Kazuki Takahashi creator of Yu-Gi-Oh! dies in snorkling accident

Japanese manga artist and creator of Yu-Gi-Oh! Kazuki Takahashi was found dead on Wednesday at 60 years old.

Kazuki Takahashi was found dead on the coast of Okinawa Island in Japan after what appears to be a snorkelling incident.

The artist’s body was discovered by the Coast Guard, roughly 300 metres offshore, wearing snoring gear, according to NBC News.

Credit: Wikimedia Commons/StGerner

Takahashi, who was well known for his popular manga-turned-franchise Yu-Gi-Oh!, was travelling alone and had abandoned a rental car nearby and officials told NBC News there were “damages to his body which looked like they were caused by some sort of marine animal.”

The website for Takahashi’s agency Studio Dice went dark following the news of the artist’s death with the message, “This site is under pause. Resumption time is undecided.”

The manga artist and game creator’s exact cause of death has still not been confirmed as officials continue to investigate.

Takahashi became the most well-known for his publication of Yu-Gi-Oh! in 1996. The manga ran until 2004 and was turned into a multimedia empire with an animated series, a popular card game and video game adaptations.

After the manga concluded, Takahashi continued to work in a supervisory role with Yu-Gi-Oh! while starting new projects.

The creative was highly celebrated in the manga and gaming community and received the Comic-Con International’s Inkpot Award, “recognizing an individual who has made outstanding contributions to comics, science fiction and fantasy, film, television, animation, and fandom”.

He had continued his illustrious career until the day he died, most recently working on a comic starring Iron Man and Spider-Man with Marvel and Viz Media.