The North American cover artwork for the first Mega Man game has become the stuff of legend. It's effortlessly one of the worst covers ever, not just because it's a rough illustration but because it totally fails to capture the nature of the lead character.
A lot of the time, western covers for Japanese games tend to go largely unnoticed by people in Japan, but it turns out that former Capcom designer Yoshiki Okamoto has some pretty strong feelings about the NA Mega Man artwork.
Speaking about his early career at Capcom, Okamoto – who worked on such legendary titles as Final Fight and Street Fighter II – explains that, had it been his decision, he would have killed the western cover before it entered production:
So, the overseas version of Rockman is called Mega Man. Have you ever seen the package illustration? It's an old man in blue tights wearing a helmet. He's standing in a bendy, crab pose with a tube in his hand.
And I couldn't believe this was allowed to happen. It's like, I'm sure everyone hates it! I mean, we made this game together, you know. But because it had to cross the ocean...
...We had to listen to the opinions of the marketing staff over there [Capcom USA] about what's "appealing" and "popular".
If I had more authority then — if I was stronger — none of this would have happened. That's what I thought. As a matter of fact, I *still* think about it. In the end, if I had the final say... I could have said "NO!"
Perhaps you're one of the few people who actually likes the NA Mega Man cover? Let us know by posting something below.
- Further reading: Poll: Box Art Brawl #40 - Mega Man