Nintendo is a Japanese gaming-console manufacturer.
TV gaming systems
Nintendo is especially known for their series of TV gaming consoles, starting with the cartridge-based Famicom in 1983. The console was later released worldwide as Nintendo Entertainment System, NES. NES became a major success, making Nintendo a virtual monopoly in the gaming console industry of the 80s. This position has later been challenged by other gaming-console manufacturers, such as SEGA, Sony with their PlayStation consoles, and more recently also Microsoft with their Xbox.
The successor of NES, the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES), was released world-wide in 1991. This gaming console was also a success, and was followed by the 64-bit Nintendo 64 with 3D graphics abilities in 1996.
Today Nintendo's most recent TV gaming system is the Nintendo GameCube, released in 2001. It is also their first console to use compact discs instead of cartridges for game distribution.
Nintendo is currently developing a new TV gaming console codenamed "Revolution". It is already been noticed for its minimal size and its unconventional hand controllers. The controllers resemble a TV remote control more than the traditional design, and contain motion sensors so that they can, for instance, be wielded like a sword.
Nintendo is also known for the Game Boy series of handheld gaming systems, the first one released in 1989. Later editions have brought many redesigns and improvements.
In 2004, Nintendo released a new handheld gaming system, called Nintendo DS. This system boasts two screens (one of them touch-sensitive), voice recognition, wireless communication, and chat.
Super Mario Bros. is a game originally designed by Nintendo for their NES system in 1985. It became a huge success. The main characters of that game, Italian plumbers Mario and Luigi, have been following the Nintendo trademark and their gaming consoles ever since, with numerous remakes, clones and spin-offs.