Earlier this year, Nintendo’s president Satoru Iwata presented shareholders and fans with a new project focusing on Quality of Life. And while the company will continue to create video games, Iwata believed they needed to acknowledge and support society’s changing lifestyles. In a recent interview with Japanese tech site Diamond, the CEO talks about how the idea was built upon and why Hiroshi Yamauchi’s passing was an integral inspiration to QOL.
“Surely, a lot of people around the world must think ‘Nintendo is a company that is just for video games,’ about us, and I believe that there are more and more of our own employees who have begun to think like that. So, even if the fact that our focus being video games won’t be changing, I felt the need to take this occasion to say ‘Nintendo is a company that can do whatever they want’.
“This subject came to light when Yamauchi passed away, but I felt that our surroundings are greatly changing. We need to redefine what Nintendo must do, from this point on. However, I felt that saying ‘Nintendo will do anything,’ was also the wrong idea for the company.
“Yamauchi was one to always say, ‘Nintendo is a company for entertainment, and it shouldn’t be for anything else,’ and he didn’t necessarily think that ‘entertainment equalled video games’. I’ve been wondering how to express Yamauchi’s feelings, and I’ve been thinking about it non-stop, even during the New Year’s holiday break.”
The CEO continued, “Lately, the words QOL (quality of life) have come up. Entertainment is there to improve people’s quality of life. After your basic needs, there’s entertainment. At the start of this year, I finally figured that improving people’s quality of life with fun, with emphasis to the ‘fun’ would be perfect for Nintendo.”