Earlier in the week the gaming industry lost a visionary game music composer in Kenichi Okuma, who was known best for his work on multiple Nintendo titles in the Smash Bros series.
The sad news was revealed by Okuma’s own Twitter account on Monday, sharing what exactly occurred:
After using Twitter’s rough attached translator, this is the Tweet:
【news】 Kenichi Okuma fell asleep on July 22 due to esophageal cancer. I was 56 years old. The funeral will be held at the family funeral. I would like to express my gratitude to everyone who loved Okuma’s music and all the people involved for their long-standing kindness. Thank you very much. (All family members)– Kenichi Okuma, Twitter
This revelation of course was then responded to by the Smash Bros. Director Masahiro Sakurai, also on Twitter, which translates to “I pray for your soul…Thank you for your help in ‘Smash Bros. X’, but there are songs that are also used in later series.”
Kenichi Okuma was also involved with the Japanese website, TwoFive, which works in hiring sound talent, and sound production as shown on his social media bios, a true space for the composer’s expertise.
His iconic sounds can be found as early back as 1994’s Lunar: Eternal Blue, but his compositions were most known from 2008’s Super Smash Bros. Brawl for the Wii, and these tracks have lived on through the years making their way to the next entry simply called Super Smash Bros. (often referred to as Smash 4 in the community) finding their final resting spot with the latest entry in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. The major tracks Okuma was involved in were Gyromite, the Pokémon Gym/Evolution theme (Pokémon Red/Pokémon Blue), and Flat Zone 2.
The gaming industry lost real sound with Okuma’s passing, and he will be missed.