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Thread: Miyamoto 60th Birthday Writeup, Full, English and Unedited

  1. Miyamoto 60th Birthday Writeup, Full, English and Unedited

    This was previously published in Print in Sweden (Level magazine) and Russia( Strana Igr/Gameland magazine) and more recently on italian website
    The reason its unedited is that the respective magazines/website translated and edited it in their own language so at times it might apear a bit rough.
    Feel free to post elsewhere as long as I get credited(Hasan Ali Almaci @fishieflopoog ) and the content is not changed.

    Toshihiro Nagoshi: For me Shigeru Miyamoto is a God among men.

    The year is 2004 and I find myself in Tokyo. Across the table sits one of my favorite videogame developers in the world Toshihiro Nagoshi, developer of such classics as Daytona USA, Super Monkeyball, the Yakuza games etcetera. A year prior Nagoshi together with Nintendo released FZero Arcade and the home conversion of said game will soon be coming to the ill-fated Gamecube as FZero GX. When I try to get more info from Nagoshi on the collaborations and difficulties he encountered working with Nintendo his reply is uncharacteristically short. Said Nagoshi:They have very serious and strict policies in making their games to a very high standard. The two staffs working together sometimes had to compromise on conflicting views on things like the visuals. It was rather hard to communicate with them, all the way in Kyoto... But other than that, not many problems. It is however obvious that the development of the game has at times been stressful.

    Its 2003 and there is no DS yet to end the problems Nintendo has found themselves in for the last few years. The aging Gameboy line doesnt sell like it used to and to add shame to the embarrassments Nintendo President Iwata at E3 has publicly apologized for the performance of the Gamecube in the marketplace. Nintendo is losing third party developers left and right so the cooperation with companies like Namco and Sega for project Triforce is one born out of necessity. Arcade companies can make money in the arcades with Nintendo properties and Nintendo gets new content trough that partnership for the Gamecube, content it desperately needs. As the situation worsens, Nintendo starts allowing almost everybody to start including their iconic characters in third party games just to ensure its worthwhile for them to continue releasing games for the Gamecube, examples are for instance Mario in EA´s NBA games.

    The same year on a cold Kyoto morning my Shinkansen arrives at the main Kyoto station. Kyoto is a bit of an anomaly in Japan in that it has kept its old beauty. Being the old capital of Japan before Tokyo became capital the US left it largely unbombed during the second world war. Other mayor cities in Japan were less lucky. I am scheduled to have lunch here with a name largely unrecognized by the general public and have an interview in the afternoon with a person who Time Magazine considers as important as Mahatma Ghandi and the Dalai Lama . The lesser known person is called Dylan Cuthbert who as a teenager moved from the UK to Kyoto to work on Starfox/Starwing for Nintendo. During lunch Dylan talks about his move to Japan, working for Nintendo before moving to work for Sony to eventually end up talking about his newly formed own company called Q Games in Kyoto. The majority of the conversation however consists of talking about the time he spend at Nintendo and how Shigeru Miyamoto influenced him and how they thought each other to learn the other ones language. With that informal lunch chat in mind I take my train towards one of Kyoto´s smaller stations for my afternoon meeting.

    Leaving the train station I find myself in an old industrial part of Kyoto and after a short walk passing stray cats and thrown away trash I approach my destination. A brand new white building that sort of looks like a hospital from the outside and which looks totally out of place with its surroundings. It is of course Nintendo`s new headquarter and I am here for a one on one with Shigeru Miyamoto. I had met and talked with him before and I have talked with him since but this one was pretty special for me. Interviews with Miyamoto are hard to get and full access ones like this are almost unheard of, yet here I am inside the new Nintendo HQ waiting for Miyamoto with the promise I will get at least one hour with the man on condition that Nintendo can check on the final text before publication. The interview ends up lasting almost 90 minutes and while many of the following quotes come from said interview I will add quotes from other meetings I had with Mr Miyamoto as well as other videogame luminaries to paint a fuller picture of what Shigeru Miyamoto has achieved during Nintendo`s darkest days and how he ended up saving the company for a second time.

    The interview itself started predictably enough with talk about his youth, education at an art college and early years at Nintendo. How he took 5 years to get his Major because he was occupied with drawing(he originally wanted to get into Manga) and having his own garage band, his love for the banjo and Blue Grass music and of course his recent performances at concert halls. From there however we start talking about his health and how he quit smoking when he turned forty. In 2000 for around 15 minutes a message was up on the Bloomberg Japanese newswire that Shigeru Miyamoto had passed away. Immediately Nintendo asked to take the report down and denied anything was wrong. It took about two weeks before Miyamoto was seen in public again, speculation was that he had a heart attack. Talking about his health reminded me of that so I asked him what happened and while he never mentioned a certain timeline he did acknowledge that he used to have a history of heart problems. Nintendo out of fear that such news would upset fans as well as investors asked us to tone down the original written text so officially Miyamoto said: There have been times in the past when I've endured some hardships, like when we're preparing new hardware and games for launch. The stress sometimes really took a toll on me physically, to the point even where I have developed some heart problems in the past. After his initial health scare he starts a daily regimen of swimming and exercise, things that heavily influenced his decisions at Nintendo as well as in his personal life.

    Moving on from that bombshell the interview switched to his current role at Nintendo, said Miyamoto: What I've been doing lately hasn't changed a lot from when I started, really. It's more the quantity of things to do that has changed. Right before I came here to speak with you, I was checking up on the progress of some WIP games. That's the sort of the work I enjoy the most. I also have to join meetings to assist in making future decisions for Nintendo and have to train the next generation of designers for Nintendo so we can continue to provide the sort of content which we are known for in the future as well. Let me be a bit more specific. The company knows that it would be better to allow me to work at the forefront of game development. That's why the company gives me so much autonomy. But, with a lot more at stake for the company, it may be in Nintendo's best interests to nurture new employees with potential to take the place of people like me for when I will eventually have to leave. Still, I keep on doing a lot of what I used to do, but alongside that I have many other duties which I didnt have in the past.

    When I asked if he prefers his current job over what he used to do in the 80s he continues: Nintendo is unique because it makes both innovative games and hardware. When we have a good idea, we not only can take advantage of it through software, but through various hardware and peripherals as well. As long as we have this sort of position, I like the way Nintendo is now better than it was in the past. But really, it's a hard question. I can't say yes or no. When it comes to games I can't always take the hands-on approach I used to, so it's a bit limited. Nintendo is publishing 2 or 3 dozen games a year. I can't really work as much on any single game as much as I'd like. I wind up doing training and relegating work to others more than I would like. I really enjoy the process of designing and creating games, the hands on approach of designing games is something very special. For instance just the other day, I met Mr. Hideo Kojima. He's been regarded as a designer whose work is similar to cinema. He, however, insists he should be known as more of a game designer.
    Last edited by Almaci; 27 Dec 2012 at 02:22 PM.

  2. At E3 roughly half a year after the Interview in Kyoto I had the privilege to talk with Miyamoto again after Nintendo had just unveiled the Nintendo DS. Upon asking if the DS was what he was talking about in our previous interview he replied: Well yes that is what I meant last time but of course I couldnt tell you about it last year. At Nintendo I have the luxury of creating hardware to serve the software and if you look at the DS it is an evolved handheld device. With the NES we introduced the first DPad, with the Nintendo 64 we introduced the first analog stick and now with the DS we continue to introduce these new play styles. Wheater its touch controls with the stylus or using the build in microphone to aid in control or the wireless features we build into the DS. We have taken all these features and thats really going to allow us to create new styles of gameplay that we have never seen before. Upon asking what this would mean for the average gamer his reply was as brilliant as it was simple: Well what it allows us to do is level the playing field a hardcore gamer and a casual gamer will both be picking up the stylus at the same time its new for both of them and neither has an advantage and in that sense the DS becomes a system that anybody can play 5 to 95(he means ages) and everybody who plays it is at the same level and for that reason it is really going to broaden and open up the market for us.

    Going back to the older interview the meeting he had with Kojima as we found out later had to do with the Silicon Knights produced Metal Gear Solid: Twin Snakes and it further underlined the trouble Nintendo was in. In order to get high profile third party games Nintendo was more or less forced to lend third parties their characters or develop the titles themselves. So when I mentioned the relative failure of the Gamecube and President Satoru Iwata`s apology at E3 Miyamoto became very passionate and nervously he started a really long monolog where he kept repeating himself and denied what thousands of people witnessed in person, the following is a short version of what he replied and is edited for clarity and length: I think that how people interpret what we say is something that needs to be discussed. Mr. Iwata is a former mechanical engineering designer. As the president, sometimes what he says might be misinterpreted as the whole company's position, but because of his background, when he speaks of not achieving a goal, he talks about it more on a personal level - like challenges that weren't surpassed or expectations he couldn't meet. When Mr. Iwata spoke of the N64, we weren't admitting it was a failure. We just think that maybe things could have been done better a little smoother and more streamlined. It was a capable machine, but maybe it was too hard for our third-party developers. We should always be looking back on the past and looking at our experiences to improve ourselves. He never meant to say the N64 or anything else was an outright mistake. Quite the opposite, since Nintendo is a company built on risk-taking. If we don't take risks, we can't innovate and create new forms of entertainment. If we challenged the established norm, meaning ourselves as well as others but didn't wholly succeed, we don't consider it a mistake. So what he said was taken out of context and wasn't quite what he wanted to convey. With a background like his, he always feels like things maybe could have been a little bit better than they turned out. Most of the comments that might have been misunderstood were made about 2 years ago, I think. Mr. Iwata talked about the fact that with Mario and Metroid that they were anticipating greater sales, but they didn't increase hardware sell-through as expected. Right now, at R&D, we're simply trying to fine-tune our games as much as possible. We had to delay Pikmin 2, but that's because I wanted this game to be of the high quality standards that Nintendo is known for. Nintendo's major strength is great character franchises. When people speak of Nintendo, they talk of the important Nintendo character franchises as well. But we're always working on new and original games, too. I think, beyond our established works, Nintendo also has to make efforts to design great, new game series. What Nintendo is doing differently these days is trying to build strong relationships between the game creators at Nintendo and other companies. We've worked with Mr. Nagoshi, Mr. Imamura, Mr. Naka, Mr. Okamoto (before his departure from Capcom), Mr. Kojima... It is the personal relationships between creators that has produced these collaborations, which then continue to be beneficial to all who are involved.

    Despite the fact that Satoru Iwata mentioned the Gamecube by name and was not even a Nintendo employee during the N64 era(Iwata worked for Hal laboratories while the infamous Hiroshi Yamauchi was president) Miyamoto would have none of it and had no problems denying what everybody in the games industry knew to be true, he would not sit there and have his current console be badmouthed by anyone. Not even the person who on paper at least to this day is still his boss. When I tried to mention the fact Iwata mentioned the Gamecube by name he kept insisting the entire world had misunderstood the words of the President of the company.

    As the chat continued we started talking about the changing marketplace compared to the 90s so when asked if Nintendo was a company in transition I got another lengthy reply: Yes. After all, the entertainment business has to keep reinventing itself, or it will not persist. When we speak from the viewpoint of the customer, they always want something you can't get from anyone else. I just talked a moment ago about our fine-tuning processes. We used to be able to do this to cater to the veteran game players. But, when we say fine-tuning now, we have to make sure it's accessible to both the veterans and the novice players who are just getting into gaming. It's become very different nowadays from when we could sell massive amounts of games of any sort. After all, customers want uniqueness. However, people tend to flood to things which are easy to understand. It isn't always easy to make something that's both unique and easy to understand. The current situation is that games are everywhere now. Games themselves aren't unique anymore, so you can't sell on the simple basis of being a video game anymore. We've constantly had to abandon things we've done in the past. Unless we can change ourselves repeatedly, we can't create anything new and interesting. So in that regard yes I would have to say that Nintendo is a company in transition, simply because of the fact that the entertainment industry itself is constantly in transition. We hope we can continue to be a driving force in the constant change this industry is going trough.

    From talking about the state of Nintendo talk shifted to talking about Miyamoto and what he thought the future will bring for his company and himself: My children are now 17 and 18 years old. Soon they'll be off to college, then after about 5 years or so they will be assuming their places in the workforce(his kids have since left the house). I sometimes wonder what I'll do when they're gone. So far, my priority has been to be a family person. But they'll be leaving soon, so I need to think about what I'm going to be doing after that. One thing I've been doing nowadays is practicing musical instruments. I've already mentioned my garage band back in college, and my concert hall performance. My wife sings sometimes, so maybe she'll join me in a band. It's my secret mission! *laughs* At Nintendo, I don't see anything changing drastically in the near future. I might leave Nintendo to retire someday. I have to consider what I'll be doing when that day comes. Of course, when I challenge myself to do something new, that's always fun. About 5 years ago, I started a garden(which resulted in Pikmin), and 2 years ago, I got a puppy. I loved the experience of training the puppy and watching it grow(which resulted in Nintendogs). And, at my home, I study music. I made a personal music studio in my garage, all by myself. I also made a big kennel for the dog. I love those sorts of DIY projects. Making things with my own hands has always fascinated me.

    While technically he should call Donkey Kong his favorite production since it was the game that started it all he tells me that in reality he is most proud of Mario 64 since he could use a lot of the ideas he had for years in that game, talking about other companies games however is something he does not like to do: I haven't played a whole lot of other companies' games, actually. I don't really like answering that sort of question, because I don't really have the ability to play other games in depth. But, even though it's a Nintendo product, I really liked Wario Ware a lot. I didn't have any involvement with it, so playing it after it was done was something really fresh and new for me.

    Instead of talking about other peoples games he directed the interview back to his cooperations with other companies which he described as being mutually beneficial: We are always calling them collaborations. Other hardware companies buy exclusives from third parties. We feel that doesn't benefit the third parties and the consumers very much. Our goal is to combine our strengths so that all parties involved can benefit. Those who we work with get the benefit of working with our famous characters and properties, and the consumers get a better variety of strong character-based titles. In turn, it gives us more resources to develop new and original content. It's a winning situation for everyone involved. Like with Donkey Konga, made by the Taiko no Tatsujin (a popular rhythm game in Japan involving the use of traditional Japanese Taiko drums-ed.) team at Namco. The controller was made by Nintendo, and Namco made the game itself. Since the Taiko is a more cultural instrument, we thought something like Donkey Konga has more broad appeal to a world market. This way we ensure that all involved benefit from this mutual cooperation. The people we work with (as mentioned before, we dont view it as Nintendo or simply myself working with a company, but rather with people at those companies) get to work with characters and properties which they otherwise would have no access to and the consumers get a broader range of games with characters they recognize and love while we get more time to continue working on new concepts and ideas.

    When pressed on Western developers love for adult themes and violent games however again he seems to become nervous and uneasy with the subject matter: It's a difficult question for me to answer. All I can say is that this isn't the sort of game Nintendo wants to make. I suppose whether it's really acceptable depends on the concepts and the ideology the game makers have in mind. As far as I am concerned, my own criteria are "when I play my own game, is it something I can be proud of, is it something I can sit down and play with my kids?

    Once the rumors started about Project Revolution(Wii) during another chat with him I asked him when he could talk more about it and what we could expect, he replied: Well yeah, I don't know when we'll be talking about it specifically, but you know Nintendo's always researching new hardware and new styles of hardware, and I think that one thing that's really going to influence the direction that the next system takes will be how people react to the DS and the kinds of new features the DS introduces. If all you do is look at the technical specifications of hardware and you continually up those every few years, then eventually all that you have is a hardware battle, and it's a competition for who can make the most technologically advanced hardware. But Nintendo's a software company, too. So for us, it's not about just trying to create really incredible hardware, it's about trying to create really incredible software. We're going to create hardware that allows us to create that, in a way that brings creativity and fun to the games.

    Now at this point some of you may be wondering why I am focusing on stuff that happened almost a decade ago. Thing is I have followed Mr Miyamoto´s career almost my entire life and have been lucky enough to share several hours in his presence. We all know the old stories about him, how he grew up in the beautiful hills around Kyoto and how as a kid hiking around there later in his life inspired him to create legend of Zelda, how Donkey Kong in 1981 saved Nintendo from the brink of disaster. I too talked with him about his love for creating things with limited materials as a kid and how he still adheres to that in game design(dont overwhelm the player, ease them into the game). Those are stories you can read about all over the internet. What I hope to achieve here is show just how instrumental those dark years at Nintendo in the first part of the previous decade was in bringing out the best in Miyamoto and how he formed the company to be an extension of who he is.

  3. To fully understand though we do have to take into account the past. His importance for the company became apparent quite early on in his career when he saved the company from the brink of insolvency with Donkey Kong and a few other high profile arcade games. From there he went on to develop his legendary NES games, not on his own accord but under order of Hiroshi Yamauchi. He told me: The decision was made to stop arcade games by the man at the top a long time before the system actually came to market. Yamauchi instructed all of R&D to focus on the home market instead of the arcade business. In those days, it was a risky decision, because the viability of the machine was as yet unproven. We were worried about the decision at the time, but it turned out to be the right path for the company to have taken. It wasnt long before Yamauchi realized Miyamoto´s brilliance and started consulting with him for his business decisions with regards to videogame deals with third parties. Henk Rogers who is famous for convincing Yamauchi to include Tetris as the pack in game for the original Gameboy over Miyamoto´s Marioland told me it was thanks to Miyamoto that the deal went on: I made my pitch to Mr Yamauchi and he decided to ask Shigeru Miyamoto about it. So he calls Miyamoto into the room and asks him about this Tetris game and Miyamoto tells him that a lot of the people at Nintendo are playing the game during their lunch breaks or even when they should be working. At that point Mr Yamauchi realized the potential of the game.

    Miyamoto had proven himself with his top selling games so he could do what he wanted most, create the experiences he wanted. He was however left out of business decisions and so in the early 90s Yamauchi managed to piss of both Sony and Phillips which pretty much ensured Nintendo was not allowed to use CD technology as the licenses for that were in the hands of those companies. On the Sony side an angry Ken Kutaragi reportedly promised to DESTROY Nintendo and within Sony started to secretly continue development of the Playstation, a machine that was first envisioned to be a CD Rom add on for the SNES. On the Phillips side the contract stated that Phillips had the right to a certain amount of games based on Nintendo IP. Nintendo was not going to develop those so Miyamoto helplessly saw Mario and Link appear on Phillips CDi in horrible games like Hotel Mario or Zelda: Wand of Gamelon.
    Around the same time Miyamoto noticed all the talent that was abroad so Nintendo started bringing in talent from all over the world. People like the aforementioned Dylan Cuthbert or Gilles Godart(who amongst others is responsible for the morphing Mario head in Mario 64) and even investing in talented companies like Rare. One business mistake Nintendo made with companies like Rare was that they allowed them to work with Nintendo characters and make Nintendo games while simultaneously allowing them to add new characters. Characters for which they retained the copyrights, this resulted in Nintendo actually having to license characters like Diddy Kong for the Donkey Kong racing games from Microsoft after Microsoft had bought Rare. On the quality front however remembering the Cdi disasters Miyamoto made sure that first and second party titles met a certain quality and that they in look and quality felt like a Nintendo product, hence the example at the start of this article where Nagoshi visibly seemed to have a few differences of opinion with the teams at Nintendo.

    It was in the early 90s as well that Nintendo and Miyamoto started helping out colleges with game course degrees. In the US that famously was at the Digipen institute of technology but in Japan itself there are several schools who with help from Nintendo started courses in developing videogames. In fact Koichi Hayashida the director for last years wonderful Super Mario 3D Land started such a course thanks to Miyamoto´s games and in 1991 he attended a seminar where Miyamoto was teaching, said Hayashida: Miyamoto gave me my mantra, If you enjoy making something you will make something enjoyable. Its a mantra that kept us going trough the horrible earthquake last year(unlike most of Nintendo Hayashida has his Nintendo studio and develops Mario games in Tokyo so his studio was heavily affected by the Earthquake/Tsunami on March 11th 2011)
    Throughout the N64 years Nintendo struggled against its self created rival Sony with the Playstation console which was destroying everything in its path. Miyamoto however continued to do what he does best, with Mario 64 he delivered a land mark title, brilliantly designed and bursting with creativity and with Zelda Ocarina of Time people say he invented the sandbox genre(1984s Rescue on Fractalus begs to differ). While working on those titles and delivering some of them way too late he continued to help out others to improve their games. It is during the years that they were under Miyamoto´s wings that one could argue companies like Rare and Silicon Knights delivered their best works.

    And then the new millennium starts and as the Gamecube launches the old dictator Yamauchi steps down as President of Nintendo only to be replaced by an affable man from Miyamoto´s own generation. Having worked at HAL Laboratories on the Kirby games Satoru Iwata and Shigeru Miyamoto are no strangers to each other, in fact some believe that Miyamoto refused to become President himself and preferred Iwata to be brought in to replace Yamauchi. It is the start of a new era, free from the shackles of Yamauchi the company starts to transform around Miyamoto and his ideas. For the Gamecube however it is too late and while the Gamecube is failing in the market place unbeknownst to the public Miyamoto is working towards the revival of the company. Meanwhile he has to keep up a brave face and do whatever it takes to bridge the gap until the release of two machines that will help define part of his vision: the Nintendo DS and the Wii. Did he distort the truth and whore out his precious characters in order to keep the Gamecube going, did he keep dangling Zelda: Twilight Princess in front of Gamecube owners telling them not to abandon the Gamecube for years only to deliberately delay it and launch it on the Wii first? Yes he has on both accounts and while Twilight Princess especially stings and reeked of disrespect towards Nintendo´s most loyal fans one could argue in hindsight he had to. The company he and Iwata inherited from Yamauchi was one who had lost most credit and goodwill with third parties and for the first time since the early 80s was heading towards financial losses. With his hand forced he did what he had to in order to keep Nintendo going and having learned from a decade prior the projects he lend his characters to had to be up to his quality standards and the second party projects remained Nintendo`s IP. Geist in that regard for instance despite being a third party made Nintendo published game remains the full property of Nintendo. Eternal Darkness however started out as a Nintendo 64 project and thus the IP is still fully owned by Silicon Knights.

    Those dark Gamecube years and the changes Nintendo was going trough brought out the best in Miyamoto, it resulted in a culmination of everything he had observed and done before. He was and still is that young boy who explored the beautiful hills around Kyoto, who made his own toys with sticks and string, who gets his inspiration from the everyday life and the mundane. Where we see a spring onion he sees Pikmin, while we view a hospital stay as a nuisance he finds inspiration and where we view a gambling hall as a place where people lose their hard earned cash he sees a place that proves the creativity of the human mind. Said Will Wright(creator of The Sims and a person Miyamoto has said he admires): Miyamoto and I talked a lot about imagination and creativity and while these days he bettered his life but when I visited Kyoto in the 90s Miyamoto and I used to go out into town and went to pachinko parlors. If you know Japanese gambling laws you know that technically gambling is illegal so when you win instead of getting money they give you a common household item like a bar of soap or detergent with a stamp of the pachinko parlor on, then you go outside and there is a little booth who buys your detergent for the equivalent of your winnings. When you win that bar of soap is no longer soap, its currency its rupees.
    He was and still is the single most important developer in the games industry, someone who influenced his peers as well as the generations that came after him. Someone also who went out of his way to help those he felt had the potential to become great developers regardless of which company they might eventually end up at. Someone who helped out educational institutions and worked tirelessly to improve what he calls the entertainment industry(he refuses to call Nintendo a Videogame Company).

    On top of that he added the ruthless business skills he learned from Hiroshi Yamauchi while towards the outside world remaining to look like a nice guy who wouldnt hurt a fly. Of course he tried to change the subject or become long winded while I was asking him questions he rather would not answer, unlike most people I have interviewed though he did answer them even when his answers sometimes were not entirely truthful. In his answers as well in retrospect you can see the vision he had all along and which did not become apparent until a few years after the fact. For two decades he had been the most important sailor on the ship and once he became captain of a ship that had lost its steering wheel he rebuild it bigger and better then it had ever been before.

    And while the partnerships with third parties started out as necessities to keep the Gamecube going until the DS and Wii were ready for launch Miyamoto kept his word. The partnerships that worked out exist to this day, Sega is still making the Mario VS Sonic games and Sora under the direction of Masahiro Sakurai is still making Super Smash Bros games. Those who did not however have been let go and looking at the implosion of Rare and the total destruction of Silicon Knights there too the right decisions were made. His decision to exit the so called Nuclear Arms race in the middle of the last decade was universally seen as Nintendo giving up, most press proclaimed the Nintendo DS to be dead on arrival in light of the far more powerful Sony PSP. When the specs of project Revolution started leaking many said it was sign of Nintendo admitting defeat. Both went on to be two of the most successful pieces of hardware ever.

    Miyamoto in the end is as much an anomaly in Japanese business as the region he grew up in is towards the rest of the country. As I mentioned before, Kyoto is different from other similar sized cities in Japan and as such Miyamoto is as well. From his atypical upbringing he started a typical job as a salaryman doing what his superiors tell him to. Thanks to his creativity he was allowed to do most of the things he wanted while remaining a typical salary man doing what a typical Japanese salary man is supposed to do. Work long hours, smoke, drink, gamble and be an absentee father before turning that all around and becoming a family man. In a country where creativity and individuality are generally repressed he fostered his creative side while making sure that what he did was not for his benefit but for that of the company and community. If there would have been anyone in his position in the western world they would have long chased the big money and demanded company shares, a personal jet and a multi million dollar mansion. Not Miyamoto, he might be the shadow leader of the only company he has ever worked for and likely ever will have worked for but he remains a salary man. He arrives at work in the morning, swims a few laps in the swimming pool they installed at Nintendo HQ for him and starts his work day. He hasnt worked hands on for any game in a long time but his influence is everywhere in the company from his work ethos to his design philosophies. He has and always will be an autobiographical game designer, for everything he has worked on he has drawn inspiration from his own life and what he observed around him. Mario for instance is what Shigeru Miyamoto would like to be himself, an innocent mischievous character who likes to have fun. Miyamoto is like that, I remember one of the E3 Roundtables where Miyamoto together with Eiji Aonuma was going to talk about the future of the Zelda games. As Aonuma sat down he accidently bumped his knee against the table almost knocking down the water glasses on the table, upon seeing this Miyamoto immediately kicked the table and started gesturing to Aonuma as if the just knocked over glass was Aonuma`s fault. After his health deteriorated he threw around his life, working out and tracking his improvements became a game for him. One that heavily influenced the design of the Wii and led to Wii Fit and which continues today in the 3DS where you earn in game currency for actually walking around with the 3DS.

    As an adult he has retained his childlike innocence both in his personal life as well as his works while simultaneously becoming a shrewd businessman. Few people in this world can be proficient in one thing in their lives, yet he has mastered two things that are exact opposites of each other and changed the world for the better while doing so. Most impressively he did this while the company he works for was at its lowest point in decades. These days you could say he no longer works for Nintendo, Nintendo works for him. The company is running on the Miyamoto DNA with the people there having grown up with his games, having attended his game design classes or having worked with him directly. Hayashida amongst others is living proof that a Miyamoto game today can be made with little or no Miyamoto influence while people like Dylan Cuthbert have either started their own companies or work for other companies having learned most of what they do from the master himself. It is why people like Toshihiro Nagoshi despite the troubles he had working with Nintendo regards Miyamoto as a God amongst men.

    November 16th 2012, mere days before the public launch of the WiiU a legend turns 60.
    Happy birthday Shigeru Miyamoto, you have been a big part of our lives and you will continue to be so long after you decide to call it quits. Your legacy is unequalled and will continue to shape this industry for a long time to come.

  4. I got a virus notification from this thread. ALT+F4 immediately

  5. This thread gave me crabs

  6. Happy birthday Shigeru Miyamoto, you have been a big prick all our lives

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by dave is ok View Post
    I got a virus notification from this thread. ALT+F4 immediately
    Quick! Delete system32 and reboot!

  8. This was a good read. Thank you for posting it in TNL's native language.
    6-6-98 - 6-6-18 Happy 20th Anniversary TNL

  9. There's some facts that needed checking in that. For example the IP for Eternal Darkness I'm pretty sure is owned by Nintendo, in fact I could swear they've renewed the IP a few times since the game came out.
    Where I play
    Quote Originally Posted by Dolemite
    I've changed my mind about Korian. Anyone that can piss off so many people so easily is awesome. You people are suckers, playing right into his evil yellow hands.

  10. It is and they have.


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