Veteran developer and publisher Atlus, behind the award-winning Shin Megami Tensei and Persona series, alongside Katsura Hashino - director of ATLUS titles including Persona 5, Catherine, Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne, have announced they are launching a new internal studio called Studio Zero.
Within the studio's new logo is a story in and of itself: The number 0 is the "Fool" arcana for tarot cards - the void from which all other things begin - and punctuated with the imagery of a young child on a journey. Not much is known about the game itself, as it's in the very early stages of development. However, it will be a complete departure from the SMT and Persona games, being more of a return to the classical Japanese fantasy RPG roots mixed with Atlus's own flair.
Hashino is tapped to be the game's director, along with other legendary ATLUS names. Along on the journey will be Shigenori Soejima from the ATLUS Artwork Team, responsible for creating the character art of the denizens of this new fantasy world, and Shoji Meguro from the ATLUS Sound Team, who will breathe life and depth into the new world as music composer.
We take seriously this goal of creating a game with the care and detail expected by the people who love ATLUS games and home console games. We haven't determined yet what platform our new game will be, and I imagine this project will take a long time until completion. But we'll be working hard at this challenge to truly deliver something new and incredible for all our fans.
Hashino is currently focusing entirely on building Studio Zero from the ground up, but Soejima and Meguro will maintain their responsibilities to the Persona series. Likewise, P-Studio, the production team in charge of Persona, will continue to operate at full strength to develop new entries to fulfill demand for the series. Fans can keep track of the official website, rpg.jp, as future updates come in.