Some stories in the world of technology are simply curious. For example, Mario Segale was the owner of the place where the Nintendo América operations were located, in the early 1980s. At that time, Nintendo president Minoru Arakawa, along with other executives, was trying to "Americanize" the name for the avatar of his game Donkey Kong, which at the time was called "JumpMan" (man who jumps) . And when Segale went with Arakawa to demand payment of the rent, inspiration came.
David Sheff, who has made a remembrance of all that era (in his book "Game Over"), he says executives exclaimed: "Super Mario!", after Segale visited them in 1981. Benji Edwards, meanwhile, in a thorough investigation of this whole story, said that the description of "Super" for the drawing of Mario was not common until the departure of Super Mario Bros., in 1985. It has also been said that "Super" comes from the role that Segale had, that of "superintendent" of the building, but this story seems to be apocryphal.
#Nintendato: Mario Segale, the person who inspired Mario's name, has died at the age of 84. He owned a warehouse rented by Nintendo of America. During Mario's creation, Miyamoto shuffled names like Mr. Video and Ossan ("middle-aged man" in Japanese). pic.twitter.com/t3tgaga66G
– Nintendatos (@Nintendatos) November 2, 2018
In 2005, in an interview with MTV, Shigeru Miyamoto, of Nintendo, did not remember the place where the company was in New York in the 80s. He also suggested – mistakenly – that Segale "had a striking resemblance to the character designed in Japan for the game," showing how history has been distorted over time even considering those who lived that first hand.
Mario Segale died last night. The man Nintendo was inspired to baptize our favorite plumber. D.E.P. pic.twitter.com/H6AL8hJ8TQ
– Tecnolobirra (@tecnolobirra) November 3, 2018
But anyway, in the Seattle Time, in his obituary, it was written: "Segale always sought notoriety [por ser el símbolo de Mario de Nintendo], and he wanted to be known for what he achieved in his life, such as being a successful businessman in the construction world starting from a garbage truck he bought after he finished high school. In 1993 the Seattle Times quoted him as a joke: "You could well say I'm still waiting for my royalty checks," which seems to be the only comment recorded in all of Nintendo's history about this case. Segale is survived by his wife Donna, four children and nine grandchildren.