Fire Pro Wrestling Creator Dies at 48

Fire Pro Wrestling Creator Dies at 48

Masato Masuda, creator of the long-running Fire Pro Wrestling series, has passed away.

Controversial developer and Grasshopper Manufacture frontman Goichi Suda tweeted earlier today that his former boss and mentor Masato Masuda had passed away at the age of 48.

"He was 48 years old, still young," wrote Suda. "I genuinely pray for his happiness in the next world. He was one of the greatest creators of video games and he was my direct teacher. Thank you for giving us our favorite Fire Pro Wrestling. You are the god of it."

The Fire Pro Wrestling series is still going today, with the most recent installment being an unfortunately poorly received Xbox Live Arcade incarnation featuring Xbox Avatars.

Masuda was best known, as Suda says, for creating the long-running Fire Pro Wrestling series, which Suda also worked on as a scenario writer in the early '90s. Masuda developed the original Pro Wrestling game for NES -- the originator of the meme phrase "a winner is you" -- in 1986, largely single-handedly, and remained in control of the series for many years after the studio he worked at, TRY, became Human Entertainment and rebranded it Fire Pro Wrestling in 1989.

The series has seen 28 mainline titles and a number of spinoffs to date across a variety of different platforms, though many installments remained confined to Japan. The series was noteworthy for its large roster of characters drawn from different wrestling circuits around the world, albeit with changed names, and also for its strategic, timing-based grapple combat system. Its character creation system also proved to be particularly influential -- so much so that a detailed character editor is now an expected feature in many sports games, not just those based around wrestling.

Human Entertainment folded in 2000 and development of the series was subsequently taken on by Spike. Former Human developers ended up at a variety of companies including Spike, Nude Maker and, indeed, Suda's own company Grasshopper Manufacture.

Sometimes we include links to online retail stores. If you click on one and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. See our terms & conditions.

Related articles

New Silent Hill Title Being Considered by Konami Following Reports

It seems like more Silent Hill might actually be possible.

The 2020 Grammys Featured a Surprise Nintendo Switch on Stage

Turns out Jasper Dolphin was playing Pokemon.

The Leads of Red Dead Redemption 2 Would Like You to Know They're Not "Voice Actors"

The people behind Dutch, Arthur, and other game stars want to set something straight.

Activision Blizzard Moves Away From Twitch, Partners With YouTube Gaming

The Overwatch League and more will stream exclusively with Google.

You may also like

Journey to the Savage Planet Review: Galaxy's Rough Edge

If it oozes green slime, we can kill it.

Axe of the Blood God: Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot, Temtem, and the January Mailbag!

Which short RPGs do we recommend? What happened to Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot? Find out in this week's episode of our RPG podcast.

How Mass Effect 2 Made Garrus More Than Just Another Squadmate, And Created an Iconic Character in the Process

On Mass Effect 2's 10th anniversary, we remember how Garrus became one of the Normandy's most vital crew members.

What Underused Setting Would be Amazing in a Video Game?

COMMUNITY QUESTION | South Asia? Toronto? We want to hear from you which underused setting would be great for a video game.