Kentaro Miura (三浦 建太郎, Miura Kentarō, July 11, 1966 – May 6, 2021) was a Japanese manga artist. He was best known for his acclaimed dark fantasy series Berserk, which began serialization in 1989 and continued until his death. As of 2021, Berserk had more than 50 million copies in circulation, making it one of the best-selling manga series of all time. In 2002, Miura received the Award for Excellence at the 6th Tezuka Osamu Cultural Prizes.
Miura was born on July 11, 1966, in Chiba, Chiba Prefecture, Japan. In 1976, at the age of 10, he created his first manga, entitled Miuranger, which was published for his classmates in a school publication; the series ended up spanning 40 volumes. In 1977, Miura created his second manga, Ken e no Michi (剣への道, "The Way to the Sword"), in which he used India ink for the first time. When he was in middle school in 1979, his drawing techniques improved greatly as he started using professional drawing techniques.
While in high school in 1982, Miura enrolled in an artistic curriculum, where he and his classmates started publishing their works in school booklets. There, he befriended his later fellow manga artist Kōji Mori [ja]. They both co-authored a science fictiondoujinshi which was sent to Weekly Shōnen Sunday, but was shot down in the last round of selections. At age 18, Miura briefly worked as an assistant to George Morikawa, of Hajime no Ippo fame. Morikawa quickly acknowledged Miura's high artistic level and dismissed him, saying there was nothing he could teach that Miura did not already know. By then, Miura had a dark warrior with a gigantic sword already illustrated in his portfolio.
In 1985, Miura applied for entrance to the art college of Nihon University. He submitted a short project, Futatabi (再び, "Once More"), for examination and was granted admission. The project later earned him the 34th Newcomer Manga Award from Weekly Shōnen Magazine. Miura's next work, NOA, was published in Fresh Magazine in the same year, but it was not successful. In 1988, while working for Buronson on a project titled King of Wolves (王狼, Ōrō), Miura published a prototype of Berserk in Hakusensha's Monthly ComiComi; the 48-page prototype placed second in ComiComi's 7th Manga School competition. The full serialization of Berserk, which would become Miura's most famous and successful work, began in Hakusensha's Monthly Animal House in 1989. In 1990, a sequel to King of Wolves, entitled Ōrō Den (王狼伝, "Legend of the King of Wolves"), was published in the same magazine. In 1992, Monthly Animal House was renamed Young Animal, where Berserk continued serialization. In the same year, Miura collaborated with Buronson on the manga Japan, which was also published in Young Animal.
In 2013, Miura released the short standalone manga Giganto Maxia, published in English-speaking territories by Dark Horse in 2016.Duranki, a short manga produced by Miura's personal manga studio Studio Gaga, was serialized in Young Animal Zero in 2019.
Established as one of the best-selling manga of all time, Miura's series Berserk impacted the manga medium and beyond, with journalist Jade King stating: "[It] is difficult to overstate the tremendous impact his work has had on the world of games, manga, film, anime, and even literature." The image of Guts and his massive sword is attributed to inspiring characters like Cloud Strife of Final Fantasy VII and Dante from the Devil May Cry series, with the overall aesthetic of Berserk inspiring the monsters and world of the Dark Souls series. Video game director Hideaki Itsuno and producer Hiroyuki Kobayashi are fans of Berserk, and the role-playinghack and slash game Dragon's Dogma included armor based off Guts and Griffith's. During a GDC talk in 2019, Itsuno stated that the tone and style of Devil May Cry 5 was inspired from Berserk.
^ abc『原作者・武論尊、もしくは史村翔』 [Original creator, Buronson, also Fumimura Sho]. manga-gai.net (in Japanese). Ginnansha Co.,Ltd. March 13, 2004. Archived from the original on October 31, 2014. Retrieved May 20, 2021.