Nintendo is a Japanese company widely known as a developer of such trendy video games as Mario and Pokémon but not limited to them. We would say that every gamer is familiar with this brand. In addition, it stays behind the NES and Nintendo Switch consoles, which are full of useful features and benefits compared with the top rivals. It is true that the company tries to be humble and suggests only the best result possible in whatever it involves. It learns from its experiences, updates its products, and reconsiders its approaches continuously.
Now it operates at an international market. You can find its representative offices in France, Great Britain, Germany, Italy, Spain, and more. Its footprint goes far beyond Europe. It has its locations around the world. This company has a long history with many legends and curious facts swept under the carpet. We want you to learn more about Nintendo. And we are sure you will be surprised to hear that…
First, do you know that Nintendo is translated from Japanese as “leave luck to heaven”? We would say it means that you should believe in destiny. But even if you think that your future depends on fate, you should stay active and work at your dreams.
This company was founded for the production of playing cards known as hanfuda and used for popular domestic games in Japan. Since 1889 it has succeeded in this business, creating an increasing demand for the cards all over the world. Nintendo even signed a deal with Disney to print Disney characters on the cards. Later it launched a chain of love hotels. It ran a TV channel. It produced instant rice, and even more.
Only in the 1970s, Nintendo got involved in a video gaming industry. And this business turned out to be more efficient. Their agreement with Magnavox about the distribution of the Magnavox Odyssey video game console in Japan triggered a new undertaking. Soon, Nintendo decided to try their hand in the production of their own video game console which was meant to become one of the most powerful and reliable gaming equipment. There have already been several variations released since that time. And who knows what would happen if it weren’t for that distribution business line.
Nintendo released a range of titles which never left Japan; in other words, nobody in the world has had access to them. Still, probably all gamers know the name Shigeru Miyamoto — a Japanese video game designer and a producer of Nintendo titles. He created games which gained success globally. Let’s remember them: Mario, Star Fox, The Legend of Zelda, Donkey Kong, and more. But his first game was intended for console only: Devil World has never appeared on shelves in the USA and other countries except for Japan.
Nintendo was the first to use the D-pad on their controllers, providing easier and more efficient navigation and playing experience. As you know, not all but a lot of video game controllers contain the D-pad with four buttons providing various functions and directions. It is irreplaceable when you cannot afford a mistake, and when precision is vital. Just press the buttons and navigate your character in the direction you want. The D-pad was developed in 1982 by a Nintendo employee.
Banking software is an additional business stream. We cannot say that it was continuous, but still, in 1998 the company in cooperation with TranDirect released an exceptional cartridge for the SNES. It was not connected with the gaming industry directly, but it delivered tools for the management of users’ bank accounts from their SNES. All you had to do was entering a PIN code suggested by your bank and log in on SNES to arranged your bills as you want.
Exactly this developer created the first jumping character in the popular game Donkey Kong. Another iconic name is Mario with the same feature. In 1981, when Donkey Kong was released, platformer-style games were not popular. Thanks to this title, delivering a character who is jumping over the obstacles along the route he follows, this style has become a large part of video games.
This company is characterized by a diverse offer of gaming accessories. It always delivers something different compared to already-existing titles, like the hybrid home and handheld console. The really unusual peripheral, known as the Nintendo Knitting Machine, was created as an additional device for the NES. It allowed knitting scarves and other things when plugged into the console. But this peripheral has never reached consumers.
In 2001 Nintendo released Animal Crossing. As you know, this is a game series generating a couple of characters used in other games. It is so popular in Japan that there’s still plenty of its merchandise sold. And there is even more. You hardly know that Nintendo produced a movie based on this game. In 2006 the film Dōbutsu no Mori was available on a big screen only in Japan. In the movie, an 11-year-old girl Ai travels to Animal Village and communicates with various dwellers of that place. In general, the plot is the same as the games.
Nowadays, we play online with friends and distant players which can be a world away at the current moment. But in the 1990s it was so rare that seemed impossible. And you know what? Back at that time, Nintendo offered a peripheral allowing online gaming. It was released for the Super Famicom. It was not possible to team up or compete against one another when playing Donkey Kong or Yoshi Island as you can do today, but still, it delivered some innovative options, like playing quiz games, downloading the titles via a one-way satellite connection, etc. The price for such a unique peripheral was about $200.
And of course, we should mention the Nintendo PlayStation. This miraculous gaming console was really produced. In 1988, the company came to an agreement with Sony to improve SNES and make CDs possible in addition to cartridges. As you know, then only Sony’s PlayStation used discs for playing on a console. Unfortunately, the collaboration failed to be continuous and fruitful because both parties couldn’t agree upon the division of income from the console sales. Still, about 200 prototypes of the Nintendo PlayStation were released then. Now everybody dissembles this fact, and that console is considered a kind of legend.
It is not going to stop
The above information about the activities of Nintendo is supported by new purposes of the company which is going forward. Now it looks in the direction of medical and health services. It is going to consider the development of computer software. At the same time, there are interests in the restaurant business and licensing. As you see, it remains constant, expanding its horizons behind the existing activity. The company has announced a quality of life platform. We should say that such plans are exciting, though still up in the air. And if you remember the start of the company as a board game cards producer, we can expect almost any initiative of Nintendo and believe that it will make something great in healthcare too. We are waiting for innovations!
This company has a long history lasting over 100 years and proves that it is possible to be successful in various fields if you work hard, stick with your principles, and move ahead with an innovative approach. Now we know Nintendo more as video games and consoles developer, which has been working its way from making playing cards. Its still-popular Mario title continues to attract players and brings a return.
The company produces games for home and portable consoles, desktops, and smart devices. There is its own games platform with the brand specialty. The company wants to enter the animated film market, and more. It seems that this brand is everywhere.
We should mention that Nintendo cares about its fans, being attentive to their needs and preferences, considering the feedback, and suggesting new titles or updates of the existing ones in accordance with the fans’ expectations. Its goal is to continue the typical Nintendo experiences even within new products and at the same time to surprise with unique features. It is really flexible and does its best to follow the changing entertainment market.
We hope that we have managed to open your eyes with this article, and you have learned many more details concerning this awesome company. Please leave your comments and share this information with your friends.