In short: Ikumi Nakamura was art director for The Evil Within 1, previously had done some work on Bayonetta. She did a lot of awesome concept arts you can see in art book for the game and I think she also came up with characters and locations (don't quote me on that).
It seems like her involvement in The Evil Within 2 was minimal. She is only credited for additional art. Like, what does that even mean? It might as well mean that the hospital flashback scenes had some of her art in them. I wonder what happened to her? Few years ago Shinji Mikami was talking about how Nakamura, someone else and Madworld creator were all good contenders for game director chair. So she went from being an art director, to being a possible game director to "additional art"? Looking for information about this on the internet I came across this thread on gamefaqs.One of the posters says:
"Mikami's pick for the director's chair got fired by bethesda lol! I wonder how he feels about the sequel"Other posters reply:
"what the hell? i just had this gut feeling that TEW2 was a bit western, for a game with Shinji's involvement, even in a producer capacity. I just knew it."
"i can't find links about it. anybody got the links?"Original poster replies:
"It's not covered at all in western publication. Ikumi Nakamura was her name and she was the main character designer for the first (and I think) Mikami's original pick for the director of the sequel. Mikami was grooming 3 people for the director's chair. Johannes, Nakamura and the director of Mad World (I think he worked on the third dlc of the first game). Nakamura was fired for undisclosed reasons shortly after the first game wrapped up development. Nobody really knows why but apparently she tweeted some concept art of Leslie possessed by Ruvik? I dunno, her twitter account doesn't exist anymore. She used to tweet a lot during the development of the first game. Either way, she now works with Capcom
this pretty much also explains why the sequel is so different. Even the enemy/boss designs aren't as striking as the originals"Link: https://gamefaqs.gamespot.com/boards/211292-the-evil-within-2/75881814?page=4
NEVERMIND. THIS AMIGO HAS GOT SOME WRONG INFORMATION. SHE STILL WORKS AT TANGO. PROOF AT THE BOTTOM. HER TWITTER BEING DELETED AFTER POSTING CONCEPT ART IS REAL THOUGH. POSSIBLE ORIGINAL CANNED THE EVIL WITHIN 2 OR THE EVIL WITHIN 3 ART DOWN BELOW
I looked deeper to see if I could find a reason as to why her account got deleted. I could not find any Twitter archive for her profile, but I found this on some dead The Evil Within themed Tumblr blog:
big if true
Is this what I think it is? Concept art for original (possibly canned) version of The Evil Within 2? Is that fucking Leslie possessed by Ruvik? Wait... there's more.
Old Sebastian cosplaying Max Payne
Lets think about this. There is some SERIOUSLY weird stuff going at Tango/Bethesda. Why did she post this? Was this just some of her fan art, or official artwork for the game? If it's not then why her Twitter account got removed? Does she still work at Tango?Worst case scenario:
Bethesda got heavily involved in The Evil Within 2 development forcing John Johanas (the american dude) to direct the game to appeal to westerners, Nakamura stopped working there and dumped some artwork for the game breaking the NDA and her Twitter account got removed for this reason.Best case scenario:
Ikumi Nakamura still works at Tango Gameworks and is currently working on The Evil Within 3 continuing Ruvik's story/ or working on other projects, while John Johanas directed The Evil Within 2 to finish off Sebastian's story.
Fact to back this up:
- Shinji Mikami wanted Tango to work on multiple projects at a time: "Mikami says he still wants Tango to become a studio that produces multiple games at a time"
Source*:* https://www.polygon.com/features/2014/2/20/5425802/shinji-mikami-the-evil-within BUT!
(from the same article) "Following Bethesda's acquisition, Mikami says he still wants Tango to become a studio that produces multiple games at a time, but it's not his decision alone."
So it could go both ways...
- Ikumi Nakamura is still on Tango Gameworks website, but it has not been updated in recent time.
New info provided by AlexinChains87 in the comments here: https://imgur.com/gallery/l0TpPp3
So she still works at Tango. I wonder why her role on this game was so minimal. I think Bethesda might have still meddled with development somehow, but it proves that the Gamefaqs user has got some fake info. Hopefully she is directing The Evil Within 3 or another project. TEW1 art direction was just perfect. And what's with this concept art she posted on her Twitter? Might be some unused content I guess, or sequel stuff, but if it was sequel stuff then why would she be allowed to reveal it this way? This whole situation is confusing.