Article 4—Nintendo Media Briefing Invitation (1998)

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1998 was the second and final year in which the city of Atlanta hosted the annual Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3). I saved this postcard because it amused me to think that somebody walked into the offices of Nintendo executives Peter Main, Minoru Arakawa and Howard Lincoln and took their pictures with a Game Boy Camera, then messed ’em up with mustaches and funny teeth. But upon closer examination, it seems more likely that they pointed the Game Boy Camera at studio portrait photographs of those guys instead of their actual faces…which kind of takes the fun out of it.

I never met Main or Arakawa, but Howard Lincoln once visited the offices of VideoGames magazine while I was working there, accompanied by Eileen Tanner of Nintendo PR firm Golin Harris. It surprised me that they would fly to L.A. and take an hour to sit and chat with VideoGames editor in chief Frank O’Connor and myself, because VideoGames was not a terribly important magazine by that time. (In fact, my full-time responsibilities had already transitioned over to Tips & Tricks, which was just starting to find its audience after spinning off from the slowly dying VideoGames.) It was a relatively informal meeting; they didn’t seem to have a specific reason for being there, other than just getting to know us. If they had a hidden agenda, I never found out what it was. Lincoln was cordial, with the quiet confidence of a man in a comfortable position at a powerful company. I remember asking him if Nintendo would ever get back into producing coin-op arcade games. He was amused by the question and tried to give a noncommittal reply, but it was obvious that the real answer was “probably not.”

If you’re wondering why I obscured Eileen’s contact information on this scan, it’s because—as I write these words, more than 12 years after the fact—she’s still the head of Nintendo’s PR machine, and she still has the same e-mail address and phone number!

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