The Game Designers Studio

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The Game Designers Studio
Native name
Romanized name
Kabushiki gaisha Taitosofuto
The Game Designers Studio (1999-2005)
SQEX Corporation (2005-2006)
Shell corporation
Industry Video game
Genre Role-playing
FateRe-branded as Taito Corporation and eventually dissolved into Square Enix.
Successor Taito
FoundedJune 22, 1999 (1999-06-22)
Founder Akitoshi Kawazu
DefunctMarch 11, 2010 (2010-03-11)
Key people
Yoichi Wada
Yasuo Nishigaki
Products Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles
Number of employees
Parent Square (1999-2003)
Square Enix (2003-2010)

The Game Designers Studio, Inc.(株式会社ゲームデザイナーズ・スタジオ,kabushiki gaisha Geimudezainaazu Sutajio) was a shell corporation founded in June 1999 by Square. The brand’s final iteration was known as Taito Soft Corporation(株式会社タイトソフト,Kabushiki gaisha Taitosofuto), a 10-employee team designed for software development for consoles. The Game Designers Studio is associated with Taito Corporation for being the legal entity to assimilate Taito into the Square Enix group.

Shell corporation Company with few, if any, actual assets or operations

A shell corporation is a company or corporation that exists only on paper and has no office and no employees, but may have a bank account or may hold passive investments or be the registered owner of assets, such as intellectual property, or ships. Shell companies may be registered to the address of a company that provides a service setting up shell companies, and which may act as the agent for receipt of legal correspondence. The company may serve as a vehicle for business transactions without itself having any significant assets or operations. Sometimes, shell companies are used for tax evasion, tax avoidance, and money laundering, or to achieve a specific goal such as anonymity. Anonymity may be sought to shield personal assets from others, such as a spouse when a marriage is breaking down, from creditors, from government authorities, besides others.

The Game Designers Studio was re-purposed in 2002 in order to exploit a loophole with the company's exclusivity deal to develop for Sony Computer Entertainment's PlayStation consoles. [1] To evade that deal, Square held only 49% of the entity's shares while Akitoshi Kawazu, head of Square's Product Development Division-2, held 51%. The formation of a new company also made it possible to take advantage of Nintendo’s Q fund for new game developers who develop for GameCube.

Akitoshi Kawazu Japanese video game producer and designer

Akitoshi Kawazu is a Japanese game producer and game designer. He is best known for his work on Final Fantasy and SaGa franchise of role-playing video games. He was the majority shareholder for The Game Designers Studio, a shell corporation founded in June 1999 by Square and re-purposed in 2002 to exploit a loophole with the company's exclusivity deal to develop for Sony Computer Entertainment's PlayStation consoles.

The Game Designers Studio only released a single game, Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles the de facto developed by Square Enix's Product Development Division-2 with development credit to The Game Designers Studio while publishing was done by Nintendo. Square was absorbed into Enix in 2003 and formed Square Enix while Crystal Chronicles was in development. Square Enix later acquired 100% of Game Designers Studio and renamed it to SQEX Corporation in 2005.

<i>Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles</i> 2003 video game

Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles is an action role-playing game developed by The Game Designers Studio and published for the GameCube by Nintendo in 2003 in Japan; and 2004 in North America, Europe and Australia. A remastered version for Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4 will be released in 2019. A spin-off of the Final Fantasy series, Crystal Chronicles was the first title released for a Nintendo console since Final Fantasy VI in 1994.

In law and government, de facto describes practices that exist in reality, even if not officially recognized by laws. It is commonly used to refer to what happens in practice, in contrast with de jure, which refers to things that happen according to law. Unofficial customs that are widely accepted are sometimes called de facto standards.

Nintendo Japanese video game company

Nintendo Co., Ltd. is a Japanese multinational consumer electronics and video game company headquartered in Kyoto. Nintendo is one of the world's largest video game companies by market capitalization, creating some of the best-known and top-selling video game franchises, such as Mario, The Legend of Zelda, and Pokémon.

After the acquisition of Taito in 2005, Square Enix merged it into SQEX in March 2006. The merger was performed to allow Square Enix to make a Taito a wholly owned subsidiary. Despite the new subsidiary being called Taito Corporation, SQEX was the surviving company of the merger. [2]

Taito Japanese company

Taito Corporation is a Japanese video game developer and publisher of arcade hardware and mobile phones, and an operator of video arcades. It is also a former publisher of home video games. Taito is wholly owned by Square Enix Holdings. Despite being a subsidiary to Square Enix Holdings, the parent company has kept the branding of Taito distinct from Square Enix.

On February 1, 2010, in order for Square Enix to consolidate all of its arcade businesses, Square Enix merged Taito Corporation into ES1 Corporation. As part of the merger, a corporate spin-off occurred in which the Taito Corporation assets formerly known as SQEX Corporation was renamed to Taito Soft Corporation while the remaining assets were branded as Taito Corporation. Taito Soft Corporation was absorbed into Square Enix on March 11, 2010, effectively ending the company that started out as The Game Designers Studio. [3] [4]

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  1. "IGN - Sony buys stake in Square". Archived from the original on 2013-12-28. Retrieved 2013-12-25.
  2. "SQUARE ENIX TO MAKE TAITO A WHOLLY-OWNED SUBSIDIARY" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 29 March 2016. Retrieved 1 February 2018.
  3. "Notice of Absorption-Type Company Split Between Subsidiaries" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 1 February 2018.
  4. "会社情報|株式会社タイトー|お問い合わせ窓口変更のお知らせ". Archived from the original on 2 February 2018. Retrieved 1 February 2018.