Team Ninja‘s leading man, the guy with a few smiles and a thousand words, behind the Tecmo-published Ninja Gaiden and Dead or Alive series deserves his own QuickJump Quicklist, so here’s something dedicated to Tomonobu Itagaki and all his greatness. We’ve collected some lines from Itagaki that are either very amusing, or so badass fanboys would rather follow him around and wipe his sunglasses clean for a living.
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Most of us QJ.NET bloggers are helplessly heads over heels for Tomonobu Itagaki. Not only does he create video games with the hottest digital babes on the face of the planet, but is also one badass Japanese video game developer with the heart and fashion sense of a rockstar.
Aside from seeing his name in the credits of Ninja Gaiden and Dead or Alive titles, we also love to find Itagaki on headlines of interviews. It’s no secret that this dude says the coolest things ever without fear, and he’s got a library of blockbuster games to back him up.
In this list, we gathered all our beloved lines that came from Itagaki. From wanting to send Tekken guys 100 nuclear missiles to presenting 17-year old girls in the sexiest ways, there’s always something that makes us smile from Team Ninja‘s proud leading man. Beyond the jacket and sunglasses is the passionate game designer whose words remain in our memory, and here are our favorites among his personal comments.
Heavenly Sword seems really half-assed
Itagaki likes ’em big, but throwing large button icons at players during button-timing sequences is a no-go for him. That said, the designer of the hardcore action game Ninja Gaiden and its upcoming self-proclaimed “best action game in the world” sequel Ninja Gaiden 2 doesn’t fancy less interaction for more action-packed scenes. Or maybe Nariko simply wasn’t hot enough for him.
Here’s an important note: do NOT ask Itagaki about Tekken. If you do want his opinion on Tekken 6, he’d tell you “I don’t know what you’re talking about.” Itagaki admitted that he likes the mentioned series and his family completely loved Tekken 3, but since Dead or Alive was insulted in Namco’s radio show, all that’s left is hate (his top five most hated games being Tekken 1 to 5).
I will get [Namco] back with nuclear missiles more than 100 times
The root of Itagaki’s hate for the masterminds of Tekken is of course, the insult against his own fighting game series. “As the father of DoA, I will never forget an insult to my family,” he said once in an interview. In other words, you don’t mess with things Itagaki loves. Don’t even dare criticize the jacket and sunglasses.
I’m a professional when it comes to Pikmin
That’s right, the person behind bloody decapitations and sexually attractive girls also loves playing the cutesy game by Nintendo. He’s got 500 to 700 Pikmin 2 matches under his belt, and warns everyone that he knows everything about Pikmin and its sequel, so facing him will show you the painful reality of who’s boss.
When other developers see what weÂ’re doing, theyÂ’re going to lose all of their motivation
This one is pretty straightforward. Make no mistake about it, Itagaki believes Team Ninja is king in any category it takes on. With Ninja Gaiden considered as the world’s best and Dead or Alive 4 being the premiere next-gen fighting game, developers better think twice before jumping into this man’s territory. Well, maybe you can challenge his minigame oriented Dead or Alive Xtreme games after DOAX 2 had poor reception. Maybe.
The elementary school kids that come to my house to play DoA 4 are always squealing with laughter
Tomonobu Itagaki himself doesn’t believe Dead or Alive 4 is any hardcore. In fact, he allows elementary school kids to experience his M-rated game made of scantily clad chicks and strange stories. Whether he teaches the youngsters about physics too, we do not know, but it sure sounds cool to be playing sexy games in the industry celebrity’s home as a kid.
I feel very close to Kasumi
The line may sound simple, but it’s worth more to those who know the beef of it all. Itagaki, the man who considers his Dead or Alive creation as family, is also strongly attached to his favorite character Kasumi. After stressing out that DoA is more about love than sex appeal, he once reminisced how his heart was broken when hackers found a way to turn Kasumi nude in DoA 3. “It was an attack on her,” he said, leaving our imaginations with the idea of his teary eyes beneath the shades.
17-year-old girls are still gorgeous
When talking about Kasumi, he went on about how hot 17-year old girls can be. Itagaki was asked if he was fine with “sexualizing” a girl at that age, and he answered with: “In Japan, that’s okay. Maybe it’s 20 in America.” He also noted that he was 27 when he created Kasumi, but until now, he’s got the hots for them 17-year olds.
It’s Ninja Guy-den, not Gay-den
You must be ashamed if you’ve been pronouncing Ninja Gaiden the wrong way. Itagaki made it clear via podcast that the correct way to say his action game is indeed “Ninja Guy-den,” not “Ninja Gay-den” that western audiences commonly use. Also, Helena’s name is pronounced without the H, while his name goes something like “Toh-moh-no-boo Ee-tah-gah-kee.”
I am the core of Team Ninja, I am the one raising the bar
As if he couldn’t stress it out enough, Tomonobu Itagaki wants everyone to know that he is the man. He once revealed in an interview his talent of being able to make a decision in five seconds, sometimes even before the person telling him what’s happening finishes talking.
For him, development teams with too many staff members (Kojima Productions’ Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots has 200 people working on it) are making excuses to work slowly. Of course, he pointed that out after explaining how he does all the important stuff in Team Ninja and his games raising the bar for others can credited to his mad skills.