Nintendo created Mario, Zelda, Pokemon, Donkey Kong, Mario Kart, Metroid, Star Fox, Animal Crossing, Smash Bros., GoldenEye, Earthbound, Kirby, Killer Instinct, Banjo-Kazooie, under Yamauchi's watch. The Iwata era was no where close for software quality overall or innovation in actual new things that stand the test of time. The most significant new IP that was created under Iwata that continues to be big today is Splatoon.
Even the DS having dual screens was Yamauchi's idea.
The main mistake Yamauchi made was bungling the CD-ROM deal with Sony, otherwise he did most things correctly and even when Nintendo made a mistake (like censoring Mortal Kombat), they would react in a reasonable time frame to adjust -- Mortal Kombat 2 for example wasn't censored and was better than the Genesis version as a result.
90s Nintendo was the best version of Nintendo, they had a Game of the Year contender basically every year for the decade (1990 - Mario 3, 1991 - Mario World 1992 - Zelda: LttP, 1993 - Star Fox, 1994 - Super Metroid or DKC, 1995 - Yoshi's Island and DKC2, 1996 - Super Mario 64, 1997 - GoldenEye, 1998 - Zelda: OoT, 1999 - Pokemon craze, 2000 - Zelda: Majora's Mask ... after 2000 this began to wane). Nintendo doesn't do this anymore.
And Nintendo was trying a lot of wild stuff, the NES (Famicom) in Japan had online functionality in the 1980s, lol. Very wild. Nintendo is no where near as bold today.
Nintendo never posted a fiscal loss in the game business under Yamauchi, under Iwata they lost money for like 2-3 years straight.
Last edited by Soundwave - on 13 July 2020