Yoshinori Kitase

Japanese game director (born 1966)

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Yoshinori Kitase
北瀬 佳範

Kitase at the 2009 E3
Born (1966-09-23) September 23, 1966 (age 57)

Alma mater Nihon University
Occupation(s) Video game director, game producer
Years active 1990–present
Employer Square Enix
Notable work Final Fantasy series

Yoshinori Kitase (北瀬 佳範, Kitase Yoshinori, born September 23, 1966) is a Japanese game director and producer working for Square Enix. He is known as the director of Final Fantasy VI, Chrono Trigger, Final Fantasy VII, Final Fantasy VIII and Final Fantasy X, and the producer of the Final Fantasy X and Final Fantasy XIII series.

He is currently the head of Square Enix’s Creative Business Unit I and the Final Fantasy series Brand Manager, and vice president, a member of the board of directors and an executive officer at Square Enix Co, Ltd and Square Enix Holdings.[1]

He was the head of Square Enix’s Business Division 1 during its entire existence as well as a Corporate Executive. He is also part of the Final Fantasy Committee that is tasked with keeping the franchise’s releases and content consistent.[2][3]


In July 1978, at the age of 11, Kitase watched the movie Star Wars for the first time and was deeply impressed with it. He later examined the making-of video to it and became interested in the creative process of the film industry. Kitase decided to attend the Nihon University College of Art and studied screenwriting and filmmaking. Although he enjoyed filming, he showed a much greater passion for post-production editing as he felt it allowed him to give the footage a completely new meaning and to appeal to the viewers’ feelings. In his first year after the graduation, Kitase worked at a small animation studio that produced animated television programs and commercials. When he played Final Fantasy for the first time, he considered a switch to the game industry as he felt that it had potential when it came to animation and storytelling.[4] Despite having no software development knowledge, he applied at the game development company Square and was hired in March 1990. In the ten years to follow, he gathered experience as an “event scripter”, directing the characters’ movements and facial expressions on the game screen as well as setting the timings and music transitions. He has compared this work to directing film actors.[5] Kitase continued directing cutscenes in spite of filling other roles in later projects; for example, he directed part of the event scenes in Final Fantasy VIII and was event planner for the Nibelheim section of Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII.[6][7]

Yoshinori Kitase (right) and art director Isamu Kamikokuryo (left) at HMV‘s Final Fantasy XIII launch event in London in March, 2010

When many players responded to the sci-fi world of Final Fantasy VII and Final Fantasy VIII by requesting a “simple fantasy world”, Kitase tried to expand the definition of the word “fantasy” beyond that of a medieval European setting. This led to Southeast Asia being the backdrop for Final Fantasy X.[8] Kitase referred to Final Fantasy VII and its protagonist Cloud Strife as his favorite game and character, respectively.[9] In an interview, he said that he loves first-person shooters.[10] Kitase supervised the Final Fantasy VII: Technical Demo for PS3. Final Fantasy creator Hironobu Sakaguchi feels that he “handed the torch to” Kitase as far as heading the series is concerned.[11]


Video games[edit]

Year Title Role(s)
1991 Final Fantasy Adventure Game design, scenario
1992 Romancing SaGa Field map design
Final Fantasy V Field planner, event planner, scenario[12]
1994 Final Fantasy VI Director, event planner, scenario[12]
1995 Chrono Trigger Director, scenario[13]
1997 Final Fantasy VII Director, story
1999 Final Fantasy VIII Director, story, system designer, event scene director[14][6]
2001 Final Fantasy X Chief director, producer, scenario[15][16][17]
2002 Kingdom Hearts Producer
2003 Final Fantasy X-2
2004 Before Crisis: Final Fantasy VII Executive producer
Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories Producer
2005 Kingdom Hearts II
2006 Dirge of Cerberus: Final Fantasy VII
Final Fantasy V Advance Supervisor
Dirge of Cerberus Lost Episode: Final Fantasy VII Executive producer
Final Fantasy VI Advance Supervisor
2007 Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII Executive producer, event planner[7]
2008 Sigma Harmonics Producer
Dissidia Final Fantasy
2009 Final Fantasy XIII
2010 The 3rd Birthday
2011 Final Fantasy Type-0
Final Fantasy XIII-2
2013 Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII
Final Fantasy X/X-2 HD Remaster
2014 Final Fantasy VII G-Bike Executive producer[2]
2015 Mobius Final Fantasy Producer
2016 Final Fantasy XV Special thanks, original producer[A]
2017 Flame vs Blaze Executive producer
2019 Final Fantasy VIII Remastered Special thanks, supervisor[18]
2020 Final Fantasy VII Remake Producer
2021 Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster Supervisor
Final Fantasy II Pixel Remaster
Final Fantasy III Pixel Remaster
Final Fantasy IV Pixel Remaster
Final Fantasy V Pixel Remaster
Final Fantasy VII: The First Soldier Executive producer
2022 Final Fantasy VI Pixel Remaster Supervisor
Chocobo GP Executive producer
Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII Reunion
2023 Final Fantasy VII: Ever Crisis
2024 Final Fantasy VII Rebirth Producer

Other media[edit]

Year Title Credit(s)
1995 Final Fantasy VI The Interactive CG Game Director
2001 Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within Thanks
2005 Final Fantasy VII Technical Demo for PS3 Producer
Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children Producer
Last Order: Final Fantasy VII Executive producer
2009 Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children Complete Producer
On the Way to a Smile – Episode: Denzel Executive producer
2016 Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV Special thanks

Additional credits[edit]

Year Title Credit(s)
1998 Xenogears (Japanese version) Cooperation
1998 Ehrgeiz FF VII staff
1999 Chrono Cross (Japanese version) Development cooperation
2002 Unlimited Saga Special thanks
2003 Hanjuku Hero Tai 3D Development cooperation
2004 Dragon Quest & Final Fantasy in Itadaki Street Special Final Fantasy part cooperation
2005 Romancing SaGa Special thanks
2006 Dragon Quest & Final Fantasy in Itadaki Street Portable Final Fantasy part cooperation
Dawn of Mana Special thanks
2007 Heroes of Mana
2009 Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light
2010 Final Fantasy XIV Crystal tools
2011 Dissidia 012: Final Fantasy Special thanks
2012 Theatrhythm Final Fantasy
2013 Final Fantasy: All The Bravest
2014 Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call
2015 Final Fantasy X/X-2 HD Remaster for PlayStation 4
Final Fantasy: Brave Exvius
Dissidia Final Fantasy (2015 video game) Arcade
2016 Final Fantasy X/X-2 HD Remaster for Microsoft Windows
2017 Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward (Patch 3.56)
Final Fantasy XIV: Stormblood
Pictologica Final Fantasy
Itadaki Street: Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy 30th Anniversary
Final Fantasy Dimensions II
2018 Dissidia Final Fantasy NT
Chrono Trigger Upgrade Version
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Original game supervisor
2019 Final Fantasy XIV: Shadowbringers Special thanks
Romancing SaGa 3 remaster Executive officer
SaGa: Scarlet Grace Ambitions English Version
War of the Visions: Final Fantasy Brave Exvius Special thanks
Star Ocean: First Departure R Creative business unit 1, vice president
2020 Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles Remastered Edition
Kingdom Hearts: Melody of Memory
Collection of SaGa Executive officer
2021 SaGa Frontier Remastered
Neo: The World Ends with You Creative business unit 1, vice president
Dungeon Encounters
Final Fantasy XIV: Endwalker Special thanks
2022 Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin Creative business unit 1, vice president
Chrono Cross The Radical Dreamers Edition
Star Ocean: The Divine Force
Tactics Ogre: Reborn
Romancing SaGa Minstrel Song Remastered Executive officer
2023 Theatrhythm Final Bar Line Creative business unit 1, vice president
Final Fantasy XVI Special thanks
Star Ocean: The Second Story R Creative business unit 1, vice president
2024 Foamstars Square Enix special tester


  • .mw-parser-output .citation{word-wrap:break-word}.mw-parser-output .citation:target{background-color:rgba(0,127,255,0.133)}A Kitase was a producer on Final Fantasy XV until the end of 2013.


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  1. ^ .mw-parser-output cite.citation{font-style:inherit;word-wrap:break-word}.mw-parser-output .citation q{quotes:”””””””‘””‘”}.mw-parser-output .citation:target{background-color:rgba(0,127,255,0.133)}.mw-parser-output .id-lock-free.id-lock-free a{background:url(“//upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/65/Lock-green.svg”)right 0.1em center/9px no-repeat}body:not(.skin-timeless):not(.skin-minerva) .mw-parser-output .id-lock-free a{background-size:contain}.mw-parser-output .id-lock-limited.id-lock-limited a,.mw-parser-output .id-lock-registration.id-lock-registration a{background:url(“//upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/d6/Lock-gray-alt-2.svg”)right 0.1em center/9px no-repeat}body:not(.skin-timeless):not(.skin-minerva) .mw-parser-output .id-lock-limited a,body:not(.skin-timeless):not(.skin-minerva) .mw-parser-output .id-lock-registration a{background-size:contain}.mw-parser-output .id-lock-subscription.id-lock-subscription a{background:url(“//upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/aa/Lock-red-alt-2.svg”)right 0.1em center/9px no-repeat}body:not(.skin-timeless):not(.skin-minerva) .mw-parser-output .id-lock-subscription a{background-size:contain}.mw-parser-output .cs1-ws-icon a{background:url(“//upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/4/4c/Wikisource-logo.svg”)right 0.1em center/12px no-repeat}body:not(.skin-timeless):not(.skin-minerva) .mw-parser-output .cs1-ws-icon a{background-size:contain}.mw-parser-output .cs1-code{color:inherit;background:inherit;border:none;padding:inherit}.mw-parser-output .cs1-hidden-error{display:none;color:#d33}.mw-parser-output .cs1-visible-error{color:#d33}.mw-parser-output .cs1-maint{display:none;color:#2C882D;margin-left:0.3em}.mw-parser-output .cs1-format{font-size:95%}.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-left{padding-left:0.2em}.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-right{padding-right:0.2em}.mw-parser-output .citation .mw-selflink{font-weight:inherit}html.skin-theme-clientpref-night .mw-parser-output .cs1-maint{color:#18911F}html.skin-theme-clientpref-night .mw-parser-output .cs1-visible-error,html.skin-theme-clientpref-night .mw-parser-output .cs1-hidden-error{color:#f8a397}@media(prefers-color-scheme:dark){html.skin-theme-clientpref-os .mw-parser-output .cs1-visible-error,html.skin-theme-clientpref-os .mw-parser-output .cs1-hidden-error{color:#f8a397}html.skin-theme-clientpref-os .mw-parser-output .cs1-maint{color:#18911F}}“Board of Directors”. Square Enix. 2019. Archived from the original on 13 May 2016. Retrieved 14 May 2016.
  2. ^ a b “【インタビュー(完全版)】『ファイナルファンタジーVII Gバイク』 いま明かされる開発秘話”. Famitsu. 27 June 2014. Archived from the original on 30 April 2015. Retrieved 26 May 2015.
  3. ^ “What Does Square Enix’s Final Fantasy Committee Do?”. Siliconera. 25 March 2014. Archived from the original on 6 March 2016. Retrieved 2 June 2016.
  4. ^ “Everything we know about the man behind the Final Fantasy 7 remake”. 14 August 2015. Archived from the original on 13 May 2019. Retrieved 13 May 2019.
  5. ^ 「ハリウッド映画に負けていますか?」 スクウェア・エニックスプロデューサー北瀬 佳範 (in Japanese). Kodansha. 25 November 2009. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 5 April 2013.
  6. ^ a b Studio BentStuff. Final Fantasy VIII Ultimania (in Japanese). Square Enix. p. 464.
  7. ^ a b Martin, Joe (26 April 2008). “Crisis Core: Interviewing Yoshinori Kitase”. Interview. bit-tech. Archived from the original on 20 March 2012. Retrieved 4 April 2011.
  8. ^ “Beyond FINAL FANTASY – Interviews”. FINAL FANTASY X Bonus DVD. Square Enix Co., Ltd. Archived from the original on 23 May 2014. Retrieved 4 April 2011. Yoshinori Kitase: For Final Fantasy VII and VIII, the setting was sci-fi and many players responded by saying that they preferred a simple fantasy world. They seemed to have a fixed notion of what fantasy means to them, and to them, it consisted of a medieval European world. I wanted to change that idea. I wanted to expand the definition of what the players thought the word “fantasy” implied.
  9. ^ “Yoshinori Kitase on FFXIII, FFVII and Dissidia”. VideoGamer.com. 8 May 2009. Archived from the original on 2 December 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2012.
  10. ^ Cheng, Justin (19 May 2005). “E3 2005: Yoshinori Kitase Interview”. IGN. Archived from the original on 29 June 2011. Retrieved 19 July 2010.
  11. ^ “Hironobu Sakaguchi and Hajime Tabata Discuss Their Passion for the Series and Behind-the-Scenes Episodes from the Final Fantasy XV Reveal Event”. Famitsu. 13 May 2016. Archived from the original on 11 June 2016. Retrieved 13 May 2016.
  12. ^ a b Parish, Jeremy (24 February 2010). “Final Fantasy: Kitase’s Inside Story”. 1UP.com. UGO Networks. Retrieved 11 September 2010.
  13. ^ “Procyon Studio: Interview with Masato Kato”. Cocoebiz.com. November 1999. Archived from the original on 24 July 2011. Retrieved 3 June 2007.
  14. ^ “Interview with Nomura, Kitase and Naora”. Shūkan Famitsu. ASCII Corporation. 5 June 1998. Archived from the original on 12 October 2010. Retrieved 23 February 2011.
  15. ^ “Interview: Final Fantasy X”. Core Magazine. 6 March 2001. Archived from the original on 13 April 2001.
  16. ^ “Interview with Final Fantasy X Developers”. The Madman’s Cafe. 19 January 2001. Archived from the original on 27 September 2013. Retrieved 13 April 2013.
  17. ^ Studio BentStuff. Final Fantasy X Ultimania Omega (in Japanese). Square Enix. pp. 192, 476.
  18. ^ “Talking FINAL FANTASY VIII Remastered with YOSHINORI KITASE // Meme Review”. YouTube. Archived from the original on 21 December 2021.

External links[edit]


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