10 Things You Didn’t Know about Ikumi Nakamura

Ikumi Nakamura

Ikumi Nakamura is an artist who has been involved with video games as well as other forms of entertainment. Primarily, people will recognize her for two reasons that are very much connected with one another. One, she managed to charm a lot of viewers when she spoke about GhostWire: Tokyo at E3. Two, Nakamura has since departed from the development of GhostWire: Tokyo, which has left a lot of those same viewers scratching their heads because it is unclear what happened as well as why it happened. Here are 10 things that you may or may not have known about Ikumi Nakamura:

1. Used to Watch a Lot of Zombie Movies

When Nakamura was still a child, she watched a lot of zombie movies. However, those weren’t her biggest influence when it comes to horror.

2. Big Fan of Hellraiser

Instead, Nakamura was most influenced by Hellraiser, which is perhaps unsurprising when she is supposed to have watched it on an almost daily basis. For those who could use a refresher, Hellraiser was a British horror movie based on a book by Clive Barker, who decided to direct the film adaptation because of his disappointment with previous film adaptations of his books. Much of the interest in Hellraiser was focused on the Cenobites, which were extra-dimensional entities that saw themselves as explorers of carnal experience.

3. Involved in the Making of Okami

Nakamura was involved in the making of Okami as someone who worked on the backgrounds. The name Okami means “great god,” so it is perhaps unsurprising to learn that the Capcom title was centered on the Shinto sun goddess Amaterasu. However, it is interesting to note that its version of Amaterasu shows up in the form of a white wolf, which makes for a very striking appearance to say the least. In any case, while Okami wasn’t much of a commercial success on its initial outing, it was much beloved by the critics as well as a cult following. Something that presumably contributed to the subsequent making of Okamiden.

4. Involved in the Making of Bayonetta

Later, Nakamura went from Capcom to Platinum Games. There, she worked on Bayonetta as one of its conceptual designers. In short, Bayonetta is one of the hack and slash titles that Platinum Games is famous for. It is named for its protagonist, a witch who possesses a wide range of powers that are very well-suited for combat. In particular, it is interesting to note that Bayonetta starts out with not one, not two, but four guns, with two guns in her hands as well as two guns attached on her feet. Suffice to say that Bayonetta is more than a bit strange but that much more memorable because of it.

5. Lead Concept Artist For The Evil Within

By the 2010s, Nakamura was working on The Evil Within for Tango Gameworks. This time, she was the lead concept artist, meaning that she had seen a huge jump in status. In any case, Nakamura’s childhood influences are clear in The Evil Within, which was the perfect place for her interest in horror to bear fruit. After all, said title was a survival horror set in an unreal world stuffed full of nightmarish horrors.

6. Lead Concept Artist For The Evil Within 2

Nakamura was involved in the making of The Evil Within 2 as well. Initially, she was the one who was chosen to do the directing for the project. However, that plan fell through, with the result that Nakamura reprised her role as the lead concept artist for the title.

7. Apprenticed Under Shinji Mikami

During her time with Tango Gameworks, Nakamura apprenticed under Shinji Mikami, who is a rather notable name when it comes to video games. This is because Mikami was the one who directed the very first Resident Evil, meaning that he can claim a fair amount of credit for the creation of the survival horror genre. Having said that, Mikami has had other successes as well, with examples ranging from Dino Crisis to God Hand. However, it would be an exaggeration to say that his career has been perfectly smooth, seeing as how he has also experienced his fair share of critical and commercial disappointments.

8. Had Nightmares About Shinji Mikami

Amusingly, while Nakamura was working with Mikami, she had nightmares about him. To be exact, Nakamura had nightmares about Mikami wearing a white bag on his head. Generally speaking, this isn’t what most people would consider to be the most terrifying of scenarios. However, nightmares operate on nightmare logic, meaning that this is very far from being the first time that someone has had a scary dream that makes little sense save when someone is caught within it.

9. Designed Concepts For Blame!

Besides video games, Nakamura has worked as a concept designer for the Blame! franchise. For those who are curious, Blame! is very unusual in that it is a sci-fi story set in a megastructure called the City, which is so huge that it has encompassed the orbit of Jupiter at the very least. Story-wise, it is centered on a person named Killy, who is searching for someone with a genetic marker called Net Terminal Genes that can be used to exercise a measure of control over the City. Something that is important because the City is continuing to expand out of control while its Safeguards are killing anyone who lacks the Net Terminal Genes.

10. Was Director of GhostWire: Tokyo

Recently, Nakamura received a fair amount of interest because of her E3 presentation of her project GhostWire: Tokyo. This was strengthened when it was announced that she would be leaving Tango Gameworks and thus the project that she was directing. Something that is particularly perplexing because the game isn’t even close to being finished. Unfortunately, there is very little information that has been made available to interested individuals, meaning that we don’t have a good idea of either what happened or what will happen now.


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