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Remembering a friendship with Nintendo's reclusive boss

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Hiroshi Yamauchi
Hiroshi Yamauchi

Ex-president of Nintendo, Hiroshi Yamauchi, died in September. Mysterious, imperious, and more than a little scary, Yamauchi earned a semi-mythical status in the games industry for his bold decision making and shrewd judgement — judgement that turned Nintendo into one of the world's foremost videogame companies.

Yamauchi's position at the top meant few outside of Japan got to know him personally. One of those few was Henk Rodgers, now a veteran game publisher and co-founder of The Tetris Company. Rodgers first moved to Japan in the late 1970s, and managed to get an audience with Yamauchi at a time when the Nintendo president was snubbing some of the biggest players in the business. Rodgers recalls his time with Yamauchi in this excellent piece for Wired as he charts his first meeting with the man, remembers how he introduced Tetris to the Nintendo boss, and explains how the two grew to be friends.