Minecraft had humble origins, but the popular block-building sandbox game has become one of the most successful titles in gaming history with over 100 million copies sold. Numerous developers have tried to capitalize on that success by copying or tweaking the formula (and Dragon Quest Builders has been quite successful in that regard), but according to Shigeru Miyamoto, Nintendo was actually working on a "very similar" project decades ago.
Speaking with Glixel, the longtime Nintendo creator praised Minecraft and lamented the fact that it (or something like it) is not a Nintendo original.
"I do like Minecraft, but really more from the perspective of the fact that I really feel like that's something we should have made. We had actually done a lot of experiments that were similar to that back in the N64 days and we had some designs that were very similar. It's really impressive to me to see how they've been able to take that idea and turn it into a product." — Shigeru Miyamoto
Oh, what could have been! That said, Minecraft and the Super Mario Mash-Up Pack are fantastic on Wii U, and hopefully they will come to Nintendo Switch next year as well.