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    Nintendo History

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    Optimus
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    Nintendo History

    Post by Optimus on Thu Jul 08, 2010 3:29 pm

    Nintendo Co., Ltd. (任天堂株式会社, Nintendō Kabushiki gaisha?) is a multinational corporation located in Kyoto, Japan. Founded on September 23, 1889[2] by Fusajiro Yamauchi, it produced handmade hanafuda cards.[6] By 1963, the company had tried several small niche businesses, such as a cab company and a love hotel.[7]

    Nintendo soon developed into a video game company, becoming one of the most influential in the industry and Japan's third most valuable listed company, with a market value of over US$85 billion.[8]

    Besides video games, Nintendo is also the majority owner of the Seattle Mariners, a Major League Baseball team in Seattle, Washington.[9]

    According to Nintendo's Touch! Generations website, the name "Nintendo" translated from Japanese to English means "Leave luck to Heaven".[10] As of October 2, 2008, Nintendo has sold over 470 million hardware units and 2.7 billion software units.

    History
    Main article: History of Nintendo
    Former headquarters plate, from when Nintendo was solely a playing card company
    [edit] As a card company (1889–1956)

    Nintendo was founded as a card company in late 1889, originally named Nintendo Koppai. Based in Kyoto, Japan, the business produced and marketed a playing card game called Hanafuda. The handmade cards soon became popular, and Yamauchi hired assistants to mass produce cards to satisfy demand. Nintendo continues to manufacture playing cards in Japan[12] and organizes its own contract bridge tournament called the "Nintendo Cup".[13]
    [edit] New ventures (1956–1975)

    In 1956, Hiroshi Yamauchi (grandson of Fusajiro Yamauchi) visited the U.S. to talk with the United States Playing Card Company, the dominant playing card manufacturer there. He found that the world's biggest company in his business was only using a small office. This was a turning point, when Yamauchi realized the limitations of the playing card business. He then gained access to Disney's characters and put them on the playing cards to drive sales.
    The Nintendo Love Tester

    In 1963, Yamauchi renamed Nintendo Playing Card Company Limited to Nintendo Company, Limited. The company then began to experiment in other areas of business using newly injected capital. During this period of time between 1963 and 1968, Nintendo set up a taxi company, a love hotel chain, a TV network and a food company (selling instant rice, similar to instant noodles). All of these ventures eventually failed, and after the 1964 Tokyo Olympics, playing card sales dropped, leaving Nintendo with ¥60 in stocks.

    In 1966, Nintendo moved into the Japanese toy industry with the Ultra Hand, an extendable arm developed by its maintenance engineer Gunpei Yokoi in his free time. Yokoi was moved from maintenance to the new "Nintendo Games" department as a product developer. Nintendo continued to produce popular toys, including the Ultra Machine, Love Tester and the Kousenjuu series of light gun games. Despite some successful products, Nintendo struggled to meet the fast development and manufacturing turnaround required in the toy market, and fell behind the well-established companies such as Bandai and Tomy.

    In 1973, its focus shifted to family entertainment venues with the Laser Clay Shooting System, using the same light gun technology used in Nintendo's Kousenjuu series of toys, and set up in abandoned bowling alleys. Following some success, Nintendo developed several more light gun machines for the emerging arcade scene. While the Laser Clay Shooting System ranges had to be shut down following excessive costs, Nintendo had found a new market.
    [edit] Electronic era (since 1975)

    In 1974, Nintendo secured the rights to distribute the Magnavox Odyssey video game console in Japan. In 1977, Nintendo began producing its own Color TV Game home video game consoles. Four versions of these consoles were produced, each including variations of a single game (for example, Color TV Game 6 featured six versions of Light Tennis).

    A student product developer named Shigeru Miyamoto was hired by Nintendo at this time.[14] He worked for Yokoi, and one of his first tasks was to design the casing for several of the Color TV Game consoles. Miyamoto went on to create, direct and produce some of Nintendo's most famous video games and become one of the most recognizable figures in the video game industry.[14]

    In 1975, Nintendo moved into the video arcade game industry with EVR Race, designed by their first game designer, Genyo Takeda,[15] and several more titles followed. Nintendo had some small success with this venture, but the release of Donkey Kong in 1981, designed by Miyamoto, changed Nintendo's fortunes dramatically. The success of the game and many licensing opportunities (such as ports on the Atari 2600, Intellivision and ColecoVision) gave Nintendo a huge boost in profit.
    The Nintendo Entertainment System (NES)

    In 1980, Nintendo launched Game & Watch—a handheld video game series developed by Yokoi where each game was played on a separate device—to worldwide success. In 1983, Nintendo launched the Family Computer (commonly shortened "Famicom"), known outside Japan as the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES), home video game console in Japan, alongside ports of its most popular arcade titles. In 1985, the NES launched in North America, and was accompanied by Super Mario Bros., currently the second-best-selling video game of all time.[16]

    In 1989, Yokoi developed the Game Boy handheld game console.

    The Nintendo Entertainment System was superseded by the Super Famicom, known outside Japan as the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES). This was Nintendo's console of the 16-bit 4th generation, following the Famicom of the 8-bit 3rd generation, whose main rival was the Sega Mega Drive/Genesis. A fierce console war between Sega and Nintendo ensued,[17] in which the SNES was victorious[citation needed]. The SNES eventually sold 49.10 million consoles[18], around 20 million more than the Mega Drive.

    During the dominance of the Game Boy line, its creator, Yokoi, designed the Virtual Boy, a table-mounted semi-portable console featuring stereoscopic graphics. Users view games through a binocular eyepiece and control games using a gamepad. Rushed to market in 1995 to compensate for development delays with the upcoming Nintendo 64, the Virtual Boy was a commercial failure due to poor third-party support and a large price point. Amid the systems's failure, Yokoi was asked to leave Nintendo.[19]

    The company's next home console, the Nintendo 64, was released in 1996 and features 3D graphics capabilities and built-in multiplayer for up to four players. The system's controller introduced the analog stick. Nintendo later introduced the Rumble Pak, an accessory for the Nintendo 64 controller that produced force feedback with compatible games. It was the first such device to come to market for home console gaming and eventually became an industry standard.[20]

    The Nintendo GameCube followed in 2001 and was the first Nintendo console to utilize optical disc storage instead of cartridges.[21] The most recent home console, the Nintendo Wii, uses motion sensing controllers[22] and has on-board online functionality used for services such as Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection and Internet Channel[23] (in contrast to GameCube's limited functionality on select games with an additional modem accessory[24]). The Wii's success, as well as the success of the DS, introduced a change in audience to broader and non-traditional demographics, a business model with which Nintendo has had success.[citation needed] Contrarily, the new business model has also resulted in some long-time gamers abandoning the Nintendo console for its competitors.[25]

    Nintendo is the longest-surviving video game console manufacturer to date.

    Read More: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nintendo

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