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Shigeru Miyamoto

Shigeru Miyamoto
Born November 16, 1952 (1952-11-16) (age 57)
Sonobe cho, Kyoto, Japan[1][2]
Occupation Game designer, EAD General manager
Years active 1977-Present

Shigeru Miyamoto (宮本 茂 Miyamoto Shigeru?) (born November 16, 1952) in Sonobe, Kyoto, Japan[1]) is a Japanese video game designer and producer. Miyamoto was born and raised in the Kyoto Prefecture; the natural surroundings of Kyoto inspired much of Miyamoto's later work. He is mainly known for his work at the video game production company Nintendo, where he created some of the most successful video game franchises of all time, including Mario, Donkey Kong, The Legend of Zelda, Star Fox, Animal Crossing, Pikmin and F-Zero. He currently manages the Nintendo Entertainment Analysis and Development branch, which handles many of Nintendo's top-selling titles. Miyamoto's games have been seen on every Nintendo video game console, with his earliest work appearing on arcade machines. His games have received critical praise from many reviewers, and he has been the recipient of various awards. Miyamoto is married and has two children.


Early life

Miyamoto was born in the Japanese town of Sonobe, Kyoto on November 16, 1952. Miyamoto's later work was greatly influenced by his childhood experiences in the town. From an early age, he began to explore the forest around his home. On one of these expeditions, Miyamoto came upon a cave, and, after days of hesitation, went inside. During another trip, Miyamoto came upon a lake, which he later described as feeling like a "vast ocean." Miyamoto's endeavors into the Kyoto countryside manifested in his later work, particularly the NES version of The Legend of Zelda.[3] An incident involving a neighbor's chained dog inspired the Chain Chomp villain from the Mario series.[4] Miyamoto graduated from Kanazawa Municipal College of Industrial Arts with no job lined up. In 1977, he asked his father to contact Hiroshi Yamauchi, a family friend, about employment possibilities. Upon their initial meeting, Yamauchi instructed Miyamoto to bring him toy designs. When Yamauchi saw Miyamoto's work, he hired him as a staff artist for Nintendo.[5]



At the game's end, Jumpman and the Lady are reunited.

When the Nintendo company began branching out, Miyamoto helped design the company's first original coin-operated arcade game, Sheriff.[6] He first helped the company develop a game with the 1980 release Radar Scope. The game achieved moderate success in Japan, but by 1981, Nintendo's efforts to break it into the North American video game market had been a complete failure, leaving the company with a large number of unsold units and on the verge of financial collapse. In an effort to keep the company afloat, Nintendo president Hiroshi Yamauchi decided to convert unsold Radar Scope units into a new arcade game. He tasked Miyamoto with the conversion,[7]

Gunpei Yokoi worked with Miyamoto for many years in the company and became his mentor.

with Nintendo's head engineer, Gunpei Yokoi supervising the project.[8] Miyamoto imagined many characters and plot concepts, but eventually settled on a love triangle between a gorilla, a carpenter, and a girl. He meant to mirror the rivalry between comic characters Bluto and Popeye for the woman Olive Oyl. Bluto evolved into an ape, a form Miyamoto claimed was "nothing too evil or repulsive". This ape would be the pet of the main character, "a funny, hang-loose kind of guy."[9] Miyamoto also named "Beauty and the Beast" and the 1933 film King Kong as influences.[10] Donkey Kong marked the first time that the formulation of a video game's storyline preceded the actual programming, rather than simply being appended as an afterthought.[11] Miyamoto had high hopes for his new project, but lacked the technical skills to program it himself; instead, he conceived the game's concepts, then consulted technicians on whether they were possible. He wanted to make the characters different sizes, move in different manners, and react in various ways. However, Yokoi viewed Miyamoto's original design as too complex.[12] Yokoi suggested using see-saws to catapult the hero across the screen; however, this proved too difficult to program. Miyamoto next thought of using sloped platforms and ladders for travel, with barrels for obstacles. When he asked that the game have multiple stages, the four-man programming team complained that he was essentially asking them to make the game repeatedly, but team eventually successfully programed the game.[13] When the game was sent to Nintendo of America for testing, the sales manager hated it for being too different from the maze and shooter games common at the time.[14] When American staffers began naming the characters, they settled on "Pauline" for the woman, after Polly James, wife of Nintendo's Redmond, Washington, warehouse manager, Don James. The Playable character, initially "Jumpman", was eventually named for Mario Segale, the warehouse landlord.[15] These character names were printed on the American cabinet art and used in promotional materials. The staff also pushed for an English name, and thus it received the title Donkey Kong.[16]

Donkey Kong was a success, leading Miyamoto to work on sequels Donkey Kong Jr. and Donkey Kong 3. His success earned him work on other Nintendo titles like Excitebike and Devil World. His next game was based on the character from Donkey Kong. He reworked the character Jumpman into Mario, and gave him a brother: Luigi. He named the new game Mario Bros.. Yokoi convinced Miyamoto to give Mario some super human abilities, namely the ability to fall from any height unharmed. Mario's appearance in Donkey Kong - overalls, a hat, and a thick mustache - led Miyamoto to change aspects of the game to make Mario look like a plumber rather than a carpenter.[17] Miyamoto felt that New York City provided the best setting for the game, with its "labyrinthine subterranean network of sewage pipes. The two-player mode and other aspects of gameplay were partially inspired by an earlier video game entitled Joust.[18] To date, Mario Bros. has been released for more than a dozen platforms.[19]


Gameplay of The Legend of Zelda is in overhead view. Here, Link attacks Octorok monsters with his sword in the overworld

After Mario Bros., Miyamoto worked on several different games, including Ice Climber and Kid Icarus alongside Yokoi. He soon made another Mario game titled Super Mario Bros.. The game achieved widespread financial and critical successes. The game largely popularized the platforming genre.[20] Miyamoto began work on a new game, The Legend of Zelda. In both the Mario and Zelda series, Miyamoto decided to focus more on gameplay than on high scores, unlike many games of the time.[21] Miyamoto took a new direction with The Legend of Zelda, using nonlinear gameplay that forced the player to think his way through riddles and puzzles.[22] With The Legend of Zelda, Miyamoto sought to make an in-game world that players would identify, a "miniature garden that they can put inside their drawer."[21] He drew his inspiration from his experiences as a boy around Kyoto, where he explored nearby fields, woods, and caves; each Zelda title embodies this sense of exploration.[21] "When I was a child," Miyamoto said, "I went hiking and found a lake. It was quite a surprise for me to stumble upon it. When I traveled around the country without a map, trying to find my way, stumbling on amazing things as I went, I realized how it felt to go on an adventure like this."[23] He recreated his memories of becoming lost amid the maze of sliding doors in his family home in Zelda's labyrinthine dungeons.[24] In February 1986, Nintendo released the game as the launch title for the Nintendo Entertainment System's new Disk System peripheral. The Legend of Zelda was joined by a re-release of Super Mario Bros. and Tennis, Baseball, Golf, Soccer, and Mahjong in the introduction. This peripheral had 128 kilobytes of space, a vast increase over the cartridge format's capacity.[21] Due to the still-limited amount of space on the disk, however, the Japanese version of the game was only written in the alphabetic katakana, rather than using any pictographic kanji. Rewritable disks saved the game, rather than using a password system. The Japanese version used the extra sound channel provided by the Disk System for certain sound effects; most notable are the sounds of Link's sword when his health is full, and enemy death sounds. The sound effects used the Nintendo Entertainment System's PCM channel in the cartridge version. It also used the microphone built into the Famicom's controller that was not included in the Nintendo Entertainment System.[25] The Legend of Zelda was a bestseller for Nintendo, selling over 6.5 million copies.[26]

Miyamoto worked on the sequel for Super Mario Bros and The Legend of Zelda. Super Mario Bros. 2 (known as Super Mario Bros.: The Lost Levels outside Japan) reuses gameplay elements from Super Mario Bros., though the game is considered much more difficult than its predecessor. Because of the perceived difficulty, the game did not see a North American release until much later. Instead, another game was labelled Super Mario Bros. 2 in this market; in the game, Mario and his companions are out to stop the evil frog Wart in the dream land of SubCon. In Japan, Super Mario Bros. 2 was originally made as Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic, and later converted into a Mario game for other markets. Zelda II: The Adventure of Link was developed by a different team than the first, with key members from The Legend of Zelda design team.[27] Almost none of the music from the previous game was integrated, save for the introductory notes of the overworld theme (Hyrule Overture), which were quoted at the start of the new overworld theme.[28] The music from the game has generally been incorporated into later Zelda games. The Adventure of Link was originally released on the Family Computer Disk System ("FDS") before its worldwide release. Like its predecessor, the FDS version appears to be an earlier version of the game, with a few obvious differences. In the English release, the dungeons each have different colors, whereas in the FDS version they are all gray. Also, the two dungeon bosses Carrok and Volvagia (the latter being initially named Barba in the NES release) have different graphical appearances.[29] The game over screen in the English version features the silhouette of villain Ganon from the chest up, with the text saying "Game Over - Return of Ganon", whereas the FDS game over screen is a plain black screen with the text saying "Return of Gannon - The End". There are some slight additions to the dungeons, as well as a handful of differences on the dungeons themselves. Due to an additional soundchip that the Disk System has, when Nintendo ported Zelda II over to the NES they had to eliminate some musical elements, especially from the title screen. On the main map, the icons denoting attacking monsters look different, but the most significant change is the spending of experience points, as Link's three attributes cost the same, unlike the worldwide release. This makes levelling up in the game very different.[30]

The cover of Super Mario Bros. 3

Soon after, Super Mario Bros. 3 was developed by a group within Nintendo's Research & Development Team 4; the game took more than two years to complete.[31][32] Miyamoto directed the designers and programmers, working with them closely during the initial concepts and final stages, and encouraging a free interchange of ideas.[31] The game was designed to appeal to players of varying skill levels; to assist less skilled players, bonus coins and extra lives are more abundant in earlier worlds, while later worlds present more complex challenges for more experienced players. In the two-player mode, the players alternate turns to balance play time.[31] The development team introduced new power-ups and concepts that gave Mario the appearance of different animals as a means of providing him with new abilities. An early idea changed Mario into a centaur, but was dropped in favor of a raccoon tail that allows limited flying ability.[31][32] Other costumes with different abilities were added to his repertoire, and levels were designed to take advantage of these abilities.[33] New enemies were included to add diversity to the game, along with variants of previous enemies, like Goombas, Hammer Bros., and Koopa Troopas.[32][33] The real life experiences of Miyamoto and his staff provided the inspiration for many new enemies. For example, the idea for the Chain Chomp enemies (spherical, dog-like creatures) came from a bad experience Miyamoto had with a dog as a child.[31] Bowser's children were designed to be unique in appearance and personality; Miyamoto based the characters on seven of his programmers as a tribute to their work and efforts.[31][32] The Koopaling's names were later altered to mimic names of well-known, Western musicians in the English localization.[32]


A merger between Nintendo's various internal research and development teams led to the creation of Nintendo Entertainment Analysis and Development (Nintendo EAD), which was headed by Miyamoto. F-Zero was one of the launch titles for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System; Nintendo EAD had approximately fifteen months to develop the game.[34] Miyamoto worked through various games on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System, one of them Star Fox. For the game, programmer Jez San convinced Nintendo to develop an upgrade for the Super Nintendo, allowing it to handle three-dimensions better, the Super FX chip.[35][36] The SuperFX was so much more powerful than the Super Nintendo's standard processor.[37] Using this new hardware, Miyamoto and Katsuya Eguchi designed the Star Fox game with a degree of 3D.[38] Argonaut Games recommended using space ships in the new game, but Nintendo wanted a "arcade-style shooting" video game.[39] Yoichi Yamada, a level designer for many Nintendo games, laid out and edited the Star Fox maps.[39] With another Super Nintendo title, Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars Miyamoto led a team consisting of a partnership between Nintendo and Square Co.; it took nearly a year to develop the graphics.[40] The story takes place in a newly rendered Mushroom Kingdom based on the Super Mario Bros. series. Square reported the game was about 70% complete in October 1995. They created all the interior elements such as columns and stairways and exterior elements using Advanced Computer Modelling (ACM) techniques. Special lighting effects create the shadows and reflections that were meant to improve the 3D elements.[41][42]

The Ocarina of Time was a critical success.

When the Nintendo 64 console was released, Miyamoto began making games for the new system, mostly from his previous franchises. His first game on the new system was Super Mario 64; he began with character design and the camera system. Miyamoto and the other designers were initially unsure of which direction the game should take, and months were spent selecting an appropriate camera view and layout.[43] The original concept involved a fixed path much like an isometric type game, before the choice was made to settle on a free-roaming 3D design.[43] Although the majority of Super Mario 64 would end up featuring the free-roaming design, elements of the original fixed path concept would remain in certain parts of the game, particularly in the three Bowser encounters. One of the programmers of Super Mario 64, Giles Goddard, explained that these few linear elements survived as a means to force players into Bowser's lair rather than to encourage exploration.[43] The development team placed high priority on getting Mario's movements right, and before levels were created, the team tested and refined Mario's animations on a simple grid.[44] The second one was The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. Miyamoto was the principal director of Super Mario 64. He produced his next game: The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, and led a team of several directors.[45] Individual parts of Ocarina of Time were handled by multiple directors - a new strategy for Nintendo EAD. However, when things progressed slower than expected, Miyamoto returned to the development team with a more central role. The team was new to 3D games, but assistant director Makoto Miyanaga recalls a sense of "passion for creating something new and unprecedented".[46] Miyamoto initially intended Ocarina of Time to be played in a first-person perspective, so as to enable the players to take in the vast terrain of Hyrule Field better, as well as being able to focus more on developing enemies and environments. However, the development team did not go through with it once the idea of having a child Link was introduced, as Miyamoto felt it necessary for this Link incarnation to be visible on screen.[47] The development crew involved over 120 people, including stuntmen used to capture the effects of sword fighting and Link's movement.[48] Other ideas were not used due to time constraints.[45]

Miyamoto worked on many Mario series spin-offs like Mario Kart 64 and Mario Party. He also made another Zelda game called The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask, which he also produced. By re-using the game engine and graphics from Ocarina of Time, a smaller team required only 18 months to finish Majora's Mask. According to director Eiji Aonuma, they were "faced with the very difficult question of just what kind of game could follow Ocarina of Time and its worldwide sales of seven million units", and as a solution, came up with the three-day system to "make the game data more compact while still providing deep gameplay".[49] He also produced Star Fox 64.


When the Nintendo GameCube was released Miyamoto made various games, including the launch title Luigi's Mansion. The game was first revealed at Nintendo Space World 2000 as a technical demo designed to show off the graphical capabilities of the GameCube.[50] Miyamoto made an original short demo of the game concepts, and Nintendo decided to turn it into a full game. Luigi's Mansion was later shown at the E3 in 2001 with the Nintendo GameCube console.[51] Miyamoto continued to make additional Mario spinoffs in these years. He also produced the 3D game series Metroid Prime, after the original designer Yokoi, a friend and mentor of Miyamoto's, died.[52] In this time he developed Pikmin and its sequel Pikmin 2. He also worked on new games for the Star Fox, Donkey Kong, F-Zero and Legend of Zelda series on the both the Gamecube, the Gameboy Advance and the Nintendo DS systems.[53][54][55] He helped in many games on the DS, including the remake of Super Mario 64, Super Mario 64 DS, and the new game Nintendogs.[56]


With the launch of the Wii console, Miyamoto ported a Gamecube title to Wii: The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. Transferring GameCube development to the Wii was relatively simple, since the Wii was being created to be compatible with the GameCube.[57] At E3 2005, Nintendo released a small number of Nintendo DS game cards containing a preview trailer for Twilight Princess.[58] They also announced that Zelda would appear on the Wii, then codenamed the "Revolution",[59] but it was not clear to the media if this meant Twilight Princess or a different game.[60] The team, including Miyamoto, worked on a Wii control scheme, adapting camera control and the fighting mechanics to the new interface. A prototype was created that used a swinging gesture to control the sword from a first-person viewpoint, but was unable to show the variety of Link's movements. When the third-person view was restored, Aonuma thought it felt strange to swing the Wii Remote with the right hand to control the sword in Link's left hand, so the sword control was transferred to a button.[61] Details about Wii controls began to surface in December 2005 when British publication NGC Magazine claimed that when a GameCube copy of Twilight Princess was played on the Revolution, it would give the player the option of using the Revolution controller.[62] Miyamoto confirmed the Revolution controller-functionality in an interview with Nintendo of Europe[63] and Time reported the same soon after.[64][65] However, support for the Wii controller did not make it into the GameCube release. At E3 2006, Nintendo announced that both versions would be available at the Wii launch,[66] and had a playable version of Twilight Princess for the Wii.[61] Later, the GameCube release was pushed back to a month after the launch of the Wii.[67] He help on the development of Wii Sports, Wii Fit and he created Wii Music. Another Wii game he made was Super Mario Galaxy. The concept for Super Mario Galaxy's game play originated from ideas taken from Super Mario 128, a tech demo shown at Nintendo Space World in 2000 to exemplify the processing power of the Nintendo GameCube.[68] The demo's director (and director of Super Mario Galaxy), Yoshiaki Koizumi, desired that one of the demo's distinguishing features, spherical-based platforms, would be used in a future game, but was held back in belief that such a feat would be "impossible for technical reasons".[69] Miyamoto suggested to work on the next large-scale Mario game after Nintendo EAD Tokyo finished development on Donkey Kong: Jungle Beat in late 2004,[70] pushing for the spherical platform concept to be realized.[69] A prototype of the game's physics system took three months to build, where it was decided that the game's use of spherical platforms would best be suited to planetoids in an outer space environment, with the concept of gravity as a major feature.[69] During development, the designers would often exchange ideas with Miyamoto from his office in Kyoto, where he would make suggestions to the game design.[69] Miyamoto ended up being more involved in the development of Galaxy than he did with Super Mario 64 and Super Mario Sunshine. He also produced New Super Mario Bros. Wii, a platformer similar to the original Super Mario Bros. but being able to play with four players. The game is seen in 2D, some of the characters and objects are 3D polygonal renderings on 2D backgrounds, resulting in a 2.5D effect.[71][72][73] He will soon release Super Mario Galaxy 2.

Personal life

Although a game designer, Miyamoto spends little time playing video games, preferring to play the guitar and banjo.[74] He has a Shetland Sheepdog named Pikku that provided the inspiration for Nintendogs.[75] He is also a semi-professional dog breeder.[76] He has been quoted as stating, "Video-games are bad for you? That's what they said about Rock 'N' Roll."[77] Miyamoto also has stated that he has a hobby of guessing the measurements of objects, then checking to see if he was correct, and apparently carries a tape measure with him everywhere.[78] He has a wife and two children, and lives with a cat.


Many of Miyamoto's games have received critical praise. Super Mario Bros. 3 was a commercial success. Levi Buchanan of IGN considered Super Mario Bros. 3's appearance in the film The Wizard as a show-stealing element, and referred to the movie as a "90-minute commercial" for the game.[79] By 1993, the game had sold 4 and 7 million units in Japan and the United States respectively, earning Nintendo over US$500 million in revenue. Author David Sheff commented that, in music industry terms, the game went platinum eleven times.[80] Super Mario 64 was the best-selling Nintendo 64 game,[81] and as of May 21, 2003, the game has sold eleven million copies.[82] At the end of 2007, Guinness World Records reported sales of 11.8 million copies. As of September 25, 2007, it is the seventh best-selling video game in the United States with six million copies sold.[83] By June 2007, Super Mario 64 had become the second most popular title on Wii's Virtual Console, behind Super Mario Bros.[84] Ocarina of Time also got praised by critics. Edge magazine referred to it as the Nintendo 64's "key launch title".[85] The game placed second in Official Nintendo Magazine's "100 greatest Nintendo games of all time".[86] Super Mario Galaxy and The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess where also critically acclaimed by critics for the graphics and the gameplay. Twilight Princess was released to universal critical acclaim and commercial success. It received perfect scores from major publications such as, CVG, Electronic Gaming Monthly, Game Informer, GamesRadar, and GameSpy.[87][88][89][90][91][92] On the review aggregator MobyGames, it is one of the highest rated games of all time.[93] On TopTenReviews, it has received an average score of 3.86 out of 4, the highest among all games in the Zelda franchise.[94] In the PAL region, which covers most of Asia, Africa, South America, Australia, New Zealand, and most of Western Europe, Twilight Princess is the best-selling Zelda game ever. During its first week, the game was sold with three of every four Wii purchases.[95] The game had sold 4.52 million copies on the Wii as of March 1, 2008,[96] and 1.32 million on the GameCube as of March 31, 2007.[97]

Miyamoto's other franchises were also well received, such as Star Fox. At the time of the game's release, the use of filled, three-dimensional polygons in a console game was very unusual, beyond a handful of earlier titles, including Sega Genesis ports of Atari's arcade driving game, Hard Drivin', and their helicopter shooter, Steel Talons.[98] Due to its success, Star Fox has become a Nintendo franchise, with five more games and numerous appearances by its characters in other Nintendo games such as Super Smash Bros. series. Star Fox was awarded Best Shooter of 1993 by Electronic Gaming Monthly.[99] Metroid Prime in which he acted as a producer was one of the most acclaimed games on the Gamecube. Metroid Prime became one of the best-selling games on the GameCube. It was the second best-selling game of November 2002 in North America, behind Grand Theft Auto: Vice City,[100] and hit 250,000 units in just one week.[101] The game has since sold about 1.49 million copies in America,[102] earning more than $50 million in revenue.[103] It is also the eighth best-selling GameCube game in Australia,[104] and sold more than 78,000 copies in Japan[105] and more than 250,000 copies in Europe, thus entering the Player's Choice line in the PAL region.[106] Prime was also critically acclaimed,[107] including a perfect review score from Electronic Gaming Monthly,[108] and numerous Game of the Year awards. It was praised for its detailed graphics, with special effects and varied environments,[109] moody soundtrack and sound effects,[39] level design,[110] immersive atmosphere,[111] and innovative gameplay centered on exploring as opposed to the action of games such as Halo[112] while staying faithful to the Metroid formula.[113] Criticisms included the unusual control scheme, which Game Informer considered awkward;[114] lack of focus on the story, making Entertainment Weekly compare the game to a "1990s arcade game, filled with over the top battle sequences, spectacular visual effects – and a pretty weak plot";[115] and backtracking, stated by GamePro that inexperienced players "might find it exhausting to keep revisiting the same old places over and over and over".[116] On GameRankings, Prime is the fifth-highest rated game ever, with an average score of 96.26% (as of June 2009), making it the highest reviewed game of the sixth generation.[117] The video game countdown show Filter named Prime as having the Best Graphics of all time.[118]

Awards and recognition

The name of the main character of the PC game Daikatana, Hiro Miyamoto, is an homage to Miyamoto.[119] The character Gary Oak from the Pokémon anime series is named Shigeru in Japan and is the rival of Ash Ketchum (called Satoshi in Japan). Pokémon creator Satoshi Tajiri was mentored by Miyamoto. In 1998, Miyamoto was honored as the first person inducted into the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences' Hall of Fame.[120] In 2006, Miyamoto was made a Chevalier (knight) of the French Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Minister of Culture Renaud Donnedieu de Vabres.[121]

On November 28, 2006, Miyamoto was featured in TIME Asia's "60 Years of Asian Heroes," alongside Hayao Miyazaki, Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Teresa, Bruce Lee and the Dalai Lama.[122] He was later chosen as one of Time Magazine's 100 Most Influential People of the Year in both 2007[123] and also in 2008, in which he topped the list with a total vote of 1,766,424.[124] At the Game Developers Choice Awards, on March 7, 2007, Miyamoto received the Lifetime Achievement Award "for a career that spans the creation of Donkey Kong, Super Mario Bros. and The Legend of Zelda to the company's recent revolutionary systems, Nintendo DS and Wii."[125] Both GameTrailers and IGN placed Miyamoto first on their lists for the "Top Ten Game Creators" and the "Top 100 Game Creators of All Time" respectively.[126][127]

In a survey of game developers by industry publication Develop, 30% of the developers chose Miyamoto as their "Ultimate Development Hero".[128] Miyamoto has been interviewed by companies and organizations such as CNN's Talk Asia and[129][130]

See also


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  14. ^ Sheff 49.
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  123. ^ Wendel, Johnathan. "The TIME 100 (2007) – Shigeru Miyamoto". TIME Magazine.,28804,1595326_1615737_1615521,00.html. Retrieved 3 May 2007. 
  124. ^ "Who is Most Influential? – The 2008 TIME 100 Finalists". TIME Magazine.,28804,1725112_1726934_1726935,00.html. Retrieved 12 April 2008. 
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External links


Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

I don't like all the attention. I think it's better to let my work do the talking.

Shigeru Miyamoto (born 16 November 1952) is Nintendo's most respected video game developer.



  • I could make Halo. It's not that I couldn't design that game. It's just that I choose not to. One thing about my game design is that I never try to look for what people want and then try to make that game design. I always try to create new experiences that are fun to play.
  • A game that keeps a smile on the player's face is a wonderful thing. Nintendo's theme for 2006 will be "Create new fun". Spread the fun of games to everyone. To do this, we must return to the beginning, to recapture the essence that made people who enjoy games even now enjoy them in the first place.
    • Source: Famitsu
  • Any new media or industry that grows rapidly is going to be criticized. That's just because the older, more established media have been around, and a lot of adults can be very conservative. They may not have an open mind to new things that weren't around when they were growing up, and are replacing the things they grew up with... over the years I've seen this standard image of a child playing a video game in which the child is alone in a darkened room, with his face very close to the TV, with the light of the TV reflecting off his face, holding the controller and just staring at the TV. I'd really like to be able to change that image of video games into something that's a little more positive.
    • Source: (members only)
  • Games are a trigger for adults to again become primitive, primal, as a way of thinking and remembering. An adult is a child who has more ethics and morals, that's all. When I am a child, creating, I am not creating a game. I am in the game. The game is not for children, it is for me. It is for an adult who still has a character of a child.
    • Source: Next Generation Magazine
  • I don't know what Mario will look like next; maybe he will wear metallic clothing with a red hat.
    • 1991, before the release of Super Mario 64.
  • I don't like all the attention. I think it's better to let my work do the talking.
  • The PSP will not be able to display anything that you cannot do on a current system.
    • Source: USA Today
  • What if everything that you see, is more than what you see? The person next to you is a warrior and the space that appears empty is a door to another world? What if something appears that shouldn't? You either dismiss it or accept that there is more to the world than you think. Perhaps it is really a doorway, and if you choose to go inside, you'll find many unexpected things.
    • Source: Nintendo Power
  • Necessity is the mother of invention. I love solving things like that. Because there wasn't enough memory, thinking of an economical way to make the movements look right was like solving a puzzle, and I had a lot of fun.

On Wii

  • Controller is so intuitive, even your mum can play.
    • Source: E3 2006
  • I would say the games that we're working on now, like the new Zelda: Twilight Princess, have hardcore content. And if you look at the Revolution's controllers, there's a nunchaku-style controller expansion that's really well suited to first-person shooters.
    • Source: 2006 Issue of Maxim
  • Originally, I wanted a machine that would cost $100. My idea was to spend nothing on the console technology so all the money could be spent on improving the interface and software. If we hadn't used NAND flash memory [to store data such as games and photos] and other pricey parts, we might have succeeded.


  • Video games are bad for you? That's what they said about Rock n' Roll.

External links

Wikipedia has an article about:


Up to date as of February 01, 2010

From Wikia Gaming, your source for walkthroughs, games, guides, and more!

Shigeru Miyamoto, contemplating a game based on Wikicities.

Shigeru Miyamoto is a seminal videogame designer in affiliation with the videogame company Nintendo. He designed such influential videogames such as the Mario Brothers series, The Legend of Zelda series, and Donkey Kong. Because of his contributions to the gaming community, he has achieved a somewhat cult following among those who have witnessed his work. To some he is considered a gaming god. He was inducted to the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences' Hall of Fame in 1998.

It appears as if everytime he designs a game, it has something to do with his mundane real life hobbies such as: his love of gardening (Pikmin), his professional dog breeding (Nintendogs), and his strange fascination with backpacks(Luigi's Mansion, Super Mario Sunshine).

Shigeru Miyamoto is a Japanese video game designer. He has also supervised many titles published by Nintendo on behalf of other developers, including Metroid Prime and Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games.

Miyamoto is a world-renowned game designer, and has been called the "father of modern video games" and "the Walt Disney of electronic gaming".[1] Video games designed by him typically feature refined control-mechanics, intuitive gameplay, simple story lines, and imaginative worlds in which the players are encouraged to discover things by themselves.

Employed by Nintendo as an artist in 1977, he was given the task of working on one of their first coin-operated arcade games. The resulting title was Radar Scope,[2] which was not as successful in the United States as Nintendo had hoped. Miyamoto later reused the game's hardware and modified it into Donkey Kong, which was a huge success as well as a turning point in video game history. The game's lead character, Mario (then called Jumpman), became an easily recognizable video game character and Nintendo's mascot. Miyamoto quickly became Nintendo's star producer, designing many franchises for the company, most of which are still active.



Early life

Miyamoto was born in Sonobe (now Nantan), Kyoto, Japan. He is the second child of Iijake Miyamoto and Hinako Aruha. As a young boy, Miyamoto loved to draw, paint pictures and explore the area surrounding his house. Stories describe his boyhood discovery of hidden caves, lakes and other natural features near his home which were linked to his later work. The Legend of Zelda, in particular, took inspiration from his childhood exploration.[3] As a child, Miyamoto was menaced by a neighbor's dog - kept at bay by a chain attached to a post - inspiring the Chain Chomp enemy from the Mario series.[4] In 1970, he enrolled in the Kanazawa College of Art and graduated five years later — though he later remarked that his studies often took a backseat to drawing. Miyamoto was said to have had an eclectic taste in music for his age, being interested in such groups as the Lovin' Spoonful, the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, the Ramones and The Beatles.Template:Fact


Template:Refimprove In 1977, having completed a degree in industrial design, Miyamoto arranged a meeting with his father's friend Hiroshi Yamauchi, head of Nintendo of Japan. Yamauchi hired Miyamoto as a "staff artist" and assigned him to the planning department.

In 1980, the fairly new Nintendo of America was looking for a hit to establish itself as a player in the growing arcade market. After successful location tests using prototypes, then-NoA CEO Minoru Arakawa ordered a very large number of units of the arcade game Radar Scope. However, by the time the arcade machines could be produced and shipped to the U.S., interest had evaporated, and the game flopped. To stay afloat and clear the costly inventory of Radar Scope, Nintendo of America desperately needed a smash-hit game that the unsold machines could be converted to play. Yamauchi assigned Miyamoto the task of creating the required game.

Miyamoto consulted with some of the company's engineers, composed the music on a small electronic keyboard, and created Donkey Kong. When the game was complete, the chips containing the new program were rushed to the U.S. and Nintendo employees worked around the clock converting the Radar Scope machines. It was fortunate that Nintendo had so many units on hand, because Donkey Kong was an overnight success, and not only saved the company, but introduced a character who would be eternally identified with Nintendo.

The three famous characters Miyamoto created for the game were Donkey Kong, Jumpman, and Pauline. It was Jumpman, who would later be known as Mario, who has found the most success. Since his debut in Donkey Kong, he has appeared in more than 100 games spanning over a dozen gaming platforms.

Miyamoto is usually listed as "Producer" in the credits of Mario games. The few exceptions include the Super Mario Land series for the Game Boy, with which he had virtually no involvement (Gunpei Yokoi, Miyamoto's mentor, produced the Super Mario Land series). In The Legend of Zelda, Zelda II: The Adventure of Link, and Doki Doki Panic, he was credited as "Miyahon", a mistranscription of the kanji in his name (Template:Lang — which can be read as either Template:Lang or Template:Lang). The misread surname was Miyamoto's development nickname in the 1980s (having a nickname was a common practice among Japanese game developers at the time).

At E3's convention in 1997, Miyamoto revealed that he was constantly working with around four hundred people on a dozen or so projects at a time.[5]

Competition with Sony and Microsoft

Miyamoto has claimed his peers in the industry have been "too focused on hardcore gamers".Template:Fact His belief that his project could outsell PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 is influenced by his business motto; "Games should be what we would want to play". However, he admits changes had to be made before the Wii was a serious contender. "There was a time when Nintendo was not influencing the world in the way it would have liked," Miyamoto claims, "That's why I've spent so much time trying to find new, exciting control systems we can use."Template:Fact

In the first six months of straight competition, Wii outsold both its rivals, Sony and Microsoft, with gamers buying more than twice as many Wiis as Xbox 360s and four times as many Wiis as PlayStation 3s. When asked about his vision of this rivalry in the future, he said, "My dream is that the Wii becomes this device everybody sees as being the natural thing next to the TV."[6]

Awards and recognition


File:Ancel Miyamoto Raynal.png
Template:Deletable image-caption

Miyamoto was the first person inducted into the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences' Hall of Fame in 1998, an award that outlines his lifetime achievement and dramatic effect on the video game industry. In March 2005, Miyamoto was among the first honorees in 2004 to receive a star on the Walk of Game: a section of San Francisco's Metreon Center that is modeled on Hollywood's Walk of Fame.

As part of the French video game policy effort, on March 13, 2006 the French honored Miyamoto by inducting him as a Chevalier ("Knight") into the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, with game designers Michel Ancel and Frédérick Raynal.

The name of the main character of the infamous PC game Daikatana, Hiro Miyamoto, is an homage to Miyamoto.[7]

The rival character in the first generation of Pokémon games was named Shigeru. Likewise, the main character was named Satoshi, for the developer of the Pokémon series.

In Perfect Dark, enemy soldiers' faces are mapped from the game staff and Nintendo employees. Shigeru Miyamoto's face is seen on the patrolling guard in the opening cut scene of the Pelagic II stage.

A hidden Easter egg in Nintendogs reveals a character named Shiggy (Shigeru) and his Sheltie Pik (Pikku). At events, though, such as ones at Nintendo World Store in New York, his name is Miyamoto with the Daschund Mario.

On November 28, 2006, Miyamoto was featured in TIME Asia's "60 Years of Asian Heroes" with Hayao Miyazaki, Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Teresa, Bruce Lee and the Dalai Lama.[1]

At the Game Developers Choice Awards, on March 7, 2007, Shigeru Miyamoto received the Lifetime Achievement Award for a career that spans the creation of Donkey Kong, Super Mario Bros. and The Legend of Zelda. He was also credited for the company's recent consoles, the Nintendo DS and Wii. He was a keynote speaker at that conference, along with Eiji Aonuma and Satoru Iwata.[8]

Shigeru Miyamoto was chosen as one of the 100 TIME Magazine's 2007 Most Influential People of the Year.[9] He has once again been nominated for the list in 2008, and topped this list.[10]

Shigeru Miyamoto appeared on a Mega64 video as himself, along with Rocco Botte and Derrick Acosta who were dressed as Mario and Luigi and Shawn Chatfield dressed as Link who comes out of a door behind Miyamoto.

A Sunday New York Times profile published in May 2008 called Miyamoto "the world's most famous and influential video-game designer".[11]

GameTrailers awarded Shigeru Miyamoto the first spot on their "Top Ten Game Creators" list.[12]

Current activities

Miyamoto developed Wii Fit and Wii Music for the Wii and has supervised Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games for the Wii and Nintendo DS. Both versions of the latter were developed by Sega, not Nintendo. Miyamoto unveiled Wii Fit at E3 2007.

He pointed out in an interview that he likes to focus on "games in order, one by one" rather than concentrating on many games at once.[13] Miyamoto also announced at E3 2008 that the next installment of the Pikmin series is in development.

Personal life

Although a game designer, he spends little time playing games. In his spare time, Miyamoto plays the guitar and banjo.[14] Shigeru Miyamoto has two children with his wife, Yasuko Miyamoto, who was general manager of Nintendo of Japan in 1977. Neither of their children has expressed a desire to go into the family business. He claims that Yasuko does not like video games, but she is beginning to enjoy playing games like Brain Age and using the Wii's Everybody Votes Channel. His son, Kenshi Miyamoto, has allegedly expressed a desire to become a pro surfer rather than a professional gamer.[15] Miyamoto has a Shetland Sheepdog named Pikku (pronounced Pick) that was the inspiration for Nintendogs.[16] Miyamoto is described as being a semi-professional dog breeder.[17]


As producer and R&D member of several games, Miyamoto has had Nintendo implement delays "in order to make a game [...] of the high quality standards that Nintendo is known for."[18] At times, the entire development of a game is scrapped.

Miyamoto and fellow developers refer to this scrapping as "Chabudai Gaeshi" (ちゃぶ台返し, "upending the tea table"), a reference to manga and anime Star of the Giants.[19] It is also referred to as "Miyahon Check" (Miyahon is an alternative kanji reading of Miyamoto) or "Miyamoto Test".[20]

  • "Twinkle Popo" was a completed product with a pre-order of 26,000 units. It was supposed to be released under the game's developer, HAL Laboratory. Miyamoto intervened, arguing that with a tiny bit of tweaking it would become a great game. After canceling the pre-order, the game was eventually released under Nintendo with the title Kirby's Dream Land.
  • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time was supposed to be released immediately after the release of the Nintendo 64 (Japanese release date, 6 June 1996). Instead, Miyamoto, who was the producer, repeatedly ordered the game to be redone, resulting in numerous announcements of delays by Nintendo until the game's eventual release on 21 November 1998.
  • Eiji Aonuma was initially the producer of The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. However, between 2005 to 2006, he assumed direction duties while Miyamoto replaced him as producer. Aonuma stated that the switch was the result of a year-long development being Template:Ql.[21] In the same interview, Miyamoto said that he had to clean up the mess from his Template:Ql, so he joined as a producer and assisted in the development of the GameCube and Wii versions of the game.

See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 Wright, Will. Shigeru Miyamoto: The video-game guru who made it O.K. to play. TIME Magazine. Retrieved on 2006-11-28.
  2. Developer Profile: Intelligent Systems. IGN (2001-01-10). Retrieved on 2007-09-19.
  3. Vestal, Andrew, et al. (2000-09-14). History of Zelda. GameSpot. Retrieved on 2006-09-30.
  4. Template:Cite book
  5. Template:Citation.
  6. interview - LIVE Magazine, 29 July 2007.
  7. A Hardcore Elegy for Ion Storm p. 5. Archived from the original on 2006-12-06. Retrieved on 2007-09-19.
  8. Carless, Simon (2007-02-12). 2007 Game Developers Choice Awards To Honor Miyamoto, Pajitnov. Gamasutra. Retrieved on 2007-02-12.
  9. Wendel, Johnathan. The TIME 100 (2007) - Shigeru Miyamoto. TIME Magazine. Retrieved on 2007-05-03.
  10. Who is Most Influential? - The 2008 TIME 100 Finalists. TIME Magazine. Retrieved on 2008-04-12.
  11. Schiessel, Seth (2008-05-25). Resistance Is Futile. New York Times. Retrieved on 2008-05-26.
  13. N-Europe: News: Wii Music On Track For 2008
  14. Shigeru Miyamoto Developer Bio. MobyGames. Retrieved on 2007-09-19.
  15. Williams, Bryn (2007-03-08). Miyamoto's Creative Vision. GameSpy. Retrieved on 2007-09-19.
  16. Totilo, Stephen (2005-09-27). Nintendo Fans Swarm Mario's Father During New York Visit. VH1. Retrieved on 2007-09-19.
  17. Gibson, Ellie (2005-08-23). Nintendogs Interview // DS // Eurogamer. Eurogamer. Retrieved on 2008-05-02.
  18. An Interview with Shigeru Miyamoto. on 2007-10-24.
  19. Iwata Asks: The Indefinable Essence Of Zelda. Nintendo. Retrieved on 2006-11-16.
  20. スクリーンショット
  21. 【任天堂】ラウンドテーブルにて『ゼルダの伝説 Twilight Princess』の全貌が明らかに! (Japanese). Famitsu (2005-05-18). Retrieved on 2007-09-19.

External links


  • N-Sider — Shigeru Miyamoto profile
  • Shigeru Miyamoto profile on MobyGames
  • New York Times profile, May 25, 2008
  • Video profile of Shigeru Miyamoto from the digital TV series Play Value produced by ON Networksar:شيغيرو مياموتو

ca:Shigeru Miyamoto da:Shigeru Miyamotoel:Σιγκέρου Μιγιαμότοeu:Shigeru Miyamoto fr:Shigeru Miyamoto gl:Shigeru Miyamoto ko:미야모토 시게루he:שיגרו מיאמוטוja:宮本茂 no:Shigeru Miyamotopt:Shigeru Miyamoto ro:Shigeru Miyamoto ru:Миямото, Сигэру simple:Shigeru Miyamoto fi:Shigeru Miyamoto sv:Shigeru Miyamoto th:ชิเงะรุ มิยะโมะโตะ vi:Miyamoto Shigeru

This article uses material from the "Shigeru Miyamoto" article on the Gaming wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.

Simple English

Shigeru Miyamoto (born November 16 1952[1]) is a Japanese game designer. He created the Donkey Kong, Mario, Pikmin and The Legend of Zelda video game series for Nintendo.

He is one of the most famous game designers in the world and is often called the father of modern video gaming. His games give players many ways to play and explore. This was unique in video games when his games were first released.

Miyamoto started working with Nintendo in 1977 as an artist when it was still a toy and playing-card company. In 1980, he designed Donkey Kong, which was a big success. Miyamoto became Nintendo's leading producer, and he continues to create many popular games for Nintendo today.


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