Bandai Namco, Ilca Partner on New Studio

Takuya Iwasaki, left, and Kazutoki Kono will lead Bandai Namco Aces.
Takuya Iwasaki, left, and Kazutoki Kono will lead Bandai Namco Aces. / Courtesy of Bandai Namco Aces

Publisher Bandai Namco has partnered with Japanese development studio Ilca to form a new studio they're calling Bandai Namco Aces.

Ilca was founded in 2010 as a video production company, in recent years it has expanded its wheelhouse to include video game production. The studio worked on Game Freak's Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl, a pair of long-awaited remakes the studios put out in 2021.

Ilca CEO Takuya Iwasaki will lead Bandai Namco Aces, serving as both president and CEO. Longtime Bandai Namco producer Kazutoki Kono will serve as vice president.

Neither partner has specified precisely what the new studio will be working on, but the studio itself says it will "continue to deliver high quality content." That includes for the Ace Combat series, which Kono has worked on since 1997's Ace Combat 2.

"We have always strived to provide contents and services that give intense satisfaction and excitement to our fans. In the process, we have come to realize that the core of entertainment lies in the 'heart-pounding emotion' that comes at the moment when creativity moves the 'emotions' of our fans," Kono said in a statement.

"In order to maximize this value we hoped to create a new development environment where creators and fans could co-create in the future.

"We aim to create a next-generation entertainment experience in which people empathize with each other and share their excitement."