Born in Hokkaido, Japan in 1965. Kaz Ayabe turned his love of drawing and later animation into his studies in college. Ayabe attended Tokyo Designer Gakuin College after moving to Tokyo. After graduation Ayabe got a job at NMK, an arcade and console developer who often worked under contract for Jaleco. Originally hired as graphic artist, Ayabe found himself working primarily as a programmer, a skill that he had zero experience with prior to joining NMK. While at NMK he worked on titles such Esper Boukentai and Psychic 5.
After leaving NMK, Ayabe joined K-Idea, a game design planning firm. Their biggest titles being those in the Jungle Wars series, Ayabe is credited with "system assistance" on Jungle Wars 2 for the SNES. Ayabe describes his role at K-Idea as game design along with project management. The latter would help inspire him to start his own studio.
After departing K-Idea, Ayabe founded the studio Millennium Kitchen so that he could begin to work on his own games. The idea for the series that would define the studio, Boku no Natsuyasumi, was something Ayabe states had been stewing within even before he founded his own company. The game would draw inspiration from Ayabe's own childhood and his time spent drawing and building plastic models of towns as a kid.
After pitching the game and getting his idea to portray a 10 year old boy's summer vacation green-lit by Sony, Ayabe and his company along with help from Japanese illustrator, Mineko Ueda, started work on the first Boku no Natsuyasumi game.