Dozens, if not hundreds, of talented people are behind the creation of any meaningful video game. But we often only know a few major names, such as Corey Barlog or Neil Drakman. Is this fair? Oddly enough, but in many respects yes, because collective work is worth nothing without a gem designer who created the idea and became the main development engine that accumulates the work of several hundred people together and brings the creation of the game to the final point.
Japanese gamedev is a real treasure of talented people and we are a little offended that the domestic gamer knows only the name of Hideo Kojima. That is why I would like to restore justice a little and tell both about Kojima and 7 more legendary Japanese game designers.
Hideo Kojima is an exceptional personality for both Japanese and world gamedev in general. He is the first person in the industry who was able to make a brand out of his name and popular directors and musicians are among his admirers, and gamer love can be measured at least by his Instagram account, which has about a million subscribers. The flip side of such popularity is a huge number of ill-wishers, to put it simply, haters, but one cannot fail to note the importance of Kojima's creations for the gaming industry.
First, he's the man who pioneered the Stealth genre with the release of Metal Gear on MSX 2 back in 1986. Secondly, Kojima is not afraid of bold genre experiments, which can be clearly seen even in the ambiguous, but at the same time unique Death Stranding. And secondly, Kojima, with the release of Metal Gear Solid on PS1 in 1998, was able to bring games very close to cinema, taking video game production to a new level.
I would like to talk separately about cinema in Kojima's life, because it is not for nothing that he claims that 70% of his body consists of cinema. The game designer's love for films was instilled by his parents, not allowing 4-year-old Hideo to fall asleep until after watching the movie. In the future, Kojima was torn between the choice of the profession of a writer, illustrator and director, and as a result, he went into the gaming industry, where he was able to fully demonstrate all his talents and aspirations.
Shigeru Miyamoto is less famous for the layman than Kojima, but at the same time he is perhaps the most significant person in the history of the gaming industry. After joining Nintendo in 1977, Miyamoto was the one who helped the Japanese campaign become one of the major giants in the gaming industry. Starting as an artist, he would go on to create iconic series such as Donkey Kong, Pikmin, The Legend of Zelda, Star Fox and Mario. The importance of the latest series, namely Super Mario Bros. 1985 is hard to underestimate, as it inspired a host of talented individuals, such as Gabe Newwell and Hideo Kojima, to work in the gaming industry.
The philosophy of Shigeru Miyamoto is based on two main rules: games should be designed for the largest possible audience (including even those who are not familiar with the gaming industry) and be interactive entertainment, where the head is not graphics or production, but interesting and innovative gameplay. Unlike the same Kojima, Shigeru Miyamoto declared in 1999 that he would never make games like movies.
In addition, Shigeru Miyamoto has distinguished himself as the head of development for Nintendo's innovative consoles, the most famous of which was the Wii released in 2006. Subsequently, the Wii ranked second (after Playstation 2) among the best-selling consoles in history.
A good game designer, like a film director, has his own special and recognizable style. Individual handwriting that allows you to define the game even without the knowledge of the studio responsible for the development of the project. The best examples are Fumito Ueda's games ICO, Shadow of the Colossus, and The Last Guardian. Each game features a minimalist storytelling, a nameless and seemingly extinct world and characters that are sure to resonate in the hearts of even the most callous gamers.
Ueda himself called his unique style "design by subtraction" and admitted that he drew inspiration from games (Prince of Rersia, Virtua Fighter) and manga (Galaxy Express 999) before entering the gaming industry. Also, for all players who are familiar with the work of Fumido Ueda, we think it will not be a revelation to learn that as a child, the maestro loved to catch small animals, follow their movement and then reproduce the animation of living creatures using animation. The final result of Ueda's childhood hobbies is The Last Guardian, which showcases the best four-legged beast animation in the history of the gaming industry.
In his youth, Yu Suzuki was a man of rare creative talents: an illustrator, musician, architect, and at the same time he decided to go to a medical university by submitting documents to the Faculty of Dentistry. Perhaps it is for the best that the young Japanese did not get into the medical industry following the results of the exams and changed his profile as a programmer, and then as a cult game designer. Suzuki's very first game was the Hang-On Slots Race, which became a technical breakthrough for the gaming industry.
Over the next thirty years, Yu Suzuki was noted for the creation of several dozen more significant games, for which he became one of the first people who in 2003 entered the Hall of Fame of the Academy of Sciences and Arts. The most significant works by Yu Suzuki are the Virtua Fighter and Shenmue series. The Shenmue Dilogy was the fruit of Suzuki's technical prowess and love of Japanese culture, which collectively spawned one of the most expensive, revolutionary and financially disastrous games in industry history.
Let's admit that the recently released Shenmue III turned out to be a game that is largely outdated. And at the same time, clearly proving that Suzuki, despite his retirement age, is still full of enthusiasm and does not want to leave his favorite industry.
Goichi Suda is perhaps one of the most extraordinary Japanese game designers. Starting from working as an undertaker in his youth and ending with his own game design style, which he called "punk" - Suda has always been a nonconformist and differed in many ways from the average Japanese. The best thing about Goichi Suda's unusual handwriting is one of his first games, Super Fire Pro Wrestling Special, which starts as a typical sports game, then turns into a horrific tragedy, where in the finale the main character, having received the champion belt, ends his life by suicide in his own mansion.
Suda has repeatedly said that as a creator he is interested in creating bold and unusual game concepts, to become an innovator in an industry full of imitators. As a result, Goichi Suda, with the release of games such as No More Heroes, The Silver Case, Killer 7 and Killer is Dead, fully confirmed his words, but due to the unusualness of his own script and concepts, he did not succeed with the mass player. But if you want to fully experience the madness of the Japanese gaming industry and are tired of the monotony among modern Western games, Goichi Suda's projects will appeal to you. But this is not certain.
Shinji Mikami is best known for his love of the horror genre and the creation of the Resident Evil series. But, oddly enough, the game designer began his career in the industry by developing games for children. After joining Capcom in 1990, for three years he participated in the creation of three games based on Disney cartoons at once: Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Goof Troop and Disney's Aladdin. After proving his professional suitability to Capcom, he finally got the go-ahead to implement his own concept - the chamber horror Resident Evil, which was his response to the 1979 film Zombies.
The bottom line, you yourself know - the game marked a transitional stage for Capcom, became the founder of the Survival-horror genre and turned into a major media franchise, with more than a dozen games and a separate series of films by Paul Anderson. The horror concept Mikami continued in 1999 with the release of Jurassic Park-inspired Dino Crisis. Then, after numerous production jobs, he triumphantly returned to the industry with Resident Evil 4 in 2005, forever inscribing his name on the list of legendary game designers. Other projects by Shinji Mikami include the groundbreaking fighting game God Hand, the adrenaline-fueled thriller Vanquish and the psychedelic horror game The Evil Within.
The life of Kazunori Yamauchi is an example of one of those motivational stories loved to be told at TED with the applause of an enthusiastic audience. From an early age, Yamauchi was a real fan of cars and already at university made presentations for various automotive companies. A little later, he got a job at Sony Music Entertainment, participated in the development of the Playstation and in 1994 released his first racing project, Motor Toon Grand Prix, inspired by Mario Kart. Despite good media reception, arcade racing was not what Kazunori wanted to do, so in 1997 he released his dream game, Gran Turismo.
Gran Turismo was a resounding success, as together with colorful graphics the Yamauchi team was able to bring the world the first full-fledged car simulator on consoles, which was accompanied by a weighty two-volume manual. In the future, the fame of Gran Turismo only grew, more and more attracting the attention of leading automobile concerns to the personality of Kazunori Yamauchi. Subsequently, he was honored to develop the design and multifunction display for cars of the Nissan brand, and Porshe, Ford, Mercedes-Benz presented Yamauchi with their own cars for the active promotion of their brands in games.
The holder of several Guinness records, an ingenious Japanese game designer and the record holder for the number of banned fans on his own twitter - these are just a few of the main achievements of Hideki Kamiya. The illustrious Japanese started his way at Capcom in 1994 and after a number of projects was promoted to head of development for Resident Evil 2, which, according to Capcom's desire to create a mass product, was in many ways different from the first part. But, nevertheless, Camia managed to develop a truly frightening and at the same time adrenaline project.
Hideki's next piece, Devil May Cry, followed closely his desire to create "cool and stylish games." But that was just the beginning of Hideki Kamiya's career, who then shot the release of the iconic Okami, Bayonetta and Wonderful 101. In addition to developing games, Hideki does not forget to play them, having recently marked the world record for the most points scored in the Arcade Archives Ninja-Kid.
But perhaps the funniest thing about Hideki Kamiya is his hot temper and the wars he occasionally wages on Twitter with his own fans. Don't even dare to tweet Kamiya anything other than Japanese, or worse, dare to call his games art - go to the blacklist right away.
See also the best games of all time (80-71), where there was a place for one of Hideki Kamiya's games.
The Topic of Article: Dozens, if not hundreds, of talented people are behind the creation.