In related news to the Nintendo 3DS upcoming price cut, certain Nintendo executives, including the main man himself Satoru Iwata, are taking pay cuts as well, according to multiple sources.

Iwata took full responsibility for the recent news that the Nintendo 3DS will take a steep $80 price drop from $249.99 to $169.99 next month.  Since he feels that the poor sales of the system are his fault, he has decided to take a 50% pay cut of his base salary and bonuses.  Certain other executives, including Shigeru Miyamoto and Shinji Hatano, will both take 30% cuts, and even more executives will take 20% cuts in their pay.

What is this in dollar amounts?  According to Nintendo of Japan’s corporate site, Iwata made ¥137 million, or $1.8 million, in both base salary and bonuses last year.  Assuming his salary stayed the same, it would be roughly half that number.

What do you guys think?  I know yesterday’s big new was the price drop of the system, but what do you think about executives within the company taking the blame for poor sales and actually losing money themselves?

Source: Joystiq
  • Super-Vaati

    Kinda sad news… 🙁

  • anonymous

    Do they somehow think that publicity paycheck cuts are going to renew the faith of their investors? Keep trying, Nintendo.

    • -33

      -33? Damn…

      • Ashmic

        i know, ppl are babys lol

    • at least it's not like American banks, who screw up the whole world them give there executives massive pay raises and extra bonuses.

  • I am impressed more than anything. 50% is a lot, Iwata. You are truly a dedicated man. =(

  • themisssinglink

    Honestly, I think this is what differentiates Japanese companies from American ones.

  • Keimori

    this seems to be more of a PR thing to me, it says "we realize our product is stumbleing to get its footing, it was ouir mistake and we acept that" what'll realy Renew their investors faith'll be this "Holiday season" when the heavy hitters come out on the 3DS, thats when they'll see sales pick up.

  • Rather than lay off workers, they take a pay cut. It's more honorable.

  • Seph

    This is a really nice thing to do.

  • Soeroah

    It fits in with the Japanese culture of honour, to be sure. I hope they see increasing returns soon, though.

  • snuddelhund

    wow a sign that shows that nintendo cares more about the gamers than the money

    • mcNamara

      this is hardly a sign of that. this only shows they f'ed up, and these are the consequences.

  • I think that their salary doesn't matter if they give us what they promised.

  • skywardocarina1

    the new price is $169.99

  • bushes283

    It's very Japanese, I don't think it's an attempt to gain sympathy or anything, it's kind of what their culture demands. They see themselves as part of a whole, that whole is Nintendo, they believe they failed Nintendo so they feel they have to punish themselves.

    I'm just glad no one committed ritual suicide.

    • America

      Hasn't ritual suicide been less common the past few decades?

  • this makes me proud of being a nintendo fan

  • TheStyg

    How does this make people proud of Nintendo? This means they're showing signs of failure! This is not a sign that they care more about gamers than money; this is a sign that they care more about staying in business than anything.


    • Keimori

      Calm down, its not the first time Nintendo has faced financeal problems, all companys face such, its a part of bussiness.

    • HeroOfTime

      But pretty much every company would just fire some people but Nintendo took pay cuts to help their company.

  • Nephy

    I have to agree with TheStyg. This is finally a concrete sign that all of Nintendo's poor choices and ruining of their franchises by appealing to kids has finally caught up to them. As Yahtzee said "Nintendo does not like you, just pretend to because they want your money." Sure the act of taking he pay cut is honorable, but ti won't save teh company if they continue to release sub par cheap games like they have since the Wii's debut.

    • melodiouskitsune

      Appealing to kids isn't a bad marketing choice for a game company like Nintendo, as for "sub par cheap games" it's never seemed like Nintendo has been trying to answer to Sony and Microsoft in terms of systems or games in general. As I see it, this isn't bad news, just taking responsibility in a correct manner. I hear so many people complain that "Nintendo shouldn't appeal to kids" or "Nintendo doesn't make games for hardcore gamers!", but as things stand with me, if not appealing to kids is something it takes to be a hardcore gamer or playing only Call of Duty games is the best way to be a hardcore gamer, then it makes me proud to be just a casual gamer. Being a hardcore gamer used to be something good, but now, as time has passed it's seemed more like a disgrace to gamers since it's been pushed to qualify in all of the wrong ways. Back on topic here though, I only see this as having a rough time out the gate, and every company has that happen every now and again.

    • Nintenfan81

      You ever hear the story of the comic book industry? They were HUGE with kids when they first gained momentum -and only kids, for the most part-

      As time went on, the industry shrank from its former glory as those kids were forced to forgo their entertainment for work and food. Then, suddenly those original readers had disposible income, and began to buy comics again. But since they were adults, they now could really enjoy the "dark" and "gritty" stuff, and they loved it. The industry noticed, and began to tailor to those people. After another period of time, the readers could not continue to buy for whatever reason. The comic book industry crashed.

      It crashed HARD.

      All the time they had been making those "mature" titles, they hadn't been bringing in new, younger readers. They didn't have any customers, AT ALL. So in truth, those "kiddy" games? They're saving the industry's future, while Sonny and Microsoft go the way of the comic books.

  • Wait until Skyward Sword gets released, Iwata's pay check will be higher than ever 😉

    • Tani

      People like you give me hope, a good comment gives me a good feel, as for bad comments… they make it seem as if its things will never get better…thanks

      • Nephy

        So instead of acknowledging the problem and trying to fix it, people would rather just hear nice things and act like there's no problem…

        • Peter

          No. Focusing on the positive is the way to go, focusing on what's bad will only drag you down.

  • Ashmic

    Good, All those people who earn that much need to help others, no one needs that much money

    • Doomjaw

      to be fair, only iwata and Shinji actually took their bonuses, shigeru declined them to keep his paycheck close to his coworkers

  • Nephy

    I'm willing to throw-down cold hard cash that Skyward Sword won't be as financially successful as Zelda fanatics predict it will be.

    • shooflypi

      as long as that "throwing down cold hard cash" is in the act of buying a copy, go ahead 🙂

  • smbmaster99

    I think they are some of the most honest game developers and employees in gaming history. Taking a 50% pay cut is a big thing to do, and to take the blame is even more so. It's one of the many things I love about Nintendo, they don't only make the best an most innovative games, but are honest and are faithful to the fans.

    Everyone makes mistakes, and Nintendo has shown they learn from theirs. Like "Iwata's Wallet" posted before me, once Skyward Sword is released, I'm confident their paychecks will be higher than ever.

    • Tani


    • Nephy

      Most Honest? I guess they just "forgot" to mention the Wii-U only supports one controller at E3.

      • shooflypi

        Well, they did show only one controller being used. Just because they didn't explicitly state something at E3 doesn't mean they "forgot"; they didn't say anything about the specs or price at E3 either and they didn't even really show much of the actual console. They had limited time to present and they chose to focus that on showing the innovativeness of the controller, upgrade to HD graphics, and third party support

      • Doomjaw

        i think you missed the part where 5 people were playing on the tech demos.

  • They -well most of them anyway- are Japanese. It's all about honor and stuff.

  • Sage of Hyrule

    I don't see this as the beginning of failure for Nintendo; I don't know where the naysayers are getting that. The 3DS isn't selling as well as expected right off the bat (and really, with very few 1st party titles so far it's not surprising), and so to compensate they're cutting down on expenses, which is what any company would do. Do you see any other executives cutting the losses from their own pocket? Yes, it's a PR move. And yes, they are trying to stay in business because well hey, they ARE a business, first and foremost. But they could have found that money in any amount of layoffs or corner-cutting, but they didn't, and that's what I, as a fan, appreciate. I guarantee that when this year is over and all of those big-name titles that were announced are released, we will see the popularity of the 3DS jump. Just because something had a rough start out of the gate doesn't mean it can't make a comeback down the road.

    And I really don't feel that Nintendo has "ruined" anything by "appealing to kids." Nintendo has always been a company that develops games that appeal to everyone, not just "hardcore gamers" or kids. I have been a Nintendo fan since I was a kid. I'm not a child anymore, and the appeal of Nintendo's franchises has never been lost to me. I'm pretty sure Miyamoto has just as much fun playing his games as he does creating them.

    Bottom line is, I don't see Nintendo's future being as bleak as people say it is. As long as people like me continue to support them they will be fine.

    • mcNamara

      Yes… but people see this as something that shows Nintendo's dedication. It's just a business tactic, and should not be looked at as anything but. The 3DS didn't sell well, and they need to save money. This is what any business would do if a product bombs, so I just don't see why people praise Nintendo for this move. It's not a good thing! It's just bad news.

      • cdickens97

        At least they didn't lay off or fire people who need work. Unlike these American and Euro businesses. Besides the 3DS just needs some strong first party title to give it some backbone. Notice I said "first party" and not third, because Nintendo doesn't need third party companies, third party for them is just a way of allowing them to rest in between major titles. What they need is to get back in the lab like they did when they first started and start blasting out new grasshoppers to go alongside the grand masters (Super Mario, Zelda, etc…)

        • Sage of Hyrule

          Exactly. It may currently be "bad news" because the 3DS isn't selling well YET. Like I said, when those first party titles hit the shelves, I guarantee it will start selling better, especially around the holidays. I would love to see new original titles from Nintendo or even old ones revisited (Earthbound and the like comes to mind).

          I praise Nintendo not because they are trying to save themselves as a business, but because they did it in a way that didn't hurt the people working for them. While the big wigs are still millionaires, a 50% paycut is huge, and like cdickens97 said, you don't see that in western culture. That is why I appreciate what they're doing there.

  • prince

    tipical japanese behaviour. Good job Nintendo!

  • I feel sad for Nintendo these days.. I wish people could see how awesome their new games and consoles are. Good luck, Nintendo.

  • falconfetus8

    If Nintendo learned anything from this, it's that they should actually make some new games for their system *before* releasing it. I feel bad for them, though. That's a huge cut.

  • Majin Kai

    ….This reminds me of their statement on resources for making a movie.

    But sheesh. Even 50% of 1.5 million is still a frikin truckload of money. It's not that bad. My family (Yes, family. Not father, mother, sister, etc) live off 12K a year. We have a nice house, a nice garden (Albeit a bad neighbourhood), buy great food, have "stuff", and we're doing alright. So -0.75 million aint going to do much to the guy's lifestyle.

    Though it's a good thing that lower down the ladder workers weren't laid off. How un-European/American



  • Chu-Chu Train

    Aww. Poor Iwata. At least he's trying to be sincere.

  • For those of you saying this is simply a PR move: obviously you don't know much about Japanese culture. They are a very honorable people and are much, MUCH harder on themselves and their peers when it comes to performance. This announcement doesn't surprise me, because that's just how they are. Is it admirable? Very much so. I think American CEOs and corporations could learn a lot from Nintendo and the Japanese. This is why I support and will always continue to support Nintendo. Hopefully the price cut will help boost the 3DS' popularity enough that they'll start making a profit again once the bigger hitting titles such as Luigi's Mansion 2 and Mario Kart 3DS hit the gaming market.

    Also, Nintendo needs WAY more third-party support. I just found out that several third party developers have cancelled their 3DS games (including Capcom and Megaman Legends 3, which has me and many other MML fans seething with rage, especially since Capcom blamed US, the gamers, as the main reason). If third-party developers start to see that the sales and demand are there for 3DS games and Nintendo actually reaches out to them for help, perhaps we'll see the return of these "cancelled" games and new ones that will become worthy editions to the 3DS library.

    There, that's my two-cents for the day, 😉

  • TheMaverickk

    They make a tonne of money…. even after the pay cut.

    It's a shame that they had to do that…. but you gotta remember that's an additional amount of money now in the companies pockets to pay for other things (games, promotional aspects, striking deals with 3rd parties). At the end of the day they are essentially taking responsibility for the fact that they could've done a better job with the launch of the 3DS. I personally look at the gesture being something that is really earnest to their fans and supporters.

    Hopefully the money cut will help the company as a whole though so we keep seeing new games created by Nintendo.

  • Jean D'oe

    This must be the harakiri of japanese game developers.

  • AstroStar

    that is good executive management and a good move,

    the only american business i can think of that has similar integrity is Costco, the CEO of that fortune 500 company gave himself a salary of $300,000 a year and the ability to be fired if he doesn't do his job

  • I really hope that this situation isn't carried further. I want Nintendo at the top of it's game like it has always been. People just don't realize how great their games and innovative ideas are.

  • Epona500h

    To really understand why they are taking these cuts, you ought to watch the movie, "Gung Ho". It excellently shows how the Japanese think about their business. Unlike us, their work is their lives. To them, if the business fails, it means the workers are failing. To the chagrin of many people who would like to believe otherwise, this is not a sympathy stunt. The Japanese culture is HUGELY different than ours. You need to stop thinking, "Oh, but he's still making all this money!" That's not the point Iwata is trying to make. What he's trying to do is show us that he' willing to sacrifice his own needs for the company. I have no doubt that in my mind that he will go even further should the sales not pick up. If only some of the people here in America would learn be as loyal and honorable.

  • Insekt

    I think that in doing so, they are putting pressure on themselves to work even harder. I honestly think that if this is their way of coping with the loss and if this realy makes their motivation of creating even more "utopian" hard- and software, then this isn't such a bad idea.

    – Insekt

  • EmptyStar

    Feeding into the whole "Japanese people are more honorable" is stereotyping them, albeit positively, but still. Using it as a coverup is just offensive.

    Judging their actions based on their culture rather than their personal history is wrong.

    That being said, it seems like a PR move honestly. If it really WAS about honor, I'd imagine the last thing they'd do was start telling reporters about it.

  • Hoocher

    I'd buy a 3DS if they cut their pinky fingers.