 2020 / Switch)
  8. Yakuza: Like a Dragon (Sega / January 16, 2020 / PS4)
  9. The Last of Us Part II (Sony Interactive Entertainment / June 16, 2020 / PS4)
  10. Genshin Impact (miHoYo / September 28, 2020 / Switch, PS4, iOS, Android, PC)

Titles included are not only among those released in 2020, as the list represents games released at any time which were the most popular this year.

Four different Atlus developers were given the questionnaire.

Katsura Hashino’s Top 5 Games of 2020

Katsura Hashino

Katsura Hashino is an Atlus director who worked on Persona 3Persona 4, and Persona 5. He is now a lead at Studio Zero, the producer of Catherine: Full Body, and the director of Project Re Fantasy.

1. Final Fantasy VII Remake (PS4 / 2020-04-10)

Rosy retrospection always kicks in when it comes to remakes like this, so I had mixed feelings at some parts, but the story and system were both extremely high level… so I’m impatient to play the next game!!!

2. Carrion (Switch, XB One, PC / 2020-07-23)

It was a motivating game for me in various ways. I loved the setting and the ending was brilliant.

3. Final Fantasy XIV: Shadowbringers (PS4, PC / 2019-07-02)

I’ve been playing this MMO for a long time… but looking at Shadowbringers by itself, it was a masterpiece.

4. Ghost of Tsushima (PS4 / 2020-07-17)

I’m sure a lot of people will name this game as their best game of the year, but… it’s an amazing game. Especially the UI. I was constantly impressed, thinking, “You can do it like this?!”

5. Fate/Grand Order (iOS / Android)

Ahh, this is another constant for me… but it’s all about Castoria, you know. Her appearance has made my research more fun.

Daisuke Kanada’s Top 4 Games of 2020

Daisuke Kanada

Daisuke Kanada is a director and producer ot the Persona Team. He was a director and producer on the “Persona Q” series and behind Persona 5 Strikers.

1. Sakuna: Of Rice and Ruin (Switch, PS4, PC / 2020-11-11)

Being able to eat dinner with your friends every night in the game is unfair. It’s amazing.

2. 198X (Switch, XB One, PC / 2019-06-20)

It was a special experience, like a fusion of retro gaming with literature.

3. Game Gear Micro (Red) (2020-10-06)

I can’t make light of it. I keep getting back into it.

4. Candy Crush (2012-11-14)

It’s the best game to play while thinking to yourself. It might as well be a work tool.

Kazuyuki Yamai’s Top 5 Games of 2020

Kazuyuki Yamai

Kazuyuki Yamai is an Atlus producer behind the Shin Megami Tensei series. He is the producer of the upcoming Shin Megami Tensei V.

1. Dragon Quest Walk (iOS, Android / 2019-09-12)

It’s easy to play and updates are fast. My family has all been playing it since launch. It’s great for driving.

2. Persona 5 Strikers (Switch, PS4, PC / 2020-02-20)

Persona’s first action RPG. The P5 characters’ after-story is a must-see!

3. Momotaro Dentetsu: Showa, Heisei, Reiwa mo Teiban! (Switch / 2020-10-19)

I’m highly enjoying it. It’s a universal kind of fun. I’m making linear round trips to Sata Station.

4. Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne HD Remaster (Switch, PS4 / 2020-10-29)

I cried from nostalgia. I remembered back when I was in my third or fourth year of work and returned to being a beginner (laughs).

5. Animal Crossing: New Horizons (Switch / 2020-03-20)

I enjoyed playing it with my family. Due to the coronavirus, I’ve been spending more time with them.

Kazuhisa Wada’s Top 3 Games of 2020

Kazuhisa Wada

Kazuhisa Wada is a creative producer and chief director of the Persona Team. He worked on Persona 4 Arena and the “Persona Dancing” series, with his latest work being Persona 5 Royal.

1. Project Winter (PC / 2019-02-07)

Nothing beats the feeling of excitement when you’re selected as traitor! The detailed updates have the user’s perspective in mind. It’s a great game!

2. Momotaro Dentetsu: Showa, Heisei, Reiwa mo Teiban! (Switch / 2020-10-19)

It has to be this! I have no complaints; it’s just fun. Momotetsu forever!

3. Final Fantasy VII Remake (PS4 / 2020-04-10)

Stunning graphics and playability. Midgar alone has that much content. It’s practically a new game, not just a remake.

The top games of 2019 for Atlus developers Shinjiro Takada, Katsura Hashino, Kazuhisa Wada, and Daisuke Kanada can be read in last year’s post.