In 2008, when the licensing rights for Guilty Gear were in turmoil amid legal issues with Sammy Studios, Arc System Works came out with a sister franchise to continue its impeccable fighting game efforts: BlazBlue. Directed by Toshimichi Mori, BlazBlue became as beloved as Guilty Gear for its multitude of characters, stylish gameplay mechanics, and enjoyable competition. Unfortunately, it seems that after nearly two decades with Arc System Works and many years directing the BlazBlue franchise, Mori is exiting the company. The future of BlazBlue is currently unknown.
Toshimichi Mori shared details of his exit from Arc System Works via his personal Twitter on September 24, 2022. Mori joined Arc System Works in 2003 and began work with Guilty Gear X. When the licensing rights to the Guilty Gear series became disputed, Mori directed the launch of the BlazBlue series. It would go on to become every bit as beloved as Guilty Gear with multiple sequels and spinoffs, including the very recent BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle. Toshimichi Mori has directed every BlazBlue fighting game since the series’ incarnation.
Mori goes on to share that he knows his leaving means a lot of questions for BlazBlue fans, and he apologizes for leaving the franchise in doubt. However, Mori also goes on to share that he wants to make a new game in the future outside of Arc System Works. The full message can be found below, as translated by Gematsu:
With that, it looks like Arc System Works has lost a truly good one. That said, it looks like we also haven’t seen the last of Toshimichi Mori in gaming. Here’s hoping his absence doesn’t last long and we get to see what he has up his sleeve soon. Meanwhile, stay tuned as we await any sort of word on the BlazBlue series from Arc System Works.