Video game composer Kenichi Okuma has died. He was 56 years old.
In a post shared to his social media account by the composer’s family, it was announced that Okuma had died on July 22 after battling esophageal cancer.
Okuma was well known for working on the Super Smash Bros franchise, starting with Brawl in 2008. He returned a decade later to work on Smash Bros. Ultimate. Some of the most notable additions to these games included arranging the Pokémon Gym / Evolution – Pokémon Red & Blue, Gyromite, and Flat Zone 2 soundtracks.
In response to the tragic news, Super Smash Bros. director Masahiro Sakurai sent his condolences, thanking Okuma for his work over the years.
Outside of Smash, Okuma got his start in sound working on the 1994 game Lunar: Eternal Blue. He also worked on the sequel to the title LUNAR 2: Eternal Blue Complete in 2000. Lunar: Eternal Blue was released for the SEGA CD in 1994 and for PlayStation in 1999.
Another composer on the game, Noriyuki Iwadare, shared his sympathies in a Twitter post responding to the announcement from Okuma’s family.