The late Nintendo President entrusted the Director with the ambitious project.
All of the Super Smash Bros. games have obviously had a lot of time, thought and heart put into them all the way back to the original game when it launched on the Nintendo 64. But really, Ultimate is something special on another level with its commitment to bringing the entire roster together once again, along with new characters from both budding Nintendo franchises to third party characters from classic Japanese IPs. As it turns out, Director Masahiro Sakurai was on a mission, the last mission given to him by Satoru Iwata.
If you aren’t aware, Satoru Iwata was the former President of Nintendo who died in 2015 after complications with a tumor. He had a massive effect on the direction of the company, creating the Nintendo Direct concept, as well as the driving force between concepts like the Wii, DS and Switch, which helped the Nintendo brand evolve to what it is today. Accepting an award at the Japan Game Awards 2019, Sakurai said that accomplishing the ambition behind Super Smash Bros. Ultimate was Iwata’s final mission he gave to the Director (thanks to PushDustIn for translations).
“I’m sorry for bringing up this personal story at a time like this… but making Smash Bros on the Switch was the last mission the late Satoru Iwata gave to me…. I’ve put my all into the game, and with more DLC I will continue to work hard.”
Iwata is generally remembered fondly in the industry, and it says a lot that Sakurai saw it as a mission to deliver a game that, by all means, probably shouldn’t have been able to exist in the way it does. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is quite the tribute indeed.
Sakurai at Game Awards:
I'm sorry for bringing up this personal story at a time like this…but making Smash Bros on the Switch was the last mission the late Satoru Iwata gave to me….I've put my all into the game, and with more DLC I will continue to work hard. https://t.co/cH3SxcN05Y
— PushDustIn (@PushDustIn) September 13, 2019