“Nintendo Koppai” has had quite a long history since its early beginnings as a playing card manufacturer. Founded in 1889 by Fusajiro Yamauchi, the company has undergone many changes in leadership that would eventually land in the hands of a 21-year-old Hiroshi Yamauchi in 1949. As a newly listed company in the Osaka Securities Exchange, they experienced many failed ventures including love hotels, and remote controlled vacuum cleaners before finally entering the toy market.
When arcade gaming rose to popularity in the mid-’70s, they began their foray into gaming with the TV-Game 6, followed by the Game & Watch console, which sold 43 million units and birthed characters like Donkey Kong and Mario — who was originally known as “Jumpman.” But the gaming console race we know today was started with the introduction of the Nintendo Entertainment System in 1985, followed by the release of the Game Boy in 1989. But the company did not see smooth sailing from there, as they greatly failed with the Virtual Boy in 1995, a VR console that was lightyears ahead of its time.
During the sixth generation of gaming consoles, the N64 was overtaken in popularity by the PlayStation 2 and Xbox, a competitive race that caused the newly elected CEO, Satoru Iwata to pivot the companies’ direction. He implemented a blue ocean strategy that set them apart from competitors, leading to the production of the revolutionary Nintendo DS, and eventually the Nintendo Wii. This new direction pioneered motion-controlled gaming, which would eventually be mimicked by the aforementioned competition. To learn the full history of Nintendo and the events that led to the recent surge in market value, check out the video above.