Miyamoto Finds Microsoft Avatars “Quite Flattering”


The man behind Mario has brushed aside any issues with Microsoft adopting Nintendo’s Mii model for Xbox LIVE.

At its E3 press conference, Microsoft confirmed plans to allow Xbox LIVE users to digitally represent themselves via Avatars, animated customizable characters that bore a resemblance to Nintendo’s Miis. Rumored weeks in advance due to a marketing leak, Microsoft’s Avatars are aiming to make the Xbox experience more inviting to casual players who may not be active LIVE members.

IGN’s Matt Casamassina caught up with Miyamoto during E3 to ask the Nintendo designer about his thoughts on Microsoft’s rendition of cute digital characters designed by players.

“I don’t really use the term avatar to refer to what we’ve done with the Miis. We created the Miis with the idea that the people you live with in your house or family, you also live together with inside the TV, and you can use those characters interchangeably in the games you play,” explained Miyamoto.

Miyamoto is more pleased with Microsoft’s direction, seeing as the Avatars will unlikely be used for the same purposes Nintendo gives to Miis.

“To see that a company like Microsoft has taken something we’ve done and kind of looked at it in a way and brought it out on their platform to kind of show that we’ve done has become the standard, I find quite flattering,” stated Miyamoto. “But on the other hand, I think probably the basic ideas behind perhaps those two different systems are different and because of that I think they will probably develop in different ways.”

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