Nintendo has denied its legendary designer Shigeru Miyamoto is to step down from his current role inside the company and take partial retirement.
Miyamoto said in an interview with Wired he was stepping aside to make smaller projects.
"Inside our office, I’ve been recently declaring, ‘I’m going to retire, I’m going to retire.' I’m not saying that I’m going to retire from game development altogether. What I mean by retiring is, retiring from my current position," Miyamoto said.
“What I really want to do is be in the forefront of game development once again myself. Probably working on a smaller project with even younger developers. Or I might be interested in making something that I can make myself, by myself. Something really small.”
Nintendo's flat out denied that this is the case, however.
"This is absolutely not true," it said in a statement to Reuters. "Please do not be concerned."
Since the news broke, shares in Nintendo have fallen by 2%.
Miyamoto seemed deadly serious about this decision in the interview, declaring he intends to begin one of these small projects in 2012, and have something to show before year's end.
"In other words, I’m not intending to start from things that require a five-year development time,” he said.
The designer feels he can safely step down from his current role, because the teams under his guidance have proved capable of producing quality games, namely The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword and Super Mario 3D Land - but that Nintendo's younger staff need to learn to do it without him.
“The reason why I’m stressing that is that unless I say that I’m retiring, I cannot nurture the young developers,” he explained.
“After all, if I’m there in my position as it is, then there’s always kind of a relationship. And the young guys are always kind of in a situation where they have to listen to my ideas. But I need some people who are growing up much more than today.”
Miyamoto's list of credits is a who's-who list of Nintendo's franchises; Mario, Donkey Kong, Pikmin, Nintendogs, The Legend of Zelda, Starfox, and more.
[Original story by Brenna Hillier, contributions by Johnny Cullen]