Special feature in TIME: Shigeru Miyamoto answers 10 Questions from fans

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ASK_Story

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#1 ASK_Story
Member since 2006 • 11455 Posts

http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1645158-1,00.html

The father of modern video gaming, he created iconic characters like Mario and Donkey Kong. His latest big hit is the Nintendo Wii game system. Shigeru Miyamoto will now take your questions.

Do you think the success of the Wii--an interactive system that emphasizes physical activity--will change the gaming culture? -Will Chung, TAIPEI
I hope that in 10 years people will look back and see both the Wii and Nintendo DS [a handheld system] as devices that helped redefine what a video game is--if you can even call it a video game.

Are you happy that the Wii is seen as a form of exercise? -Jonah Eaton, LAUREL, MD.
While working on Wii Fit [a new exercise game with a balance board for yoga and other activities], we got letters from fans who wanted some type of exercise program. We were very happy to see that response from consumers, but it also put a bit of pressure on us to try to get it completed.

What do you say to the gamers who accuse Nintendo of catering to the casual gamer and not the hard-core gamer? -Sean Rhodes, AURORA, COLO.
At E3 [a gaming trade show], I was a little concerned about defining people as a hard-core gamer vs. a casual gamer. But there are hard-core gamers who play a lot of casual games. Nintendo's focus is to break down the barriers between those two groups and consider everyone just gamers.

Are any of your games, like The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, meant to send important messages, or are they just supposed to be fun? -Matt Perry, LONDON
When I create a game, I try to focus more on the emotions that the player experiences during the game play. But in the case of the Zelda games, the producer puts some messages about good and evil into the game.

Many criticize the reuse of franchises like Mario. Do you prefer to create new characters or work with old ones? -Shabaab Kamal, BETHESDA, MD.
I try not so much to create new characters and worlds but to create new game-play experiences. If a new experience is better suited to a new type of character or world than one of our existing franchises, then we might create a new character or world around it.

What one game has revolutionized the industry? -Lucas Ross, SHOREVIEW, MINN.
Space Invaders. Before I saw it, I was never particularly interested in video games and certainly never thought I would make video games.

Do you think violent or explicit games can negatively influence young children? -Reinhart Klein, SEATTLE
The obvious objective of video games is to entertain people by surprising them with new experiences. Violence is one means of doing that, [though] I look to make people laugh or smile. But the more we have parents playing video games themselves, the more they will understand the interactive world and how to deal with games that have a tremendous amount of violence.

How do you see video games evolving in the future? -Dave Barnhardt, FORT ERIE, ONT.
In the past, video games had a more relevant place in pop culture. What we are trying to achieve with devices like Wii and Nintendo DS is bring gaming back to that relevant role not only in pop culture but also in society in general.

What advice do you have for aspiring video-game designers? -William Abeel, FREEHOLD, N.J.
The most important thing is to create--when I was young, I made comics and puppets. Then take those creations and show them to people so you get feedback. Whether it is positive feedback or even if they make fun of it, repeating that process is a good thing for being prepared to make games.

Are video games something we should grow out of? Are you still a kid at heart? -Christopher Solis, SAN FRANCISCO
I think that inside every adult is the heart of a child. We just gradually convince ourselves that we have to act more like adults. Nintendo wants to make it easier for people to never grow out of video games.

You stated in an interview with Business Week that you wanted the Wii to cost $100--instead of $250. Any chance we will see the price drop? -Toss Condon, Calgary, Canada
Unfortunately, I am not in the position to announce any changes in price, but the truth of the matter is that technology is something that gets more inexpensive over time.

In most games, the female is the one being rescued. But in Metroid, the main character was female. Is Nintendo trying to make games more appealing to female players? -Rosendo Leon, Vista, California
I wasn't the one who created Metroid, but I have long been interested in games with females playing the lead role and I think we will continue to see more. Nintendo doesn't try to focus on games that specifically appeal to females-we just try to create games with a universal appeal.

Who is your favorite video game character? Are any based on yourself, even a little? -Deanna Trevethan, York, Pennsylvania
That is a difficult question because I don't really have a favorite-though I have been making Mario for a very long time. I guess it is possible that I put some of my own personality into him.

When you have free time, do you play video games yourself? Do you have a favorite? -Brett Arlotti, Tokyo
I spend so much time working on video games that I don't have a lot of free time to devote to actually playing them. I have been having so much fun working on Wii Fit and Super Mario Galaxy that right now those are my favorite.

Sony and Microsoft have always been stiff competitors. What's Nintendo's game plan for dealing with this? -Daniel Wang, Beijing
I always get asked that question, but the fact of the matter is that we don't really view them as competition. The biggest challenges are keeping games relevant to society and trying to expand the way people can enjoy them. That is why this time we have chosen a very different path from those two companies. It is not about competition, it is about making fun and entertaining experiences that everyone can enjoy.

What did you aspire to as a child, or as a young adult? -Casey Jamieson, Huntington, Vermont
When I first entered Nintendo they weren't even making video games, I joined [the company] thinking that I was going to do product planning. Shortly after, Space Invaders came out and I thought that might be something I might want to do. Actually, when I was younger I wanted to be a puppeteer.

As High-Definition adoption becomes mainstream over the next few years, how does Nintendo plan to compete in this new market? -Wes Schiel, Atlanta, Georgia
Clearly people are adopting HD and I think over time that will be something we will start to look at. We felt that with this generation, what was far more important was making a hardware system that was approachable-something people could look at and say, 'I want this in my home. It is small, quiet and intuitive and I know how to use it.' As HD adoption rates increase, it is likely that we may start looking at that in the future.

The Legend of Zelda has enough potential to be the greatest video game based movie of all time. Could we see Link on the big screen in the future? -Jason Zarrilli, Huntsville, Alabama
[Laughs] That is a question that always comes up. We have been approached by people before and we have thought about potential ways that it could happen. But I struggle with the Hollywood process. So it is just a question of whether or not we can find something down the road that will meet our desires.

So, a Zelda movie is a possibility. Potential to surpass Lord of the Rings as the greatest fantasy/adventure films of all-time, IF Zelda was made into a movie?

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Angry_Beaver

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#2 Angry_Beaver
Member since 2003 • 4883 Posts
Great Q&A! The only thing I worry about is software variety.
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ThaSod

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#3 ThaSod
Member since 2007 • 1207 Posts
Legend of Zelda movie could be as popular as the Final Fantasy Movie!
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gaminggeek

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#4 gaminggeek
Member since 2003 • 14223 Posts

Heyyou missed the other questions...

Question 11:

"Do you ever let Aonuma out of his zelda making cage?"

Answer: "Only to pee."

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creepy_mike

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#5 creepy_mike
Member since 2007 • 1092 Posts

Excellent Q&A. Thanks for sharing!

Legend of Zelda movie could be as popular as the Final Fantasy Movie!ThaSod

Which one?

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Archangel3371

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#6 Archangel3371  Online
Member since 2004 • 38959 Posts

Great Q & A there.

A Zelda movie would probably be very cool.

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rzepak

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#7 rzepak
Member since 2005 • 5758 Posts
The only way a Zelda movie would be good is if it starred an adult Link. I hate child actors, they suck and everyone knows it, there are expections but for the most part its like the little girl screaming Silent Hill in the movie...that made me cringe and run for the remote.
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ASK_Story

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#8 ASK_Story
Member since 2006 • 11455 Posts

The only way a Zelda movie would be good is if it starred an adult Link. I hate child actors, they suck and everyone knows it, there are expections but for the most part its like the little girl screaming Silent Hill in the movie...that made me cringe and run for the remote.rzepak

Unless it's a trilogy...but in this one, the kid won't turn to the Darkside. ;)

All kidding aside, starting out as a child Link is a must because that's how Zelda started. It's justa big part of the entire Zelda legacy so taking that out would be blasphemy!

It would work out as a trilogy. They need ideas to fill out three films so starting out as a child would be great. The second one will be him going back in time, shifting from a child to adult, and than the final one will be ALL Link as a adult making sweet, sweet love to Zelda. :D

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shinian

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#9 shinian
Member since 2005 • 6871 Posts
Nice QA. Though I would like to see some more straight forward answers about games for hardcore players.
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lordlors

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#10 lordlors
Member since 2004 • 6128 Posts
Nice Q&A. Thanks.
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#11 azad_champ
Member since 2005 • 3482 Posts
I was dissapointed with the answer of the casual and hardcore gamers. Basically he was saying: "If we don't offer hardcore games then they'll eventually play casual games". As a hardcore gamer I have difficulties finding myself or any other hardcore gamer to enjoy Wii Fit and Brain Training just as much as enjoyed Metroid Prime and Zelda.
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yodariquo

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#12 yodariquo
Member since 2005 • 6631 Posts
I count 18 questions >_>