Incredible tribute to late Nintendo President Satoru Iwata hidden in Switch’s OS
There is an incredibly sad and touching easter egg buried in the Nintendo Switch’s OS for their late President Satoru Iwata. Iwata spent decades at Nintendo and HAL (the developer behind Smash Bros and Kirby), with one of his earlier games being NES Golf in the late 1980’s. It turns out there is a fully playable version of NES Golf built inside the Switch’s OS. But don’t try to access it yourself just yet.
Some members of the Switch homebrew community discovered this easter egg by setting the Switch’s date to July 11th, the day Satoru Iwata died of cancer in 2015. The system has to be on firmware 1.0.0, something your system likely isn’t on anymore. If you’ve met all these criteria, you have to disconnect the two Joy Cons and make a gesture with them similar to Iwata’s iconic “directly to you” hand gesture that he made famous in Nintendo’s series of “Direct” presentations. Once done, the emulator with NES Golf will start up and you’ll hear a short voice clip of Iwata himself.
Eurogamer (with the help of Justin Epperson believes this easter egg could represent an “omamori” in Japanese culture. An “omamori” is a type of charm that is usually placed at Japanese shrines as a sort of spiritual protection.
These charms are kept by individuals as a sort of good luck charm, so Nintendo put this easter egg in every Nintendo Switch in hopes of bringing good luck to the system after the struggles they suffered with the Wii U and 3DS. This becomes even more emotional and poignant once you consider that Nintendo translates to “Leave Luck to Heaven” and, well Satoru Iwata is deceased. Meaning they are literally hoping to receive luck from their dearly departed friend from beyond our mortal realm.
Yup, this is one heck of an easter egg. Satoru Iwata had a huge impact on the gaming industry, helping numerous franchises like Pokemon and Smash Bros become what they are today when they saw early development troubles. He spear-headed the Wii’s unique motion controller and the DS’s dual-screen setup, revolutionizing gaming for tens of millions of non-gamers. Iwata is responsible, along with Nintendo, for expanding gaming’s audience in the last decade to heights no one thought it would ever reach.
Rest in peace Mr. Iwata. You will never be forgotten.