Nintendo is one of the best-loved companies of all time thanks to the many awesome video games and consoles the company has produced over the years. Check out these 13 facts you never knew about the company that brought us Mario, Pokemon, The Legend of Zelda and so many more…
The company’s beginnings
Nintendo was founded in 1889 and for many years specialised in producing playing cards. The company turned to producing video games to cash in on Japan’s ever-growing video game obsession. The company’s first video game was produced in 1978.
2. The fate of Twister in Japan
In the 60s after spending so long producing playing cards, Nintendo fully concentrated on toys and tried to sell the classic US game Twister to the Japanese market, though the game didn’t catch on, mainly because in Japanese society it was thought to be improper for girls to get so up close and personal with others.
3. Riches beyond compare
Nintendo is ridiculously rich. In fact, it’s so rich that it can afford to have a yearly loss of a quarter of a billion dollars every year until around 2052 before going bankrupt.
4. Gaming gloves
Nintendo set aside roughly $80 million to manufacture gaming gloves for players who had been playing the Mario Party N64 game, which came out in 1998/1999. Some of the mini games required players to rotate the analogue stick on the controller – people would use the palms of their hands instead of their thumbs and ended up getting blisters and friction burns, hence the need for gloves.
5. An adults-only hotel…
Back in the 50s and 60s, Nintendo owned something called the Love Hotel, which was aimed exclusively at couples.
6. No Nintendo, no PlayStation
It’s thanks to Nintendo that the PlayStation was created. Back in the late 80s, Nintendo and Sony were working together on the SNES-CD, which was an add-on device that enabled video games to be manufactured on CDs. Negotiations between the two companies fell through after a few years and Sony continued developing it on their own – it would eventually become the PlayStation.
7. Product loyalty
The first Nintendo home console, the NES, came out in 1983 and was supported by the company for 20 years.
8. High jumper
People have worked out that if Mario was a real-life character, he’d be able to jump about 27 feet high.
9. The Seattle Mariners
Nintendo has been the proud owner of the Seattle Mariners since 1992. Late Nintendo president Hiroshi Yamauchi made the purchase, though he never attended any of their games.
10. Even astronauts play Nintendo games…
The first ever video game played in space was Tetris and it was played on a Nintendo Game Boy.
11. No champagne for you
In the original Super Mario Kart games, characters would celebrate their racing victories by cracking open a bottle of champagne – at least they did this in the Japanese version. The American version was edited so the game had no reference to champagne and the characters merely celebrated sober.
12. Why the games used to be so hard
Back in the 80s and 90s, games weren’t actually that long because technology didn’t allow for game cartridges to hold that much data. To make the games seem longer, Nintendo deliberately made their games harder to beat, so people would have to spend longer playing them.
13. One of the best Nintendo employees ever
Shigeru Miyamoto joined Nintendo as it was starting to develop video games and has created some of the most popular and critically acclaimed video games ever. The company supposedly forces him to drive to work as they think it’s safer than walking or riding a bike to work. He’s so important to the company that any rumours of his retirement cause Nintendo’s stock price to drop