Ah, Nintendo, the company that made up a lot of our childhoods.
For many of us gamers, Nintendo was our first console. It was the gateway to the gaming world we soon became immersed in. Nintendo brought us Mario, Zelda, Star Fox, Super Smash Bros., Mario Kart, Metroid, and more. Whether you wanted to take on Koopas, fight aliens, or save a kingdom from the King of Evil, Nintendo had a game for you. Nintendo was the one that started it all, and while many other game consoles and companies have risen up, Nintendo is still going strong.
For me, Nintendo is and will likely be my favorite gaming company. I got into gaming through my brothers, and they mostly played Nintendo games, so Nintendo will always have a special place in my heart. While I do have fun playing games like Halo and Resident Evil, I will always go back to games like Legend of Zelda and Mario Kart.
Nintendo has been around for many decades and has built up quite the amount of interesting trivia and fun facts surrounding its games. However, not all of the information surrounding Nintendo games is true. In fact, many “facts” about Nintendo that gamers stand by as truth are actually completely false. And yet, gamers often accept these bits of information as facts. So, we’re going to talk about some false facts about Nintendo games that likely fooled you.
Are there some other false facts you know about? Do you think we missed any big ones? Please let us know in the comments!
20. Mario’s Original Name Isn’t What You Think
When Mario first debuted in Donkey Kong, he wasn’t called Mario. According to the story, Mario was originally called Jumpman, since his main ability was jumping. This became thought of as solid fact to many characters and that Mario’s original and first name was Jumpman. But this isn’t quite true.
According to Shigeru Miyamoto, the man who created Mario, he called Jumpman “Mr Video.” He did this as an idea of wanting to use the same character for every video game that he made, hence the strange and rather generic name. But he soon changed the name to Jumpman, and eventually the name was changed to Mario. So, before Jumpman became Mario, he was actually Mr. Video. It’s interesting to see how time can change even a character’s name.
19. The NES Didn’t Actually Start It All
The NES is the one that started it all for many Nintendo fans. It brought Super Mario Bros., The Legend of Zelda, and many more games that became instant classics. Many gamers assumed that the NES was the first home console that Nintendo ever launched. And while this console did help rocket Nintendo into fame, it actually wasn’t the first home console Nintendo made.
That title belongs to a series of home consoles called the Color TV-Game. This lesser known game system had games that were mostly knock-off of other games like Pong. It was also known for not being very good. But regardless, the Color-TV Game series wasn’t actually a bust. It sold around 3 million copies and was worked on by Miyamoto, who then went on to create the pretty much every Nintendo character we know. So, things worked out pretty well.
18. Who Is Justin Bailey?
Everybody knows that in the original Metroid, if you beat the game in a certain amount of time, you’ll get to see Samus take her helmet off, revealing that she is in fact a girl, a huge deal since most gamers likely assumed she was a guy. Many also know that if you input the name Justin Bailey at the game’s password screen, you’ll then get to see Samus in a swimsuit, in all her sexy 8-bit glory.
But who is Justin Bailey? Many gamers assumed that he was just a programmer that worked on the game. But this is not true. There actually is no Justin Bailey. In reality, the fact that the password resembled a name was just coincidence. In fact, if you input the code “000000 000020 000000 000020” you get the same results, so the name Justin Bailey holds no weight in the Metroid world.
17. They Definitely Made The Power Glove, Right?
You may remember the Power Glove, a supposedly cool Nintendo device that let you control the game through everyday motions. In theory, it was this amazing device that let you hold the gaming world in the palm of your hand. In reality, the Power Glove was terrible as it barely worked for players. Many gamers were a little surprised that such a terrible device came from Nintendo, a company that normally prides itself on quality (or at least decent working technology).
But the fact is that Nintendo did not make the Power Glove. This crappy device was designed by Abrams/Gentile Entertainment and manufactured by Mattel. As a result, it was made with cheap parts that didn’t work very well. All Nintendo did was provide the logo.
16. We All Know Yoshi Is A Male…
In the English versions of Mario, Yoshi is often referred to as a male, using male pronouns and such. And for the longest time, we all assumed that our favorite dinosaur and companion to Mario was a guy. But we realized that a few things don’t quite add up. For example, how can Yoshi be male and lay eggs?
It turns out that Yoshi is simply a species title and that Yoshis can be male and female. As for the eggs issue, Yoshi’s can reproduce as*xually, so it doesn’t matter. So the Yoshi that we’re familiar with could be a guy, a girl, or neither. It’s just a matter of how you choose to look at it. But if you really want Yoshi to be male, no one’s stopping you.
15. And Birdo Is A Girl…
At first glance, it seems obvious that Birdo is a female, what with the pink skin and the bow. For a long time, many people believed this and never questioned it. Even with Birdo’s unusual, deeper voice, it was assumed and treated as fact that she was female.
This is not quite accurate. When we look at the Nintendo canon, Birdo is actually a male, who believes he is a female. So essentially, Birdo is more or less a transgender character. This is actually rather fascinating since Birdo was introduced during a time where topics like transgenders were a bit taboo, or at least not as widely talked about, especially in Western culture. We say you go Birdo! Work that bow and be who you want to be!
14. Is Star Fox A Cyborg?
If you look closely at the main Star Fox characters, you’ll notice something a little weird about their legs, particularly starting from their knees and going down. They look rather metal, almost robotic. So why would that be the case? Many gamers came up with theory that Star Fox and his crew had their legs amputated and replaced with robot legs in order to withstand the G-forces during high-speed flight. This theory got so popular that many gamers accepted it as fact.
But it is not true. Dylan Cuthbert, the co-creator of Star Fox debunked this theory, saying the reason the feet look mechanical is that the crew are wearing metal boots. That’s it. When asked about this theory, Shigeru Miyamoto, who produced Star Fox agreed that while it sounded interesting and very sci-fi, this particular theory was not true.
13. Was This The Launch Title?
Many people assumed that Super Mario Bros. was the launch title for the NES in Nintendo. It made sense since it was Mario Bros. that essentially launched Nintendo into fame and gave it new life. However Super Mario Bros. was not the launch title, at least in Japan.
In Japan, the NES came out in 1983 while production on Super Mario Bros didn’t even start until 1985. But in the US, things get a little tricker. Many believe that the NES was launched in the US in 1985, while Super Mario Bros. came out a year later in 1986. But Nintendo also claims that the two were launched at the same time in 1985.
12. Donkey = Monkey
Don’t you think the name Donkey Kong is a little strange for a gorilla? After all, donkeys have very little to do with monkeys or apes. A lot of gamers thought so too and came up with a theory to explain it. They theorized that his name was originally supposed to be Monkey Kong, but was mistranslated to Donkey Kong. This theory became so popular that many gamers accepted it as fact.
But it’s false. Donkey Kong’s name was deliberate. Its creator, Shigeru Miyamoto, said that he looked up the word “donkey” in the dictionary and found it to also mean “goofy.” So, the name Donkey Kong was actually supposed to mean “Goofy Monkey.” While Nintendo of America didn’t love the name and wanted to change it, Miyamoto insisted and so we have Donkey Kong as the name for our favorite gorilla.
11. Our New Favorite Netflix Original
Many fans have hoped and waited for Zelda to come to either the big screen or to TV. In the past, IGN released a very convincing fake trailer for a Zelda movie that quickly got debunked, crushing many fans’ hopes and dreams.
In recent years, there have been several rumors that Netflix was going to do a Legend of Zelda TV series. This caused some gamers to have hopes; a Zelda series would be awesome! Unfortunately, the Nintendo CEO Satoru Iwata responded to those rumors, saying that they were not true and the article that had spawned them was incorrect.
Nintendo is very leery of translating their characters to the big screen, especially since the movie Super Mario Bros. bombed spectacularly at the box office. I guess we’ll just have to continue to dream.
10. Running Faster Than The Running Man
In The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, one of the characters is a man who is obsessed with running fast. You can interact with him a few times throughout the game. At one point in the game, you can challenge him to a race. You have to get from one point in Hyrule to the other. Many gamers claimed that you could actually beat the Running Man in this race.
This is false. This character is actually programmed to beat you to the destination, no matter how fast you get there. Once you arrive, he will be there, giving you your time, and telling you that he beat you by just a moment. So, anyone who has claimed to beat the Running Man is actually lying. It can’t be done. No matter what you do, he will always beat you.
9. This Blows
Back in the day of the NES, the games came as these thick cartridges with gaps in between them. A common trick that many gamers used was that when the game wasn’t working, you could blow in between the space on the cartridges and that supposedly got rid of any dust or build-up and helped the game to read better. It became a widespread thing and was accepted as pure fact.
Yeah, that trick doesn’t actually work. Usually when a gamer took the cartridge out of the console to blow on it then put it back in, it was like the equivalent of turning something on and off again. If you kept trying to connect and disconnect, it would work eventually. In fact, blowing on the cartridge might have made things worse, since it could corrode the pin connectors.
8. Pokémon References 9/11
Pokémon Black and White, the game where Kyurem first appears, takes place in an area that’s based off of New York and the surrounding areas. Many fans theorized that there were two references to the 9/11 attacks on New York in this game. The first reference was the area where Kyurem first appears, which is a ruined area near the main city. This was thought to be a reference to Ground Zero. The other reference was Kyurem itself. Supposedly its height was 9 feet 11 inches tall.
However, both of these facts have been proven to be false. The ruins were from an ancient civilization and did not represent the attacks, and Kyurem is actually 9 feet 10 inches tall. So even though the game does take place in an area inspired by New York, no references to the infamous attacks were made throughout the game.
7. Developmental Disabilities Are No Joke
This is an interesting theory that got around the gaming community. Many websites shared articles that stated that the creator of Pokémon, Satoshi Tajiri, has autism, and it was his experiences in growing up with this developmental disability that helped him to create the Pokémon series. It’s an inspiring story of someone rising above his challenges to create something amazing.
However, none of this is true. There is no actual proof that Tajiri is autistic. This bit of information came from an unauthorized biography of Tajiri that doesn’t have any source for its information. Also, Tajiri has never mentioned having autism in interviews. While it may be possible he’s autistic, there has been no confirmation. Regardless, it’s still amazing that he created a series that’s done so well and has gained the traction it has.
6. The Simpsons Predicts App Trends
Pokémon Go became quite the worldwide phenomenon after it was released. Not long after its release there was an image going around the internet that seemed to prove that the The Simpsons actually predicted Pokémon Go before it happened. The picture showed someone playing some sort of Pokémon game with their phone, looking quite similar to Pokémon Go. This wasn’t that outlandish since The Simpsons was known to predict certain events in the past.
But it turns it this was not one of those times. The famous image referencing Pokémon Go was false, and not actually part of the The Simpsons. Someone likely made it as a hoax or to bring hype to both the game and the show. It’s too bad it wasn’t real; that would’ve made for an interesting story in The Simpsons.
5. Zelda Was Going To Get Futuristic
The Legend of Zelda is mostly a series of fantasy games dealing mostly with medieval time periods and very little advanced technology, (which a few exceptions.) While some games did have some futuristic technology that came from advanced civilizations from the past, many gamers hoped that there would eventually be a game that actually took place in the distant future.
This hope was raised a few years ago when Wii.tv released a trailer for what looked like Legend of Zelda in space. Titled The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Future, the game would take place in the future with some interesting sci-fi elements, such as Epona becoming a motorbike. It was revealed that this trailer was a prank and that there would be no sci-fi Zelda game in the near future. That’s kind of a shame; a futuristic Zelda game would be pretty interesting.
4. Bowser The Father
This was a fact that recently was proven false. In previous games, we’ve seen Mario go up against the Koopalings, several Koopas that acted under Bowser’s orders. Each Koopaling was often a boss of the different levels. For many years we all assumed that the Koopalings were Bowser’s kids. It made sense, given their names and the fact that they all seemed to act like siblings. It wasn’t much of a stretch to imagine them being related to Bowser.
But in the recent games, Nintendo has come out and said that this is actually not the case. The Koopalings are simply minions that work for Bowser. Bowser’s only offspring is actually Bowser Junior, and we don’t know who the mom was. Well, at least it seems that Bowser doesn’t have to provide for a bunch of kids.
3. Toad’s Race Might Not Have Fungi Origins
Anyone who’s played the Mario games knows about Toad, Princess Peach’s attendant. And while some gamers find him annoying, this character has become rather iconic in the Mario series with his head resembling some type of mushroom. It was then thought by many people that Toad’s people were some sort of sentient race of mushrooms. It made perfect sense based on their appearances and given that this was the Mushroom Kingdom.
But producer Koichi Hayashida has confirmed this to be false. Toad’s people are not actually sentient mushrooms. However, the producer failed to give any information on what these people actually are, instead stating that that was one of the “great mysteries of the Mario universe.” I guess we’ll never know where Toad came from and who his people are.
2. One Ganon Is More Than Enough
This thought came about as gamers theorized that there were actually multiple Ganons throughout the universe of the Legend of Zelda. It made sense since it was confirmed that there were multiple Links and Zeldas. Having multiple Ganons explained a few contradicting backstories for Ganon, as well as why he is still around throughout the ages and still in his prime. It was a great explanation for some details in games that seemed to contradict.
However, according to Shigeru Miyamoto, this is not true. The creator of the Legend of Zelda has come out and said that while there are multiple Links, there is only one Ganon. This actually still hasn’t convinced some fans, who still stick to the Multiple Ganon Theory. I guess you believe what you want to believe.
1. They Look The Same, So They Must Be A Thing
Ever since Toadette debuted in Mario Kart: Double Dash, there has been lots of speculation about her relationship with Toad. Many people assumed that Toadette was Toad’s girlfriend, while others thought that they might be siblings. This became considered common knowledge, along with the thought that Toad was a guy and Toadette was a girl.
But in actuality, there is no relationship between them, familial or romantic. In fact, Toad and Toadette aren’t necessarily male and female. When asked, producer Koichi Hayashida said that although Toad and Toadette take on some gendered appearances, neither have specific genders and are not romantically involved or siblings. He goes on to say that the people at Nintendo never really went out of their way to decide on the gender of these characters.
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