Nintendo icon Shigeru Miyamoto has emotionally recalled the relationship he had with the House of Mario’s late president Satoru Iwata.
Iwata-san passed away in 2015 at the age of just 55 after suffering from a rare form of cancer.
The Sapporo-born exec presided over Nintendo during their two biggest successes of the noughties – the DS and the Wii.
Iwata-san was also the face of the Nintendo Direct broadcasts and Iwata Asks, helping to build a strong relationship with the legions of Ninty fans.
And a new book about the Nintendo icon published in Japan today features an interview with Miyamoto in which he remembers Iwata.
As revealed in a post by IGN, during the interview Miyamoto says he recalls Iwata as “a friend more than anything”.
Miyamoto said: “It never felt like he was my boss or that I was working under him. He never got angry; we never fought about anything.
“Normally, if someone younger than yourself with fewer years of experience becomes president, it might be difficult to get along with each other, but it was never like that.
“It had always been obvious that he was more suited for the position (than me), so it never became a problem.
“I think it allowed us to naturally become true friends.”
The Mario creator revealed that he and Iwata shared opinions during lunch on a daily basis, and recalled one of their very first meals together.
It happened when Iwata-san was in Kyoto while running Smash Bros developer HAL Lab, and he went for a late night bowl of ramen with Miyamoto.
Miyamoto-san said: “Nintendo doesn’t pay for social expenses, so we had to go Dutch on the bill.
“That became a tradition that lasted even after he became company president and I became an executive.”
The Mario creator added: “Since he passed away, Nintendo has been doing just fine.
“He left many words and structures that live on in the work of our younger employees today.
“The only problem is that, if there is some good-for-nothing idea I come up with over the weekend, I have no one to share it with the next Monday.
“That I can no longer hear him say ‘Oh, about that thing…’ is a bit of a problem for me. It makes me sad.”