Sad news for classic JRPG fans out there. Osamu Kobayashi, a game designer renowned for the splendorous world and locales of the 1997 Sega Saturn/PS1 classic JRPG Grandia, has passed away. He was 57 years old.
The world designer died due to kidney cancer on 17th April according to an official GungHo online post. They’re the folks who own the Grandia IP, by the by.
Osamu Kobayashi, World Designer for GRANDIA, passed away due to kidney cancer on April 17. Thank you for creating the amazing world of GRANDIA that we all love, and may you rest in peace. https://t.co/ksUGjaCytR
— GungHo Online (@GungHo_America) April 19, 2021
Were it not for Kobayashi, we wouldn’t get the charming city of Parm, the epic giant wall that led to the End of the World, and what lies beyond. I daresay that all of Grandia’s locations and its world is arguably better than any Final Fantasy game at the time, just because of its scale and ingenuity.
Kobayashi also directed an episode of Gurren Lagann and Dororo, as well as animated shows like BECK and Paradise Kiss. He will be missed.
If you want to see it for yourself, do get the Grandia HD Collection for Switch and PC. It’s not perfect, but at least you can play the original game in its Japanese dub.