Landlord Named “Mario” Becomes Video Game Hero
How a Landlord Became “Mario” – The Computer Game Character
“You can’t pay a landlord in dogma.” – Jodi Picoult
With all of the political stories and global tragedies recently making headlines, I thought that it might be fun to share a story about the lighter side of real estate that you can share with your children (especially if they love video games). Have you ever wondered how computer games select the names of their characters?
Back in 1981, when Nintendo was still renting warehouse space in the US as their headquarters, the landlord made a visit to the location and demanded the late rent be paid. According to Wikipedia, a “heated argument” ensued, and the US president of Nintendo promised Mario Sengale, the landlord, that rent would be paid shortly. Minoru Arakawa, head of the Nintendo US operations, decided to pay homage to the landlord and changed the name of their character in Donkey Kong from “Jumpman” to “Mario”. It has been estimated that over 240 million Mario games sold to date and Mario has appeared in over 200 games since the release of Donkey Kong in 1981! Mario Segale does not speak very much about his iconic named character, but he may not have the time. He was named as one of the top 50 political donors in Washington State and owns a 490 acre development site in Tukwila, Washington!
Everyone loves to hate their landlord when they are a tenant. However, it is certainly interesting to see how an irate landlord forever changed consumers’ opinions of the gaming industry and can enjoy the legacy of “Mario” for generations to come…even if he never did receive any money in royalties for his name becoming a popular character!
Brian McCullough & Myles McCullough
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