The Playing With Power: The Nintendo Story trailer has arrived. Crackle is preparing to release their upcoming 5-part docuseries about the enduring legacy of Nintendo on March 1st. Not a lot of people, outside of hardcore gamers, know that the iconic gaming company started back in the 1880s as Japanese card game. A lot has changed since then, and Playing With Power attempts to fill in all of those gaps, from dominating the gaming world in the 1980s to falling to third place in the early 2000s.
Playing With Power is narrated by Sean Astin and it features new interviews with video game executives, along with celebrity fans, including Wil Wheaton. As the trailer promises, the docuseries is not going to focus solely on the triumphs of Nintendo. Instead, it will take a look at the crazy amount of lawsuits the company has faced over the years, monopolies, and its intense competition with the other major gaming companies, like Microsoft, Sony, and Atari. Nintendo has brought a lot of joy to the world, but there is some darkness underneath the surface.
Back in the mid-1980s, video games were often referred to as Nintendo games. It didn’t matter where they came from, or who made them, that’s just how big Nintendo was at the time. For a few years, they dominated the market and had pretty much zero competition, until SEGA came along with 16-bit graphics on the Genesis console. From there, the console wars started, and for a while, thanks to multiple franchises, Nintendo was able to stay afloat and continue dominance, though it was short-lived.
Microsoft attempted to buy Nintendo out when they were developing what would become the Xbox. The argument was that Nintendo’s hardware was inferior to what was coming down the road, though Nintendo laughed at the offer and remained on their own, which saw them get left in the dust as the Xbox and PlayStation took off. Nintendo went for quirky designs and weird hardware for their consoles, which included the often-criticized GameCube and Wii systems, while PlayStation and Xbox went with new technological trends and left their designs practical.
No matter how much the hardware was criticized, Nintendo always had their roster of famous franchises to pull from. New Super Mario Bros. games, along with Zelda, Metroid, Animal Crossing, Super Smash Bros., and more have kept the company in the public eye for decades, often outselling its competitors as a result. Playing With Power aims to tell this entire story over the course of five episodes. Luckily, Crackle is a free service, so Nintendo fans will not have to shell out any extra cash on a new streaming service to see the docuseries, which is only a few weeks away from premiering. While we wait, you can check out the full trailer for Playing With Power: The Nintendo Story above.