Home > Gaming, NES, Nintendo World Championship, Q&A, Retro, Thor Aackerlund > Q&A: Nintendo World Championship Car

Q&A: Nintendo World Championship Car

A reader of Lost Hammer, Matt Weber wrote to us with some inquires regarding the Nintendo World Championships.

Matt: Hi!  I’m a big fan of competitive video games, I’ve been spending some time trying to dig up info about the 1990 championships but everything seems to link to a few sources that have conflicting details.  I’m hoping your crew of experts can clear up some things, or point me in the right direction.

Erik: “Will do our best”

Matt : Specifically, I’m confused about this:

“There was no official competition round to crown a single winner. However, after the competition ended there was an informal face-off between the three winners, with Thor Aackerlund taking first place, Jeff Hansen taking second, and Robert Whiteman finishing third.”

Erik: “Confirmed”

Matt: Jeff Hansen went on as America’s representative to Japan to win the World Championship title again in Tokyo, Japan, and again in Las Vegas at a rematch with the Japanese champion, Yuichi Suyama.”

Do you happen to know where I could find information about the Tokyo competition?  Everything I’ve been able to dig up points back to that same passage in Wikipedia, which doesn’t cite a source so I’m not even confident the Japan competition existed.  If it did, do you have any idea why Jeff Hansen (11 at the time from what I can tell) went to represent?

Thor: “No idea on why Nintendo choose Jeff Hansen.”

Erik: “There was very very little in the media when it was happening, I think Nintendo wanted to control it, and keep it close to the belt, we did not even know about it until well after it had taken place, it was not on the scale of the massively publicised 1990 Nintendo World Championships were.”

Matt: Wikipedia also claims the winner won a car and a TV in addition to the savings bond.  The savings bond I’ve found other evidence of, but again no source on the car/tv thing and no mentions of it aside from this wiki article that everything seems to copy.  People are fond of citing the time Carmack gave away his Ferrari as the first instance of a car being won in video games, which makes me wonder if that is true also.

Thor: “The winners also recieved a 1990 Geo Metro Convertible, this would predate Carmack giving away his Ferarri.  They had a GeoMetro convertible in yellow for all of the contestants to ooh and ahh at, just out side the StarTrek Theater at Universal Studios, A bunch of the contestants at one point decided to lift the car off the ground!”

Erik: “If I remember right the savings bond was for $10,000, which had a pretty low cash value,  the TV was a Panasonic 42″ it replaced Thor’s 13″ Color TV of the time.  There were some other things the winners got, A Mario trophy, and a Panasonic Boombox. ”

Matt: I know these are weird and specific questions, and appreciate any insight you can give.  Hope the gaming blog goes well, I love reading about all kinds of game competition and retro gaming.

Thor: “Thanks for your great questions, keep them coming”

Advertisements
  1. March 22, 2011 at 9:04 pm

    I can add that 2nd place got a silver Mario trophy (no bronze for 3rd I’m very sure) and 2nd through 7th (in order: Rich Ambler, Robin Mihara, Jeff Falco, Kenny Welch, Jeff Bender and Nick Weitlisbach in the 12-17 age category) received a $1000 savings bond and NOT the boom box. We didn’t get the bond for quite some time iirc. The bond matured 10 years after being issued. (3 years after being issued it was worth in the $600 range, which buys quite a bit of malt liquor fyi)

  2. March 22, 2011 at 10:03 pm

    Oh, and regarding the 2nd Hansen contest: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v96mjIAD1Bs

    Note the crowd reaction. The story I heard is that Japan was ashamed of the landslide loss, and insisted that Hansen return to play again. He did, and won again, but not in honor-slashing fashion. 🙂

  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: