News Article

Satoru Iwata Won't Attend E3 For Health-Related Reasons

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

"Please understand that it is business as usual for Mr. Iwata"

With E3 less than a week away, Nintendo has made the surprise announcement that company President Satoru Iwata won't be in attendance. The company has already confirmed that Shigeru Miyamoto will be in attendance, along with all the major figures of Nintendo of America, yet Iwata-san will not attend following advice from his physician.

Speaking to Polygon, a Nintendo representative said the following.

He's been instructed by his physician not to travel overseas in the immediate future, and so he will not be making the trip to Los Angeles. Please understand that it is business as usual for Mr. Iwata, and he continues his normal duties as president of Nintendo Co., Ltd. while he remains in Japan. As always, he will be actively involved in all of Nintendo's activities at the show.

Nintendo has a lot planned for the event, though without a live press conference it's possible that the impact of Iwata-san's absence won't be too keenly felt. It's naturally a concern that the company President is avoiding travel, though at present we should take the statement at face value in terms of this not affecting Iwata-san's work and, by extension, general well-being.

We'll provide any official updates as and when they're provided.

Thanks to Ryan Millar for the tip.

[via polygon.com]

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User Comments (123)

XCWarrior

#4

XCWarrior said:

What bothers me is that anyone from Nintendo is still talking to Polygon after the crap they've been spewing on their website. And if you don't know what I'm talking about, go find it yourself. They don't deserve links to get them more clicks.

As for the news itself, this confirms Iwata is literally going to drop a bomb at E3. World War III is happening people!

Gold

#6

Gold said:

So who's going to say 'Please Understand'? Oh man, this is going to be weird.

Peach64

#8

Peach64 said:

With it being pre-recorded, I'm sure he'll still be heavily involved in the digital event, so it won't make any difference at all.

Gerbwmu

#12

Gerbwmu said:

Saturo Iwata-Mech CONFIRMED. In all seriousness, hopefully he is alright and it is just something minor.

MixMasterMudkip

#15

MixMasterMudkip said:

Plot Twist: Iwata is actually in a giant cake to celebrate the announcement of Star Fox U, and while everyone is eating it he'll pop out of it in a speedo. Please Understand.

Honestly, though. I hope he's alright.

Mrclaycoat

#18

Mrclaycoat said:

I'm sure he's not present due to the fact that his speeches are painfully slow. Not his fault and of course I do sincerely hope that he is alright if in fact illness is the reason. but given the lameduck reactions his presentations receive, leaving the show up to Reggie is a great move

PJR0cks

#19

PJR0cks said:

@XCWarrior
Agreed, Polygon has become the new gamespot, maybe even worse, they continue writing crappy opinion pieces, and Nintendo shouldn't bother with them at all.
Well hope Iwata gets better, in the meantime I think every thing will go smooth in E3.

bouncer0304

#24

bouncer0304 said:

I hope he gets well soon. Health comes first though- i know that from personal experience. To see he's still working in Japan though is a good sign that nothing major is wrong thankfully!

sinalefa

#27

sinalefa said:

I hope MIK8's success help with his health. He must be under a lot of stress lately. I do understand, unlike people who only make fun of him.

MajinSoul

#29

MajinSoul said:

Polygon is a terrible website and Nintendo should avoid having contact with it imo. That being said, I hope Iwata gets well soon and as long as Miyamoto is at E3 I'm still hyped. I will never forget his happiness from playing and showcasing Pikmin 3 last year. The gaming industry needs more of his kind.

Artwark

#30

Artwark said:

Its funny that a lot of people want Iwata to be fired and now everyone wants him to be there??? Seriously guys make up your mind!

Oh Well at least Miyamoto is coming to E3. Get well soon Mr. Iwata.

Dr_42o

#31

Dr_42o said:

Anyone else sense a conspiracy? Iwata has been poisoned by a SONY henchman! It's time for Nintendo fans to unite and take down the tyrant that is SONY!!! P.S. Get well soon Iwata-san!

Rect_Pola

#33

Rect_Pola said:

That's too bad. This is probably going to be a big show this year. I mean it better be, they've been coasting on Smash and Kart for some time now..

aaronsullivan

#34

aaronsullivan said:

He'll show up on video and he could even do live interaction if they saw fit as he wouldn't have to travel for that.

It could be good for his health if he could get the spotlight while touting the success of Mario Kart 8 in selling consoles. ;D

19Robb92

#35

19Robb92 said:

Won't make a difference since everything will be pre-recorded. Hope he gets well soon though.

Shiryu

#36

Shiryu said:

Will be missed on the show floor for sure. Hope for a speedy recovery for the 社長.

Kaine_Morrison

#40

Kaine_Morrison said:

He's only saying that it is because of Health Reasons...
It's because he know the Ninty fans will kill him if E3 sucks.
So, yes, technically... it is because of Health Reasons... Just Future ones.
:p

WebHead

#41

WebHead said:

So iwata won't be presenting the digital event? Oh wait the DE is probably prerecorded.

outburst

#45

outburst said:

I hope he'll be okay. I'd still want him to see run Nintendo until the next console release.

Hy8ogen

#47

Hy8ogen said:

@sinalefa This. His health problem is probably caused by the enormous stress that he has been experiencing for the past year. Put yourself in his shoes, you'll see how much of a burden it is to be in his position. Good to see things are finally getting better after Mario Kart 8.

Get well soon Iwata-san!!

tysonfury

#48

tysonfury said:

If he's been advised not to fly long haul, it's likely a case of high blood pressure - which is not surprising considering!

Get well soon Iwata-san.

Mega719

#49

Mega719 said:

Aw hope he's ok, good others are taking his place it isn't safe for him to continue for us

Morpheel

#50

Morpheel said:

I hope he gets better soon.

Being a directive is not as easy as most people think, it's super stressful and dangerous for the heart.

Tops

#51

Tops said:

Hope you get better Iwata-san! Take a break and rest for a while

I'm sure it's just stress and he doesn't need travelling to add to that

DarkKirby

#52

DarkKirby said:

Considering Nintendo won't be doing stage presentations and be showing prerecorded videos in its place, does it really matter that he's not there?

ekreig

#53

ekreig said:

Looks like everyone will have to find someone else to take everything they don't like about E3 out on. I hope this doesn't mean anything too serious.

SeVok

#54

SeVok said:

Smart man, following the advise of his physician.
However E3 is still a month away, don't think it's a regular cold that prohibits traveling to this extent.

Grumblevolcano

#56

Grumblevolcano said:

@DarkKirby Everything is live except from probably the digital event but even that we don't know for certain about because straight afterwards is Nintendo Minute Live.

rjejr

#60

rjejr said:

Hope he's ok. Don't see how this would really effect E3 though w/ so much of their stuff being online.

I do think it odd they would announce any health problems he has like this, if Nintendo were a US company the financial websites would be going bonkers over this.

NintyMan

#61

NintyMan said:

That's too bad. I definitely understand. There's no telling how much stress Iwata has to deal with all the pressures of a company struggling to break through with a home console and banking on momentum at E3.

Looks like there won't be a cool pre-E3 picture of the big three (Iwata, Miyamoto, and Reggie) meeting at the expo like the past two years. Still, this won't be as big a deal since everything will be on video, and Iwata will still be seen there. At least Miyamoto will have a significant presence at E3, and he's good at getting the expo pumped.

WanderingPB

#62

WanderingPB said:

@Peach64 for once i agree being that the event is pre-recorded i don think it it truly matters since he probably already recorded his part.

Overall i hope Iwata-san gets better. health is very important especially when ones constantly working

Yoshis_VGM

#63

Yoshis_VGM said:

Aww get better Mr. Iwata! But since the digital event is pre-recorded, I wonder if he'll make an appearance in that? If not it's okay - it's better for him to get better than deal with more stress.

PuzzleMaster7

#64

PuzzleMaster7 said:

I find it ironic that during this E3 the QOL platform will be revealed, yet the creator of it will not be there himself to showcase it due to health reasons. In all seriousness though, I hope that Iwata-san makes a quick recovery.

WiiLovePeace

#66

WiiLovePeace said:

:'( That's sad. I hope he's okay! I'm a big fan of his, & him not making a cameo at Treehouse Live is disappointing, but I'm more sad for him. :(

Excep7ional

#67

Excep7ional said:

Wow, I know that guy has been dealing with a huge amount of stress. I hope he gets better soon.

SleepyCrossing

#69

SleepyCrossing said:

There are many conditions that would cause doctors to discourage long distance air travel. Since it's digital it's not too bad. Someone said this confirms something big at E3; how exactly? I don't see a correlation. Hope he gets better soon, I don't think this is anything to be too worried about. And we will have plenty of good news come E3!

TruenoGT

#70

TruenoGT said:

He could probably use a break these days anyway, it's been a tough go of it lately... I hope he at least made it into the digital event recording, I always look forward to his segments. Anyway, get well soon Iwata-san!

jjmesa16

#71

jjmesa16 said:

I hope Mr. Iwata gets to feeling better but I'm kind of glad that he won't be at E3. This means that we get to see more of Reggie, Sakurai, Miyamoto, and maybe Aonuma. Get well soon Mr. Iwata!

@rjejr I agree. Iwata being gone shouldn't have that big of an impact at this year's E3.

Varoennauraa

#73

Varoennauraa said:

I hope it's nothing serious and he gets well soon. I was looking forward to watching his presentation...but hey! Thank goodness for the Direct! No need to fly around the world, when we watch him in a video anyway.

Perhaps QoL -product will get his body ready for future events.

bezerker99

#78

bezerker99 said:

Physicians will often recommend no flying or traveling to their patients....and it can be for lots of reasons/ailments (some serious and some not). Hopefully, for Iwata-san, it's nothing too serious.

and...we understand! :)

ColdingLight

#79

ColdingLight said:

This is actually funny to me. It's like calling in on a sick day for school. Imagine him talking to his teacher about his health! Satoru Iwata : Please understand miss Mizuki, that I'm not feeling well. I hope you and my peers will understand the situation... My mind also kinda thinks he's just avoiding cynical stares and harsh questions. Well, whatever.

Superiorspider

#81

Superiorspider said:

Iwata is corrupted with phazon. He has to be taken care of or else he will use the phazon to wipe out all inhabitants of earth! #stopiwata #stopphazon #freetheworld

whodatninja

#83

whodatninja said:

Anyone who watched the Tomodachi Life direct knows that this is a cover up... We all know what he's really doing!
Untitled

Seriously though, cheer up and feel better, Mr Iwata

Ruthven

#85

Ruthven said:

I'm pretty sure I don’t want Iwata fired as I'm not a greedy shareholder, just a Nintendo fan. :P
Get better Iwata :)

Hy8ogen

#86

Hy8ogen said:

Imagine when Nintendo is showing off their QoL platform on E3 and suddenly Iwata emerges from the curtains and say "This platform made me feel better!". I would totally suffocate if that's the case.

DBPirate

#88

DBPirate said:

Hmm...who's hosting the Digital Event? Reggie? I doubt Miyamoto will as he's a developer and will likely only talk about a few games like he did with Pikmin 3 at E3 2012.

On a lighter note, hope to see you get well soon, Mr. Iwata!

burninmylight

#90

burninmylight said:

@XCWarrior

Amen! Polygon is a black eye on video games journalism and Exhibit A for anyone needing proof that sites have no problem sacrificing credibility for a check. It's so deep in Microsoft's pocket that it can smell Phil Spencer's ass.

Vrael

#93

Vrael said:

I wouldn't be surprised if this was stress related. Get well soon mr Iwata.

ajcismo

#95

ajcismo said:

I may not agree with many of his decisions over the years, but I would never wish ill will upon the man. He's a good dude, my best wishes and health to him and hope to see him on a Nintendo Direct again soon.

JaxonH

#97

JaxonH said:

I hope Mr Iwata is ok.

He's a great guy- I really do like him. He actually cares, which is quite the rarity nowadays.

andrea987

#98

andrea987 said:

@Frapp lol, good one.
But seriously, get well Mr Iwata, plenty of Life Noodles and rest on the Good Night Bench anytime you can.

BassLostie

#100

BassLostie said:

Is Mr. Iwata really sick? If that is the case, I hope he gets better soon! And he could send a written message to the fans with Miyamoto ;)

IceClimbers

#102

IceClimbers said:

Get better soon Mr Iwata!

Whatever health issues he has are probably stress related. He must be under an extreme amount of stress right now with 3 consecutive losses, the Wii U struggling, worrying about whether the 3DS has already peaked in sales and will just decline from here on out, and trying to keep the handheld market alive in the face of mobile gaming. Yeah, that's a ton of stress right there.

NintyMan

#103

NintyMan said:

I'm perplexed why some people are worried this is life-threatening. He probably just has high blood pressure or something stress-related and needs to relax somewhat. There's no telling how many hours of hard work he goes into. Being a company president is no easy job at all.

SMW

#106

SMW said:

Whatever the reason, I hope hes alright! Maybe he needs to get himself a Sky Runner.

LetsGoRetro

#108

LetsGoRetro said:

Hmm no disrespect to.the sick.. but. Urious isthis is planting a seed in the publics mind in case they have to fire him"

"Iwata-san will be stepping down due to previously announ ed health issues"

Zombie_Barioth

#110

Zombie_Barioth said:

I hope for his sake it really is just an excuse not to show up. Its a very real possibility that its a stress-triggered issue, so even if it was really minor his doctor would advise him to take it easy for a while.

Needless to say, thats not good if his job is causing him that much stress. At least hes in a position where he can off load as much extra work as he needs to on somebody else.

Melkac

#111

Melkac said:

NOOOOOOOOOOOO! Iwata-dono! How am I going to get Miyamoto-senpai to notice me now?!

Seriously though, that's actually kinda sad. Hopefully that doesn't mean he's not going to do the Digital Event thing...

midnafanboy

#113

midnafanboy said:

Wow the hype of the E3 made him sick damn. Or was it that he messed up nintendo's E3 lineup and did not want to face the music who knows.

Genesaur

#115

Genesaur said:

@whodatninja Haha, awesome.

I kinda wonder if the Quality of Life platform is far enough along to be tested for Iwata's well-being, in light of this health development.

2Sang

#120

2Sang said:

@sinalefa please undastand. I do not want Iwata either fired (at least for a few more years if he can't turn things around) or hurt, despite the wii u selling like boxed cancer. Please undastand that please undastand means please undastand.

sinalefa

#121

sinalefa said:

@AlexSora89 @2Sang

As a matter of fact, I am actually delighted to see so many people supporting the man and wishing him well.

With that, I "undastand" that Please Understand, as most memes, gets old by overuse, specially when used as a means to make fun of Iwata's accent.

Inkling

#122

Inkling said:

I hope Iwata gets better, and as we know health comes first.

Get well soon, Iwata.

Dpullam

#123

Dpullam said:

This stinks, but it's better that Satoru Iwata gets healthy in Japan rather than risking going against the doctor's orders and attending E3. Get well soon Iwata!

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