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Yuji Naka tells his story of offending Yu Suzuki in a recent interview

For a long time, Yuji Naka and Yu Suzuki worked tirelessly to deliver top notch video games for SEGA. At one point during their tenure at the company, there was a falling out between the two men. In a recent interview with Yuji Naka, he revealed the interaction between the two pioneers.

Naka: But one time we had a big falling out. I don’t know if I should talk about it though. [laughs]

Kato: Even just the part you’re able to. [laughs]

Naka: At one time, Yu-san was making Shenmue※, right?

217: I love it!

Naka: It’s great that he was making Shenmue. It also turned out to be a home console game; with just Sonic which I was working on, it was felt that SEGA wouldn’t be competitive. So Ijimajiri-san※ spoke with Yu-san and asked him to try his hand at making a console game, and what Yu-san started working on was Shenmue.

At the time, it was called Virtua Fighter RPG though. During that time, there weren’t any Yu Suzuki-produced arcade games, right? What a great pity! I love Yu Suzuki’s arcade games.

Kato: There’s a large number of arcade fans among SEGA fans.

Naka: To be honest, I felt extremely bad for letting everyone down. It was as if I was lacking, from the perspective of the home console game division.

And then the performance of the arcade division started to decline. At that time, at a certain big meeting, I said something to him along the lines of “I wish you could pull the arcade games division back up again.” Well, that really offended him. After my unfortunate comment, he didn’t speak to me for around 18 months to two years after that…

217: That’s a long time!

Via Phantom River Stone 

Marcin Gulik

Been a gamer all my life. Studied Sociology and Criminology in college, and traveled for a bit. I like long walks on the beach and I like to listen to… (wait wrong site….) Sega Dreamcast and Shenmue all the way!

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  • Nowhere Man

    Legends.

  • vice86

    So the arcade division was in a decline. Naka simply states he wishes Suzuki could do something to bring it back up. Suzuki decides to be a drama queen and not talk to Naka for almost 2 years. How professional. Guess Suzuki can’t take criticism too well.

    • Christopher David Schmenk

      There are two sides to every story. We dont know if this is exactly why Yu Suzuki and Yuji Naka had issues with each other. By looking at Naka-san’s past history of killing Sonic Extreme over the use of the Nights engine he is no angel either. I prefer to hold of judgment on both of them and enjoy the great masterpieces they were both a part of. 🙂

      • vice86

        Oh totally still enjoy the games. Just cool to hear what went on in the background at Sega. True, don’t know both sides, just going by what I read here.

    • MDashK

      You have to see this in a Japanese perpective. To japanese people, they are ALWAYS giving their best in their work. By Naka saying such comment, Yu understood that he was implying that he was not giving his best at his work and that he was not doing his job right. To most japanese people, such comment is very offensive, and as such, I’m not surprised about Yu not speaking to Naka for that period of time.

  • LarryBundyJr

    Yu Suzuki turned around to me and said “And I wish you weren’t such a pissy bitch about Sonic Xtreme, I was looking forward to that game you prick.”

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