Atlus's Persona series has grown from an offbeat cult oddity to one of the largest JRPG franchises in the industry, and the series' mix of J-pop vocals and jazzy riffs are a big part of its signature style. Well, brace yourself, Persona fans, because iconic composer Shoji Meguro recently announced that he left Atlus at the end of September to focus on developing indie games.
“I know this is quite sudden, but I, Shoji Meguro, resigned from Atlus Co., Ltd. at the end of September 2021,” Meguro said in a post on Twitter. Meguro further stated that he's been making RPGs in his spare time for five years, and that he is now working with the publisher Kodansha on a new indie RPG that will be revealed at the Indie Live Expo on November 6.
Translation: “I will be an indie game writer! So I decided to leave Atlas Co., Ltd. and go on to become an indie game writer! However, we will continue to have a good relationship with Atlas Co., Ltd. Please look forward to the Atlas Sound Team with Shoji Meguro in the future. For more information [click here].”
Not quite never more — It's not all bad news, however, as Meguro also said in the statement that he will continue to work with Atlus on video game music, which certainly comes as a relief to Persona fans. Meguro first joined Atlus in 1995, and his work has appeared in every Persona game since series debut Revelations: Persona, as well as many other games in Persona parent franchise Shin Megami Tensei.
It's no exaggeration to say that Meguro's work is an irreplaceable part of the Persona blueprint. Though each game has its own unique flavor — from the acid jazz of Persona 5 to the bizarre mumbled hip-hop verses of Persona 3 — Meguro's personal flair is very apparent in each and every track, and it would be almost unthinkable for Persona 6 to continue in his absence. Then again, the Halo series has made due without its composer Martin O'Donnell since Halo: Reach, but it's still hardly an ideal set of circumstances for Halo fans.
Wild card — It's nice to see that Meguro is finally able to branch out and pursue his apparent dream of making his own games, but let's hope that he's able to continue to provide high-quality tunes to what is arguably the most stylish series in gaming.