If you're a fan of Capcom's Street Fighter series, you've probably heard of Yoshinori Ono: he's been the series' executive producer since Street Fighter IV, which was released back in 2009. But he didn't start out that way.
"At the time, I liked games and was more interested in composing music for them rather than making them." Ono recalled in an interview with Weekly Famitsu. Ono initially joined Capcom as a sound creator. "In college I liked music and wanted to find a way to make a living on music." Ono added with a laugh, "Of course, I based that on the simple thought that 'if I work in music, I'll probably be popular with the ladies.'"
In 1994, Capcom was riding the popularity wave of the Street Fighter II series and actively hiring new blood. Aside from programmers, they were also hiring composers. "I thought it wouldn't cost me anything so I applied. The very next day I got an acceptance notice. I was surprised and thought, 'should it really be this easy?'" Looking at the current job market, Ono admits he was pretty lucky. "If it was me now, I probably wouldn't be hired."
Ono's change in career came about through the guidance of Mighty No. 9 creator Keiji Inafune, who told him that what he would need is the ability to control other composers. "At the time it didn't really hit me, but as I went on and talked to other people, I realized the importance of management." Ono said.
All in all, Ono's time composing at Capcom has made up only 2 to 3 years of his so-far 17 year career there, but he has no regrets. Said Ono, "Taking Inafune-san's advice then was the right choice." A fortunate career change, and something else that we can thank Inafune for.
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