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Tokuro Fujiwara
藤原得郎
Tokuro fujiwara 97
Tokuro Fujiwara, circa 1997

Birthdate:

April 7th, 1961[1]

Occupation:

Game director, producer

"Arthur" was the pseudonym Tokuro Fujiwara (藤原得郎) used during development of the CPS-1 installment of Strider. A prolific Japanese video game designer and producer, he's best known for creating the iconic Capcom series Ghosts 'n Goblins, as well as being producer in several of the company's other franchises, most notably the Mega Man series and the first Resident Evil[2]. Fujiwara has also been credited under the name "Professor F".

CareerEdit

KonamiEdit

Tokuro Fujiwara was attending the Osaka Designer's College when he joined Konami in 1982. Fujiwara was interested in an opening as product planner the company had at the time, and didn't even knew Konami made video games until he did the entrance exam. At first he worked as an artist for stuff such as leaflets and the acrilic boards for medal games.[3]

He directed two games while at Konami, Pooyan and Roc'n Rope, the second being the first game he developed from scratch. Roc 'n Rope was difficult to develop as Fujiwara found himself constantly struggling with the memory limitations. Years later, he'd expand on the rope gameplay mechanics in Capcom's 1987 Arcade/NES game Bionic Commando.[3]

CapcomEdit

Fujiwara left Konami in 1983 to join Capcom together with Yoshiki Okamoto, although the two were invited to join the company by different people[3]. Fujiwara designed many of Capcom's first Arcade games, including Vulgus, Pirate Ship Higemaru, Ghosts 'n Goblins and Commando, the latter two developed concurrently[3]. Around 1986, he became head of one of Capcom's three development groups[4] (the "First Planning Room"[5][6]).

In 1988, Tokuro Fujiwara oversaw the development of the Strider three-way project, where he was credited as "Planning Adviser". As Kouichi Yotsui's manager, he picked him as the head of the Arcade game side of the project because he had "really good negotiation skills", as he believed such a project would require them[7]. During the three project heads's stay at the Shinjuku Hilton hotel, both him and Capcom's head of development Akio Sakai would occasionally join them and help in building the game's world and main character.[6]

Although infamous for being rather strict to his junior staff, Fujiwara showed a lot of leniency to the inexperienced Yotsui, allowing him free rein to do as he saw fit and ensuring the game would be finished only when Yotsui said so[7]. Strider was developed around the same time as Ghouls 'n Ghosts, both games using the then-new Arcade "CP System" board. Fujiwara felt the board's operational capabilities weren't hard to work with, but the ROM capacity presented a challenge. As the chips were all lined up across the circuit board, they needed to put a lot of effort into the design front in order to make good use of them. To do this they used 30 graphic artists instead of the usual 2 or 3 used in previous projects.[3]

Strider turned out to be the last Arcade game Fujiwara worked on[3]. Around the latter half of 1988, Capcom organized itself into 2 departments, one to handle Arcade games and one focused on home consoles. Although Fujiwara expressed his desire to continue making Arcade games, he was ordered to move into the domestic division. Once he was transferred, he started work on Mega Man 2.[3]

For the following years, Tokuro Fujiwara was involved as producer in several of Capcom's entries for home consoles, including several entries in the Mega Man and Final Fight series. His final contribution at Capcom would be as producer of the first entry in the Resident Evil series. Inspired by Sweet Home, a NES horror game he developed, Fujiwara determined elements such as the game's setting and the change from a 1st person view to a 3rd person view, leaving out the "actual work" to the game's planner (and future series producer) Shinji Mikami.[3]

Later yearsEdit

Following Resident Evil's release, Tokuro Fujiwara left Capcom and funded his own company, Whoopee Camp. The company, however, only released two titles: Tomba! and its direct sequel, before going out of bussiness. Masahiro Kurokawa and Harumi Fujita (planner and composer of the NES Strider) rejoined him as staff on Tomba!, Kurokawa filling in as writer for it and its sequel. Although the games were well-received critically, poor distribution led them to underperform in sales and lead to the company's disbandment.

Undeterred, Fujiwara then established "Deep Space" as a subsidiary of Sony Computer Entertainment Japan. Deep Space released two titles before folding as well: 2001's Extermination, a survival horror game taking several cues from his previous work in Resident Evil, and 2003's Hungry Ghosts, which took a different approach to the genre, seeking to provide a more "virtual" experience through exploration.[2]

In 2005, Fujiwara was approached by Capcom to work on Ultimate Ghosts 'n Goblins, the latest entry in the series he created. Fujiwara was happy, but also a bit apprehensive due to how little he knew about the hardware it was being developed on, the PSP. He developed the game as a "pure" sequel with expanded content, a number of new elements (such as branching paths) and a more casual approach in an attempt to revitalize the platforming genre[8]. He was later credited as "consultant" in the 2006 remake of another game he created, Bionic Commando Rearmed.

GameographyEdit

Year Title Developer Publisher System Role
1982 Pooyan
プーヤン
Konami Konami Arcade Designer
1983 Roc'n Rope
ロックンロープ
Konami Konami Arcade Designer
1984 Vulgus
バルガス
Capcom Capcom Arcade Designer
1984 Pirate Ship Higemaru
ひげ丸
Capcom Capcom Arcade Designer
1985 Ghosts 'n Goblins
魔界村
Capcom Capcom Arcade Designer
1986 Commando
戦場の狼
Capcom Capcom Arcade Designer
1986 The Speed Rumbler
ラッシュ&クラッシュ
Capcom Capcom Arcade Designer
1987 Higemaru Makaijima
魔界島 七つの島大冒険
Capcom Capcom NES Advise Manager
1987 Bionic Commando
トップシークレット
Capcom Capcom Arcade, NES Designer
1987 Tiger Road
虎への道
Capcom Capcom Arcade Designer
1988 Ghouls 'n Ghosts
大魔界村
Capcom Capcom Arcade Designer
1988 Mega Man 2
ロックマン2 Dr.ワイリーの謎
Capcom Capcom NES Producer
1989 Strider
ストライダー飛竜
Capcom Capcom Arcade Planning Adviser
1989 Destiny of an Emperor
天地を喰らう
Capcom Capcom NES Producer
1989 Willow
ウィロー
Capcom Capcom NES Producer
1989 DuckTales
わんぱくダック夢冒険
Capcom Capcom NES Producer
1989 Marusa no Onna
マルサの女
Capcom Capcom NES Director
1989 Sweet Home
スウィートホーム
Capcom Capcom NES Designer
1990 Mega Man 3
ロックマン3Dr.ワイリーの最期!?
Capcom Capcom NES Producer
1990 Gargoyle's Quest
レッドアリーマー 魔界村外伝
Capcom Capcom Game Boy Producer
1990 Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers
チップとデールの大作戦
Capcom Capcom NES Producer
1990 Street Fighter 2010: The Final Fight
2010 ストリートファイター
Capcom Capcom NES Producer
1990 Little Nemo: The Dream Master
パジャマヒーロー NEMO
Capcom Capcom NES Executive Producer
1990 Final Fight
ファイナルファイト
Capcom Capcom SNES Special Thanks
1991 Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts
超魔界村
Capcom Capcom Arcade Director
1991 Tenchi wo Kurau II
天地を喰らうII 諸葛孔明伝
Capcom Capcom NES Producer
1991 The Little Mermaid Capcom Capcom NES, Game Boy Producer
1991 Mega Man: Dr. Wily's Revenge
ロックマンワールド
Capcom Capcom Game Boy Producer
1991 Mercs
(戦場の狼
Capcom Capcom Arcade Designer
1991 Mega Man 4
ロックマン4 新たなる野望!!
Capcom Capcom NES Producer
1991 TaleSpin Capcom Capcom NES Producer
1991 Mega Man II
ロックマンワールド2
Capcom Capcom Game Boy Producer
1992 Final Fight Guy
ファイナルファイト・ガイ
Capcom Capcom SNES Special Thanks
1992 Darkwing Duck Capcom Capcom NES, Game Boy Producer
1992 Gargoyle's Quest II
レッドアリーマーII
Capcom Capcom NES Producer
1992 Mega Man 5
ロックマン5ブルースの罠!?
Capcom Capcom NES Producer
1992 Mega Man III
ロックマンワールド3
Capcom Capcom Game Boy Producer
1992 Street Fighter II′ Turbo
ストリートファイターIIダッシュターボ -HYPER FIGHTING-
Capcom Capcom SNES Special Thanks
1993 Breath of Fire
ブレス オブ ファイア 竜の戦士
Capcom Capcom SNES Producer
1993 DuckTales 2
ダックテイルズ2
Capcom Capcom NES, Game Boy Producer
1993 Final Fight 2
ファイナルファイト2
Capcom Capcom SNES Producer
1993 Mighty Final Fight
マイティ ファイナルファイト
Capcom Capcom NES Special Thanks
1993 Mega Man 6
ロックマン6史上最大の戦い!!
Capcom Capcom NES Producer
1993 Disney's Aladdin
アラジン
Capcom Capcom SNES Producer
1993 Mega Man IV
ロックマンワールド4
Capcom Capcom Game Boy Producer
1993 Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers 2
チップとデールの大作戦2
Capcom Capcom NES Producer
1993 Mega Man X
ロックマンX
Capcom Capcom SNES Producer
1994 Mega Man Soccer
ロックマンズサッカー
Capcom Capcom SNES Producer
1994 Goof Troop
グーフィーとマックス 海賊島の大冒険
Capcom Capcom SNES Producer
1994 Mega Man V
ロックマンワールド5
Capcom Capcom Game Boy Producer
1994 Demon's Crest
デモンズブレイゾン 魔界村 紋章編
Capcom Capcom SNES Producer
1994 X-Men: Mutant Apocalypse
エックスメン ミュータントアポカリプス
Capcom Capcom SNES Producer
1994 Breath of Fire II
ブレス オブ ファイアII 使命の子
Capcom Capcom SNES Producer
1994 Mega Man X2
ロックマンX2
Capcom Capcom SNES Producer
1995 Street Fighter Alpha: Warriors' Dream
ストリートファイターZERO
Capcom Capcom PlayStation, Sega Saturn Consumer Staff
1995 Mega Man 7
ロックマン7 宿命の対決!
Capcom Capcom SNES Producer
1995 Mega Man X3
ロックマンX3
Capcom Capcom SNES Producer
1995 Final Fight 3
ファイナルファイトタフ
Capcom Capcom SNES Producer
1996 Resident Evil
バイオハザード
Capcom Capcom PlayStation General Producer
1998 Tomba!
オレっ!トンバ
Whoopee Camp Sony Computer Entertainment PlayStation Producer, Director
1999 Tomba! 2: The Evil Swine Return
トンバ! ザ・ワイルドアドベンチャー
Whoopee Camp Sony Computer Entertainment PlayStation Producer, Designer
2001 Extermination
エクスターミネーション
Deep Space Sony Computer Entertainment PlayStation 2 Executive Producer
2003 Hungry Ghosts
ハングリィ ゴースト
Deep Space Sony Computer Entertainment PlayStation 2 Executive Producer, Director
2006 Ultimate Ghosts 'n Goblins
極魔界村
Tose Capcom PlayStation Portable Director
2006 Bionic Commando Rearmed
バイオニック コマンドー マスターD復活計画
GRiN Capcom PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PC Consultant
2009 MadWorld
マッドワールド
PlatinumGames Sega Wii Original Game Design
2016 Project Scissors: Night Cry Nude Maker Nude Maker PC, PlayStation Vita, iOS, Android Special Support (message)

ReferencesEdit

  1. Ohta Publishing (2009). "Game Center CX Complete" (Japanese). ISBN 978-4-7783-1180-3.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Hamamura, Hirozaku (July 2, 2003). "The Lair of Hungry Ghosts". Famitsu. Translated by Fox, Fennec. Retrieved from archive.org. Accessed September 1, 2016.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 Staff (2003). "The Man Who Made Ghosts’n Goblins" (Japanese). Continue (12). Translated by GlitterBerri. Accessed September 1, 2016
  4. Tane, Kiyofume (February 2009). "The Father of Strider Who Made the Game World Explode: Kouichi Yotsui Discography". Gameside (16). Translated by Gaijin Punch for Gamengai. Accessed 24 Oct 2010.
  5. Strider. (Capcom). Arcade. Level/area: End credits. (March 7, 1989).
  6. 6.0 6.1 Scion; Dire 51 (24 April 2010). "Interview with Kouichi "Isuke" Yotsui". LSCM 4.0. Translated by Gaijin Punch. Accessed September 1, 2016.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Jones, Darran (24 Apr 2010). "The Making of... Strider". Retro Gamer (76). pp. 48-53.
  8. "Makaimura Series – Interview Collection" (Japanese). Translated by Shmuplations.com. Accessed September 1, 2016

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