Uncharitable Nintendo fans might wish Satoru Iwata spent less time interviewing developers on his website and more time commissioning new Marios, Zeldas and Pikmins, but if Nintendo's president ever tires of ordering more stationery and chasing Shigeru Miyamoto around the office then he should have no difficulty attracting freelance writing commissions. Certainly not when his insights are as weightless and poetic as this one: "When you're driving well in a racing game, you often get into an egoless state and rise above yourself."
That's Iwata talking to Namco Bandai's Yozo Sakagami, who enthusiastically agrees, and many of us will know why: because it captures perfectly the meditative trance into which we descend when, at least once every console generation, we locate the magic centre of a new Ridge Racer.
For Ridge Racer 3D, it comes at the start of the second phase of the Grand Prix mode, as the third-tier cars come online, speeds hover across the 320km/h threshold, and the slow-paced track-by-track repetition of the first three hours coalesces into an hypnotic blend of perfect muscle memory and extrasensory feedback, your inputs no longer fully conscious and the anchor tethering your mind to the moment fully, beautifully broken. You're no longer racing; you flow.
There's just one month to go now until Nintendo releases its shiny new handheld and everyone in the world throws their 3D specs in a bin. Yes, as of 25th March, we'll all be able to enjoy glorious, glasses-free, three-dimensional gaming with the Nintendo 3DS.
Providing we're willing to part with Ł230 first. And aren't one of those people whose eyes can't even look at a 3D screen without their eyes going all swimmy. But this is missing the point. The POINT is that this is the start of a magnificent new era. Soon we will be able to visit gameworlds where objects in the distance look not just smaller, but farther away. And what a wide range of worlds there will be to explore, right from launch.
As covered in our recent previews there's new Pilotwings and Kid Icarus to enjoy, not to mention Super Street Fighter IV.