Nintendo President Satoru Iwata Dies aged 55
In a late night message, Nintendo have confirmed that the long standing CEO has died aged 55.
Iwata-san had been diagnosed with bile duct tumour back in early 2014 , and has been absent from many high profile event on the last few years, most notably at E3 2014.
Starting his career as a programmer for HAL laboratory’s, he quickly became a fan favourite for his quirky level designs and cute characters, such as the loveable Kirby and his Dreamworld, and his work on the Earthbound series. He assisted in the development of Pokemon Gold and Silver with Nintendo, and aided with programming Pokemon Stadium.
Iwata joined Nintendo in 2000 and succeeded to president in 2002, following the resignation of Hiroshi Yamauchi, and was the first not to be related to the family. He oversaw Nintendo’s transition into a more handheld focused company, with Iwata pushing development of both the DS and 3DS, while also standing by with the recent troubles with Wii-U sales. He was also the driving force behind the Nintendo Direct series, and then stepping away from large conferences at E3 and other conventions.
Puppet Iwata seen at E3 2015
Following the news of his passing, the flags outside Nintendo’s headquarters were lowered to half mast, and members of the games industry have expressed their sadness including Sony president Shuhei Yoshida stated “He has given a great contribution to the development of the gaming industry. I will pray for Iwata’s soul”
He will be greatly missed