Nikkei is reporting that the longest running president of Nintendo Co. Ltd. (1949-2002) has died today of pneumonia. He was 85 years old.

Hiroshi Yamauchi is the man behind Nintendo’s diversification away from being just a traditional card maker. Businesses such as a taxi company, love hotels and even fast food didn’t fare well almost bankrupting the company until Yamauchi spotted the talented Gunpei Yokoi and his toy inventions.These were a great success for the company and following the emergence of electronics in home entertainment products, which Yamauchi was keeping a keen eye on, the eventual development of the successful Color TV Game 6, arcade games such as Radar Scope and Donkey Kong as well as the Game & Watch series put Nintendo on the road to where we find it today.

Yamauchi stepped down as president in 2002 following the launch of Nintendo Gamecube. He became chairman of the board of directors until 2005. He refused to accept his pension, valued at approximately 9-14 million US dollars, when he left saying that Nintendo could put the money to better use. He was the largest shareholder of Nintendo and was crowned the 12th richest man in Japan and donated 7.5 billion yen to build a cancer treatment centre in Kyoto in 2010.

Yamauchi leaves behind a wife and three children.

The History of Nintendo!

~The First 90 Years~

‘Hoy, small fry! Wander here, ready to celebrate Nintendo’s 125th Anniversary by walking through their vast history and looking at some of the games, products, and ideas that brought them to where they are today. In fact, I’m going to be showing you all 125 of Nintendo’s products, about five per day for the next five weeks, from their humble beginnings to their opulent present. Today is all about the Nintendo before they started making games; we have about 90 years worth to look at, so let’s not waste any time!

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Hiroshi Yamauchi, the man that made Nintendo what it is today, passes away

Nintendo as you probably know wasn’t always in the video game business. Yamauchi diversified Nintendo’s manufacturing base to include more than just hanafuda cards. He introduced toys, electronics, and ultimately video games turning Nintendo into a billion dollar enterprise. 

He hired Gunpei Yokoi who approached him when he was only a janitor with his ideas for new products. Yokoi would then go on to develop the Game and Watch, the Gameboy, and produce classics like Metroid and Kid Icarus. He also hired Shigeru Miyamoto, who came up with, well, everything else. 

This much is certain: without Yamauchi, the Nintendo you know of would not be around today. He left behind a massive legacy as a titan of industry. And among fans like myself, he will certainly be missed. [❤]

Hiroshi Yamauchi Passes Away

November 7, 1927 – September 19, 2013

Hiroshi Yamauchi took Nintendo, a small card-making company, and attempted to expanded the brand in various markets. Yamauchi found little success until the company began focusing on the toy market. 

As the company began incorporating electronics into their product line- Yamauchi turned to one of their early artists, Shigeru Miyamoto, to create a game to break into the US market. That game resulted in the original Donkey Kong. 

With that breakout hit, Nintendo continued their focus on electronic gaming and grew under Yamauchi’s guidance. Under his presidency of the company Nintendo released the NES, SNES, N64, Gamecube, Gameboy, and Virtual Boy. Resulting multi-billion dollar video game company with a vast array of characters and franchises known throughout the world today. 

(NY Times Article)


Hiroshi Yamauchi, November 7, 1927 - September 19, 2013

Hiroshi Yamauchi was the former president of Nintendo and was the man responsible for the many Nintendo consoles we’ve grown up with. He set the company in the direction it continues to follow to this day, a video game company. He, with help of others such as Miyamoto, revolutionized the world of gaming with the many familiar faces the world knows and loves. Games that make us smile, games that tell stories that we never forget, games that teach us to be brave in the face of danger, or to never give up even when the challenge seems impossible. Games that continue to live on in revolutionary new forms in the consoles we play today! This man made history turning what was once a simple card company, into the world’s most famous video game company. We will never forget you and the wonderful childhoods you’ve help us have, so here’s to you, Yamauchi. May you forever rest in peace.

~Leave luck to heaven…

Hiroshi Yamauchi, former president of Nintendo and the man credited with transforming Nintendo from a trading card manufacturer to the video game power house it is today, has passed away at the age of 85. Mr. Yamauchi ran the company from 1949 to 2002 and spearheaded the movement that brought us such memorable games as Donkey Kong, Super Mario, Legend of Zelda, and Starfox. R.I.P. Mr. Yamauchi. You will be missed.


Fallece Hiroshi Yamauchi, ex presidente de Nintendo que llevó al éxito a la compañía.

Convirtió a Nintendo, una empresa que fabricaba barajas de cartas, en un gigante de los videojuegos, entregando clásicos que acompañaron la infancia de millones. Se mantuvo a la cabeza de la compañía hasta 2002. Falleció este jueves de neumonía a los 85 años.