Satoru Iwata's Presence Was Sorely Missed by the Zelda: Breath of the Wild Developers

Satoru Iwata's Presence Was Sorely Missed by the Zelda: Breath of the Wild Developers

The team was excited to share new ideas with Iwata, only to realize they couldn't.

The New Yorker's Simon Parkin recently published an interesting breakdown of the development process for The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. Though it's a brief piece, we learn a little more about Nintendo's decision to go open-world with its beloved series.

There's one passage that's a bit of a heart-breaker, however: Breath of the Wild's director, Hidemaro Fujibayashi, told Parkin that there were several moments when the team wanted to share their development progress with former Nintendo President Satoru Iwata, only to remember he was gone.

Editor's pick

The Video Game Industry Remembers Satoru Iwata

"[M]idway through production, Satoru Iwata, Miyamoto’s friend and mentor and Nintendo’s well-loved president, died, suddenly and unexpectedly. 'When he passed away, there were moments we'd come up with an idea which we'd be excited to talk to Iwata about,' Fujibayashi told me. 'Then we'd remember he was no longer here.'

"'Miyamoto told me it was the same for him. He'd come up with an idea at the weekend and would feel excited to speak to Iwata about it on Monday, only to remember. The sadness runs deep. This is approaching spiritual talk, but we had the sense that he was watching over our work. That became a source of motivation, a drive for us to improve and be better.'"

The fact that Breath of the Wild's development team was "excited" to share their ideas with Iwata, even though they sadly couldn't, speaks to how much love Iwata had for games, and how much Nintendo's other developers revered him. No doubt he'd be very happy with Breath of the Wild's accolades.

Sometimes we include links to online retail stores. If you click on one and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. See our terms & conditions.

Nadia Oxford

Staff Writer

Nadia has been writing about games for so long, only the wind and the rain (or the digital facsimiles thereof) remember her true name. She's written for Nerve, About.com, Gamepro, IGN, 1UP, PlayStation Official Magazine, and other sites and magazines that sling words about video games. She co-hosts the Axe of the Blood God podcast, where she mostly screams about Dragon Quest.

Related articles

Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat Out of Evo Online Over Recent Allegations [Update]

As more withdraw from Evo Online, two major players won't be present.

Ubisoft CEO Promises "Profound Changes" at Company After Accounts of Systemic Abuse

Yves Guillemot says Ubisoft is "not looking for a quick fix" to its reportedly toxic culture.

Madden 21's Devs Have Heard Fan Outcry and Are "Bolstering Plans to Support Franchise"

"We see your fix Madden Franchise tweets and we understand your frustration," executive producer Seann Graddy says.

Evo President Goes On Leave as Wave of Abuse Allegations Hit Fighting Game Community [Update]

In light of the past day's events, some top players are also stepping away from Evo Online.

You may also like

What Game Would You Like to See As a TV Show?

COMMUNITY QUESTION | With the new Fallout TV show announcement, let's dream up other game adaptations.

TimeSplitters at 20: How the Cult Classic Series Laid the Groundwork for Modern Hero Shooters

For TimeSplitters's 20th anniversary this year, we talk to David Doak about creating the seminal shooter.

Scarlet Nexus's Developers Talk About Bandai Namco's Next-Gen RPG: "Action Elements are a Must"

The "brainpowered" action game isn't losing its narrative roots in the process.