Call for Papers 

Replay #13: Decoding Nintendo 

We have the pleasure of announcing the call for papers for the 13th issue of Replay, the Polish Journal of Game Studies, which will be devoted to Nintendo, the Japanese company. We want to create space for discussions about one of the most important and longest-operating producers of games and video consoles and its impact on gaming culture. 

Super Mario Bros., Pikachu, Game Boy, or Shigeru Miyamoto are probably the first associations one has with Nintendo. In this issue, we intend to take a broader look at the phenomenon of this brand, taking into account the specificity of its production process, the authorship of the works of leading designers, the importance of marketing innovative solutions, its relationship with fans, as well as the company's attitude towards piracy or emulation. 

For over four decades, Nintendo has been developing its vision of electronic entertainment, on the one hand, sticking to its own tradition and recognizable patterns while, on the other hand, offering fresh experiences and breaking existing gameplay conventions. The importance and status of this company within the gaming culture are unparalleled and undeniable. However, alongside the spectacular commercial success of its consoles, such as Wii or Nintendo Switch, the company’s decisions and marketing strategies have also been known to arouse strong emotions in its fans. An example is last year's exclusive Nintendo eShop for WiiU and 3DS consoles, which was met with dissatisfaction from fans and numerous negative comments from game journalists. 

This duality is also present in other contexts, with the release and popularity of Animal Crossing: New Horizons (2020) deserving of special attention considering its role in the facilitation of pursuit of parasocial relationships and provision of relaxation and escape to the players during the Covid-19 pandemic (Seller, 2021; Barr, M., & Copeland-Stewart, 2022). Animal Crossing also showcases the aforementioned duality of Nintendo as it tends to be criticized for its representation of late-capitalist tendencies hidden under a charming and seemingly harmless visual design (Vossen, 2020). 

Additionally, the consoles and controllers designed by the Kyoto-based company provide an interesting object of research in platform studies, as evidenced by the growing number of publications about Nintendo equipment. For example, Jesper Juul describes the Wii phenomenon in the A Casual Revolution book (2010), Nathan Altice devoted his I Am Error (2015) book to the NES system, while Samuel Tobin dealt with the portable Dual Screen in Portable Play in Everyday Life (2013). 

Thus, we invite you to submit articles that aim to decode Nintendo and discuss their many faces. The topics might cover some of the following topics: 

  • from Hanafuda cards to Switch – the history of Nintendo company 
  • Shigeru Miyamoto, Satoshi Tajiri, and Gunpei Yokoi – game developers and hardware designers 
  • Nintendo’s key franchises and cult series (Super Mario, The Legend of Zelda, Pokémon, Metroid) 
  • GameBoy – the influence of Nintendo on mobile gaming and the design of the handheld consoles 
  • Nintendon’t – the console wars, provocative advertistement, their rivalry with Sega, Sony, and Microsoft 
  • the key elements of the Nintendo style – iconography, cultural references, characteristic gameplay 
  • Nindies – independent games on Nintendo consoles 
  • casual revolution – Nintendo Wii(U), Nintendo Dual Screen, 3DS 
  • the Japanese/global character of Nintendo games 
  • Nintendo vs emulation, piracy, and game modding 
  • Nintendo outside of Japan – distribution, reactions, fan practices 

 Please send texts to by  September 30th, 2024, in a format consistent with the editorial guidelines available on the website in Polish and English [here]. 


Altice N., (2015). I Am Error: The Nintendo Family Computer / Entertainment System Platform. The MIT Press. 

Juul, J. (2010). A Casual Revolution: Reinventing Video Games and Their Players. The MIT Press. 

Barr, M., & Copeland-Stewart, A. (2022). Playing Video Games During the COVID-19 Pandemic and Effects on Players’ Well-Being. Games and Culture, 17(1), 122–139. 

Seller, M. (2021). Ever-Lockdown: Waiting through Times of Playbour and Pandemic in Animal Crossing. Networking Knowledge: Journal of the MeCCSA Postgraduate Network, 14(1), 100–116. 

Tobin S. (2013). Portable Play in Everyday Life: The Nintendo DS. Palgrave Pivot. 

Vossen, E. (2020). Tom Nook, Capitalist or Comrade? On Nook Discourse and the Millennial Housing Crisis. Loading... The Journal of the Canadian Game Studies Association, 13(22), 109–134.