Devon Day: Reflecting on the Passing of Satoru Iwata

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Written by Devon Day


Greetings fellow readers! Devon here, bringing you my tribute of an innovator, a legend, and a great man; Mr. Satoru Iwata. That out of the way, let’s get started.

When I first heard of Iwata-Sensei, I really did not thinkof much of him at the time. Sure, I did hear of him regarding a certain game that would help me later on, but at the time, said name really meant little to me. After obtaining my PlayStation 3, I caught wind of his name once again. Naturally, as an adolescent, I had wondered who was this man and why was he continually mentioned. Soon after, one of my friends showed me one of Nintendo’s newest products: The Nintendo Dual Screen Handheld (DS as you may know it). At first, it looked quite odd. “Two screens on a handheld?”, I thought to myself. “Would it work?” Then, my friend showed me a game I had missed on the Nintendo 64: Super Mario DS. Playing near identical as the original, I knew I wasn’t missing out on said title this time. That being said, my journey towards knowing Iwata-Sensei began.

After saving up tons of money and obtaining good grades, the DS Lite would be mine on a cool crisp December 25 of 2007. At first, I was ecstatic. Having the successor to the DS was already a treat; getting the elusive Super Mario 64 in a remaster doubly so. Many long days were stretched as I figured out each level, stage, and challenge. However, as I was playing said game on an awesome system, one thing struck out to me. “If a person with a collective group of people made a great system, wouldn’t it be best to know more about him?” At that point, during the early days of January, I had toughed it out against chilly and snowy conditions to research who Iwata-Sensei was. His back story was quite interesting for me. Having owned the remastered variant of a game he helped developed was already a surprise for me. However, such research would help pave the way for much of my gaming hobby later on down the road; discovering games like Ballon Boy, the Kirby Series, and a game of a series I received in late January known as Pokémon. As time continued, not only would learning more about Iwata-Sensei help me learn more about games, this also gave me more appreciation for the developers and publishers of the games that I was playing; prompting me to research those as well. After getting a Wii later on in 2009, I had, for the first time, knew I was having some real fun with games like Super Mario Galaxy (even though my Call of Duty fix wasn’t satisfied at the time). All in all, the more I learned about Iwata and Nintendo, the more I appreciated others work.


Years would go by before I considered getting either a 3DS or Wii U. I didn’t have enough money like I did back in 2007-2010 to get myself many Nintendo products. However, while I coupe not get them, I did encounter a person who would later befriend me who did have both the Wii U and 3DS. While I only have played Pokemon X sparingly on the 3DS, my first game on the Wii U was the same series  I had received on the GameCube: Super Smash Bros. Naturally, being a rebel, my main character was Sonic (Gotta go fast!!). Having read about their rivalry, I still found it odd to see the blue blur again; even though I first saw him in Brawl. Either way, I do remember having a good time playing the game. Most importantly, Iwata-Sensei had helped delivered another grand slam console in my book. However, one game that I had always wanted to play always eluded me… until that day. Shortly after smashing things up, I had asked my friend if he had a game called “EarthBound.” To my astonishment, he indeed did. After some minor technical issues, I had finally got to play the game I had wanted to enjoy for over a decade, and I have to say, it was a decade worth waiting for. Everything caught my attention, even down to the wonderful cartoon esque pixel art. Knowing beforehand Iwata-Sensei had helped develop the game, my respect and admiration for him grew exponentially; an experience I will never forget.

This now concludes my tribute to Iwata-Sensei. Hearing the news this morning made me sick to my stomach; so much so I requested to postpone my interview for my new job. Multiple tissues lay beside my bed and many memories etched into my brain. That being said, he brought the power to Nintendo: Nintendo Power that is.

With that out of the way, what was your first Nintendo game that Iwata-Sensei was involved with? What did you like most about Iwata-Sensei? What would have been your final words to Iwata-Sensei had you knew today was his last day? Once again, thank you very much for reading! This has been a special tribute brought to you by the fellow writers of Blast Away The Game Review.

Rest In Peace Satori Iwata. You may be gone, but the memories and moments you shared with us all will never be forgotten.

Sunrise: December 6, 1959  // Sunset: July 11, 2015


Satoru Iwata, Former CEO of Nintendo

About the Writer:

Devon_Day_BATGRA man growing up between the gaming boundaries on the 5th generation N64, but admiring the 3rd gen. NES and 4th generation Sega Genesis for their contributions, he always has something on his mind regarding video games and acessories. His first was a microphone for N64 for “Hey You, Pikachu!”, but expanded towards the next line up of gaming peripherals including the Astro A40, MadCatz MLG Pro Circiut Controller, MadCatz STRIKE 7, and many other gadgets. Now loving gaming tech more than ever, he sees this generation crucial to bring the full circle of social connectivity that the 8th generation of consoles have.

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