If you’ve ever played Super Mario Bros., The Legend of Zelda, Donkey Kong, Star Fox, Pikmin, Nintendogs, Wii Sports, or Wii Fit (including many others), you need to know who the man behind the scenes is. His name is Shigeru Miyamoto, born in Kyoto, Japan on November 16th, 1952.
He began his career in 1979, with Nintendo, under then-President, Hiroshi Yamauchi. Every console and handheld generation that Shiggy (one of his popular names given to him by his fans) has been a part of, he has contributed very highly to. Many multi-million selling titles are under this man’s belt, from Super Mario Bros. 3 in the NES era to Super Mario World on the SNES, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time on the Nintendo 64 (to this day it remains the number one ranked game of all time according to both GameRankings.com and Metacritic.com (two sites that gather all reviews across the globe and average them out, giving a game one overall score), Metroid Prime on GameCube, where he acted as producer, up until the recent mega-hits being Wii Sports and Wii Fit.
George Harrison, Shigeru Miyamoto, Satoru Iwata, and Paul Gale at E3 2003.
He has been a constant innovator in technology, too, with his desire to bring gaming to everyone. Motion based controllers, balance boards, analog sticks, and rumble technology are just a few of the designs that Shigeru helped Nintendo along with in development. This year at E3, we will see how Nintendo’s Vitality Sensor works and I’m sure that Mr. Miyamoto will blow people away, yet again.
Shigeru Miyamoto has been on the receiving end of many awards, too, from the likes of IGN, GameTrailers, BAFTA, Time Asia, and Time Magazine, to name a few. One of the other things we’ve learned in recent years is how Mr. Miyamoto comes up with ideas for some of his games. When he and his family in Japan got a dog, he became intrigued with playing with the dog, that it gave him inspiration to come up with Nintendogs. When he picked up gardening as a hobby, out evolved Pikmin. When Mr. Miyamoto became more health conscious, out came Wii Fit.
Satoru Iwata, Shigeru Miyamoto, and Paul Gale at E3 2005.
Something special and unique that I learned from Shigeru was when we met for the first time, at E3 2003. It was at the end of the show, at Nintendo’s booth, and I got the chance to speak with him. I found out that one of his inspirations in life was the 1933 classic, King Kong. That movie too, is one of my favorite films of all time, and you could probably guess what that led to…Donkey Kong. Something else we share is that we were both Boy Scouts. I’ve known this cool bit for a long time, and that’s that as a young boy in Japan, Shigeru would play in the forest, being an adventurer, having fun in the scouts, learning new trades, etc., and that’s what gave him the inspiration for his Link character, in The Legend of Zelda series.
Shigeru Miyamoto talking with me and signing systems for fans at E3 2006.
Within are a few pictures of Mr. Miyamoto and me, from E3 2003, E3 2005, and E3 2006. Each year he was very kind to speak to, especially considering how busy of a person he is. I thank him for his energy spent talking to me and for continuing to develop such amazing titles, all the time. It’s applaudable for a man that busy to take a moment out of his day to talk with me and still sign fun Nintendo merchandise/consoles/games/etc. for his fans. I’m currently thoroughly enjoying Super Mario Galaxy 2 and had a complete blast playing The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword at E3.
If you want to see Mr. Miyamoto at E3 2010, demonstrating The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, check out
Nintendo’s Pre-E3 Show
Shigeru Miyamoto before magically popping out on stage at Nintendo’s Pre E3 Media Conference at E3 2010.