Published: Sun, November 04, 2018
Electronics | By Kelly Massey

Super Mario's namesake, Mario Segale, has passed away

Super Mario's namesake, Mario Segale, has passed away

At the time, the company was looking for proper names for characters from Shigeru Miyamoto's Donkey Kong, who were just called "Jumpman" and "Lady". He started his own construction business soon after graduating from high school in 1952, and later began focusing on real estate and property development, establishing the Segale Business Park in the 1970s. When Nintendo made a decision to give "Jumpman" and "Lady" real names in the original Donkey Kong for the arcade, they named Lady "Pauline", which they derived from their warehouse manager's wife, Polly.

Seagle was intensively private about being the inspiration behind the character over fears it could damage the reputation of his businesses.

Asked what he thought about the character being named after him, he would only say: "You might say I'm still waiting for my royalty cheques".

Today, Mario is the best-selling video game franchise of all time, comprising dozens of games across three decades' worth of gaming systems.

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The plumber's latest adventure, Super Mario Odyssey, is now the best-selling game on the new Nintendo Switch console and has sold more than 12 million copies.

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According to a report on Kotaku, Segale died on October 27 surrounded by family at his home in Washington.

'While he was the inspiration for the name of Nintendo's "Super Mario" from when they were tenants in his business park in the 1970s, he always ducked the notoriety and wanted to be known instead for what he accomplished in his life, ' his obituary read.

Segale kept a very low profile, only rarely speaking to the media.

He sold his company in 1998 for £46.21million ($60million).

He is survived by his wife of 62 years, four children, and nine grandchildren.

This story originally appeared in The Sun.

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