|Other Names||Japan Capsule Computers|
Capcom (株式会社カプコン Kapukon Kabushikigaisha = Capcom Co., Ltd.) is one of the most successful video game companies in history releasing to the arcade, console, and PC markets. They have created several successful franchise like Mega Man, Street Fighter, Resident Evil, Devil May Cry, Breath of Fire, and Monster Hunter.
Capcom is short for Japan CAPsule COMputers.
Capcom's early arcade titles used a variety of different sound drivers, before eventually adopting one designed by Toshio Arima as their standard driver circa 1985. After a couple of years, Yoshihiro Sakaguchi created an updated driver, which continued to be used in various forms (often customised by other programmers) up until around the early-mid 1990s.
The majority of Capcom's NES games use a sound driver written by Yoshihiro Sakaguchi in 6502 assembly to produce sound on the audio processing unit of the CPU of the NES, the RP2A03. Composition required musicians to arrange their music into a custom Music Macro Language using hex values, a very tedious process. Capcom's sound driver was quite robust and yielded an distinctly identifiable sound.
It is unknown if the earliest NES Capcom games used the same driver, as the composers have given differing reports as to whether they used Sakaguchi's driver or one by Micronics programmer Kazuo Yagi, but it is known that the last few games use a sound driver created by Make Software rather than Sakaguchi's driver, possibly because it was easier to work with.
Toshio Kajino designed the first sound driver used for Capcom's SNES games; his driver may have been a heavily modified version of Nintendo's Kankichi-kun driver. After about a year, this was replaced by a new driver designed by Yoshihiro Sakaguchi with assistance by Yasushi Ikeda, which was used for the remainder of their SNES games - with the exception of Street Fighter Alpha 2 (SNES), which for some reason uses a Kankichi-kun-derived driver, possibly programmed again by Kajino. Instrument samples were provided by Tatsuya Nishimura, who had just departed from TOSE.
These composers worked at Capcom:
- Akari Kaida
- Akihiro Akamatsu (employee of contractors Make Software)
- Ayako Mori
- Ippo Yamada
- Harumi Fujita
- Hiroshige Tonomura
- Junko Tamiya
- Katsunari Kitajima
- Kenji Yamazaki (employee of contractors Biox)
- Kinuyo Yamashita (employee of contractors Minakuchi Engineering)
- Kouji Murata (employee of contractors Minakuchi Engineering)
- Kumi Yamaga
- Makoto Tomozawa
- Manami Matsumae (also employee of contractors Minakuchi Engineering)
- Mari Yamaguchi
- Minae Saito
- Naoshi Mizuta
- Naoto Tanaka
- Noriyuki Iwadare
- Sachiko Oita (employee of contractors Make Software)
- Setsuo Yamamoto
- Shusaku Uchiyama
- Takashi Tateishi
- Tamayo Kawamoto
- Tatsuya Nishimura
- Toru Osada (employee of contractors Minakuchi Engineering)
- Toshio Arima
- Toshio Kajino
- Toshihiko Horiyama
- Yasuaki Fujita
- Yasushi Ikeda
- Yoko Shimomura
- Yoshihiro Sakaguchi
- Yoshino Aoki
- Yuki Iwai
- Yuko Takehara
Capcom's sound team, circa 1990. http://shmuplations.com/womenofgamedesign/