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|Fate||Acquired by SNK|
Nazca Corporation (株式会社ナスカ?) was a Japanese video game company that developed video games for the Neo Geo. The company was formed in 1994 by a group of employees from Irem who were tired of the company's inactivity. In 1996, the company was acquired by SNK.
R-Type II's graphical style bears great similarity to what this team is known for. However, it is generally thought their first game was Air Duel; they would later make games such as Armed Police Unit Gallop, Undercover Cops, Pound For Pound, Ken-Go, and Kaitei Daisensou. Their final game for Irem was Geostorm, after which they left and created Nazca, creating Neo Turf Masters and Metal Slug; the latter shares many stylistic similarities to the previous Irem works. They were seemingly absorbed by SNK thereafter, and would make the second and third Metal Slug games and possibly Neo Geo Pocket Metal Slug and The King of Fighters R games. It is believed the team disbanded after SNK filed for bankruptcy in 2001.
Nine of the original Nazca staff (including Meeher, Akio, Susumu and development manager Kawai) answered questions from an undated text interview that was translated and included in Metal Slug Anthology.
Because the common use of pseudonyms in arcade titles to hide identities, details of its staff remains scarce. One known key member is composer Takushi Hiyamuta (credited with names such as "HIYA!" and "HIYA-UNIT"), responsible for composing nearly every game listed here, in whole or part (he did not compose for Kaitei Daisensou; also, although he did not compose for R-Type II, he did for Super R-Type). He was considered part of SNK's in-house band, the "Shinsekai Gakkyoku Zatsugidan". He was interviewed for the Metal Slug Complete Sound Box released in 2008. It is likely that he went freelance, though the only work he is credited for since Metal Slug 3 is Yuusha 30.
Kazuma Kujo, credited as KIRE-NAG in the first Metal Slug, went on to form Granzella Games after leaving both Irem and Nazca, but has refused to comment on the status and identity of key staff members including lead designer Meeher and graphic artists Akio and Susumu.
Atsushi Inaba, formerly of Capcom and producer at PlatinumGames, was a member of Nazca (after leaving Irem) doing income management, then SNK after its acquisition, rekindling his interest in video game development. Although details were never delved, Inaba stated he did programming work on a Samurai Shodown title and was unhappy with his experience at SNK. Atsushi Kurooka (credited as A. Kurooka in the first Metal Slug), who is also a producer at PlatinumGames, revealed on Twitter to a user he worked on Metal Slug and GunForce 2 (known as Geo Storm in Japan).
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