He's one of the most influential and well-known game designers in the industry, but Miyamoto's approach to game design has changed in recent years
The New York Times has published a glowing article on the "Walt Disney of the digital generation," Nintendo's video game legend Shigeru Miyamoto. The piece details his start in the video game business, his recent work (such as Wii Fit) and how he's changed.
Although Miyamoto's name has become one of the few in the video game industry to actually reach the mainstream (he came in first on the Time 100), the creator of Mario and Donkey Kong isn't one to seek out the spotlight. All he cares about is that Nintendo thrives. "What's important is that the people that I work with are also recognized and that it's the Nintendo brand that goes forward and continues to become strong and popular," he said when asked about comparisons to Walt Disney. He added, "And if people are going to consider the Nintendo brand as being on the same level as the Disney brand, that's very flattering and makes me happy to hear."
Miyamoto also reflected on how he's changed as a designer in recent years. "I would say that over the last five years or so, the types of games I create has changed somewhat," he said. "Whereas before I could kind of use my own imagination to create these worlds or create these games, I would say that over the last five years I've had more of a tendency to take interests or topics in my life and try to draw the entertainment out of that."
Certainly with games like Pikmin (inspired by his love of gardening), Nintendogs (inspired by his family getting a dog) or Wii Fit (inspired by his own recent weight obsession), his change in game design philosophy is quite evident.