Splatoon 3 and Mario Kart 8 composer Ryo Nagamatsu leaves Nintendo

Nagamatsu composed the themes for Splatoon 3, Mario Kart 8, Link's Awakening (2019), and more.


Music is a key component to any Nintendo game. Whether it’s a mainline title or a spin-off, there is always a great deal of attention paid to composition and original soundtracks. This is thanks to the talented musicians that work with the company, including Ryo Nagamatsu, who composed the music for games like Splatoon 3 and Mario Kart 8. Now, Nagamatsu is leaving Nintendo.

Ryo Nagamatsu announced his departure from Nintendo in a tweet this morning. “I have made a decision to leave the company of April 30, 2023,” he announced. “I will work a little wider and more directly to help those who need my help and to help the industry. Thank you all for your kind support! I look forward to serve you in the future!” He also clarifies that his split from Nintendo was amicable.

A squid kid standing in the desert.

Source: Nintendo

Nagamatsu got his first start at Nintendo in 2006 making music for Wii Play. Since then, he went on to compose tunes for Super Mario Galaxy 2, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, and Splatoon 3. He also has a special thanks credit in Super Smash Bros. Brawl and Arms. While Nagamatsu is done at Nintendo, it doesn’t look like he’s done making music for video games altogether. We’re curious to see what non-Nintendo projects he ends up getting involved with.

Ryo Nagamatsu is walking away from Nintendo after roughly 17 years with the video game company. His final work for The Big N was Splatoon 3, which launched last year. We look forward to seeing what comes next in his career, and will also be watching to see if Nintendo brings in any fresh musical talent for its upcoming projects. In other Nintendo news, the company is currently celebrating The Super Mario Bros. Movie crossing the $1 billion mark at the worldwide box office.

News Editor

Donovan is a young journalist from Maryland, who likes to game. His oldest gaming memory is playing Pajama Sam on his mom's desktop during weekends. Pokémon Emerald, Halo 2, and the original Star Wars Battlefront 2 were some of the most influential titles in awakening his love for video games. After interning for Shacknews throughout college, Donovan graduated from Bowie State University in 2020 with a major in broadcast journalism and joined the team full-time. He is a huge Scream nerd and film fanatic that will talk with you about movies and games all day. You can follow him on twitter @Donimals_

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