Bandai Co., Ltd. (株式会社バンダイ Kabushiki-gaisha Bandai) is a Japanese toy maker and a producer of a large number of plastic model kits as well as a former video game company. It was the world's third-largest producer of toys in 2008 after Mattel and Hasbro. Some ex-Bandai group companies produce anime and tokusatsu programs. Its headquarters is located in Taitō, Tokyo.
|Bandai Co., Ltd. |
|Industry||Toy Maker, software & programming, film production, anime & tokusatsu|
|Founded||July 5, 1950|
|Headquarters||Taitō, Tokyo, Japan|
|Masaru Kawaguchi, President|
|Products||Gundam models, Godzilla, Super Sentai models, Naruto Gachapon and Figurines, Tamagotchi, Digimon, plastic model kits, video game consoles, among others|
Number of employees
|817 (as of June 2018) [a]|
|Parent||Bandai Namco Holdings|
In 1947, Naoharu Yamashina was working for the company of his brother-in-law, a textile wholesaler. As that segment of the market was going weak at the time, he realized about the potential of the toy industry. He successfully convinced his brother-in-law to dedicate a portion of the company's activities in that industry and to be in charge of it. Step by step, Yamashina developed a toy distribution empire within the company. On July 1950, Yamashina took full control of the toy distribution business, renamed it and founded the company Bandai-ya whose name was eventually shortened to Bandai in 1961.
In its first year, Bandai produced its first internal game, the Rhythm Ball, and its first metallic toy, a reproduction of the B-26. It also began the exportation of toys. As the company expanded, Bandai increased its exportations by building up in 1953 a new warehouse outside of Komagata. Several services were created within the company such as quality control, an R&D department and a transport division.
In early 1955, Bandai founded the subsidiary Waraku Works, a manufacturing facility. During the summer, Bandai moved to new headquarters in Taito-ku, not far from Komagata. The first company logo was created using the initials "BC" based on the first letters of Bandai Company. At the end of the year, Bandai launched its first product under guarantee, a mini replica of the Toyopet Crown car.
In 1958, Bandai introduced its first television commercial using the slogan « The Red Box means a BC-guaranteed toy ». In the middle of the following year, the company launched a lineup of mini toys representing car models from all over the world dubbed as "Cars of the World". The company logo was redesigned to emphasize on the quality of Bandai's products and was known as the "Banzai mark".
In the 1960s Bandai expanded to include international export sales. The management was handed to a new subsidiary created in New York called Bandai Overseas Supply. Bandai's racing car set, which first appeared in 1962, became a huge success.
In 1963, Bandai separated the transportation service from the company to become its own subsidiary called Bandai Transport.  Due to an increase of activity volume, the company relocated to new offices in Asakusa, Taitō. Bandai launched the toy Astro Boy, based on the character of the animated series. It was the first time Bandai was creating a toy based on an existing hero. 
Bandai continued to expand in the 1970s with the creation of several subsidiaries; Tonka Japan in 1970 following a joint venture with Tonka, Bandai Models being established in 1971, and finally Popy, , who specialized in the manufacturing of toy characters. Although not their most profitable range, Bandai's 1/48 scale AFV models dominated that segment of the model kit market. Bandai America Inc. was established as local US sales/marketing operation in 1978. Spacewarp, a line of build-it-yourself toy rolling ball "roller coasters" was introduced by Bandai in the 1980s.
In May 1980, Makoto Yamashina, son of the founder, became president of Bandai. Naoharu Yamashina became chairman of the board. Upon his arrival, Makoto Yamashina completely changed the aging staff of Bandai and replaced it with young employees with the intent of not only bringing new ideas, but also revisiting the strategy of the group. The new president took a different commercial approach by selling directly to retailers rather than going through intermediates. 
Since the 1980s, Bandai has become the leading toy company of Japan, and to this day, has the main toy licenses in Japan to popular properties including Daikaiju, Ultraman, Super Robot, Kamen Rider, the Super Sentai and Power Rangers series (which they took part in creating), Gundam and many others.
The management of Bandai and Sega discussed a merger in the late 1990s and voted to implement it, but the merger was later cancelled, citing "cultural differences", after a large scale protest by Bandai's middle management. Makoto Yamashina stepped down as president immediately afterwards, stating, "I feel responsible for the troubles related to the merger."
After its merger with game developer and amusement facility operator Namco in 2005, Bandai Company is now under the management and a member of Bandai Namco Holdings (Bandai Namco Group). Following a group reorganisation in 2006, Bandai heads the group's Toys and Hobby Strategic Business Unit (SBU).
On February 2018, Saban Brands and Bandai's US division jointly announced a mutual agreement to not renew their Power Rangers master toy license, effective Spring 2019, after which competing toy company Hasbro will inherit the license. This transition will not effect Bandai Japan's Super Sentai master toy license with Toei.
A sister company, Bandai Spirits Co., Ltd, was established on February 15, 2018. On April 1, 2018, the division of Bandai Co., Ltd that dealt with products for adult customers (including figures and plastic models) as well as Banpresto's prizes business were transferred over to Bandai Spirits.
Before the formation of Bandai Namco Holdings, Bandai had many subsidiaries. After group reorganization in 2006, they are managed under several strategic business units (SBUs) of the group. Further detail:
Bandai USA (doing business as Bandai America Incorporated) is the American distribution arm of Bandai that makes toy products for the U.S. market and manufactures Tamagotchi, Big Hero 6, Digimon, and Ben 10 toys. Other past products include
Tinga Tinga Tales (UK only)
Bandai Visual Co. Ltd., produces and distributes many popular anime and tokusatsu titles. These titles include Cowboy Bebop, Big O, Outlaw Star, Please Teacher!, Escaflowne, and the popular Gundam, Kamen Rider, Ultraman, and Super Sentai series. Their subsidiaries include the Emotion Music Company Limited, in which the logo is the Moai, a statue found on Easter Island. They now head the Visual and Music Contents SBU. Their North American division, Bandai Visual USA was absorbed into Bandai Entertainment (also a division of Bandai Visual) on July 1, 2008.
Bandai Entertainment was a subsidiary of Bandai Visual that was involved in the distribution of numerous anime in North America, as well as manga, American-made graphic novels and other merchandising ventures related to anime. Their headquarters in the United States were located in Cypress, California. They had a European subsidiary named Beez Entertainment (also a subsidiary of Bandai Visual) who handled European licensing & distribution rights to their library. The first part of Beez Entertainment's name stood for Bandai Entertainment European Zone, as Bandai Entertainment had operations in Europe. Beez Entertainment was based in France. Bandai Entertainment absorbed Bandai Visual's North American division, Bandai Visual USA, at the start of July 2008, and as a result, they were taken over by Bandai Visual, who then became their new parent company (though Bandai Entertainment continued to be part of Bandai). In addition, Bandai Visual also took over Beez Entertainment as their entry into the European market, and Beez Entertainment also continued to be part of Bandai as well.
However, Bandai Entertainment is no longer acquiring licenses to new anime, and as of March 1, 2013, they are no longer distributing and publishing home video in North America except for some. Also, Beez Entertainment is no longer releasing new anime in Europe.
Carddass is the Bandai subsidiary responsible for releasing trading card games based on popular Bandai franchises. This includes games such as the Gundam War Collectible Card Game based on the Gundam metaseries, as well as a Gash Bell (Zatch Bell!) TCG, Naruto CCG, Rangers Strike (Super Sentai series, Kamen Rider series, Metal Hero series), Neon Genesis Evangelion Ultra Galaxy Daikaijyu Battle (Ultra series) and most recently their most successful to date, the Battle Spirits Trading Card Game.
Bandai Games produced and distributed video games based on Bandai properties including Mobile Suit Gundam: Zeonic Front, Gundam Wing: Endless Duel and Mobile Suit Gundam: Journey to Jaburo.
In the beginning of 2005, Bandai Games opened a United States office as a wholly owned subsidiary of Bandai America which, prior to that, handled the publishing of video games in North America itself.
During the late 1970s, Bandai sold the TV Jack console line: a series of pong based consoles. The last of the series was the Bandai Super Vision 8000 console released in 1979. It wasn't a simple pong based console system but a cartridge system with an 8-bit NEC D780C (Z80 clone) as CPU.
During the early 1980s, Bandai distributed a number of videogame machines. In 1982 the Bandai Arcadia, a variant of the Emerson Arcadia 2001, was released in Japan by Bandai. There were also four Japan-exclusive game releases which were the only known Arcadia titles written by other companies than UA Ltd. They also released local variants of the Intellivision and vectrex game consoles.
Bandai produced a running mat called the Family Fun Fitness System for the Nintendo Entertainment System starting in 1986. A series of games was released both in the US and in Japan, including Athletic World and Stadium Events for the NES. Shortly after its release, Nintendo purchased the rights to the FFF mat in North America, replacing it with their own redesign, the Power Pad. In order to maintain branding continuity, Stadium Events was pulled from shelves after a short period of availability at Woolworth's stores. Because the game was pulled from shelves and discontinued before many copies were sold, Bandai's Stadium Events is universally accepted as the rarest licensed NES game released in North America. A shrinkwrapped copy of the game sold for $41,270 on eBay in February 2010. The sister game to Stadium Events, called Athletic World was initially released with a label that indicated compatibility with the Family Fun Fitness mat, but was later re-released with an updated label that mentions the Power Pad instead. Stadium Events was not released by name again, but instead was slightly modified and relaunched as the Power Pad pack-in game, World Class Track Meet.
In the 1990s, Bandai teamed up with Apple to make the Pippin. They also made their own game console, the Playdia. Neither was a mass-market success. In 1999, Bandai created the WonderSwan portable game system. It, and its update, the WonderSwan Color, sold modestly well, but were unable to seriously challenge the dominant Game Boy Color and later, the Game Boy Advance. It was discontinued in 2003.
Ace Combat (エースコンバット; Ēsu Konbatto) is a hybrid flight arcade action video game franchise featuring 17 games mainly developed by Bandai Namco Studios and published by Bandai Namco Entertainment. The development team within Bandai Namco responsible for Ace Combat games is referred to as Project Aces. The franchise emphasizes fast-paced action and dramatic plots, and has established itself as one of the longest running arcade flight action franchises. As of 2018, the Ace Combat franchise has sold over 14 million copies, making it Bandai Namco's sixth best-selling franchise, behind Tekken, Pac-Man, Gundam, Tales, and Super Robot Wars.
The main series of games takes place in a fictionalized world populated with fictional countries with details loosely based on real-life locations, events, and wars. One of the main selling points of the series is the ability to pilot a range of aircraft that include accurate or slightly modified representations of present-day military aircraft, prototypes that never saw actual battle, and completely fictional boss-type superweapons. Longtime fans of the series are rewarded with small hints of the continuity between the games, as some characters and events are referenced from one game to another.Apple Bandai Pippin
The Apple Bandai Pippin, stylized PiP P!N, is a multimedia technology console, designed by Apple Computer. The console was based on the Apple Pippin platform – a derivative of the Apple Macintosh platform. Bandai produced the ATMARK and @WORLD consoles between 1996 and 1997.
The goal of the Bandai Pippin was to create an inexpensive computer system aimed mostly at playing CD-based multimedia software, especially games, but also functioning as a thin client. The operating system was a version of System 7.5.2, and was based on a 66 MHz PowerPC 603 processor and a 14.4 kb/s modem. It featured a 4×-speed CD-ROM drive and a video output that could connect to a standard television display.Bandai LCD Solarpower
The LCD Solarpower series are handheld electronic games powered by solar energy made by Bandai in 1982. The games in the Double Panel series feature two LCD panels stacked on top of each other. This allows these games to progress in 2 stages for more variation in game play.Bandai Namco Entertainment
Bandai Namco Entertainment Inc. (BNEI) is a Japanese video game development company and publisher. The company also releases videos, music, and other entertainment products related to its intellectual properties (IP). The company is headquartered in Minato-ku, Tokyo.Bandai Namco Entertainment is a wholly owned subsidiary of Bandai Namco Holdings (BNHD) and specializes in management and sales of video games and other related entertainment products, while its Bandai Namco Studios subsidiaries specialize in the development of these products. It is the core company of Bandai Namco Group's Content Strategic Business Unit (Content SBU).Bandai Namco Entertainment is the result of a merger in March 2006 between the video game operations of Namco and Bandai. Previously known as Namco Bandai Games, the company was renamed as Bandai Namco Games in January 2014. In April 2015, Bandai Namco Holdings changed its gaming name from Bandai Namco Games to Bandai Namco Entertainment.Bandai Namco Holdings
Bandai Namco Holdings Inc. (BNHD) (株式会社バンダイナムコホールディングス, Kabushiki gaisha Bandai Namuko Hōrudingusu), also known as the Bandai Namco Group, is a Japanese holding company which was formed from the merger of Bandai and Namco on September 29, 2005. It specializes in toys, video games, arcades, anime, and amusement parks. Bandai Namco also supply various arcade machines to movie theaters and arcades across the globe.The company's headquarters are in Shinagawa, Tokyo. Their US branch, Bandai Namco Holdings USA, was officially formed on January 6, 2008, and handles the US operations of the company from their headquarters in El Segundo, California. As of 2017, Bandai Namco is the world's largest toy company, earning $6.4 billion in annual revenue.Bandai Visual
Bandai Visual Co., Ltd. (株式会社バンダイビジュアル, Kabushiki gaisha Bandai Bijuaru) (Formerly known as AE Planing (August 1983 – March 1989), Network Frontier (1984–1988) and Bandai Media (1988 – October 1992), was a Japanese anime, film production and distribution enterprise, established by Bandai Company, Limited and a subsidiary of Bandai Namco Holdings, Inc.Most of the anime and films that has been distributed and licensed by Bandai Visual has been released under the Emotion label. Since the reorganisation of Bandai Namco Holdings in 2006, Bandai Visual now heads the group's Visual and Music Content Strategic Business Unit. Its subsidiaries include the Emotion Music Company, Limited (whose logos also include the Moai from Easter Island), and Lantis Company, Limited music publishing labels. Until 2012, it was involved in the production and distribution of several anime titles, including those it has directly produced itself and anime series produced by the anime studio Sunrise, an alternate anime studio subsidiary of Bandai Namco Holdings. In September 2017, Bandai Visual has acquired the anime studio Actas.In February 2018, it was announced Bandai Visual would be merged with Lantis into a new branch of BNH, called Bandai Namco Arts. The reorganizing took effect as of April 1, 2018.Code Geass
Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion (コードギアス 反逆のルルーシュ, Kōdo Giasu: Hangyaku no Rurūshu), often referred to as simply Code Geass, is a Japanese anime series created by Sunrise, directed by Gorō Taniguchi, and written by Ichirō Ōkouchi, with original character designs by manga artist group Clamp. Set in an alternate timeline, the series focuses on how the former prince Lelouch vi Britannia obtains a power known as Geass and decides to use it to obliterate the Holy Britannian Empire, a superpower that has been conquering various countries.
Code Geass first ran in Japan on MBS from October 6, 2006, to July 29, 2007. Its sequel series, Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion R2 (コードギアス 反逆のルルーシュR2, Kōdo Giasu Hangyaku no Rurūshu Āru Tsū), ran as a simulcast on JNN stations (like MBS and TBS) from April 6, 2008 to September 28, 2008. The series has also been adapted into various manga and light novels with the former showing various alternate scenarios from the TV series. Bandai Entertainment also licensed most parts from the franchise for English release in December 2007, airing the two TV series on Adult Swim. Most manga and light novels have also been published in North America by Bandai. At the Code Geass 10th anniversary event on November 27, 2016, it was announced that the series will be receiving a new anime, along with a compilation film trilogy in 2017 that recapped the events from both seasons of the anime series. A new film, titled Code Geass: Lelouch of the Re;surrection (コードギアス 復活のルルーシュ, Kōdo Giasu: Fukkatsu no Rurūshu), will take place several years after the Zero Requiem. It was released in theaters on February 9, 2019.The anime television series has been well received in Japan, selling over a million DVD and Blu-ray Disc volumes. Both seasons have won several awards at the Tokyo International Anime Fair, Animage Anime Grand Prix, and Animation Kobe event. Critics have praised the series for its large audience appeal as well as the cross conflicts shown among the main characters and the moral questions presented.Cowboy Bebop
Cowboy Bebop (カウボーイビバップ, Kaubōi Bibappu) is a 1998 Japanese anime television series animated by Sunrise featuring a production team led by director Shinichirō Watanabe, screenwriter Keiko Nobumoto, character designer Toshihiro Kawamoto, mechanical designer Kimitoshi Yamane, and composer Yoko Kanno.The twenty-six episodes ("sessions") of the series are set in the year 2071, and follow the lives of a bounty hunter crew traveling in their spaceship called the Bebop. Although it covers a wide range of genres throughout its run, Cowboy Bebop draws most heavily from western and noir films, and its most recurring thematic focal points include adult existential ennui, loneliness and the difficulties of trying to escape one's past.
The series premiered in Japan on TV Tokyo from April 3 until June 26, 1998, broadcasting only twelve episodes and a special due to its controversial adult-themed content. The entire twenty-six episodes of the series were later broadcast on WOWOW from October 24 until April 24, 1999. The anime was adapted into two manga series which were serialized in Kadokawa Shoten's Asuka Fantasy DX. A film was later released to theaters worldwide.
The anime series was dubbed in the English language by Animaze and ZRO Limit Productions, and was licensed by Bandai Entertainment in North America and is now licensed by Funimation. In Britain, it was licensed by Beez Entertainment and is currently licensed by Anime Limited. Madman Entertainment has licensed it for releases in Australia and New Zealand. In 2001, Cowboy Bebop became the first anime title to be broadcast on Adult Swim in the United States.
Cowboy Bebop became a critical and commercial success both in Japanese and international markets (most notably in the United States), garnered several major anime and science fiction awards upon its release, and received wide acclaim for its style, characters, story, voice acting, animation, and soundtrack. In the years since its release, critics have hailed Cowboy Bebop as a masterpiece and frequently cite it as one of the greatest anime titles of all time. Credited with helping to introduce anime to a new wave of Western viewers in the early 2000s, Cowboy Bebop has also been labelled a gateway series for the medium as a whole.Daisuki (website)
Daisuki (株式会社ダイスキ, Kabushiki-gashia Daisuki) was a Japanese website focused on streaming anime content, which was founded in 2013 by Asatsu-DK and six anime studios: Toei Animation, Aniplex, Sunrise, TMS Entertainment, Nihon Ad Systems, and Dentsu. Daisuki was managed by Anime Consortium Japan, an anime content joint venture financed by Asatsu-DK, Bandai Namco, the Cool Japan Fund, and several Japanese anime studios, and which is currently managed by Bandai Namco.The service was terminated on October 31, 2017, at 11:59 JST. However, streaming of Dragon Ball Super continued until February 22, 2018, when it was transferred to DRAGON BALL SUPER CARD GAME.Digimon
Digimon (デジモン Dejimon, branded as Digimon: Digital Monsters, stylized as DIGIMON), short for "Digital Monsters" (デジタルモンスター Dejitaru Monsutā), is a Japanese media franchise encompassing virtual pet toys, anime, manga, video games, films and a trading card game. The franchise focuses on Digimon creatures, which are monsters living in a "Digital World", a parallel universe that originated from Earth's various communication networks.
The franchise was first created in 1997 as a series of virtual pets, akin to—and influenced in style by—the contemporary Tamagotchi or nano Giga Pet toys. The creatures were first designed to look cute and iconic even on the devices' small screens; later developments had them created with a harder-edged style influenced by American comics. The franchise gained momentum with its first anime incarnation, Digimon Adventure, and an early video game, Digimon World, both released in 1999. Several seasons of the anime and films based on them have aired, and the video game series has expanded into genres such as role-playing, racing, fighting, and MMORPGs. Other media forms have also been released.Gundam
Gundam (Japanese: ガンダム, Hepburn: Gandamu), also known as the Gundam series (ガンダムシリーズ, Gandamu Shirīzu), is a science fiction media franchise created by Sunrise that features giant robots (mecha) with the name "Gundam" (after the original titular mecha). The franchise began on April 7, 1979 with Mobile Suit Gundam, a TV series that defined the "real robot" mecha anime genre by featuring giant robots called mobile suits in a militaristic setting. The popularity of the series and its merchandise spawned a franchise that includes television series, OVAs, films, manga, novels and video games, as well as a whole industry of model robots known as Gunpla (plastic Gundam model).
Gunpla make up 90 percent of the Japanese character plastic-model market. Academics in Japan have viewed the series as inspiration; in 2008, the virtual Gundam Academy was planned as the first academic institution based on an animated TV series.The Gundam franchise had grossed over $5 billion in retail sales by 2000. By 2014, annual revenue of the Gundam franchise reached ¥80 billion per year, ¥18.4 billion of which was retail sales of toys and hobby items. As of June 2018, Gundam is the 15th highest-grossing media franchise of all time, estimated to have generated more than $15 billion in total revenue.Jump Force
Jump Force (Japanese: ジャンプフォース, Hepburn: Janpu Fōsu) is a crossover fighting game developed by Spike Chunsoft and published by Bandai Namco Entertainment featuring characters from various manga series featured in Shueisha's Weekly Shōnen Jump anthology in celebration of the magazine's 50th anniversary. The game was released on February 15, 2019 for Windows, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.List of Bandai Namco video game franchises
Bandai Namco Holdings is a Japanese holdings company that specializes in video games, anime, toys, arcades and amusement parks, and is currently based in Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan. The company was formed following the merger of Bandai and Namco on September 29, 2005, with both companies' assets being merged into a single corporate entity. The video game branch of the company is Bandai Namco Entertainment, formerly called Namco Bandai Games, and continues to develop games for home consoles, arcades and mobile phones internationally. The company is best known for their video game franchises, with Pac-Man becoming their highest-grossing franchise with over US$12.8 billion as of 2016, as well as becoming the company's official mascot and flagship character, while Tekken is their best selling franchise, selling over 40 million copies across multiple platforms. As of 2017, the company is the third-largest video game company in Japan, the seventh-largest in the world, and the largest toy company by revenue.Bandai Namco owns former developer Banpresto, who operates as a toy company in Japan and was purchased in 2008, and acquired a 95% stake in D3 Publisher in 2009. Additionally, the company owns the video game rights to several anime licenses, including Dragon Ball, One Piece and Sailor Moon; in this instance, the first entry for these franchises will list the first game developed or published by Bandai Namco or a subsidiary company even if the series did not begin at that time period. Bandai Namco also owns the rights to the Baten Kaitos, Project X Zone and Xenosaga franchises, after developer Monolith Soft was sold to Nintendo in 2007. The company retains the rights to defunct developers BEC, who merged with Banpresto in 2011, and Sunrise Interactive, who closed in 2008.List of One Piece video games
The One Piece video games series is published by Bandai and Banpresto, later as part of Bandai Namco Entertainment, and is based on Eiichiro Oda's shonen manga and anime series of the same name. The games take place in the fictional world of One Piece, and the stories revolve around the adventures of Monkey D. Luffy and his Straw Hat Pirates, the franchise's protagonists. The games have been released on a variety of video game and handheld consoles. The series features various genres, mostly role-playing games—the predominant type in the series' early years—and fighting games, such as the titles of the Grand Battle! sub-series.
The series debuted in Japan on July 19, 2000 with One Piece: Mezase Kaizoku Ou!. The series contains 38 games, not counting appearances in crossover titles.
More than five years passed after the anime series' debut, One Piece: Grand Battle! Rush, was released outside Japan on September 7, 2005. Out of thirty-eight games (not including non-Japanese games), eleven have been released in North America, two in Australia and thirteen in Europe. Japan's large demand for such games leads its companies to produce the titles with haste and thus low regard for quality. The opposite is the case with the One Piece video game, which has been produced for and exclusively released to the North American markets, and was crowned "GBA Platformer of the Year" in 2005 by GameSpy's network of game websites. The One Piece series has received a mixed reception; assessments ranged from "slightly below or slightly above average" to "a grand video-game series".List of PlayStation Portable games
This is a list of games for the Sony PlayStation Portable handheld console. It does not include PSOne classics or PS minis. Games have been released in several regions around the world; North America (NA), Japan (JP), Europe (EU), and Australia (AUS).
The games show the date the game was first release in that region.
Publishers and regions are placed in order of release
Alternate English titles are listed underneath the main title.There are currently 1369 games on this list.List of Power Rangers video games
The following is a list of video games based on the American entertainment and merchandising franchise of the same name by Haim Saban. The games have been primarily licensed to be published under Bandai, THQ and Bandai Namco Entertainment.Namco
Namco Limited (株式会社ナムコ, Kabushiki gaisha Namuko) is a brand and corporate name used from 1971 to 2018 by two Japanese companies in the businesses of video games, game centers and theme parks. The name continues to be used outside of Japan by the subsidiary Namco USA.
The original Namco Ltd. was founded in 1955 as Nakamura Seisakusho and changed its name to Nakamura Manufacturing in 1959. In 1971, Nakamura Manufacturing launched the Namco brand which became the company's name in 1977. In 2006, Namco absorbed the video game division of its sister company Bandai and formally renamed itself Namco Bandai Games. The same day, its existing amusement division split to form a new company called Namco Ltd which was subsequently renamed Bandai Namco Amusement Inc. in 2018.
Namco was a front-runner during the golden age of arcade video games. Pac-Man went on to become the best-selling arcade game in history and an international popular culture icon. Namco is also known for creating successful franchises such as Galaxian, Dig Dug, Xevious, Ridge Racer, Tekken, Ace Combat, Soulcalibur and Tales.Tamagotchi
The Tamagotchi (たまごっち, 拓麻歌子) [tamaɡotꜜtɕi] is a handheld digital pet, created in Japan by Akihiro Yokoi of WiZ and Aki Maita of Bandai. It was released by Bandai on November 23, 1996 in Japan and May 1997 in the rest of the world, quickly becoming one of the biggest toy fads of the 1990s and early 2000s. Up until 2010, over 76 million Tamagotchis had been sold worldwide. As of 2017, over 82 million units have been sold. Most Tamagotchi are housed in a small egg-shaped computer with an interface usually consisting of three buttons, although the number of buttons may vary.
According to Bandai, the name is a portmanteau combining the two Japanese words tamago (たまご), which means "egg", and the end of "watch". Consequently, the name is sometimes romanized as "Tamagotch" without the "i" in Japan. Most Tamagotchi characters' names end in chi (ち) in Japanese, with few exceptions.WonderSwan
The WonderSwan is a handheld game console released in Japan by Bandai. It was developed by Gunpei Yokoi's company Koto Laboratory and Bandai, and was the last piece of hardware Yokoi developed before his death in 1997. Released in 1999 in the fifth generation of video game consoles, the WonderSwan and its two later models, the WonderSwan Color and SwanCrystal were officially supported until being discontinued by Bandai in 2003. During its lifespan, no variation of the WonderSwan was released outside of Japan.
Powered by a 16-bit central processing unit, the WonderSwan took advantage of a low price point and long battery life in comparison to its competition, Nintendo's Game Boy Color and SNK's Neo Geo Pocket Color. Later improvements took advantage of quality upgrades to the handheld's screen and added color. The WonderSwan is playable both vertically and horizontally, and features a unique library of games, including numerous first-party titles based on licensed anime properties, as well as significant third-party support from Square, Namco, and Taito.
Overall, the WonderSwan in all its variations combined to sell an estimated 3.5 million units and managed to obtain as much as 8% of the Japanese handheld video game console market before being marginalized by Nintendo's Game Boy Advance. Retrospective feedback praises the potential of the WonderSwan despite its low sales and its brief time holding its own against Nintendo in the marketplace.