RIP Hiroshi Yamauchi

My husband and son are currently on the couch playing Super Luigi U right now instead of doing something more productive like working or reading or resting. My husband’s comment when he turned it on, “I am playing out of respect. Yamauchi passed away today.” And I immediately understood.

Hirochi Yamauchi was the President of Nintendo Company Limited. He was the one responsible for changing the company’s business model from making Pachinko games to the Famicom, as it was known in Japan, and the Nintendo Entertainment System as it was known elsewhere in the world.

I have read a few biographies about him and he was a brilliant businessman that had the foresight to see that the Video Game Industry could become what it is today.

And, I still respect him, even if he was the owner of the rival Seattle Mariners. Actually, I respect him for that too. He put up the money to buy the team and keep it in Seattle even at a time when many Americans were horrified at the thought of a Japanese company owning anything here in the US, particularly something as American as a Major League Baseball team. Many saw it as a slap in the face to the country. The reality was Nintendo of America was headquartered in Seattle and he saw it as a way to help the town, and probably as a sound business investment as well.

So, Yamauchi-san, thank you for the years of entertainment you have provided to my family through the years. Rest in Peace.

My son’s drawing of Rock Candy Mines from the latest Nintendo game.

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