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Filed under: Industry People, Satoru Iwata, Shigeru Miyamoto, Straight from the Source (Interview), Super Bros. Smash For 3DS, Super Smash Bros. for Wii U, Super Smash Bros. Series

Straight from the Source: Giles Goddard (Former Nintendo Employee, Vitei Games CEO)

Page 1 — The First Foreign Employee of Nintendo
Page 2 — Working on the N64
Page 3 — Snowboarding in 64 Bits
Page 4 — N64DD, Doshin and Prototypes
Page 5 — Rock n’ Roll Wii and VR
Page 6 — Undersea Adventures on the 3DS and Smash
Page 7 — Bringing Tanks Online and Missed Opportunities
Page 8 — The Future of Vitei
Page 9 — Giles, The Enabler
Page 10 — The Future of Vitei and VR

Page 2 — Working on the N64


You originally worked on the SNES, and then eventually onto the N64. You must’ve seen a lot of different prototypes of the N64.

So the N64…it was basically SGI that designed that. SGI at that point, at least in Hollywood, they were the biggest…they were basically like the Apple of the 1997. The prototype machine for the N64 was like a really big fridge. It was really cool seeing that big huge machine shrunk down to this tiny little console. That was my biggest takeaway from that. I had no idea how they were going to do that. What bits they were going to take out, to make that tiny little console…they did it quite well actually.


What did you think of the controller once you got your hands on it?

I loved it actually, it was great. Miyamoto always said in hindsight he wishes he had the D-pad on the right-hand side as well, as that would have given him more options…especially for right and left handed players.


One thing I thought was really interesting about the N64 was the many ways you could hold the controller.

But it wasn’t really left handed friendly.

I’m a left-hander, and I personally didn’t have any issues with it. But I’ve kind of grown accustomed to using my right hand for some things.

The thing in Japan is that you don’t really have left handed people.


Yeah, they get kind of forced into being right handed.

So it’s not really an issue here. [Developers] just don’t really think about it.


I think there was a rumor that the face in Super Mario 64 was inspired by Mario Paint, is that not true?

I don’t think it was inspired by anything. It was just me playing around with the camera on the SGI indie, which was a really cool consumer PC they used to sell. I started adding balls to the face, and I got someone to add a Mario character to kind of control with the balls, and Miyamoto-san saw it and thought it would be pretty cool to add into the game. When was Mario Paint as maybe this was a bit before that?


Mario Paint was released on the SNES, I believe.

Ah okay.

On the next page, we talk about snowboarding in 64 bits.

  1. I fear a fully technologically integrated society. Maybe I just really hate The Matrix films, but the idea of everything running through one device just feels monopolistic and like we’d just be waiting for the end of the world at some point. I’d probably be able to word this better if it wasn’t so late.

    What I do know is what the other second-parties have to say. HAL and GameFreak have been trying to step out of the shadow of Nintendo recently (though the burnt out GameFreak more so). Retro has said… things about working under Tanabe, but Next Level seems to think differently. And then there’s Monster. MonolithSoft seems to be in a good place, and Intelligent Systems can do whatever they want, it seems. I wonder what Treasure’s been up to? I think they were working on something for Capcom last I checked…

    Zeebor on July 3 |
  2. Great interview, PushDustIn! Question: Does the word “vitei” mean anything in Japanese, or sound like a Japanese term?

  3. it is a great interview, hope you can interview more ex nintendo staff soon !

    n128 on July 27 |