Friday, October 29, 2010

Keiji Inafune Quits Capcom (Update)

Talk about breaking news...

Kotaku reports the father of Mega Man has announced on his official blog that, after 23 years with the company, has quit Capcom affective at the end of the month.

"A manager's work means evaluating your subordinates and speaking your dreams," Inafune writes.
"There's nowhere higher for me to go. I'm leaving Capcom with the intention of starting my life over."
"People that really know me, can see where I'm coming from. I'm not a regular dude. It's probably because I'm strange."

The message ends with a simple "thank you" and a reassurance that he'll do his best. Inafune wasn't clear what he'll do now, unfortunately.

The red flags of his resignation were evident as early as late September. In an interview with Excite, Inafune expressed his disgusts in his work at Capcom, and even earlier he's shown an increasing distaste and bitterness towards the Japanese game industry. As such, his leave may not be all too surprising to some, but for me, at least, this comes as a shocker.

 Full story  at Kotaku. Thanks to everyone who sent this in!

UPDATE: Come November 1st, Jun Takeuchi will take over Inafune's position as corporate officer, as well as deputy head of consumer games and R&D Division, and general manager of R&D production.


  1. I'm thinking since he was in a managerial role that it won't have a huge effect. At the very least we won't have to listen to his constant updates about how all japanese games suck and western games are the only one's worth playing.

    Inafking will be missed though

  2. Holy shit....

    I guess this means he'll be going to some other company then? Maybe Hideki Kamiya and Platinum Games will welcome him with open arms.

  3. What?!

    The man behind MegaMan is leaving Capcom?! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!

  4. Ouch, this is too bad. But, after the last message, my surprise is limited. Not only because of his expressed opinions, but also because people who express those opinions on the net tend to leave their jobs one way or the other.

    Gotta wonder how this'll affect Legends 3. After all he's said time and again that he's always wanted to make it. Sad that, now that it's in production, his involvement is at an end.

  5. wow....1st legends 3 is announced
    now Keiji Inafune quits?

    This is just madness...but i wish the best for him and his future for starting his life over.

    I wouldnt be to worried about legends 3 being canned after so much hype but his input in all the mega man series in general is what made mega man to begin with we'll see how Capcom treats his creation in the future and the directions they decide to go with each series. Personally I always thought(and waited) Keiji would bridge the gap between the original series and mmx but i guess somebody else will now, if ever.



    ...Not gonna do the "oh noes Megaman is nao fail" thing, but...

    This is a step towards the end, I think...

  7. I am very happy for him. Capcom can be pain in the butt. I never liked Capcom but him only because of Rockman/Megaman I loved the most. Screw you, Capcom.

    Keiji Inafune, I wish you the best of luck and hope you can continue with Megaman in the future exclude Capcom.

    Capcom, stay out of his life!

  8. Wow, I feel for the guy, for him to quit Capcom he must've been miserable. I kinda saw it coming after his other post but I didn't think it'd be this soon. That's pretty crazy news.....and yeah, since Capcom owns Megaman and Keiji won't be working there anymore......I wonder what that means for the franchise.

  9. Bye bye megaman X9 and bye bye megaman in general.

    Also, I see you guys hate capcom, why so? is it that bad of a company?

  10. The man behind Megaman (Akira Kitamura) left Capcom 20 years ago...

  11. Interesting, to say the least, where this has gone. I see now why there was a safeguard made for MML3.. that is, that "it must be made by the fans." Inafune cannot trust CAPCOM to make it a good game, but he knows that if fans were to work together, that it would become good.

    So what if Inafune is gone? It's not like he's dead. And we still have to build that fucking rocket for Mega Man to come back, remember? Let's stay focused on that.

  12. Your friendly, neighborhood Metool.October 29, 2010 at 10:01 AM

    Not that much of a shock, TBH, but it still is sad news.
    I can see where he's coming from though, when you're at the top of the ladder, you don't have the creative freedom that a so called "lacky" would. Instead of making totally new ideas for your pet character and watching your works come to life, you now approve the dreams of others. And while some may argue that that's a better position/higher calling than making your own stuff, you lose the fun and dare I say, whimsy of letting your imagination spill all over a monitor.

    Now, correct me if i'm wrong, but doesn't all the series that inafaking work on have understudies or somthing? (For example, Shigeru Miyamoto doesn't touch Mario that much anymore, but has a understudy who adapted his quirks in case he ever runs out of 1-ups.) I'm sure that there are people at capcom that understand what made MM Classic, X, Zero and whatever great. Same goes for whatever series he produced that aren't MM.

    I'd also comment on his hatred of Japan's gamng industry, but this comment is too long already.

    So in short: Good luck inafaking! I hope you have good fortune in doing your life over!

  13. So long, Inafue! You will be greatly missed! :(

  14. A sad day, honestly, I didn't expect this till Legends 3 was released. I'm sure though there are plenty of people at Capcom that will carry the Blue Bomber forward. The thing is it's been that way for the last several years. Inafune probably hasn't had much involvement for a long time.

  15. "People that really know me, can see where I'm coming from. I'm not a regular dude. It's probably because I'm strange."

    Strange?!? Capcom's making some lousy games for him? Even he created his own games? Geez, he's right about the one thing:


    However... I fear a whole of Megaman series will be forgotton...

    for everlasting forever.


    This is your fault, Capcom! DmC is a lousy game! And all games that made Inafune disgusting is at your fault! Why didn't you listen to him, so he can show his way, not your way!!! Curse you, Capcom, forever!!!

  16. ...for the record, I'm glad most of the comments here are more mature than they are on TMMN. Seeing all these comments about crying, I'm thinking,

    "...Jesus Christ, this guy did not die or anything. He's just moving on to do something else."

    I've been in situations where I needed to get out quick, and leave certain (undeserving) people behind. That shit happens. Not that Inafune left US, specifically.. he definitely feels for us, the fans. (But maybe not for dudes like MegaPhilX though.. that guy is fucking creepy..)

    Working under a contract is very difficult. Your abilities are hindered, and conditions can make working a hassle. GOOD FOR INAFUNE. I'm glad he's got the balls to find a breath of fresh air. I wonder what he's going to do next?

  17. Well! That's... ...different. o_o I was not expecting to read something like this when I popped today.

  18. Yeah, i have to agree with whoever said that some famous game makers have understudies to replace them!

    So don't panic people! Someone who may be a apprentice of Inafune may continue the MegaMan series, so don't panic!

  19. We all do have to wonder about the far-reaching consequences of him leaving Capcom. There's a chance that he may not have been as much a major player as we all thought. The opposite is possible too - that he was more involved in Capcom's projects than we all thought.

    If it's the latter scenario... What does it mean for the Rockman franchise as a whole?

    The IntiCreates development team handles the Platformer series now, and they might not suffer too much from Inafune leaving. Although some of the other higher-ups might push the development process.

    I'm worried about Classic especially - Is Classic going to remain a zombie franchise doing nothing more than feeding off of 8-bit nostalgia forever? I had believed that Inafune was one of the few people who would try to advance Classic back towards gaining respect the same way it did in the past, instead of gaining respect -because- it stayed in the past.

    On the other hand, there's the X series. I see two possibilities here...

    1) The first is that X9 might finally be developed - I would imagine that Inafune and the IntiCreates team were very much against developing X9 for the time being (if Capcom was trying to get them to develop it in the first place) since they didn't originally plan for the X series to extend past X5. (IntiCreates as a company didn't exist before X5, but the team is made up of staff members who worked on the early X games.) If X9 is announced within the next year, and it turns out to be largely disappointing, I will have to ask the X fanbase, "Was it worth it?"

    2) The second is that X9 will never be developed - the last few X games sold terribly, and the higher-ups at Capcom might not have any desire to take a risk and ask IntiCreates to truly revive the series.

    Then there's Legends. The Legends situation is probably dire than most - it might be like facing an ultimatum. Assuming Legends 3 does not outright end the Legends series, Legends 3 has to sell well now, because with Inafune gone, there goes the most vocal support for a Legends 4 if Legends 3 bombs as terribly as the first two games.

    I don't see the Network Timeline being affected too much. Inafune was not exactly vocal in his involvement within the timeline, even though he did work on the games to an extent. The real brains behind the timeline appears to lie within the team now assisting with the development of Legends 3.

    As for Zero and ZX... Who knows what may happen to them as a result of Inafune leaving?

  20. Oh man this is some straight greek tragedy level of irony right here, you finally got your precious Legends 3 fans but without Inafune doing much on it!

    Oh the irony is delicious I could make a sandwich of it and eat for days.

  21. ...Well, you can bet that I'm gonna put in some serious overtime in keeping an eye on the Devroom now. I swear I'm gonna go ballistic if this means that DASH 3 is in danger. We cannot let this happen.

    Oh, and Inafune-san? Good luck and Godspeed.

  22. Guys like him should have more of a hands-on involvement in the development in the games. I think he regrets not being a part of that.

    And I certainly don't blame him for his contempt for Japanese gaming, those companies are a royal pain in the ass. He's probably had to use all of his pull to get some of the better Capcom games of the last 8 years made against the wishes of the top brass.

    Even when you're making art it sucks to have to fight tooth & nail for every little thing and I think he just got tired of it. Either that or Capcom has definite plans for Legends 3 that he strongly opposed.

  23. C´mon !! face it guys!!
    it´s obvious inafune was kinda pissed off about CASHcom´s new policy of being "mainstreaming" their products a-la-justin bieber/ lady gaga.

    For example,the new Devil May Cry, holy crap, that´ll suck for sure.

    Good for you keiji, you rule!

    PD: screw you cashcom!

  24. Well, whoever takes over, I hope he's got some plan for the current projects. I'd hate to hear Legends 3 gets canned this quickly.

  25. So, he truly IS going through with it after all...

    I... I REALLY don't know what to say, here...

  26. Keiji said this at his facebook page: "The reason wy I quit CAPCOM because I hate my jobs. I cannot get to rest for once, you all should know that I am a very busy man. Anyway, Rockman Dash 3 is not the last one yet. There are more."

  27. Anyone else find it funny that after he loses the female design competition he quits?

  28. I'm pretty bummed out about this news...

  29. Well, Looks like you guys finally have a shot at getting your Megaman X9, the only reason it wasn't happening is because Keiji wanted it to end with 5. (and we saw what happened when he didn't want them to happen and wasn't at a top position at capcom.)

    This really saddens me.. and I was hope that he can still have some role in the company, much like Nabuo Uematsu still makes music for the Final Fantasy series after quitting Square-Enix.

    At least I can dream

  30. This is worse than when Michael Jackson died. Because I actually care. :(

  31. Wow, this is just... weird.

  32. Take a rest man, you deserve it.

    I imagine when next I hear of you, you'll have come back more powerful than I could possibly imagine.

  33. (Talking about the understudy......)

    always two there are....

  34. I was expecting this. I knew this was going to happen.

    What I wasn’t expecting however was for him to quit this early-early, I was expecting him to quit after Legends 3.

    I really don’t know what to say, other than I find this upsetting. But in the same light, I respect his desires and because of all of the crap he had to go through lately, I’d say that he really needed this. Because after all, I saw a kind of sadness in his eyes, the smiles from before were all fake.

    I feel on the verge of crying almost.

  35. Let's hope Jun Takeuchi does a great job like Inafune did before he quit.

    I mean, it may or may not be the fans fault that the creator of MegaMan is leaving Capcom, it was the stress getting to him and Capcom being greedy and stuff.

    And I pray that Takeuchi will have the same legendary skills as Mr. Inafune did.

  36. Wow. Didn't see this one coming at all.

    In no way whatsoever is MegaMan dead without Inafune, it was always a team effort and there are plenty of solid titles that were done with little involvement from him (for all the fans who pit X5 against X6's sake on Inafune's alleged say-so, Yosiki Okamoto produced the both of them). Nevertheless, he will be dearly missed. I can't believe he chose to do this after Legends 3 was announced (yes, he got last in the character design, but he himself admitted at Comic Con that his design was extremely rough due to lack of time).

    MegaMan will go on, he's hit rough spots before, he may well hit them again, but he'll endure. The only "damage" I fear is what will become of the fanbase having lost their figurehead. The Japanese already grossly outnumbered the rest of the world in terms of fan-involvement in the L3 dev room.

  37. Oh boy, the last original designer of Mega Man AND the best damn producer of Capcom just quitted.

    This is gonna be interesting.

    Classic could pretty much get stuck within the 8-bit nostalgia market OR get a huge makeover a-la pre-FF7 games (mayor zazzification, loss of the original feel)

    X can finally rest in peace? I really don't know. I have to agree with Alilatias on this one.

    Zero and ZX are already long dead, so bleh.

    Now Legends... ho ho ho ho. I'm more worried about this one. Either L3 turns out to be craptastic (either by the lack of Inafune's creative mind or by a bad input from fans), sells awfully and kills the hopes for a L4 OR L3 sells awesomely well and L4 gets to be made.

    @All Legends/DASH fans:


    Did Inafune quit for the same reason Kitamura did 20 years ago? Still, let's not forget that the Rockman franchise is the result of TEAMWORK, not just Inafune's work. Still, I wish Inafune-san the bests of luck. Godspeed, Inafking! You rule!

    The fate of the Rockman franchise in general could now be in a balance, where we (the fanbase) rest in one side and Capcom rests on the other side.

    The results of this are gonna be sooooooo interesting to follow. Thank God I'm not just a fan of the MM franchise. Boy, just imagine if I only cared for this franchise XD.

  38. this is a great tradegy for the game industry,if the man who had created rockman is quiting his job then everything is lost.

    what will be of rockman without Keiji Inafune,good luck keiji and thanks for all the rockman games will be missing you.

  39. You know, I was just eating a sandwhich when I clicked on the link to get to this site. Then, I see the headliner.
    I Cried. I really did. Then I ran off into the kitchen to make another sammich (since I dropped my other one) saying "This isnt true" to myself for a good 5+ minutes. This is really a heartbreaking thing for me. And I'm also wondering how this will affect Legends 3. Cant Inafune at LEAST try to take the rights for Megaman? I mean, no one else will ever do Megaman as good as him...

    If anything, If they screw up megaman even once, I'm boycotting capcom.

  40. So many thoughts. It's a sad day.

    Kotaku said he presented his resignation last monday. He would be leaving end of November, but... he has vacation time to claim and it starts now.

    So, unless he works saturday (which is common in Japan, actually), Inafune is literally leaving today. We are here, today, living on Inafune's last day in Capcom.

    It's the end of an era.

  41. I wish someone would translate his whole blog post, btw. At

  42. Time for a different perspective, at least for the sake of argument:
    Does anyone else not see this as selfishness on Inafune's part? It just seems like such a conflict to me that Inafune would have such a dependency on fans to get Legends 3 in production, then finally ditch the company once it actually comes to fruition.
    Everyone forgets that video games are a business, and yes, Capcom is *gasp* trying to make money! And Inafune wasn't just an artist but *gasp*
    It was his job!

    I didn't hear of Capcom taking him out back and sodomizing him without pay. The company gave him the reign to have a creative vision and fulfill it. Yes, it didn't let him continue things due to a business perspective (or DID continue things from a business perspective), but that's the conflict that's present within all business.

    I know the argument is "Inafune doesn't owe anyone anything, he's the major force behind the quality of the series."
    Well, if he acts so dependent upon the fans, I think he owes us something, like some dedication to see his so-called "dream project" through. But, if he's that disillusioned to abandon what he's claimed to be his "favorite" series after production had started, maybe it's best he left.

    tl;dr: Inafune isn't perfect, but a bit selfish.

  43. Whether Rockman is ruined or not depends on one thing... and those are "rights".

    I know a musician that wrote a handful of songs for a certain band. When he left the band, the remaining members found a new singer and attempted to sign onto a label WITH the songs that my friend wrote.

    However, they could not use his songs because HE wrote and composed them. If they wanted the rights to his songs, they would need to pay a legal fee. Even then, my friend did NOT accept the amount of money they offered. Therefore, they could not use those songs on a CD or when they play live.

    Perhaps Inafune is in the same boat? CAPCOM may need to pay Inafune royalties whenever they plan to make a game with the name "MegaMan/ Rockman" plastered on the cover.

    Therefore, Inafune could very well say "You may continue to sell the games we were involved in, but you may not make any more unless you pay me my dues."

    That is.. unless CAPCOM has all of the rights to Rockman and all of his likenesses already.

    Suppose all new Rockman projects (not already in production with CAPCOM) could very well be signed with an entirely different company/developer if Inafune played his cards right..

    I'm thinking INAFUNE Productions, much like Kojima Productions. Has a nice ring to it, doesn't it?

  44. Megaman was created before Inafune joined Capcom. Source? Mega Man: Official Complete Works

  45. Two the two anons spouting Mega Man was created before Inafune:

    Yes, that's true but Akira didn;t "father" him. Akira didn't make anything with MM. Inafune pioneered the series for years and years. If that's not a father figure, then I don't know what is.

    Your adoptive father can be considered a father.

  46. @October 29, 2010 5:39 PM Anon:

    Akira Kitamura had the idea of a little robot with a plasma cannon as a hand and the ability to copy enemy's weaponry. Inafune just made the design. Inafune is credited in RM1 as a character designer: perhaps even a sprite designer. Kitamura is credited as planner. It isn't until much later that Inafune is credited as the creator of Rockman

    You know what? Forget about it. Thinking about Inafune having the rights for Rockman/Mega Man and getting payed royalties by Capcom is like implying he's a victim of Capcom in the first place.

    Sometimes you just need a little rest, get your thoughts right, revaluate your goals in life.

    And how come the name Akira Kitamura shows up now and not before? XD. As far as I know, Kitamura quitted Capcom just because he didn't wanted to be a part of his character's milking thru the times. Whatever happened to that guy? XD


    "Mega Man is dead without Inafune."

    Let's continue that line of thought, see about backing it up some more, and carry it to it's natural conclusion.

    Father or not, Inafune's had his name as the big producer behind... most all Mega Man games. His departure will mean someone else needs to take responsibility for the Mega Man franchise.

    But here's where things get tricky.

    Capcom won't drop the blue bomber-- if not for nostalgia, then for Mega Mans 9 and 10.

    However... after the arguably unsatisfactory ZX and Star Force sales-- not to bring up the PSP remakes-- there's gonna be a lot of pressure on Legends 3 and Mega Man Universe.

    MMU, because it needs to be able to show that classic Mega Man can still sell even right after MM9 and 10.

    MML3, because if it doesn't sell, Capcom may decide to forgo trying side series at all.

    I mean, do a double take for a sec.

    ZX, Star Force, MML3. If all three are failures, Capcom will see it as a trend: people prefer the classic series.

    And then classic Mega Man will be the only Mega Man.

    Whoever fills Inafune's shoes as the Mega Man franchise's caretaker needs to have innovation and inspiration to spare, to keep the brand moving both forward and in new directions.

    So, to recap! Mega Man needs a new daddy, lest he end up in the orphanage with Sonic-- who's had some questionable adoptive daddys so far, so we reeeeeeeeeally don't want to send him there.

  48. The elephant said:"Whoever fills Inafune's shoes as the Mega Man franchise's caretaker needs to have innovation and inspiration to spare, to keep the brand moving both forward and in new directions."
    Funny you should say that, because I just posted a quote from Star Trek VI: Megaman and its history, "...will shortly become the care of another crew. To them and their posterity will we commit our future. They will continue the voyages we have begun, and journey to all the undiscovered countries, boldly going where no man… where no *one* has gone before.”

  49. Even if the big man is not around anymore, won't matter to me as long as more games come out. Even though I prefer the RPG sub-series more.

    (It's how I got here in the first place, heh)

  50. @Alilatias:

    How can you even ask us X fans 'was it worth it' if this ends up being bad for the series? Yes, because we X fans held the man at gunpoint and forced him to quit. (yeah right.)

    I mean, he was obviously unhappy for a while now. His quitting has NOTHING to do with the X fans. Especially considering, there are no X games being made right now.

    Something had to be that 'final straw' situation though. He was supposedly really excited about Legends 3 and Mega Man Universe. Soooo.. yah.

    LoL... it would be hilarious if he ended up at a US company like Valve. Hil. ar. i. ous.

  51. @ Wolfshadow: I know THAT. After reading your comment in the later article and now this one, I have to say - jumping to conclusions.

    What I said had nothing to do with whether or not X fans feel that Inafune was responsible for X9 being held off. That's for the fanbase to decide.

    Okay, the earlier part might have sounded as such. However, the 'was it worth it?' part is a lot more about whether or not Inafune's supervision either makes or breaks the game.


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