Keiji Inafune joined Capcom in 1987 at the ripe age of 22. As a graphic designer, Keiji's first task was to work as an illustrator on Street Fighter. Later on, with the surprising success of Nintendo's Famicon system, Capcom wanted to produce a brand new game for the system and Keiji was promoted to be one of the leading artist on the new project entitled, "Rockman," (or " Mega Man" in North America). On April 2, 2005, Inafune was promoted from corporate officer to senior corporate officer and acted as head of Research and Development at Capcom. On October 29, 2010 Inafune announced he was leaving Capcom.
Keiji created the majority of the character art and designs in Rockman, the exception being Mega Man himself, who was already conceptualized before he began work on the project. Being that the Famicon was an early video game system capable of only rendering 56 colors, most being blue-tinted, this affected the decision of what color Mega Man's suit would be. In developing the game, many inspirations were used in terms of the music, such as Rock, which is origin of the name "Rockman." After urging Capcom to let them continue with the Rockman franchise, Keiji and his team created Rockman 2, which turned out to be a great success, earning more than the first game. After realizing that Mega Man was a profitable investment, Capcom decided to create many ports of the games and regular installments of the franchise on a yearly basis.
When the success of the Famicom began to dwindle in favor of the new system, the Super Famicon, Keiji started a new project called " Rockman X," which continued the plot of the original series. Keiji created the characters X and Zero. Zero was originally planned to be the main character in the X series but Capcom executives convinced Keiji to continue using the same leading character of the previous games. After receiving requests from Sony to develop a new Rockman series exclusive to the PlayStation, Keiji produced the three-dimensional Mega Man Legends series. Sales were not as high as anticipated.
Keiji had initially intended to end the series plot at the installment of Rockman X5 and had begun development on the Rockman Zero series, to further enhance on the character Zero. However, due to Keiji's departure to another studio, Rockman X6 was created as another installment. As a result, an inaccuracy in the plot was created but was corrected with some adjustments. Outside the storyline of the other Mega Man games, Keiji created the Megaman Battle Network series. Inafune stated that his reasoning for creating the series was from observing his son. Inafune was also involved in the creation of Rockman ZX. Inafune was also the one who gave Ben Judd the green-light to make Bionic Commando for the Xbox 360 , Playstation 3, and PC.
One of Inafune's other big projects was the Dead Rising series, which started on the Xbox 360. The game finds inspiration from the George A. Romero film, Dawn of the Dead. The initial Dead Rising game stared Frank West, a photographer sent in to investigate the happenings of a small Colorado town. The game was popular enough to be ported to the Wii, with the tile of Dead Rising: Chop Till You Drop. The other titles, both on 360, the former exclusive to the Xbox Live Arcade, are Dead Rising 2: Case Zero and Dead Rising 2. Keiji Inafune adores this series so much that he is even going as far as to direct the film adaptation of Dead Rising. The film title is "Zombrex: Dead Rising Sun." This movie will be for free and available as an 8 part download.
Keiji also developed another series, Onimusha, which spawned a number of sequels. Lost Planet: Extreme Condition is the latest project helmed by Inafune, who stated that the setting for the game was based in part by John Carpenter's film The Thing.
On October 12, 2010, rumors began circulating around the Internet that Keiji Inafune is leaving Capcom. This was evident from an interview with Kotaku stating that Inafune hated his job and wants to retire early. He said that despite all the challenges and daunting tasks he had accomplished over the years, he had had enough and wanted to take it easy. On October 29, Andriasang confirmed that Inafune, who as the President of Daletto and head of development at Capcom will be leaving at the end of the month with the intention of "starting his life over." He had been with the company for 23 years.
On Dec. 15, 2010, it was revealed that Inafune has started a new venture named Comcept.
- Mega Man 2 is Inafune's favorite Mega man game.
- Mega Man 3 is Inafune's least favorite Mega Man game. In an interview with Nintendo Power in 2007, Inafune stated that he was forced to release the game before he thought it was ready.
- In most games, he is credited under the name "INAFKING."
- Inafune's blog: http://inafking.exblog.jp/