Legendary Sonic co-creator Yuji Naka arrested for insider trading

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yuji naka sonic co-creator arrested insider trading the legendary creator addresses fans with a balan hat.
Credit: Square Enix

Yuji Naka, co-creator of Sonic the Hedgehog and developer of Nights into Dreams, was arrested for insider trading related to Dragon Quest Tact. Naka isn’t the only one who was arrested, as a number of people in Japan, including a Square Enix employee.

Prior to the arrest, Naka had distanced himself from Square Enix after the botched release of Balan Wonderworld, a platformer he was involved with. It seems that the developer had other plans when joining the company, at least if this report is anything to go by.

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It will be interesting to see what happens to Naka now that the man has been arrested for these actions. Details on who else was arrested aren’t too well known yet and Naka’s representatives haven’t said anything regarding his actions.

According to FNN (translated by Kotaku), Yuji Naka and other employees were made aware of Aiming, a game studio, making Dragon Quest Tact for mobile devices before it was announced. This gave them time to buy shares in the company and make money from the game’s success in an illegal manner, hence, all the arrests.

Reports claim that Naka purchased 10,000 shares, worth ¥2.8 million, which is approximately USD$20,000. As of this writing, the authorities haven’t disclosed if Naka and the other men arrested still have those shares after the release of Dragon Quest Tact.

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Dragon Quest Tact was a huge success in Japan, managing to get 10 million downloads and likely making quite a bit on in-game purchases. It also helps that the Dragon Quest franchise is one of the biggest in Japan, having a bigger presence than other JRPGs like Final Fantasy.

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Balan Wonderworld was the last game Yuji Naka publicly worked on. It was a platformer made with Square Enix that received negative reviews. Naka blamed the company for rushing the game, even settling a case with them in court.