The new director and producer for Persona 5 Royal have been named in a recent issue of Weekly Famitsu. Both previously worked on Persona 4 Golden, Atlus’s last updated Persona re-release.
A preview of the issue from Famitsu revealed that Persona 5 Royal‘s director is Daiki Itoh, who will be joined alongside producer Kazuhisa Wada. Both will replace Katsura Hoshino, who filled out both roles for the original Persona 5.
Altus likely chose these two to take on these roles based on their previous work with Persona 4 Golden. Itoh served as the project director for that game. Meanwhile, Wada played the role of chief designer for it, while also directing a number of other Persona 4 spin-offs. Wada had no prior involvement with Persona 5, while Itoh had served as its lead confidant designer.
The Weekly Famitsu preview states that Hoshino left the game in the hands of both Itoh and Wada in order to serve as director for Project Re Fantasy. Atlus’s brand new Studio Zero is currently working on the latter. Other Persona 5 alumni involved in Project Re Fantasy include composer Shoji Meguro and character designer Shigenori Soejima.
Series followers may recall that Hoshino directed the last three mainline Persona games. As such, his non-involvement in Persona 5 Royal may come as a bit of a surprise. Fortunately, Itoh and Wada both have experience working on Persona 4 Golden.
With Persona 5 Royal being an updated re-release similar to Persona 4 Golden, Atlus may be easing the new director and producer into taking over Hoshino’s old role. With the upcoming release, both get to try out their new roles on a game whose foundation has already been established by Hoshino.
If all goes well, Itoh and Wada could possibly fulfill the same roles for the next mainline Persona game. Of course, this all depends on how Persona 5 Royal turns out. Players will get a chance to see for themselves when Persona 5 Royal arrives on PlayStation 4 in Japan on October 31, and in the rest of the world next year.