Long before television sets and video games, people had to find other ways to entertain themselves. In Japan, Hanafuda was a card game that became popular throughout the country hundreds of years ago. It was so popular that Nintendo can trace its origins to 1889 because they produced the hanafuda cards. As technology began to develop and grow, so did Nintendo. They stopped making the hanafuda cards in 1965 and began dabbling in the toy industry.
Nintendo's venture into the toy world ended fairly quickly and by 1972, it was time for something else and they started selling the Magnavox Odyssey, the first commercially available video game console ever. Almost 13 years ahead of their time, it was not until 1985 that Nintendo would change the video gaming industry with the release of the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES).
After the huge success of the NES console, they started venturing into portable gaming and the Game Boy was born. That was preceded by the Super NES, N64, GameCube, Game Boy Color, Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS, Wii, Nintendo 3DS, Wii U, and finally, the Nintendo Switch.
Unlike all the other video game companies, Nintendo prides itself on remaining the same company they were in 1889. They focus more on the consumer's love of video games rather than trying to make a few extra bucks. Money is important but Nintendo continues to show us that focusing on the money can cause a lower quality console.
One of their two biggest rivals, the Sony Playstation, has been around the video gaming world almost as long as Nintendo and continues to compete for world dominance. But regardless of what the PS4 can do for you, it will never be able to defeat the company that saved the gaming industry many years ago.
Let's take a look at the 25 Reasons Why Nintendo Beats Out Playstation.
25 Saving the Gaming Industry
The biggest mistake in video gaming history was when Atari allowed anyone to create a video game for the Atari 2600 without any quality control. This allowed anyone with a little knowledge of video game coding to come up with a game and have it sold in retail stores. As the market was flooded with all these terrible Atari games, retailers started to back away from them because they were spending time and energy on junk.
This is where Nintendo really proved themselves in the video gaming community. They made sure not to make the same mistakes that Atari did when it came to game development. Any third party developer had to be licensed to create games for Nintendo exclusively, which means that they could not develop games for any other company, and limited them to only two per year.
Those three things alone kept Nintendo from failing and led to its' worldwide success in the late 80's.
24 Game Development
As we just talked about, Nintendo has strict rules when it comes to third-party game developers. But those rules prevented the video gaming industry from falling completely apart following the epic crash of the Atari 2600 console.
They continue to abide by these strict regulations today and are so busy, if you go to the Nintendo website to read about Game Development, they immediately let you know that they have their own in-house software development teams and they are working on projects to keep them busy for the next four to five years.
23 Mario and Friends Carry the Wii U
The Wii U was such a disaster and it sold fewer copies than any other console, and we are including the original NES, Game Boy, Super Nintendo, Nintendo 64, GameCube, Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS, Wii, 3Ds, and Switch. The Wii U sold roughly 13.56 million units but it could have been much less had it not been for the game selection.
Super Smash Bros. and Mario Kart 8 did more for the Wii U than Nintendo and when they debuted in November of 2014, two years after the Wii U hit the market, sales saw an increase of two million units in just two months, or about 22% of the total units sold.
22 Nintendo Community
What makes the Nintendo gaming community the best in the entire industry?
For starters, video games like Grand Theft Auto, Call of Duty, and God of War tend to attract the most annoying gamers in the world. The gamers that talk trash about everything, and basically have little respect for humans are the ones that flock towards the games that promote violence over gameplay.
Nintendo does not focus on many of those types of games and instead goes for overall quality which helps them keep a community of gamers that we all love. If you come across a Nintendo gamer, strike up a conversation and enjoy.
21 Portable Touch Controls
One of the coolest innovations created by Nintendo was the touch screen that was added to the Nintendo DS. That unique idea changed the course of portable gaming as evident by Sony's PlayStation Vita adding one of their own. Although the PS Vita is not a blockbuster success, it is still something they decided to sell that they got straight from Nintendo.
The controls for the DS added another element to the portable gaming community that had never been seen before and now has become a norm for portable gaming.
Thank you, Nintendo!
20 SNES Classic Outsold the PS4
The classics never die. When Nintendo released the SNES Classic last September, it flew off the shelves and ended up beating the PS4 in two consecutive months, in a total number of units sold.
For those of you who are unaware, the SNES Classic isn't an updated version of the original Super Nintendo. It does not have better graphics or different controls. It is the same console, only a little smaller, and comes with 21 preloaded titles. Nintendo is such a powerful empire that gamers would rather play the old and outdated graphics of Donkey Kong Country instead of PS4, at least for a few months.
19 Nintendo Games are Easier to Learn
When it comes to video games, one of the hardest things a company can do is create something for all. That is especially true when it comes to learning how to play a game. Nintendo has done this for many years with almost all of their games and never once did they receive any backlash from gamers.
It is not easy to make a game and make sure the controls are easy enough that anyone can learn to play any game in a few minutes. The PS4 has multiple buttons on their controller, leading to so many choices during a game, some people just can't understand how to play. But Nintendo does this all the time.
18 The Pricing War between the Nintendo DS and the PSP
When the PSP, PlayStation Portable, launched in North America in March of 2005, it was being sold for $249, which was about $100 more than the Nintendo DS. The large price tag for the portable device did not seem to matter when it launched and Sony claimed it sold 500,000 units in the first two days.
Those numbers were probably due to the many PlayStation gamers that were ready for a portable device and were willing to pay whatever they sold it for because within a couple months, that price tag ended up killing its' momentum in 2006 as it almost 60% less units than the final two quarters of 2005.
17 They Compete On Their Own Terms
Nintendo has always marched to the beat of their own drum. They have always led by example and with the success of their most recent console, the Nintendo Switch, they continue to by the real innovators of the video gaming world.
For the last few years, it seemed as if Microsoft and Sony were trying to beat each other instead of focus on their consoles. Nintendo does not speed up release dates, add ridiculous last minute additions to their consoles, or play a pricing war with their competitor's if it means that they will lose quality on their consoles.
16 The Face of the Company
What is the first thing you think about when you hear the word PlayStation? What about Nintendo?
Mario and Nintendo are one in the same. If you hear one of those words, chances are you will think of the other one first.
When it comes to video games, there is hardly anyone in the world who has not heard about Mario. He is a legend in video games and has been since day one when Super Mario Bros. was released for the NES. Although they did not know it at the time, Mario would become the face of Nintendo.
Millennials are the only generation of gamers who were raised on the sixth generation of consoles, which includes the Microsoft Xbox, Sony PlayStation 2, Sega Dreamcast, and Nintendo GameCube. They entered into a gaming world that was clearly changing from something you do for fun into a complete home entertainment system.
Before Millennials, there were the old school gamers that were raised on Nintendo and Super Nintendo. That generation still plays video games today and Nintendo knows that and continues to market the nostalgia of the original NES and all of their top-selling games.
14 Better Female Video Game Characters
What was the name of the Princess from The Legend of Zelda?
Most people will be puzzled by this question and probably not be able to answer it. That's because a lot of people forget that her name was actually Zelda, and not the lead male character. That makes her one of the most iconic female characters in video gaming history.
But she is not alone. Nintendo has Princess Peach, Princess Daisy, Samus Aran, Midna, Rosalina, and Pneuma, who are all some of the greatest female video game characters of all time.
13 Built to Last, Forever
When Nintendo launched the NES in 1983, they had no idea it would continue selling until 2003, 20 years later. Sure, it had it's problems, like having to give the game cartridge a little cleaning before putting it into the console to play. Or having to shove a second game into the NES so it would let you play your game. But those are minor issues and you could fix them yourself.
Most people bought one NES and that was it. Then, in 1989, they upgraded to the Super Nintendo, which was the second longest selling console ever, 14 years. Those lasted just as long.
This is because Nintendo builds a product that will last forever if you take care of it. They would rather hear about how happy their consumers are that they only have to purchase one console than argue with all the upset users that hate hearing about the "ring of death".
12 Nintendo Switch vs. PS4 Pro
How much better can video gaming look on your shiny new flat-screen LED TV? There is honestly only so many lines of resolution the human eye can see at one frame at a time. In other words, there is no good reason to purchase a PS4 Pro for $399.99 (As opposed to the PS4 which is $299.99). For $100 more, you get a system that has better resolution? Really? That is it?
Once again, Nintendo spent their time focusing on content instead of trying to milk their consumers for every single penny they can grab. The sales data of the PS4 Pro is a prime example of how important resolution is over content in video games.
11 Customer Support
Due to their lack of social media presence, Nintendo gets a bad wrap when it comes to customer support. The latest generation of gamers tend to move fast and expect answers right away with very little effort or human interaction. Because of this, Nintendo's customer support gets little respect.
Even with that mindset, Nintendo continues to provide the best customer support there is in the gaming community with their incredibly robust customer support website and a grab bag of intelligent Nintendo phone agents that will help you take care of all your problems involving your Nintendo console.
10 Sony Always Copied Nintendo's Successful Ventures
When it comes to business, copying a competitor's success is as normal as apple pie. It is no different in the video gaming world. Nintendo paved the road for other's to follow closely behind. For example, the original Playstation's controller was taken directly from the original Super Nintendo controller but they changed the shape of the thing and no one noticed.
It was Nintendo that added the analog stick to their N64 controllers just before Playstation did the same. Even the Wii remote was copied for the PlayStation Move, which was almost an exact replica except they added a glowy ball to the top to make it seem different, which it was not.
9 The Brand Image of Nintendo
When you see a Nintendo display, you know it is high quality. That is because they have spent nearly 40 years building a gaming empire that focuses on the product itself instead of the profit they could make from selling out.
Everything about Nintendo's brand image is positive. They make quality, innovative, exciting, new, and different games that people from all over can enjoy. If you see Nintendo, there is no doubt in your mind if it is worth the purchase. The only debate people have is whether or not they want to play certain games that you can only get on one console.
8 Exclusive Content Heaven
If you were to compare the exclusive content within the gaming libraries for the PS4 and the Nintendo Switch, you would find a pretty significant difference.
After taking a look at all of the content released for each separate console, we found that when it comes to exclusive content, the Nintendo Switch has about 20% of their entire library made exclusively for the Switch, including Mario and Zelda games. The PS4 is closer to 10% exclusive content, or about half of what the Nintendo produces.
Whether you enjoy exclusive content or not, the majority of gamers out there really focus on this aspect when selecting a console.
7 Nintendo Provides a One-of-a-Kind Experience
When the latest Call of Duty video game was released, it sold on three different platforms. It was launched for the Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC. Most of the games that are sold for the PlayStation 4 are also available on the Xbox and PC, leaving very little room to talk to anyone about a unique experience.
However, Nintendo is the only video game company that PC users still can only play using the console. There is not a Nintendo game that is released for the latest Nintendo console and also the PC. That gives an entire community a chance to enjoy a unique experience through a Nintendo console.
6 Quick Adaptation to a Constantly Changing Industry
Although Nintendo has always marched to the beat of their own drum, they have always been able to adapt to the gaming communities biggest concerns from console to console.
A great example of this is how fast the Nintendo Switch boots up compared to the previous Nintendo release, the Wii U. They saw the issue that was giving fans the biggest concerns and made sure they fixed it on their next console.
They also structure their pricing in a way that they can change it based on how people are reacting to it. They did this for the Nintendo 3DS when it was released for $249.99. A few months into the launch, they reduced the cost to $169.99, a massive price cut in just a few months.
5 Focus is Fun, Not Profit
One of the greatest reasons why Nintendo will always beat the Sony PlayStation is because they focus on making games fun, creating innovative consoles that users love to play, and sell a product that is made for families.
You can buy any Nintendo console and play by yourself for years and have some great times but if you want to get the most out of a Nintendo Switch, for example, you need to fire up the neighbors and invite them over for a game night.
For what they create, a unique one-of-a-kind system, Nintendo could charge as much as they wanted to, and still rake in sales. But they do not. They cut their margins down to the bone in order to make it easier to purchase anywhere.
4 Shigeru Miyamoto
One of the best reasons why Nintendo will always beat the Sony PlayStation is because they hire the most innovative minds in the world and keep them forever. Shigeru Miyamoto has been with Nintendo since 1977, long before the original NES was released. He was hired because of his toy creation ideas but when Nintendo changed their platform, he turned into a legend.
He is responsible for the creation and development of such franchises as Super Mario Bros., The Legend of Zelda, Star Fox, Donkey Kong, Killer Instinct, and Pokemon. There is no one for any other company that is even remotely close to Miyamoto's success in video gaming creation. He remains a faithful employee who is now one of Nintendo's representative directors.
3 Overall Quality
It is tough to build a video gaming empire, like Nintendo, and spend over 20 years creating the best quality games on the market. That is not easy to do because it requires complete control over the developers and creation of every single game that is released for their consoles.
Every single year, Nintendo comes up with some of the highest rated games in the entire video gaming community. In 2017, Mario Kart, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, and Super Mario were three of the best games of the year, and possibly the best three games. Even when the Wii U was failing, Nintendo was still releasing games that easily beat out the opposition.
2 The Legend of Zelda
The Legend of Zelda was first released, for the NES in 1987, and it quickly grew into one of the most popular titles in video gaming history. The franchise has sold more than 105 million units worldwide in the last 21 years, and it has all happened exclusively for Nintendo.
Even though the only way to play a Zelda game is on a Nintendo console, it remains one of the best selling games with each new title that they release including their most recent, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, which has sold nearly 9 million copies, making it the top-selling Zelda game ever.
When it comes to video gaming innovation, Nintendo grabs a shovel and clears the ice off the road so that others can follow with ease. That analogy perfectly describes how Nintendo has been coming up with unique innovations that have changed the video gaming industry. Nintendo is responsible for the directional pad, saving game progress on the cartridge (Thank You Zelda!), side-scrolling gameplay, the annoying selfie, portable games, avatars, and motion controls.
As far as the consoles are concerned, no other company has created more consoles that were completely different than their predecessors. After the Super NES was the Nintendo 64, which was another game-changer, and eventually, the Wii. Today, the Switch continues to break sales records and has propelled Nintendo back into the spotlight, as if they ever left.
References: Thrillist, TheThings, Mashable, TheFactSite, TheGuardian