Akira Kitamura (北村玲) is an artist and video game director who is creator of the character Mega Man. He worked on the first three games of the eponymous series as a planner and artist. He is also director of the game Cocoron released in 1991 only in Japan. He has often been credited under the pseudonyms "Famicon Akira" and "A.K.".
Akira Kitamura joined Capcom as a graphics designer, but quickly requested to be transfered to the planning team due to his interest in game design. He worked as an artist and director of Mega Man, released in 1987 on NES. He designed Mega Man inspired by Astro Boy, Casshern, Time Bokan, Kamen Rider, Kikaider, among others, but mainly the tokusatsu series Ninja Captor. He created the original static sprite of Mega Man, to make sure it could be correctly distinguished from the game's wallpapers. Later, the artist Keiji Inafune refined the design of the character.
During a special event at the Tokyo Game Show in 2007, Inafune commented on his and Kitamura's roles in the creation of the character. "I'm often called the father of Mega Man, but in fact, his design was already created when I joined Capcom. [...] My mentor (Akira Kitamura), who was the designer of the original Mega Man, had a basic concept of what the character should look like, so I only did half the work to create it. " he declared. Kitamura also worked on Mega Man 2 as a director of the game, and left Capcom during the development of Mega Man 3. He joined the game developer Takeru where he led the development of Cocoron, which has some similarities with Mega Man. He also worked on the design of Little Samson.
In the early 1990s, Kitamura retired from the game development business.