Nintendo History Part 1

Nintendo history
April 30, 2008
Hello my Retro junkies today's article will be about the history of Nintendo It will be in parts. So it would not be a very long article just a normal size one. Also there was only a little information on Nintendo's early history and little pictures so please forgive me. Well here we go.

Nintendo started back in the end of the year 1889 by Fusajiro Yamauchi. They took the name Nintendo Koppai. They began business as a card company which made Hanafuda playing cards. Their name of the company Nintendo meant "leave luck to Heaven" which made alot of sense. The cards were made only by hand and in a short time it took the public by storm. Fusajiro Yamauchi had to hire assistants just to keep up with consumers demands.

(Nintendo Poster)

In later years Fusajiro Yamauchi had no son to hand his company down to so he did as tradition dictates and adopted a son. The sons name was Sekiryo Yamauchi when in 1929 Sekiryo Yamauchi took over the company and in 1933 merged with another company which the named was changed to Yamauchi Nintendo & Company. In 1947 Sekiryo had several other main brand cards introduce to the public by the Nintendo Company. He just like his step-father had no son so he also adopted a son. Sadly though his step-son Shikanojo Yamauchi did not take the company because he left but, his son who was raised by his grandparents would be the successor of the company.

(Example of a Nintendo hanafuda card showing the company's logo at the time.)

Sekiryo Yamauchi retired his presidency of Nintendo Koppai and passed it to Fusajiro's grandson, Hiroshi Yamauchi. Hiroshi Yamauchi changed the company name to Nintendo Karuta Co., Ltd in 1951. Then in 1953 Nintendo Karuta became the first company to succeed in mass-producing and selling plastic playing cards in Japan. This gave Nintendo a strong power hold over the card making company. When it was 1959 Hiroshi Yamauchi and Walt Disney struck a licensing deal, allowing Nintendo Karuta to market playing cards featuring popular Disney characters. This was opening up a new market for children's playing cards.
When the deal was made the company had a major success by having the Disney characters added to their inventory. With the tie-in they sold over 600,000 packets in just one year. Due to this success, in 1962, Yamauchi took Nintendo public. It was listed in Osaka Stock Exchange Second division. Finally in 1963 the companies name was changed to its present day name Nintendo Co., Ltd. After the success as a card company Nintendo decide to branch out and experiment with new things. The first product launch was packets of portioned instant rice, but this venture proved unsuccessful, as was the Sleazy Love Hotel - reported to have been visited by Yamauchi himself. They had a taxi business called Daiya taxi firm in 1963 which was a booming business until a strike happened which caused them to drop the business.

In 1964 Nintendo's first research and development department, named "Games" was established to develop and produce toys and games. The first game was called Rabbit Coaster. The year 1967 was the year a maintenance employee named Gunpei Yokoi who had personal interest in toy making was assigned to the game division. This is where he created “Ultra Hand extendable claw” which became a massive hit. In 1970 a deal was stroke with Sharp Electronics which allowed Nintendo to put sensor technology in toys. When the deal was made The Kousenjuu series game out or (Beam Gun) was released. This provided a gun which emitted light to shoot a target. This lead Nintendo to be the first company in Japan to employ electronics in side toys for children.

In 1973 Nintendo bought several abandon bowling and converted them to “Laser Clay Shooting System”. These areas had large scale version of the beam gun games were you targeted clay pigeons made of light. These arcades would become very popular and a past time. In this year in 1974 Nintendo entered the arcade business using a 16mm real of film and a beam gun. Several of these, systems included Wild Gunman which was exported to both the United States and Europe. In the year 1975 a oil shortage happened and Nintendo and a closure of their Laser Clay Shooting Range which forced them to go into distribution. The system they were importing was Magnavox Oddysey.

Following the hiring of several Sharp Electronics employees in 1977 Nintendo created their first home videogame system it was the Color TV Game 6. The system was only launched in Japan, and was followed by a series of Color TV Game systems. Nintendo released its first videogame arcade systems which included Computer Othello and Block Fever. Nintendo of America Inc. was set up in New York during 1980 to distribute Nintendo arcade and videogame systems in the United States. Nintendo of America requested a game to replace the failing RadarScope. So Nintendo set a junior employee, Shigeru Miyamoto, on the task. The game they made was Donkey Kong. This was a major hit and the introduction of to forever characters Mario and Donkey Kong. Then in 1982 Nintendo of America Inc. relocated to Seattle, Washington..

(Picture of colourtvgame6)

(Picture of DK game)

I would add more but I am saving up for a second article about Nintendo. Please readers enjoy the brief history of Nintendo.
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