Copywriter Shigesato Itoi was attacked last night in Japan while on his daily stroll of the neighborhood. Itoi is most known in the West for creating Earthbound, known as Mother in Japan. He did not sustain any life threatening injuries.
The Asahi Shimbun reports that the attackers were a group of Americans who were reportedly following Itoi the entire day until they could get close enough to attack. A witness described the attack as “intense and loud”.
“I did not understand English so I could not understand what they were saying,” he recalls, “It sounded like ‘Ma Ther For’. They repeated that over and over while they beat him with baseball bats.”
Another witness who understood English said, “I recall one of them saying that Mr. Itoi should stop withholding the game from the true fans. Itoi said that he did not understand English and tried to run away. Another said that they had no choice but to beat another game out of him and then they attacked.”
“They all wore baseball caps and striped shirts,” says another witness, “it was very odd. I hope Mr. Itoi is okay.”
Itoi posted the following message on his personal web site 1101 after he was released from the hospital:
I am alright and have been released from the hospital with only minor injuries.
For those who have not heard, I was attacked last night by a group of Americans. These Americans were very big fans of a video game series I ended back in 2006. Sadly, this was not the first encounter with unruly Americans who think the only way to get me to make another game is by threatening me.
For those fans who continue to wait for another game, they should stop waiting and focus their efforts on something more worthwhile like going to school or showering. Please do not hurt me again.
Earthbound fan site, Starmen.net, posted a message on its forums saying that they were not responsible for the attack; however, if Itoi does not release Mother 4, they will do something more drastic next time.
Currently no one has been charged with the crime.