Sad news folks. The charismatic president of Nintendo has passed away this morning at the age of 55. Iwata had been battling illness for some time now and missed last year’s E3 because of it. Sadly it seems the illness got the better of him.
In an official statement from Nintendo, they said:
Nintendo Co., Ltd. deeply regrets to announce that President Satoru Iwata passed away on July 11, 2015 due to a bile duct growth.
Last we heard in regards to Iwata and his illness, he informed everyone that “I’m progressing well”, via a tweet.
Mr. Iwata first joined Nintendo as a programmer in the company’s HAL Laboratory in the 1980s working on games such as Balloon Fight and EarthBound. In the year 2000 he became the company’s Director, and was appointed president in 2002, succeeding Hiroshi Yamauchi.
Iwata is known for a lot of things at Nintendo but notably his lack of corporate attitude. One notable quote going around at the moment reads:
On my business card, I am a corporate president. In my mind, I am a game developer, but in my heart, I am a gamer.
I never got the pleasure to meet Iwata, but his passing has affected a lot of us here at n3 who grew up with Nintendo games as a staple part of our gaming diet. In fact, the Nintendo Entertainment System was one of the first consoles I ever laid my hands on.
Rest in Peace, Satoru Iwata.