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The Last Guardian: Fumito Ueda Touches Base On Game’s Development Woes In Frank Open Letter

Included in The Last Guardian media kit is a heartfelt letter penned by Fumito Ueda that addresses the game's tortured development cycle.

You wait almost a decade to get your hands on the video game equivalent of a white whale and suddenly, two come along within the space of a week. That’s right, now that Final Fantasy XV is finally out in the open (watch the stunning live-action trailer here), Sony is quietly prepping The Last Guardian for launch on December 6.

Much like Square’s long-gestating JRPG before it, development on Team Ico’s ethereal adventure game was fraught with issues and creative setbacks – in 2011, for instance, Game Director Fumito Ueda left Sony, though continued to work on The Last Guardian in a freelance capacity, before the title was uprooted for PS4 some years later. That’s a journey that Ueda himself reflects on in the frank open letter included in The Last Guardian media kit, as relayed by Eurogamer.

Acknowledging the “twists and turns” of the game’s production, Fumito Ueda’s letter goes on to tease a journey of two unlikely companions – a young boy and the griffin-like Trico – as they explore ancient ruins.

“Dear Adventurers, It’s been a long time coming, but I take great pleasure (and relief!) in knowing that The Last Guardian is in your hands. When we first began work on The Last Guardian, I intended it to take from and build on our experience working in Ico and Shadow of the Colossus, making it something akin to a greatest hits album. Unfortunately, as you know, we ran into a few twists and turns along the way, and the title took longer than anyone expected.

“Still, just as Ico and Shadow of the Colossus are truly unique games, so too is The Last Guardian an experience unlike any other. As you play, take the time to stop and enjoy the scenery as you follow these unlikely companions on their journey. And you definitely won’t want to miss the ending! The development team and I hope you all have a wonderful time with The Last Guardian. Nothing would make us happier. Fumito Ueda.”

The Last Guardian will launch exclusively for PlayStation 4 on December 6 and is arguably 2016’s last big release that you don’t want to miss out on. For those curious, Team Ico confirmed just yesterday that the review embargo is expected to lift on December 5, so make of that what you will.

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Michael Briers