Nintendo President Satoru Iwata recently said at the B Dash Camp startup conference in Osaka that his predecessor, Hiroshi Yamauchi, used to tell him that failure should not be a concern when taking risks and that is what Iwata says guided Nintendo when they brought Pokemon to the US.
“When we talk about Nintendo we cannot ignore (former president) Hiroshi Yamauchi who just recently passed away.
“He always said that if you have failure, you don’t need to be too concerned. You always have good things and bad, and this reflects the history of Nintendo. If you do the same thing as others, it will wear you out. Nintendo is not good at competing so we always have to challenge [the status quo] by making something new, rather than competing in an existing market.”
Iwata then discussed that Nintendo was warned that bringing Pokemon to the US would be a failure: “Will America accept cute monsters?” Iwata asked. “No, they said. Some people even recommended to make Pikachu more muscular.
“If we followed their advice Pokemon would never have been the success that it was. Brain Training software (Brain Age) became a hit in Japan, and I proposed that we sell it globally. And even as I said that as the president, no one listened.”