The person responsible for Nintendo’s push into the indie space has departed the company after nine years. Dan Adelman, whose successes include bringing Cave Story, World of Goo, Shovel Knight, and others to Nintendo platforms has announced that he, too, is going indie.

Adelman used to be prominent on Twitter and in the media prior to a Nintendo clamp down. He openly disagreed with Nintendo’s decision to prohibit Binding of Isaac to appear on the company’s systems due to “religious themes.” He has also been vocal about disagreeing with the 3DS region lock.

Nintendo attempted to bring him to heel, but Adelman opted for silence rather than toe the line on company policies with which he disagreed. “When people started complaining that I wasn't active on Twitter anymore, it was suggested that a PR person could just post in my name,” Adelman told Kotaku in a candid interview. “I thought that was about the worst idea I'd ever heard, so I left it as is and let the silence speak for itself.”

Adelman says that Nintendo’s indie program is in good hands, and that he built a team working with developers and that he will likely be replaced. As for his next step, Adelman hints that he may take on a consulting role, helping indies bring their games to market.

Nintendo has a significant slate of indie titles announced for the coming months. The company also recently announced its financial performance for the first quarter of the current fiscal year, showing a $97 million loss, despite extremely strong sales of Mario Kart 8. 

We’ve reached out to the company for comment on Adelman’s departure and confirmation and other details about its indie program. We’ll update should we receive a response. The Kotaku interview includes more detail about Adelman’s role and the circumstances leading up to his departure.

Update: Adelman shared the news on Twitter, also. Here's what he had to say:

Update #2: Nintendo has declined to comment on Adelman's departure and his subsequent statements.

[Source: Kotaku, Dan Adelman]


Our Take
I wish I could say that I’m surprised that it was suggested a PR representative impersonate a key company individual. Unfortunately, this isn’t unique to Nintendo, and readers can usually tell when Tweets are scrubbed and sanitized by corporate communications officers.

Adelman’s impact on Nintendo was a positive one, and he will be missed. His departure won’t mean the end of Nintendo’s indie program, but the absence of his voice will be surely be felt.