Late Nintendo president Satoru Iwata will be honoured with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the DICE Awards. The award ceremony takes place on February 18th in Las Vegas. As noted the award is only given out on very rare occasions. Other iconic individuals that have received the award include The Father of PlayStation Ken Kutaragi and early Nintendo of America presidents Minoru Arakawa and Howard Lincoln.
Japanese gaming website 4Gamer recently had an interview with the President of the Pokémon Company, Tsunekazu Ishihara.
During the interview, 4Gamer talks about the late Nintendo President, Satoru Iwata, and his involvement in the localization of the earlier Pokémon titles. You can check out the interview below, translated by Siliconera:
“4Gamer: I believe there may be more people now that don’t know that Iwata-san was involved in Pokémon.
Ishihara: I think there are even people within Nintendo that don’t even know. 1998 was around the time Iwata-san was working as President of HAL Laboratory.
4Gamer: Can you please share some details on that?
Ishihara: Ah, yes. At the time, Game Freak was moving onto the production of the next title with Pokémon Gold and Silver, and we didn’t even have any people to spare to even do any kind of port. For starters, when we made Pokémon Red and Green, the thought of bringing it to countries outside of Japan didn’t even occur to us in the first place. It was when we heard Yamauchi-san’s [former Nintendo President Hiroshi Yamauchi] voice of authority say “release this in America!” that started it all.
4Gamer: So Game Freak at the time was in a state where resources couldn’t be spared for ports or planning out things such as Pokémon Stadium?
Ishihara: Yes. On top of Uchiyama-san’s unconditional command of overseas development, he was also there instructing us to “hurry up and make the next title” [laughs]. However, we only saw one possible choice at the time, and decided to focus our attention on Gold and Silver rather than an English version, and thought “overseas development is just a dream within a dream,” and gave up on that idea. But that’s where one man raised his hand—HAL Laboratory’s president Iwata.
4Gamer: Specifically speaking, what kind of work did Iwata-san do?
Ishihara: To begin with, Iwata-san got the source code for Red and Green, and bam, read through it all, then began mapping out a course on how to make a foreign version for it.
Kadokawa President and Representative Director Nobuo Kawakami added with a laugh that source code analysis is something you’ll never see a company president do.
Ishihara: Yes, indeed [laughs]. Even so, Iwata-san first did the analysis, and with those instructions, Nintendo’s Murakawa-san [Teruki Murakawa, then Assistant Department Manager of the plan production headquarters] went on to work on its localization. The story I heard from Murakawa-san was also a very funny one. Murakawa was an engineer in the hardware field, but one day he was told by his superior to “go do an employment examination for the project.” This basically meant to go visit Iwata-san and for Murakawa to carefully examine and see if he could accomplish the work himself. So he stepped into Hal Laboratory, and you had Iwata-san there telling Murakawa-san about all the work he has done up until then. They say that the talk ended up lasting from noon until midnight.”
A fitting tribute to the late Nintendo president Satoru Iwata was made during The Game Awards 2015 last night in the form of a slideshow. It was followed by a heartfelt presentation by Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime, who gave a four-minute speech explaining why he strongly believes Iwata was a truly unique person in every single way. Iwata passed away earlier this year due to complications with a tumor in his bile duct.
Gaming Historian has posted a touching and interesting video on the life of Nintendo’s former president, Satoru Iwata, who sadly passed away earlier this year. The video takes us through his life, including the start of his career as a developer and a computer science graduate from the Tokyo Institute of Technology.
As the video points out, Iwata was not only the President of Nintendo, he was a developer, a gamer, a father and a husband. The fact that over 4,000 people attended Iwata’s funeral proves the impact he had on people’s lives.
You can watch Gaming Historian’s 37 minute video below, which is a great recap on all of Iwata’s achievements in the industry:
The Golden Joystick Awards were held today at the indigO2 at O2 Arena in London. It’s the 33rd annual event which recognises both games and people in the gaming industry.
Nintendo’s former CEO Satoru Iwata – who sadly passed away this year age 55 – has been honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award for his huge contribution and impact to both Nintendo, and to gaming as a whole:
“Satoru Iwata, the Nintendo CEO who sadly died in July this year at the age of 55, was honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award. A revered man of the gaming industry, Satoru was the driving force behind many of Nintendo’s products including the Wii and DS, and is credited for bringing gaming to the masses by making it family entertainment. Starting out as a programmer in the 1980’s for a subsidiary of Nintendo, he became president in 2002, the first outside of the company’s founding family. He was renowned for first and foremost being a gamer and was described as “… having the brain of a game developer and the heart of a gamer”. His contribution and impact on modern gaming is second to none.”
The tragic passing of late Nintendo president Satoru Iwata came as a shock to gamers and developers so it seems extremely fitting that he should be honoured at PAX Prime this weekend. The organisers behind the event have set up a special area designed for those who wish to pay their respects. It’s a relatively small area which features a display that pays tribute to his many accomplishments. It’s a nice way of being reminded what Mr Iwata did for the video game industry.
MariChan from Nintendo has taken to Miiverse to thank the fans for all their lovely messages to former Nintendo president Satoru Iwata. The team at Nintendo wanted to do something fun and special to commemorate Satoru Iwata so they have decided to announce a community driven Splatoon drawing event. We should get more details on the Art Academy Events community page at the end of the month, so stay tuned.
Hello everyone! MariChan here. Thank you so much for your outpouring of messages about Mr Iwata. Miiverse and everyone on it held a very special place in his heart, so I know he’d be very happy. Mr Iwata’s passing was an extremely painful time for all of us, but I feel like it’s our duty to carry on making Miiverse a fun and awesome place so we can keep his spirit alive! To that end, we’re planning a Splatoon drawing event. Look forward to more details in an announcement on the Art Academy Events community page on 31 July!