|Tomonobu Itagaki (1995-2008)
Yosuke Hayashi (since 2008)
Dead or Alive
Metroid: Other M
Team Ninja (Japanese: チームニンジャ?) is a Japanese video game development studio of Tecmo founded in 1995. It is formerly led by Tomonobu Itagaki and is best known for the Ninja Gaiden action-adventure game series and the Dead or Alive fighting game series.
Team Ninja was originally formed by Itagaki from the best game designers working at Tecmo specifically for the purpose of creating the home versions of Dead or Alive and its sequel, Dead or Alive 2. In 2008, Ninja Gaiden II for the Xbox 360 was published by Microsoft Game Studios, making it the first game created by Team Ninja to not be published by Tecmo. Tecmo Koei later released an enhanced version of Ninja Gaiden II on the PlayStation 3 as Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2.
On June 3, 2008, Dead or Alive creator Tomonobu Itagaki announced that he would be leaving Tecmo and Team Ninja on July 1, 2008, citing difficulties with the company. In the same statement announcing his resignation, he also announced that he was filing a lawsuit against Tecmo over unpaid bonuses for his work on Dead or Alive 4 for the Xbox 360. It was later reported that he was fired from Tecmo on June 18, 2008 in retaliation for his lawsuit. Most of his colleagues at Team Ninja quit as well to join him at his new game development team, Valhalla Game Studios. Some ex-Team Ninja members also helped with Ubisoft's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Smash-Up.
In June 2009, Nintendo representatives announced at its Electronic Entertainment Expo press conference that Team Ninja was developing a new Metroid game for Nintendo's Wii console, titled Metroid: Other M. It has also been revealed that Team Ninja is working on a PS3 and Xbox 360 game, which was the first time in 10 years that they would have made a multi-platform game; this game turned out to be Dead or Alive 5, released in 2012.
- "Yosuke Hayashi: Team Ninja is about to go...". GamesRadar.
- Icons: Dead or Alive
- Ashcroft, Brian (2008-06-23). "Itagaki Didn't Leave Tecmo, He Was Fired". Kotaku. Retrieved 2009-06-03.
- "Hands On: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Smash-Up" (News). The Escapist.
- Deam, Jordan (2009-06-02). "Nintendo, Team Ninja Collaborate on Metroid: Other M". The Escapist. Retrieved 2009-06-02.
- "Dead Or Alive: Dimensions High Kicking To Nintendo 3DS". Siliconera.
- "Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor's Edge". Amazon.com.
- "Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 Plus". Amazon.co.jp.
- "Dead or Alive 5 Coming to PlayStation Vita". IGN.
- "Team Ninja reinvents itself with Ninja Gaiden, Dead or Alive". GamePro.
- Official website
- Team Ninja on Facebook
- Team Ninja on Twitter
- Team Ninja at IGN
- Team Ninja at GameSpy