Here’s a feel-good story to brighten your day. Nintendo is well-known for its excellent customer service, but on one occasion it went above and beyond. A 95-year-old woman fell ill, and at the same time, her original-model Game Boy stopped working. After her family took it to several repair shops to no avail, they reached out to Nintendo, and the company gave her a replacement original Game Boy.
This story comes through Twitter from Asahi Shimbun, one of Japan’s leading newspapers. A 70-year-old woman named Kuniko Tsusaka wrote in to describe how Nintendo helped her out in a tough spot. Her mother, a 95-year-old, loved Tetris and loved playing it on her original-model Game Boy. She nearly always had it by her side.
But she fell ill, and by coincidence, so did her Game Boy. Her family took it to several repair shops, but no one had the parts to repair it anymore. Nor did anyone have an original-model Game Boy for sale.
That’s when Kuniko Tsusaka’s son told her grandmother about Nintendo’s legendary customer service. However, in describing Nintendo’s efforts as “divine customer service” (“kami taiou” in Japanese), it seems his grandmother became confused. You see, the word “kami” in “kami taiou” can mean both “divine” (神) and “paper” (紙).
So she thought he was saying Nintendo has a “paper customer service,” and that was the best way to contact the company. She wrote a letter to Nintendo asking for help and sent the broken Game Boy.
Within a week, Nintendo sent a letter back. The company explained it couldn’t repair her Game Boy, and so it sent a “new” original-model Game Boy (presumably one the company had stowed away) to replace it and then wished her a long life. Naturally, Kuniko Tsusaka’s mother was overjoyed to have a working Game Boy again.
Kuniko Tsusaka closed out the story by letting us know that her mother enjoyed the Game Boy for another four years before passing away, and even retained her cognitive awareness along the way. No doubt, all those rounds of Tetris helped.