Kazuma Kujo, the developer behind many of Irem's best-known recent titles has left the company to form a new game production house, Kanazawa-based Granzella.
Japanese gaming news site Andriasang noticed
the launch of Granzella's official web site
, which lists Kujo as a game designer.
Kujo's credits include work on notable game titles including R-Type Final, Steambot Chronicles, 3D Dot Game Heroes
and the Disaster Report
A planned fourth game in the Disaster Report
series was recently cancelled
in the wake of devastating earthquakes that hit Japan in March.
Platinum Games' Atsushi Inaba tweeted a cryptic teaser for the announcement
earlier in the day, calling Kujo a developer he greatly respects.
Best known for the R-Type series, which started in arcades in 1987, Irem has been developing games exclusively for Sony systems since the late '90s.
The company's most recent U.S. release was last November's PSN revamp Spelunker HD
which sold just over 5,000 copies in its first month of availability, according to a Gamasutra analysis