Takashi Nishiyama

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Takashi Nishiyama
Occupation(s)Video game designer, director, producer
Known forFighting games
Beat 'em ups
Side-scrolling games

Takashi Nishiyama (Japanese: 西山隆志), sometimes credited as "Piston" Takashi Nishiyama or T. Nishiyama, is a Japanese video game designer, director and producer who worked for Irem, Capcom and SNK before founding his own company Dimps. He is best known for developing Kung-Fu Master, Street Fighter, Fatal Fury, and The King of Fighters.


Nishiyama started his career at Irem. He worked on the game design of the 1982 scrolling shooter Moon Patrol, one of the first games with parallax scrolling. He was also the designer of Kung-Fu Master (1984), called Spartan X in Japan.[1][2] It is based on two Hong Kong martial arts films: the Jackie Chan and Sammo Hung film Wheels on Meals (1984), called Spartan X in Japan,[3] and especially the Bruce Lee film Game of Death (1972).[4] Kung-Fu Master is considered the first beat 'em up game,[4] becoming the prototype for most subsequent martial arts games in the late 1980s.[5] The NES port, Kung Fu, was programmed by a Nintendo team under the direction of Shigeru Miyamoto, later influencing his work on Super Mario Bros. (1985).[6]

During the development of Kung-Fu Master, Nishiyama was invited to join Capcom by its founder Kenzo Tsujimoto, after he had left Irem. He eventually decided to leave Irem and join Capcom before the game was complete.[7] Following its release, Nishiyama was hired by Capcom.[1] He designed an arcade successor for Capcom, Trojan (1986), which evolved the basic gameplay concepts of Kung-Fu Master. The NES port included a one-on-one fighting mode, for the first time in a Capcom game.[8] He then came up with the concept for a game centered entirely around the boss fights in Kung-Fu Master.[9] This led to his creation of the Street Fighter fighting game franchise. Along with Hiroshi Matsumoto, he directed the original Street Fighter (1987). He created the Hadouken special attack for the player characters, which he says was inspired by the Wave Motion Gun, an energy missile attack from the 1970s anime series Space Battleship Yamato.[1] He then left Capcom and did not return to work on the sequel Street Fighter II: The World Warrior.

Nishiyama then joined SNK, after they had invited him to join the company. His first project there was the Neo Geo system, which he helped develop; he proposed the initial concept of an arcade system that uses ROM cartridges like a game console, and also proposed a home console version of the system. His reasons for these proposals was to make the system cheaper for markets such as China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Southeast Asia, Central America, and South America, where it was difficult to sell dedicated arcade games due to piracy. Nishiyama then created the Fatal Fury fighting game franchise, as a spiritual successor to the original Street Fighter. He also worked on the fighting game franchises Art of Fighting and The King of Fighters, as well as the run and gun video game series Metal Slug.[1] He then left SNK and founded the game development company Dimps in 2000.[1]


Year Game title Role
1982 Moon Patrol Game designer
1984 Kung-Fu Master
1985 Section Z
1986 Trojan
Legendary Wings Director
1987 Street Fighter
Mega Man Producer
1988 Last Duel: Inter Planet War 2012 Director
LED Storm Game planner
1991 Ghost Pilots Executive director
Fatal Fury: King of Fighters Director
1994 The King of Fighters '94 Producer
1995 Fatal Fury 3: Road to the Final Victory
Savage Reign
The King of Fighters '95
Real Bout Fatal Fury
1996 Metal Slug
The King of Fighters '96
Kizuna Encounter: Super Tag Battle
1997 Real Bout Fatal Fury Special
Shinsetsu Samurai Spirits Bushidō Retsuden Executive producer
The King of Fighters '97 Producer
1998 Metal Slug 2
Real Bout Fatal Fury 2: The Newcomers Executive producer
The King of Fighters '98 Producer
1999 King of Fighters R-2
The King of Fighters '99
Sonic Pocket Adventure Executive producer
Samurai Shodown: Warriors Rage
2000 Metal Slug 3 Producer
2003 Demolish Fist Executive producer
2004 Seven Samurai 20XX
2005 The Rumble Fish
2008 Street Fighter IV
2014 Freedom Wars
2015 Dragon Ball Xenoverse
2016 Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2
2018 Soulcalibur VI


  1. ^ a b c d e "The Man Who Created Street Fighter from 1UP.com". 3 January 2012. Archived from the original on 2012-01-03. Retrieved 8 January 2019.
  2. ^ "R-Type Sound Developer Interview – Masato Ishizaki". Shooting Gameside. Vol. 9. March 25, 2014.
  3. ^ Dellafrana, Danilo (29 August 2017). "Le origini di Street Fighter". The Games Machine (in Italian). Retrieved 20 March 2021.
  4. ^ a b Spencer, Spanner (6 February 2008). "The Tao of Beat-'em-ups". Eurogamer. p. 2. Retrieved 20 July 2020.
  5. ^ Kunkel, Bill; Worley, Joyce; Katz, Arnie, "The Furious Fists of Sega!", Computer Gaming World, Oct 1988, pp. 48-49
  6. ^ Shigeru Miyamoto (December 2010). Super Mario Bros. 25th Anniversary - Interview with Shigeru Miyamoto #2 (in Japanese). Nintendo Channel. Retrieved 12 April 2021.
  7. ^ Okamoto, Yoshiki; Nishiyama, Takashi. "[ENG SUB] A Talk Between the Creators of Street Fighter and Fatal Fury: KOF (Takashi Nishiyama)". 世界の岡本吉起Ch (in Japanese). YouTube. Event occurs at 1:40. Retrieved 17 July 2021.
  8. ^ Kalata, Kurt (January 29, 2019). "Trojan". Hardcore Gaming 101. Retrieved 14 April 2021.
  9. ^ Leone, Matt (July 7, 2020). "Street Fighter 1: An oral history". Polygon. Vox Media. Retrieved July 16, 2020.

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