A couple of days ago, a video surfaced on YouTube from the YouTube channel Game Escape, giving us a ten minute clip from a 1994 French documentary filmed titled Otaku. The film was translated to German, which is the version of the clip on YouTube, however, it was never released in the U.S. This clip offers an interesting and rare look inside Nintendo’s headquarters, and while the film is quite old and we see Nintendo during its SNES days, it’s still quite the video. Interestingly enough, it really hasn’t picked up traction and only has just over 2,000 views.
The clip starts off with the Secretary General of Nintendo at the time, Hiroschi Imanishi, giving us a brief history about Nintendo’s origins. Hardcore Nintendo fans may be familiar with the company’s origin as a card game manufacturer, and Imanishi tells us that it’s always been about entertainment. However, Nintendo did see issues during its start, apparently due to Confucianism’s views of games and amusement as corrupt. As Japan’s economy surged, Nintendo saw increased success, and by 1975, the foundations of the Famicom has been created.
I’ve got to admit that the video is pretty amusing– at one point, you have Chief Press Officer Masayuki Uemura explaining to us how a Famicom, or any other game console, works. Of course, nowadays this seems like common knowledge, but even during the SNES era this was all relatively new. As a company that went unrivaled by any other game company, many people were unfamiliar with how video games even worked. Uemura also goes on to talk about the pricing of both consoles and games, and how consoles are only developed every few years so that people don’t have to keep re-buying consoles. And apparently at the time, games were priced around the average of children’s allowances, though I’m not so sure that rings true anymore.
We also get an exclusive look at an interview with a 40 year-old Shigeru Miyamoto, who at the time wasn’t nearly the iconic face he is today. The interview is actually quite fascinating, so I won’t give away too much of what he says. I will say this though: We get his thoughts on Mario, how he created the character, and where he thinks Nintendo stands in relation to other companies. It’s kind of fun to see Miyamoto in such early stages of Nintendo’s history!
The video is definitely worth the watch. Ten minutes out of your day isn’t much, and to anyone that’s a fan of Nintendo, this look inside the company is quite rare, like the video title says. The narrator of the film even states that they were only allowed to film in certain rooms, and anything that was displayed on a computer or TV monitor was set beforehand as to not give away any information. We hardly ever get to see the secrets behind the company, so you may want to get this little glimpse while you can.
Watch the full video!