Random: isn’t Miyamoto’s most famous quote his own after all?

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Picture: Nintendo Life/Damien McFerran

“A delayed game is ultimately good, but a rushed game is always bad.”

How many times have you heard this quote over the years? Twitter feeds of people posting responses to game delays, or even using it as a response to people upset about the delays. He’s achieved some kind of divine status, as saying those words has the opposite effect of saying Beetlejuice into the mirror three times.

These words are often attributed to Shigeru Miyamoto, the father of mario, pikmine, Zelda, etc – he’s pretty much the face of Nintendo. And the quote is often associated with the delay of Ocarina of Time. He’s been quoted time and time again in interviews – and he’s even discussed it with YouTuber TheJWittz – but do we have any proof that Miyamoto ever said it?

Javed Sterritt, filmmaker and owner of YouTube channel Good Blood, dared to ask what no one has asked before: where did the original quote come from?

This caused a little frenzy in the Twitter landscape – there are real gold coins at stake, after all! People have provided articles where he has been quoted or paraphrased or interviews with Miyamoto himself where they discuss the quote. But many fell at the first hurdle, with no real source linked to the articles.

Another YouTuber, AllieMeowy, dug up an article from shmuplations, where this quote may have since been cut out and recited. And for about an hour, that seemed like the only real answer. Shortly after, Sterritt discovered that it was actually a Famitsu interview from 2001 that had been translated much more recently. However, the quote has been circulating steadily in English for quite some time (remember the pre-Twitter days?).

Then comes Ethan Johnson, who runs the blog The History of How We Play. He provided evidence that the quote could be a simple misquote. His first response provides evidence that these words were more or less said by Jason Schreiber of GT Interactive in June 1998 at a convention:

This answer has since gotten a lot of attention, with Johnson coming back to it several times in the same thread to provide more context. It’s like a giant, tangled web of words and timelines!

Fortunately, Johnson has compiled all of his evidence into a handy little thread, in chronological order – with one more discovery since his initial answer. It could, in fact, just be an old industry slogan:

There’s a lot to dig into here, including an interview with Miyamoto from 2001, which is probably where a lot of people formed the Ocarina of Time association. And, indeed, this is something that can easily happen. Sid Meier from Civilization notoriety was also misquoted – oddly enough around the same time.

So this is it! It is unlikely that these famous words were uttered by Miyamoto; instead, the phrase could simply be an industry slogan that has been twisted and repeated over and over again. If so, we hope Johnson appreciates his payment for a job well done!

Are you shaken by this discovery? Let us know in the comments!