Iwata Asks is a series of interviews by Satoru Iwata, president of Nintendo. In the latest interview, Iwata-san is joined by Tsunekazu Ishihara-san, president of The Pokémon Company, and Shigeki Morimoto-san director of HeartGold/SoulSilver from Game Freak.
Morimoto: We put Mew in right at the very end. The cartridge was really full and there wasn’t room for much more on there. Then the debug features which weren’t going to be included in the final version of the game were removed, creating a miniscule 300 bytes of free space. So we thought that we could slot Mew in there. What we did would be unthinkable nowadays! […]
Iwata: …It wasn’t actually supposed to appear in the game, right?
Morimoto: Right. Unless we could think about any good opportunity to do so, the existence of Mew wouldn’t have been revealed to the public. It was left in there in case it was suitable for some post-launch activity. But if there wasn’t anyone among ourselves who wanted to use it, I thought it would be fine to just leave it as it was.
The interview sheds some light on the early days of the Pokémon franchise and like all the previous “Iwata Asks” makes a very interesting read for all gamers and Nintendo fans.