Shigeru Miyamoto is right up there as one of Nintendo’s most famous and adored talents (likely sitting comfortably at the top of that list for many), and is arguably one of the most important and influential game developers of all time. The creator of Mario, Donkey Kong, Zelda, and plenty more besides hardly needs any introduction, though, so let’s get to the good stuff.
Working alongside such an industry legend sounds like it would be exciting, inspiring, and probably a little bit terrifying, as expressed by Nintendo’s Shinya Takahashi and Hisashi Nogami in an interview with The Guardian. Miyamoto’s role at Nintendo has shifted in recent years – it’s been well documented that he now acts more as an advisor, rather than getting stuck in himself – and Takahashi provides an insight into how that plays out at Nintendo HQ.
“He is not involved in the minute details of development, but does oversee entire projects and identifies major issues: this part is bad, this part is bad, THIS part is bad … ” laughs Takahashi. “If he says something’s good, it’s rare, and you know it is. Although he’s been saying quite a few things are good, I should say. He’s actually a shy person – even when he thinks something is well done, he would not often say that to someone directly.”
If someone we respected to such a level told us that something we had been working on was “bad”, we’d probably break down in tears on the spot; while these Nintendo veterans are clearly much stronger than us, Miyamoto’s opinion still clearly means a lot to those working under his watchful eye. The interview goes on:
“I have never once been praised by Mr Miyamoto,” Nogami chimes in, deadpan.
“Perhaps not to your face, but behind your back he’s very pleased with you,” Takahashi laughs.
If you’re interested in hearing more, you can read the full interview right here.
Is Miyamoto one of your gaming industry idols? Imagine how different things would be without his work…