According to Capcom (株式会社カプコン), the name "CAPCOM" is an abbreviation of CAPsule COMputer. This was a phrase symbolic of an internal company objective to create a new gaming experience that would exceed that of rival personal computers, which had also been increasing in popularity during the same period. The word capsule alludes to how Capcom likened its game software to "a capsule packed to the brim with gaming fun", as well as to the company's desire to protect its intellectual property with a hard outer shell, preventing illegal copies and inferior imitations.
Over the years, Capcom has created some of the biggest and longest running franchises in video gaming history since starting out in 1979. The company released their first arcade game in 1984, Vulgus. Their early games were mostly arcade games such as the scrolling shooter 1942.
In the late 1980s, Yoshiki Okamoto joined the company from Konami. In 1987, Capcom released the game Street Fighter. Also in 1987, the company released the platformer Mega Man (Rockman in Japan) for the Nintendo Entertainment System.
Breath of Fire, Capcom's first major foray into the RPG genre, was released in 1994 for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System.
Resident Evil (Biohazard in Japan), a successful survival horror game, was released on the PlayStation in 1996.
In 2002, a movie based on the series entitled Resident Evil was released, which did well enough financially to warrant a sequel (Resident Evil: Apocalypse) in 2004. A third movie, Resident Evil: Extinction was released on September 21, 2007, and led the box office in first place.
Capcom also teamed up with Microsoft to make the successful Dead Rising in 2006, which was a popular zombie survival and adventure game exclusively for the Xbox 360. However, in 2009, the Wii version Dead Rising: Chop Till You Drop hit the market, and Dead Rising 2 has been announced for the 360, PS3 and PC.
Beside developing games under its own brand, Capcom also developed the arcade, Dreamcast and PS2 versions of its Mobile Suit Gundam third person shoot-em-ups for Banpresto and also distribute many games including the Grand Theft Auto series for the Japanese market.
Suleputer (セルピュータ) is the name the Japanese game development company Capcom uses for its audio releases, such as soundtracks, etc. Its name is derived from the second half of the full name of CAPCOM: CapSULE ComPUTER.
As of mid-2007, Capcom teamed up with Valve Corporation to release games through Valve's Steam content delivery system, being the first Japanese company to do so. There are many games available, those being Onimusha 3, Devil May Cry 3 Special Edition, Lost Planet, Dark Void, Resident Evil 5, Street Fighter IV and Dead Rising 2.
Capcom develops products for all age groups, and supports the programs and guidelines established by the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB). Capcom's "E" rated games for Everyone (content suitable for persons 6 and older) include the Mega Man franchise of games. Capcom's "T" rated games for Teens (content suitable for persons 13 and older) include the Street Fighter, Breath of Fire and Darkstalkers franchise of products. Capcom's "M" rated games for mature audiences (content suitable for persons 17 and older) include the Resident Evil, Devil May Cry and Onimusha series of products.
- Capcom Entertainment, Inc.
- Capcom U.S.A., Inc. was established in California as the official North American subsidiary of Capcom in August 1985.
- Capcom Studio 8, Inc. was established as the R&D division of Capcom USA, Inc. in June 1995. The studio was closed in 2006.
- Capcom Asia Co., Ltd. was established in Hong Kong as the official Asian subsidiary of Capcom in July 1993.
- Capcom Eurosoft Ltd. was established in United Kingdom as the official European subsidiary of Capcom in July 1998.
- KOKO Capcom Asia Co., Ltd. is the official South Korean subsidiary of Capcom, established in July 2001.
- Suleputer was established to market and distribute games and related merchandising (books, music, anime, etc.) in Asia. Their current name is a conjunction of CapSULE ComPUTER.
- Captron Co., Ltd. manages the rent, lease and operation of real estate properties.
- Flagship Co., Ltd. is the development studio that made Onimusha Tactics and the Zelda games on the Game Boy Color and Game Boy Advance, most recently releasing The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap.
- Capcom Charbo Co., Ltd. manages the rental, maintenance and lease of electronic game machines.
- CE Europe Ltd. was established in London in November 2002.
- CEG Interactive Entertainment GmbH was established in Germany in February 2003.
- Nude Maker Co., Ltd. is the development studio that made Clock Tower 1, 2 games on the PlayStation and Xbox and Steel Battalion only in Xbox..
- Clover Studio Co., Ltd. was a development studio based in Osaka. It was founded in July 2004, and was dissolved in March 2007. They created the Viewtiful Joe series, as well as Okami and God Hand.
- SEEDS Inc., created by former Clover Studio employees after it was disbanded.
- Platinum Games is the new studio comprised of former Clover Studio employees.
- Nickel City is a chain of video arcades once owned by Capcom where the machines ran on nickels or for free. It was sold in 2004 and continues to operate under independent ownership.
- Capcom Interactive Canada is a division of Capcom and their focus is developing games for mobile platforms.
According to the Universal Videogame List, the company's maximum output, in terms of games they developed or produced, was in 2000 with 49 games that year.
Also, maybe not suprisingly, out of the large number of games they release, most of them are fighting games.
Capcom is visually known (in game graphics whether it be 2D based games, or 3D) for their trademark, anime/cartoonish style. Despite this largely and mainly the early games (2D).