Tecmo's redundant announcement of Ninja Gaiden Σ 2 was more than just a chance to talk about online co-op; it was Producer Yosuke Hayashi's chance to come out of his ex-boss's shadow.
Tomonobu Itagaki has always been critical of Sigma. He even said that a Ninja Gaiden II Sigma version would be a "loss of face."
Responding publicly to Itagaki's criticism for the first time since the Team Ninja leader left Tecmo, Hayashi said, "There's nothing I'd put against the Sigma series. The face has changed, the leader [of Team Ninja]has changed, the so-called creator has left..." But it's still Ninja Gaiden, he said. "The DNA is there."
Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 picks up where Sigma left off and will be an "encapsulation" of the entire Ninja Gaiden series from Xbox to DS. Hayashi hopes to keep the series going even beyond that with downloadable content for the PS3 (but not the 360, sorry) and possibly future games.
"We're confident," Hayashi said of Sigma 2. "This will be the ultimate package, the one you will always remember."
Hayashi's also confident that he can fill the void left by Itagaki: "I'll prove it with the game," he said, which sounded way more badass in Japanese. Later, in English, he told me he was the boss of Team Ninja now.
You go, boy. Don't let them tell you that you can't be The Man just because you don't wear Bono shades. Go forth and make the best PS3 port/upgrade ever!