From Software has confirmed in a recent interview that Sekiro Shadows Die Twice originally began life as a new Tenchu game. The game eventually was unable to work conceptually as a Tenchu PS4 title, however. The studio also explained how Activision came to publish the game, and that they’re interested in publishing other similar titles if Sekiro sees success.
Sekiro Shadows Die Twice is set to be a pretty epic Japanese themed action-RPG, but it won’t be From Software’s first dive into this kind of game. The Tenchu franchise was originally owned by Sony Music Entertainment, then purchased by Activision who sold the IP to From Software. In an interview with GamesIndustry.biz, the studio confirmed that Sekiro Shadows Die Twice began life as an instalment of the Tenchu franchise, “but quickly outgrew the concept.”
“When we originally set out to create something different from Dark Souls and our previous titles, we thought it would be interesting to make a Japanese themed game,” From Software community manager explains, “So, from that we started going in the direction of the shinobi and ninja, and of course Tenchu was an IP with that history; that was the original impetus for this project…But as we developed and as we partnered with Activision, and started building it together, it started becoming its own thing and the game we wanted to make was no longer just Tenchu, so it really evolved into its own thing.”
In the same interview, Activision explained why they decided to take on From Software to publish Sekiro Shadows Die Twice. The reasoning seems pretty understandable: “When From Software knocks on your door and says ‘hey, we wanna make a game,’ you have only one answer right?” Given the relationship between From Software, Activision, and the Tenchu franchise, the origins of Sekiro Shadows Die Twice makes a lot of sense.