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Masahiro Sakurai says that he is now semi-retired at the age of 52 years old

Posted by Justin 'AdaptiveTrigger' Gordon • December 28, 2022 at 7:18 a.m. PST • Comments: 9

With DLC support for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate now wrapped up, Masahiro Sakurai has seemingly been focusing on his new YouTube channel where he teaches and informs about the game creation process. Sakurai recently partook in an interview where he talked about his YouTube channel. A translated summary of Sakurai's statements have been released by PushDustin.

According to PushDustin's summary, Sakurai has confirmed that he is now "semi-retired." Now that Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is finished, Sakurai feels as though he needs to aim for the next milestone in his life.

It's noted that Sakurai has effectively spent the last nine years of his life in active development for Super Smash Bros. 4 and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Sakurai apparently feels that if he is just making games full-time, his life will be over before he realizes it.

Notably, development of Super Smash Bros. 4 began in early 2012. Of course, the then president of Nintendo actually announced the next Super Smash Bros. entry back in late 2011, noting that Masahiro Sakurai would begin development of 3DS and Wii U versions of Super Smash Bros. after Kid Icarus: Uprising was finished.

After Super Smash Bros. 4 was released, Sakurai and the remnants of the development team continued to push out DLC for the game. Eventually, the "Smash Bros. Fighter Ballot" was announced, which seemingly resulted in the addition of Cloud Strife, Corrin, and Bayonetta as the final DLC fighters.

However, it was later revealed that the Smash Ballot would be used for the roster of the next game, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Indeed, it was decided by Satoru Iwata and Masahiro Sakurai to keep the results of the ballot a secret as Iwata wanted Sakurai to oversee development of a Super Smash Bros. entry for the Nintendo Switch. This would later be referred to as the last mission given to Sakurai by Iwata before his passing.

Sakurai completed the project proposal for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate back in December 2015. At the time, the development team was still working on Super Smash Bros. 4's DLC.

Following the release of Corrin and Bayonetta, Sakurai was able to take a brief vacation before beginning development for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, which would be released towards the end of 2018. From there, DLC would be worked on until Kingdom Hearts' Sora was released in October 2021.

As indicated by Sakurai, he spent nearly 10 years in a development cycle for the Super Smash Bros. series. According to PushDustin's translations, Sakurai is happy that he's been able to work on the Super Smash Bros. series as he thinks it is important, but he wanted to create a YouTube channel now that he has more time available.

Not surprisingly, this basically confirms that Sakurai isn't currently working on the next entry in the Super Smash Bros. series. At this moment, it's currently unknown if the Super Smash Bros. series will even be able to continue or if Sakurai will be involved with the series going forward now that he is "semi-retired."

We'll just have to keep an eye out in the coming years to see what's next for Masahiro Sakurai and the Super Smash Bros. series.

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