Tozai Games - building legacy with innovation and passion.
From the classics of yesterday to the original IP of tomorrow, Tozai Games delivers lasting gaming experiences to passionate gamers around the globe.
"Tozai Tozai!" is the traditional greeting at the beginning of a Japanese Kabuki theater production. It means, "Welcome everyone!" The word "tozai" is derived from "tō" meaning east, and "zai" meaning west, so it is literally a welcome to everyone from east to west.
Sheila Boughten co-founded Tozai, Inc. in 1996 and over the past decade has helped numerous publishers and developers from Japan and the West successfully launch their games in foreign markets. Her client list includes many of the iconic companies in the video game industry: SCI Games, Eidos Interactive, Infogrames, Hasbro Interactive, Bandai, NEC, Mitsui and many more. Prior to starting Tozai, Sheila served as VP of Far East Business Operations for SpectrumHolobyte/Microprose, where she managed the licensing relationships and distribution channels throughout the Far East. Joining Bullet-Proof Software in 1990, Sheila's first task was to work with U.S. and Russian immigration to help move Tetris creator Alexey Pajitnov to his new home in the United States. She worked with yet another famous game designer, Doug Smith-Lode Runner's creator-to establish worldwide licensing relationships with publishers around the world. The rest, as they say, is history.
Scott TsumuraChief Advisor/Executive Producer
Scott Tsumura's career in the video game industry spans four decades and both sides of the Pacific Ocean. That cross-cultural link has played a key role in Scott's many business endeavors, whether it was bringing an American-made computer game like Lode Runner to the Japanese arcades or overseeing Japanese titles as they were brought to the U.S. Scott first encountered Lode Runner while he was with IREM Corporation; he was so impressed with the game that IREM obtained the license and Scott produced the arcade version in Japan. It was the first time a personal computer game was ported to the arcades instead of the other way around. Scott later founded or co-founded a number of companies, including Kyodai Software, Bullet-Proof Software, Big Bang Software, Tozai Inc., and Nintendo Software Technology Corporation, and he has served as an officer or advisor to companies including Spectrum HoloByte, MicroProse, Amaze Entertainment, SCi Games, Eidos, Aksys Games, MTO USA, DigiPen Institute of Technology and BrandX games. He has been involved with the production of countless titles over the years, working closely with some of the most revered game designers of all time, such as Shigeru Miyamoto and Alexey Pajitnov, the creator of Tetris.
Brett BallowProducer/Game Designer
Designing the definitive versions of Lode Runner and R-Type Dimensions for Xbox LIVE Arcade has been a dream job for Brett; the original games were his favorite titles growing up. Brett's video game development credits while at Big Bang Software and Nintendo Software Technology Corporation include major Nintendo 64 releases such as Wave Race: Blue Storm, Panel de Pon, Pokemon Puzzle League, Ridge Racer and Lode Runner 3D. He has also fished in Alaska, framed and finished buildings, welded at shipyards, fitted pipes at oil refineries, farmed commercially and worked in the product design, prototyping and engineering fields. What's Brett's next dream project: "If I can convince Scott and Sheila that Tozai needs a 5-axis CNC mill, I can get started building my very own blaster!" Everybody DUCK!
Hideki SaitoTechnical Advisor
Hideki was just seven years old when he first played Lode Runner for Famicom (NES in Japan). It didn't take very long until it became his favorite game, and he spent countless hours creating new levels and playing with friends. After graduating from DigiPen Institute of Technology, Hideki worked in game development at Nintendo of America, Nintendo Software Technology Corporation, Amaze Entertainment, Kemco USA, MTO USA and Tozai. He also founded Media Gateway Corporation-a consulting company. He is thrilled to be able to help bring the same excitement he experienced in his childhood playing Lode Runner to even more gamers!
The talented team at SouthEnd Interactive, based in Malmo Sweden, generated the code and graphics for Lode Runner. SouthEnd Interactive and Tozai Games also delivered R-Type Dimensions for Xbox LIVE Arcade-a two-game set that has received critical acclaim since its release in February 2009. A HUGE thank you to everyone at SouthEnd for helping Tozai Games make these titles a reality.
The Microsoft and Xbox support teams assisted Tozai Games from the outset to the completion of both Lode Runner and R-Type Dimensions for Xbox LIVE Arcade. The Tozai team wishes to extend their heartfelt thanks to Chad Dylan Long, Mark Coates, Ted Woolsey and Cherie Lutz-and the countless others at Microsoft-for their unceasing support and guidance.
The testing for both Lode Runner and R-Type Dimensions took place at VMC Game Labs. Their patience and diligence helped make both titles achieve the highest possible standards of quality. Special thanks to the whole crew, including Erin Davis, Edward McPherson, Noriko Fritchle, Amy Nanto and Scott Griffiths.