Mario and Mickey Mouse similarities


Staff member
Sep 19, 2012
Shigeru Miyamoto is known to have compared Mario to Mickey Mouse on several occasioins. Here's what he said in an Entertainment Weekly interview:

When I first worked on the very first Mario game, I thought I would make Mario again and again, so that it would grow in conjunction with the technology. Mickey Mouse is a character that grew with the evolution of animation technology and motion picture technology. I thought that maybe I could do the same thing with Mario — he would be the character who grew with the evolution of digital technology.
It seems Miyamoto views Mario as a character symbolic of the videogame industry as a whole. While Mario games don't use photorealistic graphics, their gameplay has been representative of the progress in game technology, and of course, Super Mario Bros. and Super Mario 64 brought 2D and 3D gaming, respectively, to the masses.

A survey conducted in the 1990s showed that Mario was actually more recognizable to American children than Mickey Mouse.

Do you guys agree with this analogy? Are there other similarities in how Nintendo and Disney treat their favorite mascots? Does Mickey have a slightly more universal appeal than Mario worldwide?
I think there are similarities in how each represent their industry, like you said, each of them sort of evolve to change their industries.

Another Disney character that is close to a Nintendo character is Peter Pan and Link. These two are far more similar than Mario and Mickey Mouse. Just look at their outfit for starters, both wear green garbs and brown boots, both are accompanied by a Fairy, the kokori children who stay kids forever are like the people from Neverland, the list goes on and on. I think Shiggy actually stated this sometime, but I can't remember when, I just remember reading it a few years back.
No, not really. When you say evolve you can see that Mickey Mouse has changed a great deal more than Mario - moreover when looking overseas you can see that the popularity of these characters is wildly different. Also there is the factor of what they are - Mario is a guy trying to save the Princess, Mickey is a guy in love with Minnie who has a dog and friends. Mickey takes jobs and has a house and has done all kinds of things - he has a personality and a backstory. Mario is just an avatar. That said I like them both, and don't see the need to compare them.

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