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Game designer Shigeru Miyamoto has said on numerous occasions that his original concept for Super Mario Bros. was inspired by the works of Disney, particularly Mickey Mouse. It turns out that inspiration goes both ways, as Disney released a video that features a nod toward the popular Nintendo game series a couple of years ago. So, what did Miyamoto think of it?
The short is called Tokyo Go, and it stars none other than Disney's mascot character, Mickey Mouse. The folks over at Gameinformer recently discovered that Miyamoto had not seen the video and decided to treat him to a screening before asking for his feedback. Clocking in at just under four minutes, you can see the entire short below. In case it's not super obvious, the Mario Bros. reference happens at about the halfway point.
In Tokyo Go, we see Mickey Mouse in a hurry to get to work. As part of his commute, he must cram onto a train with dozens of businessmen wearing the exact same outfit. Getting on the train is only part of his troubles, as he also runs into a group of punks and even a sumo wrestler. Our hero finds himself on top of the train, where he must dodge a whole bunch of signs to keep from being hospitalized.
When the train enters a tunnel, Mickey enters an 8-bit scene where he must jump and collect coins, just like in Mario Bros.
The gag here is that Mickey works at a sort of amusement park where he serves as conductor for a train that pulls kids through a beautiful Japanese garden, a striking contrast to the ride he just took.
When Miyamoto was finally shown the short, his reaction was one of good humor. Well, we hope it was said in good humor, anyway. Otherwise, there could be a messy legal battle coming down the pipeline.
Miyamoto asked if there was a copyright issue due to the Mario Bros. sounds that appear in the clip before laughing and saying, "It's very flattering." After all of these years, he was apparently happy to see Nintendo and Disney finally do a cameo together. Since the video fist released a couple of years ago, we're a bit surprised that this is the first Miyamoto is hearing of Tokyo Go, though he does stay pretty busy these days.
The folks at GI ask if this means that Nintendo now has the ability to use a Disney character in one of their games, to which Miyamoto laughs and explains that the folks at Disney "are very strict."
Not a definite no, then? In that case, Mickey Mouse playable in next Smash Bros. confirmed!