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Nintendo President Satoru Iwata Passes Away at 55

We’ve learned some deeply unfortunate news: Nintendo’s president, Satoru Iwata, has passed away at the age of 55.

Nintendo confirmed the news in a press release:

Nintendo Co., Ltd. deeply regrets to announce that President Satoru Iwata passed away on July 11, 2015 due to a bile duct growth.

For those who haven’t been following the Nintendo boss and his personal health, he was forced to skip last year’s E3 because of his health. He went into surgery shortly thereafter to remove the bile duct growth. Things seemed ok at the time, and he returned to work shortly afterwards.

Iwata was first hired at Nintendo during the 1980s, in which he worked on various games like EarthBound and even Kirby’s Adventure. He eventually became director in the year 2000, and finally became the fourth president of Nintendo, in 2002.

satoru iwata 07-12-15-2

Satoru Iwata, when he first joined HAL Laboratory full-time, in the 1980’s.

Our best wishes go out to Iwata’s family and friends.

,
Brandon Orselli

About

Owner and Publisher at Niche Gamer and Nicchiban. Outlaw fighting for a better game industry. Pronouns: Patriarch, Guido, Olive.




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70 comments
  1. Paige
    Paige
    July 12, 2015 at 8:14 pm

    :(

  2. San Marino
    San Marino
    July 12, 2015 at 8:21 pm

    This is not quality.

  3. InfectedAI
    InfectedAI
    July 12, 2015 at 8:21 pm

    I’m in shock. I didn’t see this coming at all. I thought he was doing better. He was a brilliant programmer I looked up to and I loved seeing him in Nintendo Directs. He was the face of the company to me. And at 55. I hope his family, friends, and everyone at Nintendo pull together to get through this loss.

  4. Wonderkarp
    Wonderkarp
    July 12, 2015 at 8:22 pm

    I’m just going to drink some alcohol from my NES flask and lament…

  5. Alexis Nascimento-Lajoie
    Alexis Nascimento-Lajoie
    July 12, 2015 at 8:23 pm

    Fuck

  6. deadeye
    deadeye
    July 12, 2015 at 8:23 pm

    FUCK

  7. ConnorORT
    ConnorORT
    July 12, 2015 at 8:24 pm

    Very sad. Rest In Peace, and thank you for all the good Nintendo memories.

  8. blackice85
    blackice85
    July 12, 2015 at 8:24 pm

    I’m surprised too. I hadn’t been closely following news of his health, so I had no idea it was this serious. Like you said, at 55 it was too early for me to think about him passing. Very sad.

  9. Dom The Elegy
    Dom The Elegy
    July 12, 2015 at 8:25 pm

    What the hell is it with 2015 and killing nerd icons?

  10. Karo
    Karo
    July 12, 2015 at 8:25 pm

    What the fuck is the point of living in this world if Iwata is not in it?

  11. perfectchaos83
    perfectchaos83
    July 12, 2015 at 8:26 pm

    This… This came from out of fucking nowhere. I may not of cared for his recent decisions at Nintendo, but the company sure did benefit from his Career…

    Good night, sweet prince.

  12. Wonderkarp
    Wonderkarp
    July 12, 2015 at 8:27 pm

    Satoru Iwata, Robin Williams, Leonard Nimoy, James Horner, Christopher Lee, Dusty Rhodes, the King of Cartoons….Its Bullshit

  13. JustaGuest
    JustaGuest
    July 12, 2015 at 8:28 pm

    Time to binge on Balloon Fight and remember his legacy….

  14. sanic
    sanic
    July 12, 2015 at 8:29 pm

    Brilliant creator and business man always thinking about long term growth and focused on what’s best for the consumer not what can make a quick buck.

    Irreplaceable.

  15. BattlerArisato
    BattlerArisato
    July 12, 2015 at 8:29 pm

    you were big man, you will be remembered soldier, as long as I keep breathing and the gaming community is alive, you will be remembered.

  16. Unmotivated
    Unmotivated
    July 12, 2015 at 8:33 pm

    >no more Iwata Asks
    fuck

  17. No_Good_Names_Ever
    No_Good_Names_Ever
    July 12, 2015 at 8:36 pm

    I hope whoever becomes head is just as good if not better since I bet there’s a lot of people who wanna try to replicate Sony and Microsoft. Hope he’s happy in his next life or whatever happens after death.

  18. Derek
    Derek
    July 12, 2015 at 8:42 pm

    Meanwhile, Fish, Totilo, Ramsay’s actor still lives.

  19. Derek
    Derek
    July 12, 2015 at 8:43 pm

    Because grimdark is winning, embrace your future of Kevin Spacey, GRRM, ISIS and horrible things happening to good people

  20. Landale
    Landale
    July 12, 2015 at 8:44 pm

    It might not have been too serious, initially, to be honest. Odds are he slipped up in the recovery process. You feel fine, maybe you don’t do what you’re supposed to for just a day or two, that’s all it takes sometimes for shit to come back worse. That’s why doctors will give you hell for not using antibiotics right, for example.

  21. RetroGamer
    RetroGamer
    July 12, 2015 at 8:54 pm

    Damn. In this day and age, that’s way too young to go.

  22. Hawk Hopper
    Hawk Hopper
    July 12, 2015 at 8:54 pm

    RIP, Mr. Iwata. Thank you for everything.

  23. tetrisdork
    tetrisdork
    July 12, 2015 at 9:01 pm

    That was unexpected. And fucking sucks.

  24. FirstLine
    FirstLine
    July 12, 2015 at 9:02 pm

    wow, that’s crazy young. RIP.

  25. chizwoz
    chizwoz
    July 12, 2015 at 9:11 pm

    Well fuck that!

  26. Syndromic
    Syndromic
    July 12, 2015 at 9:12 pm

    Damn too early. R.I.P

  27. Neojames82
    Neojames82
    July 12, 2015 at 9:13 pm

    It is a bit of a sad day for Nintendo indeed, you will be missed Mr. Iwata.

    And just to show how much this site actually has some damn integrity about this, unlike some other kinds of sites……

    https://twitter.com/ManaByte/status/620390567399198720

  28. DanTheMan
    DanTheMan
    July 12, 2015 at 9:25 pm

    R.I.P

    You will be sorely missed.

  29. Master Bating
    Master Bating
    July 12, 2015 at 9:31 pm

    I tried to understand everything

    But this…this I cannot…

    Good Night Iwata

  30. Muten
    Muten
    July 12, 2015 at 9:32 pm

    I undertand now, the hole you left inside me.

  31. DariusQ
    DariusQ
    July 12, 2015 at 9:33 pm

    Fucking tools. That’s more than a little disrespectful.

  32. DariusQ
    DariusQ
    July 12, 2015 at 9:34 pm

    RIP Iwata-san.

  33. PleaseHelpMe
    PleaseHelpMe
    July 12, 2015 at 9:35 pm

    R.I.P :(

  34. Landale
    Landale
    July 12, 2015 at 9:42 pm

    No one has an archive of it that I’ve seen. It’s considered to be fake for now.
    However they are doing something to fuck with Google to make it look like they were the first by over half a day to report on this and that much can be confirmed.

    https://archive.is/F45j4
    https://archive.is/vBjyC

    8 PM, somehow 13 hours ago.

  35. Ippiki Okami
    Ippiki Okami
    July 12, 2015 at 9:54 pm

    Satoru Iwata was always a developer and business man that I admired. RIP :(

  36. Fenrir7
    Fenrir7
    July 12, 2015 at 9:58 pm

    God damnit!!

  37. Brandon Orselli
    Brandon Orselli
    July 12, 2015 at 10:05 pm

    Yep, and I can’t stop crying. Combination of Iwata passing and me feeling old, now.

  38. Mighty No. 56008
    Mighty No. 56008
    July 12, 2015 at 10:05 pm

    Rest in peace Mr. Iwata. I’ll be holding my New 3DS a little tighter tonight.

  39. FalseTragedian
    FalseTragedian
    July 12, 2015 at 10:16 pm

    The aggregate skill of the world’s programmers just tanked.

    RIP one of the greatest men in gaming.

  40. Tromboner
    Tromboner
    July 12, 2015 at 10:40 pm

    Far too young to lose such an incredible developer. The world of games just got a little less bright.

  41. Fenrir007
    Fenrir007
    July 12, 2015 at 10:47 pm

    Truly a sad day for us all. Rest well, Mr. Iwata. You deserve it.

  42. Holyfox25
    Holyfox25
    July 12, 2015 at 10:56 pm

    RIP Satoru Iwata.

  43. Tyrannikos
    Tyrannikos
    July 12, 2015 at 11:01 pm

    Honestly, I’m kind of in shock. I knew his health was bad, but for some reason, I just thought he’d be okay. Rest in peace, Mr. Iwata.

  44. PenguinPlayer
    PenguinPlayer
    July 12, 2015 at 11:05 pm

    You go living your life, one day at a time, thinking they will live forever and then this happens.

    I will never be able to understand. RIP

  45. tccboss
    tccboss
    July 12, 2015 at 11:08 pm

    Rip Iwata you had helped with so many games I never knew until now which makes me a little more sad.

  46. Nonscpo
    Nonscpo
    July 12, 2015 at 11:21 pm

    Those are some of the manliest tears you’ve got there!

  47. Obbliglol
    Obbliglol
    July 12, 2015 at 11:35 pm

    Fucking cancer, man. It’s evil. Age 55. RIP Iwata, lotta people around my age are going to wake up to a slightly colder world tomorrow. You kinda made some of our childhoods.

  48. Eldhin Hellknight
    Eldhin Hellknight
    July 12, 2015 at 11:53 pm

    What!?…. well, that was really unexpected

  49. Jack Ripper
    Jack Ripper
    July 12, 2015 at 11:58 pm

    Oh wow. That’s fucking awful.

    Couldn’t have said 亡くなりました instead of just saying 死んだ huh. That’s the difference between respect and integrity.

  50. Jack Ripper
    Jack Ripper
    July 13, 2015 at 12:03 am

    Wow his death came out of nowhere.

    RIP President Iwata.

  51. Steven T.
    Steven T.
    July 13, 2015 at 12:09 am

    So I take a brief evening nap, just to wake up to this… I did no expect this at all. And just weeks after E3 too…

  52. deadeye
    deadeye
    July 13, 2015 at 12:40 am

    This is confirmed to be fake, just so everyone knows.

  53. Zombie_Barioth
    Zombie_Barioth
    July 13, 2015 at 12:56 am

    Its possible he pushed himself too hard at work. He might have felt “fine” enough to work, so he did, and it took a toll on his health.

    That’s assuming his health wasn’t much worse than he or Nintendo let on. It wouldn’t do to have fans nor investors knowing of his condition, for both personal and business reasons.

    That being said, its always shocking when somebody passes so suddenly. I don’t think its something anybody gets used to. At least any pain he may have been in is over with now. I hope both he and his family find peace.

  54. Dogbot3000
    Dogbot3000
    July 13, 2015 at 1:06 am

    A beloved icon, to both machine and man; to pixel and soul alike.
    The world shall forever miss his whimsy, his intelligence, his compassion, and his love for a craft that many of us hold dear.

    Rest
    well President Iwata, you have done a many great services to this world and the
    many you have helped create and deserve peace. May your legacy be
    remembered forever.

  55. Nad Nod
    Nad Nod
    July 13, 2015 at 1:50 am

    geez that rude

  56. Steven T.
    Steven T.
    July 13, 2015 at 2:10 am

    I’ve been watching this keynote when writing my own article. Interesting to see the beginnings of where he would eventually take Nintendo as president. This is also where his “I am a gamer” quote comes from.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w9HUMt2rrOI

  57. 2501
    2501
    July 13, 2015 at 4:16 am

    I don’t care that anyone says, Iwata was a great CEO. He wasn’t just some suit, he knew how to program games and he showed allot of passion for this medium.

    It’s a real shame that he is gone.

  58. Wand
    Wand
    July 13, 2015 at 4:39 am

    We understand, but now’s too late. Jokes aside, RIP Satoru, your products and ideas shaped a big part of me

  59. Minohoro
    Minohoro
    July 13, 2015 at 5:33 am

    This is a sad day. I may not have known him personally, nor have played much that he’s made, but he was a big part of nintendo that deserves to be remembered. My condolences to his family and co-workers. RIP

  60. JackDandy
    JackDandy
    July 13, 2015 at 7:14 am

    Damned shame. Seemed like a great guy, and a great president.

  61. Nagato
    Nagato
    July 13, 2015 at 7:54 am

    It’s pretty surreal to realize how Iwata passed on not even two years after Yamauchi, a shame he didn’t retire when his health problems started so he could’ve lived at least some time in relative peace and quiet like his predecessor did.

  62. Neojames82
    Neojames82
    July 13, 2015 at 12:55 pm

    Well, guess in Polygon isn’t THAT incompetent. Though lord knows I would not have been surprised if it was true.

  63. Juhata
    Juhata
    July 13, 2015 at 1:13 pm

    I have never played Nintendo games until recently, but I have always respected them because they were an icon of games being true to the fact that they’re games. Looking at the games that Iwata worked and looking at his attitude towards games, even I feel like we lost one of the best in this industry. Directs were always entertaining to see as well; I’ll find it hard to see Directs without Iwata now.
    It’s a damn shame, really. I didn’t expect him to go so soon.

  64. MusouTensei
    MusouTensei
    July 13, 2015 at 1:52 pm

    I will miss him :(
    R.I.P.

  65. MaidKillua
    MaidKillua
    July 13, 2015 at 3:07 pm

    Directs won’t be the same. Rest in peace

  66. Lex
    Lex
    July 13, 2015 at 3:17 pm

    Sad news. 2015 has not been a kind year.

  67. Jesus Zamora
    Jesus Zamora
    July 13, 2015 at 10:26 pm

    Yeah. Seems a bit of a ripoff to die without having ever had a retirement. That said, the dude loved his work, so he probably wouldn’t have been comfortable in retirement.

  68. Tracy Mcdonald
    Tracy Mcdonald
    July 21, 2015 at 7:44 pm