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Visionary Nintendo President Yamauchi Dies 201

Posted by timothy
from the value-added dept.
First time accepted submitter trickstyhobbit writes "Former Nintendo president and majority stockholder Hiroshi Yamauchi has died. He was president of the company for over 50 years and saw the development of the NES, SNES, Nintendo 64, and GameCube among other devices." His career at Nintendo is worth reading about.
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Visionary Nintendo President Yamauchi Dies

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  • Very intuitive (Score:4, Interesting)

    by HalAtWork (926717) on Thursday September 19, 2013 @08:56AM (#44892695)
    This guy had a lot of intuition. He didn't like to play video games, tried a couple but was annoyed and frustrated. Yet he still had sole approval whether or not a game should be licensed on the Famicom/NES. Someone would sit down and demo the game and he'd say yes or no based on that! Coming from the Atari crash, quality was important and this guy had an eye for that. Not to take away from Yamauchi but I must say RIP Gunpei Yokoi who sadly committed suicide, but was incredibly important in Nintendo's success as well. I recommend reading Game Over and 1UP - How Video Games got an Extra Life.
    • Re:Very intuitive (Score:5, Insightful)

      by RicardoGCE (1173519) on Thursday September 19, 2013 @09:14AM (#44892861)

      Gunpei Yokoi was hit by a car, he didn't kill himself, nor was he murdered (the other urban legend regarding his passing.)

      • Re:Very intuitive (Score:4, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 19, 2013 @10:53AM (#44893623)

        Gunpei Yokoi had a "window seat" by that time, due to the failure of the Virtual Boy.

        For those that don't know what a "window seat" is, it's what the Japanese do with older, well-respected company men who fuck up a major project and lose the company money. They're grateful for the good times, respectful of experience, and not about to let another project go down the drain. So instead of firing the manager of the failed project, they give him a nice office somewhere away from where real work is being done, and where he can't fail again. A "window seat".

        Gunpei Yokoi had a good string of successes: the "grabber" toy he was first promoted to management for, several game projects, including Metroid and Kid Icarus, and the Game Boy. Then he had the Virtual Boy. Then he had a "window seat".

        His death was unfortunate, though. "Window seats" aren't always permanent, and I'm sure within a short time he would've probably gotten another chance at a big project, or maybe come up with something new. Instead, he was killed by a bus while changing a flat tire on the side of the road. There's no telling what cool stuff we lost that day.

        • by Anonymous Coward

          Actually, he quit Nintendo a year before he died, after the Virtual Boy (supposedly he had already planned his retirement), to form his own company, and developed another portable game machine for Bandai. He wasn't killed by a bus changing a tire, he was hit by another car while inspecting the damages from an accident.

      • by HalAtWork (926717)
        Nobody's sure either way actually, so I guess it depends on what you believe. He might have voluntarily stepped into traffic, or it could have been an accident. There are a lot of emotional stories surrounding the subject. My point was just to remember the greats.
    • Taking back that mod point... bad computer Hal, bad computer!
  • My heart goes out to his friends and family.
    The world will miss Hiroshi, and I'm concerned that this might be enough for Shigeru Miyamoto to leave the company.
    This is a truly sad day.
    • by timeOday (582209)
      I would love to have heard his reflections on life - a boy in Imperial Japan, then utter destruction and a cultural and economic 180, followed by a leading role in a superstar company in the rise of Japan as an electronics manufacturing superpower, and finally backslide as regional competitors rapidly gain ground. He saw so much.
  • by TWiTfan (2887093) on Thursday September 19, 2013 @08:59AM (#44892717)

    Too soon?

  • Cheats! (Score:3, Funny)

    by Stenchwarrior (1335051) on Thursday September 19, 2013 @09:11AM (#44892839)

    Before someone else posts it:

    He clearly should have used the UP, UP, DOWN, DOWN, LEFT, RIGHT, LEFT, RIGHT, B, A, START to pick up a few more lives.

    ba dum, bum

    • Before someone else posts it:

      He clearly should have used the UP, UP, DOWN, DOWN, LEFT, RIGHT, LEFT, RIGHT, B, A, START to pick up a few more lives.

      ba dum, bum

      If it had been the President of Konami then maybe that would work. Yamauchi stays put; for now.

      • by Golddess (1361003)

        If it had been the President of Konami then maybe that would work.

        But what he could have done instead, is he could have smashed a few more turtles when he was 31. ;)

    • That's Konami. This is Nintendo. Hold A and press Start to continue from where you were with a new set of lives.
    • No, As the influx of coins drained off, so too did the extra lives.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Known Nutter (988758)
      Every time someone posts the Konami code, you can tell whether they played alone or with a friend. Those with a buddy have SELECT in their head before START...
      • by CastrTroy (595695)
        When I was a kid, we thought the code was:

        Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Right, Left, Right, B, A, B, A (Select), Start

        Notice the two sets of B A. It seemed to make more sense. Everything else was in pairs.
  • Handhelds? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by barlevg (2111272)
    Article mentions the TV consoles, but isn't the Game Boy far more relevant? I mean, we're talking about the birth of handheld game consoles [wikipedia.org] (and yes, I know there were handheld video games before the Gameboy, but that's like pointing out that there were smart phones before the iPhone).
    • The NES predates it by about 4 or 5 years, and was largely responsible for the recovery after the '83 crash. In fact, without the success of the NES, there may have never been a Game Boy.
  • by yorgo (595005) on Thursday September 19, 2013 @10:11AM (#44893273)
    Did anyone try blowing on him?
  • by bitt3n (941736)
    someone insert another quarter before his ten seconds run out
  • by nurb432 (527695)

    Anyone associated with that company should have been in prison for crooked business practices that illegally destroyed Atari.

    • Atari had it's own crooked business practices to blame it's implosion on. Doesn't stop me wearing an Atari logo t-shirt though... shame it's repro, not vintage :(

    • by geekoid (135745)

      Angry troll is angry. Roars with impotent rage!

  • I guess I wasn't a bad enough dude to save the President.

    I think I'll go read Game Over (Press Start to Continue) again.

Those who do things in a noble spirit of self-sacrifice are to be avoided at all costs. -- N. Alexander.

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