Back in August 2014, beloved actor Robin Williams passed away in his California home. Williams was a big fan of video games, especially The Legend of Zelda series. He loved the games so much, he named his only daughter after Princess Zelda and even appeared alongside her in the official commercial for The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D.
After the news broke, gaming fan Nick Schaedel created a petition to have Robin Williams’s name given to an NPC character in The Legend of Zelda for Wii U as an honor to him and his family. The petition received over 118,000 signatures, more than enough to warrant a response from Nintendo.
Robin Williams was loved at Nintendo. Our hearts go out to his entire family, and especially to Zelda Williams who we’ve worked with multiple times. We appreciate the outpouring of support from the gaming community, and hear the request of fans to honor him in a future game. We will not be discussing what might be possible for future games during this difficult time, but we will hold our memories of Robin close.
The petition lost some traction after the company’s response, but the number of supporters continues to climb long after the news stopped spreading, albeit slowly.
A similar petition was created after Nintendo President Satoru Iwata’s death on July 11th, 2015 in order to “immortalize” him in the upcoming Zelda game. Once again, he was another icon beloved by many gamers; however, this petition does not call for his name to be given to an NPC character. It simply states:
While we are terribly sad of the passing of the legendary Iwata, we as Nintendo fans feel it is appropriate we immortalize his legacy in stone. All in remembrance of the late Iwata in the upcoming Zelda U.
The petition stands at 4,375 supporters as of July 25th, just 2 weeks after Mr. Iwata’s passing. Although they may be gone, they had a huge impact on the Nintendo company and its fans.