|This time I changed the
course of questioning. It may not mean much,
but I introduce the KOF series' producer, C.A.C
Yamasaki. Actually he's much more of the consummate
designer than a producer.
I never run out of things to talk about with
NEVER-ENDING INTERVIEW (Laugh)
And there you have it!
Yamasaki's a frank kind of guy.
Just one funny story after another.
It was such a blast!
Our little chat went off on all sorts
Too bad I didn't get a word in edgewise
So tell me where
your pseudonym comes from.
The initials come from my own, my mother's,
and my child's name, and I'll be adding one more
initial shortly (Laugh).
So, please tell me all the titles you've been
involved with in the KOF series (hereafter, KOF).
All of them from '94 to 2003. ...A real long
Tell me what part of KOF you were responsible
I was in charge of the "front design."
By "front design," you mean the animated characters,
Yeah, Mai and Andy. And then from '95 on, Athena....
Among the other titles' characters who didn't
appear in KOF, what character did you think,
"Man, I really wanted to put that guy in the
game?" And what title was it?
Hmm, I'd say characters from Samurai Shodown
and the ADK games. But we realized that dream
with NEOGEO BATTLE COLISEUM (Laugh).
Each KOF has its own original story, but which
story did you like?
I liked the Orochi Saga and the team story
with Yamazaki, Billy, and Mary.
Which of the original KOF characters do you
I'd say Chizuru Kagura. That's because she
was an original character and I had pretty much
free reign over her.
Which character did you think, "This guy's
really wild!"? What characteristic makes him
KOF 2000's final boss, Zero.
As a matter of fact he was imaged after a certain
character that was in "Fist of the North Star",
illustrations were so cute. (Both laugh).
Which character or characters did you personally
think would be popular? And which did you think were
less popular than you'd thought?
The character who got the reception I thought was
Iori. When '95 came out, I knew for certain that he'd
be a hit. And the one who was less popular was K'.
He was a little too plain.
Let's step away from the characters a bit...what did
you think was really difficult about being in charge
of the series.
A new title comes out each year, so you have to worry
If there was something you thought was great about
working on KOF, could you tell us what that was?
Being able to recall what happened in the year each
title appeared; that's the thing...I remember everythingé—even
the position of my desk.
If there was a part of the job that made you think
"Aw, man, give me a break!" spit it out.
KOF 2001!!! I thought, "We don't have the staff!
(Laugh) What do you expect me to do with so few people?
I was really on pins and needles then!" (^_^;)
So then, when
you think of a new series, how do you come
up with things that differ from the previous
We think about surpassing the previous game.
We go over the good points and bad points, including
the game system. Along with those things, we
want to come up with new characters every time
and we think about stuff like how they are involved
with the story and the other characters.
Are there other media you refer to? You know,
like movies or novels...?
I look carefully at movies. I like clothes
that flap around, and after considering movies
like The Matrix trilogy and Volcano High (Laugh).
I consider comic books, not novels. Especially
fighting comics...like Grappler Baki, Tough, and
That's pretty cool...(^_^;).
KOF is played overseas
as well, so is there anything that makes you
think alarms you or surprises you about the difference
between domestic and overseas' players?
Well, this is an anecdote about Hong Kong,
but characters who are known for their rigorous
training or who come from a strong lineage are
popular, but characters who are tough because
they are technology modified are unpopular.
Are you able to clear the games that you've
I can clear them all! ...But I haven't cleared
KOF 2003 yet. (^_^;)
What kinds of games do you usually play?
I like games on the Nintendo Game Cube, and
I'm really good at Pikmin! (Laugh)
I know you can't toss all the work you have
now aside, but if someone told you that you could,
what would be the first thing you'd do?
I'd like to take a long bass fishing trip all
by my lonesome.
Did you know that KOF would be this popular
from the very beginning? If you did or didn't,
please tell us why you thought so.
While we were developing
KOF '94, it seems that the lead programmer thought
the game wouldn't
sell, but I thought it would catch on. I thought
a lot of people would come to the location test,
too. But only 10 people showed up for the first
one (Laugh). (Both break up laughing)
But subsequently we got long lines of players showing
up through word of mouth, so I was relieved.
What sort of hopes do you have for the future of
To make the Tales of Ash really rock! To make it
better than the Orochi Saga and the NESTS Chronicles!
I want to make it so great (Laugh) that people think
the titles so far were all prelims to the current spate
of recent titles (Laugh).
OS: Windows 98SE
HDD 7GB; MEMORY:
THINGS IN HIS
new things, surpassing
AT HOME: Spending
time with his
family even if
it cuts into
TO PROSPECTIVE ILLUSTRATORS:
is a test. Seize
in its entirety.
It will show
up in your abilities.
IS KOF FOR YOU?:
history of SNK.
|I discovered that C.A.C
Yamasaki and Shiroi seemed to have entered
SNK in the same year. It was an interview filled
with confidential stories and a lot of hilarious
And the pictures I got from him were really masterpieces
from a true craftsman!