AYB writers and staff remember Satoru Iwata.
“My favourite Nintendo memory: plugging in a third and fourth Nintendo 64 controller, and playing a four-person GoldenEye match for the first time.
“I’ve always played solo or one-on-one, and never had anyone to play with. Sitting with my cousins, hearing the competitive click-clack of the thumb stick combined with pushing and shoving, and covering your tiny corner to prevent them from screen-cheating is not only my favourite Nintendo memory, but one of my dearest family moments. ‘Don’t forget to turn on DK mode!’
“I will never forget what Satoru Iwata has done for the company that gave me, and so many other gamers, memories just like this. Rest in peace.”
“It’s hard to choose just one memory from the many games influenced or created by Satoru Iwata. Kirby’s Dream Land, Pokémon Silver, and Super Smash Bros. are all games I have very fond memories of. I’ll always remember playing Super Smash Bros. all night at sleepovers, losing my marbles every time someone got a Pokéball with Snorlax in it. I don’t think I can count how many times my friends and I passed out with the TV still on, controllers still in hand.
“Few game developers, and even fewer corporate presidents, have the charisma that Satoru Iwata had. My thoughts are with his family.”
“I cannot express the gratitude I owe Satoru Iwata and how saddened I am that he has left us so suddenly.
“When I was a child, I found it difficult to make friends because I was a girl that liked video games. It was through games like Pokémon that I was able to find common ground with other gamers, regardless of my gender, and engage with others to build friendships. Had it not been for visionaries like Satoru Iwata and Pokémon, I may have gone a different route to try and fit a mold I wasn’t made to fit into, neglecting my adoration for video games and denying my love of nerd culture as a whole.
“So thank you, for helping to bridge the gap for female gamers everywhere.”
“I’m generally not one to get lost in my words, or for the matter get emotional and not know what to say. But for once I will be serious. This is one of the biggest losses the gaming industry has seen or felt. We all started at Nintendo and moved our separate ways. Tell me one person who has not played Mario, Kirby or Pokémon. As the years went on, some of us went mobile with the DS or PSP, some went PC, and some stayed console. Wherever we went, this shaking of our roots has brought us back to where it all began.
“Satoru’s work reaches beyond just making games; he gave us rich worlds with wonderful stories, he helped bring to life some amazing characters that we’ll never, ever forget. He worked on EarthBound and the Kirby games at HAL Laboratory, before saving the company itself from bankruptcy. He helped create Creatures Inc., and worked wonders on many Pokémon games. In his time at Nintendo, we’ve seen the DS, the Wii, and Nintendo’s presence itself expand on a global scale.
“Because of his selfless actions, we’ve been given these stories and worlds to hold close to our hearts. In his memory, instead of sadness, we should celebrate the beautiful life he lived and what he gave us.
Satoru Iwata passed away on July 11, 2015. He was 55.