Nintendo experimented with a game “very similar” in design to that of Mojang’s Minecraft during the days of the N64, Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto has revealed. One of the most successful games ever made, Minecraft has sold over 100 million copies worldwide since being released in 2011 as the product of one man – Markus Persson – and is available on almost every single gaming device known to man. However, according to Miyamoto, the sandbox title closely resembles something the Big N had been experimenting with in years long since passed.
When asked what games he likes to play in his spare time, the famed Pikmin, Donkey Kong and Mario creator said, “I do like Minecraft, but really more from the perspective of the fact that I really feel like that’s something we should have made.” Indeed, Miyamoto continues to divulge how Nintendo had actually experimented with ideas that closely resembled Minecraft‘s design “back in the N64 days,” with some designs having been “very similar” to that of Mojang’s offering.
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It’s not particularly surprising that Nintendo had, at one point, been working on a project similar to Minecraft, its universal appeal to all age groups and general ease of access are both concepts that the Japanese company prides itself on. Miyamoto doesn’t specify why the unnamed title never saw the light of day, but does voice his admiration of Mojang’s product. “It’s really impressive to me to see how they’ve been able to take that idea and turn it into a product,” he said, perhaps indicating that Nintendo’s own project was scrapped after it had trouble pinning down a selling point for a game that truly has no end point or ultimate goal.
Alas, it was just never meant to be, it seems. Sadly, in a post-Minecraft world, we’ll probably never see what Nintendo’s own version would look like in modern times, although there is a silver lining for all the Ninty fans out there. A content update earlier this year saw both studios team up to bring Mario and friends to its blocky world, including skins, music and textures all themed around the franchise.