A former Nintendo executive recently explained the mindset that led to the Wii Remote and the Sports pack.

Reggie Fils-Aimé, former president of Nintendo of America, gave a recent talk at Cornell University about the important principles he believes comprise the foundations of good leaders.

During his talk, he discussed the characteristics of an effective leader, including one of the six principles he believes are necessary for successful decision-making: courage. Related to his business beliefs, he offered some insight into the launch of one of the most influential video game systems of the past two decades: the Nintendo Wii.

Fils-Aimé called the video game industry during the Wii's launch "stagnant," noting that most people weren't actually all that into games. As a result, there wasn't any sort of market growth for the sector. Gaming didn't seem as though it was going anywhere.

"Nintendo diagnosed the problem was that there wasn't innovation in the games," Fils-Aimé explained. "It was more and more sequels, fill in the blank version two, three, four, it was all the same. There was a lack of innovation in the play styles. The controllers had gotten overly complicated. Nintendo's solution was the Wii Remote, the integral part of the Wii proposition."

He spoke briefly on the Wii, which ended up selling over 100 million systems. Calling it a "groundbreaking device," he attributed much of its success to the pack-in title it shipped out with: Wii Sports. To hear Reggie tell it, shipping Wii Sports with the Wii original "drove" the massive success the system enjoyed after it debuted.

It makes perfect sense: the Wii Sports pack-in gave users something to play without having to immediately run out and buy a new game after dropping cash on the system. It offered plenty of different, accessible sports that could be played with the Wii's remote controller, which could help emulate some of the activities in the game. For instance, you could pull back the remote and push forward to emulate that of tossing a bowling ball down the lane. Similarly, you could pretend to play tennis, which was a big draw and great exercise for players, especially elderly gaming fans.

It's still intriguing to hear how Reggie and the rest of the Nintendo crew saw the Wii's release all these years later.

Reggie Fils-Aime Speaks at E3
President and Chief Operating Officer of Nintendo of the America's at the Nintendo All Access Panel. Reuters