Kazuki Takahashi, the creator of the popular manga series which inspired the hit anime series Yu-Gi-Oh, has sadly passed away at the age of 60. It was reported on the afternoon of July 7, 2022, that Takahashi’s body was found floating off the coast of Nago City on Okinawa Island.
Japanese public broadcaster NHK reported the news, claiming that the Japan Coast Guard found Takahashi’s body floating in shallow waters on July 6. He was wearing snorkelling equipment when found, and his identity was later confirmed. The Nago City branch of the Japan Coast Guard and the police are investigating the circumstances surrounding the death.
Yu-Gi-Oh was Takahashi’s first serialised work, running from 1996 to 2004, and would ultimately launch one of the most popular anime franchises to ever exist. The Yu-Gi-Oh manga series led to a TCG game, a TV series, a handful of animated movies, and even a video game. Takahashi’s tragic and untimely death has left many fans celebrating the incredible legacy he has left behind for the world.
The incredible success of Yu-Gi-Oh came at a time when the Pokémon animated series and card game were taking off around the world, with Yu-Gi-Oh offering fans a different avenue to explore in their passion for playing such games with their friends.
Takahashi remained involved in the Yu-Gi-Oh franchise even after the original series, most recently writing the original story of the Yu-Gi-Oh: The Dark Side of Dimensions anime movie.
Born in Tokyo in October 1963, Takahashi spent much of his childhood watching classic anime series such as Ultraman. It is this upbringing that would ultimately lead him to create his own beloved work. He will be missed.