Douglas Tronsgard of Next Level Games Announces Retirement

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Douglas Tronsgard, the current president and former CEO of Next Level Games, has announced that he is ceasing the maker of Nintendo games.

Founded in 2002, Next Level Games is responsible for several popular Nintendo titles over the past two decades. Under Tronsgard’s leadership, the company certainly went places.

Gaining recognition with the Super Mario Strikers games, Tronsgard and Next Level Games quietly became a mainstay on Nintendo platforms. Over the next decade, the company continued to develop Punch-Out!! for Wii and Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon for 3DS.

The company’s relationship with Nintendo was set to grow in 2014 when NLG announced it would be working exclusively on Nintendo content. Since that promise, Next Level Games has released Metroid Prime: Federation Force for the 3DS and Luigi’s Mansion 3 for the Switch.

On January 4, 2021, Nintendo announced that it has acquired Next Level Games as its internal studio. Tronsgard stepped down as CEO in 2021, ended his tenure as president of the company and left a note for friends and colleagues on LinkedIn when he also relinquished the title of president:

After more than 20 years in the video game industry, I am pleased to announce my retirement. I wanted to thank everyone who helped me on my journey to get here. A special thank you to Nintendo for trusting me and Next Level Games. It’s been a real honor for me to be a part of NLG’s incredible history.

I am looking forward to a new chapter in my life in which I will have to travel a lot with my wife. †

Everyone take good care of each other and enjoy the journey!


While travel may be the future for Tronsgard, Next Level Games is not taking a break. Keep an eye out for Mario Strikers: Battle League, which comes out in June this year.

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