Once he was just a junior high kid who drew a Mega Man robot, but now he’s one of the most beloved comic artists in the world.

Capcom’s Mega Man came out for the Famicom/NES in 1987 and quickly established the series’ formula for success. By allowing players to choose the order in which they would take on the game’s bosses, called Robot Masters, and rewarding them with the powers of defeated foes to use in subsequent battles, Mega Man offered flexibility and continually evolving play mechanics in an era when many competing games were still repetitive single-screen skill challenges.

Sequels came quickly, and when 1991’s Mega Man 4 was in development rather than designing all the bosses themselves, Capcom held a contest in which kids could submit their own Robot Master ideas, and the winning illustrations would be turned into characters for the game. Among those who entered was a junior high school student named Yusuke, and his creation, the vacuum-like Dust Man, impressed the judges so much that it was picked to be one of Mega Man 4’s bosses.

This must have been a thrill for Yusuke, who would have been 13 when Mega Man 4 was released. With well-deserved confidence, he decided to enter the contest again when it was held for Mega Man 5, and sure enough, once again his drawing was one of the winning entries and became the basis for the game’s Crystal Man Robot Master.

Clearly Yusuke was quite the talented little artist. Eventually, though, we all have to grow up, and joining the adult world and getting a job leaves us with much opportunity to doodle robots and other cool stuff, right? Not necessarily. In Yusuke’s case, his grown-up job is “manga artist,” and he’s not just any manga artist, but Yusuke Murata, artist for smash-hits One-Punch Man and Eyeshield 21!


While Murata’s name is displayed in the credits for Mega Man 4 and 5, his involvement has gone unnoticed by many who never beat the games, or didn’t have the prescience to know he’d become and internationally beloved comic artist a decade-plus later, Recently, though, Japanese Twitter user @fRi0Kn5TM7rzxfE gave everyone a reminder.

▼ “I heard that one of the kids who won the Mega Man design contest became a manga artist when he grew up, so I looked into it, but I never expected it was someone who’s become so famous.”


@fRi0Kn5TM7rzxfE even included a piece of the announcement of the Mega Man 4 winners, which describes Murata’s Dust Man design as:

“Here’s a character drawn with a unique touch. His name, ‘Dust,’ is really awesome.”

And Murata’s Mega Man connection goes back even further than that. In this short autobiographical manga seen here, the artist recounts how he also entered the design contest for Mega Man 3 and, though he didn’t win, was selected for an honorable mention.


Of course, Murata’s skills as an artist have only gotten better since his pro debut, and a few years back he tried his hand at some Mega Man artwork again, producing the jaw-dropping group shot below.

And as you might expect of someone with a lifelong love of drawing, Murata is extremely supportive of his own kids’ interest in artwork, so one day maybe the pattern of fans looking back in awe at a Murata’s childhood illustrations will repeat itself.

Source: Twitter/@fRi0Kn5TM7rzxfE via Jin, Comic Natalie
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Follow Casey on Twitter, where he needs to go back and reread Eyeshield 21 one of these days.