Nintendo president Satoru Iwata dies of bile duct cancer

Sunday night the Kyoto-based company confirmed that Satoru Iwata-san unfortunately had passed away after an extended period of illness. In June last year he had to drop the yearly E3 game expo in Los Angeles as he had to undergo surgery.

In 2002 the previous programmer took the top post of Nintendo just two years after joining the firm. Iwata-san was the first president outside the Yamauchi family since it’s start in the late 19th century. He aimed to reach out to a wider range of potential gamers. This was well achieved through some of Nintendo’s greatest successes, the Wii and the Nintendo DS.

However, there haven’t always been glorious days for Nintendo. Their rivals Sony and Microsoft together with the ever-growing trend towards cheap (or even free) games for smartphones has given Nintendo a hard body blow. In January 2014, Iwata-san announced that he would slice his salary in half after the company recorded a tumble in profits. This action has made him very popular as disappointing financial results often means dismissals and increased pressure on workers
at the bottom of the hierarchy.

News of Iwata-sans death has led to an array of condolences. From Nintendo fans reminiscing over their most rememerable Nintendo moment, to industry executives such as Microsofts Xbox director Mike Ybarra.

Iwata-san, rest in peace.