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This is a list of current and former first-party, second-party, and devoted third-party game developers for Nintendo systems. Both First and Second Party Developers of Nintendo can have games published by Third Party Companies, but they must remain exclusive to Nintendo systems.


  • 1 First-party
    • 1.1 Current first-party
    • 1.2 Defunct first-party
  • 2 Second-party
    • 2.1 Current second-party
    • 2.2 Defunct second-party
    • 2.3 Former second-party
  • 3 Third-party
    • 3.1 Current Exclusive to Nintendo systems
    • 3.2 Not Exclusive
    • 3.3 Defunct
  • 4 Notes
  • 5 References


A first party developer is a subsidiary of Nintendo and one in which Nintendo has a controlling interest in (51% or more ownership).

Current first-party
  • Brownie Brown — Software developer consisting of former members of Squaresoft. Responsible for Magical Vacation (Japan only) and Magical Starsign, and for supporting famed essayist Shigesato Itoi and HAL with Mother 3.
  • Intelligent Systems — Established in 1986 by former members of Nintendo Research & Development 1 to develop games. Responsible for Fire Emblem, Paper Mario series and Famicom Wars franchises.
  • Monolith Soft — Founded in 1999 by a former member of Square Co., Nintendo bought a majority stake on April 27, 2007 from Namco Bandai. Developer of the Xenosaga series, as well as Namco x Capcom, and the Baten Kaitos series. Developed the Wii title Disaster: Day of Crisis and the DS titles Soma Bringer along with Mugen no Frontier: Super Robot Wars OG Saga.
  • Nintendo Entertainment Analysis and Development (Originally "Nintendo Research & Development 4") — Largest division at Nintendo. Managed by Shigeru Miyamoto. Responsible for the Mario, Star Fox, Zelda, Animal Crossing, Wii Series, and other franchises.
  • Nintendo Software Technology Corporation — Redmond-based studio responsible for Metroid Prime Hunters, among others.
  • Nintendo Software Planning and Development — Development division inside Nintendo. SPD was created during a corporate restructuring in 2004 and primarily assists other first party teams and manages overseas production of first party franchises.
  • Project Sora — A Tokyo studio founded in 2009 by Nintendo and Kirby/Super Smash Brothers creator Masahiro Sakurai. The studio is 72% owned by Nintendo and 28% owned by Sakurai's company Sora, Ltd.
  • Retro Studios — Austin, Texas-based studio fully owned by Nintendo. Developer of the Metroid Prime games excluding Hunters and Pinball.

Defunct first-party
  • Nintendo Research & Development 1 (Merged into Nintendo EAD) — Responsible for games such as Metroid, Kid Icarus, and Super Mario Land.
  • Nintendo Research & Development 2 (Merged into Nintendo EAD) — Responsible for the Super Mario Advance games on the Game Boy Advance and peripherals for Nintendo.
  • Nintendo Integrated Research and Development (Originally "Nintendo Research & Development 3") — Responsible for the Punch-Out!! series and the StarTropics series of games, as well as Teleroboxer, though focused primarily on hardware research and design.


A second-party developer is one that creates games exclusively for Nintendo systems through a contract agreement. Nintendo may or may not own a percentage of the studio, but not enough to give it a controlling interest.

Current second-party
  • AlphaDream — Developer of Tomato Adventure (Japan only) and the Mario & Luigi games.
  • Ambrella — Developer of Hey You, Pikachu!, Pokémon Channel, Pokémon Dash, and My Pokémon Ranch.
  • Camelot Software Planning — Developer of Nintendo's Mario Golf and Mario Tennis series as well as the Golden Sun franchise. Recently developed We Love Golf for the Wii, published by Capcom.
  • Game Freak — Developer of the Pokémon video game series and Drill Dozer.
  • Genius Sonority — Developer of Pokémon Colosseum, its sequel, Pokémon XD, Pokémon Trozei, and Pokémon Battle Revolution. It collaborated with Eighting in developing the Wii-exclusive Dragon Quest Swords.
  • HAL Laboratory — Developer of the Kirby franchise, Super Smash Bros. series, the Eggerland series (sometimes known as the Adventures of Lolo series), the development of the e-Reader, and co-produced the EarthBound/Mother series. Its former president, Satoru Iwata, is currently president and CEO of Nintendo Co. Ltd.
  • NDCUBE — Developer of F-Zero: Maximum Velocity, Tube Slider, and various other Game Boy Advance and GameCube titles.
  • Noise — Developer of the Custom Robo franchise and Acro Knights. (Published by namco.)
  • Paon - DK: King of Swing, DK: Jungle Climber and Donkey Kong Barrel Blast. It also developed Hercules no Eikô: Tamashî no Shômei, the fifth title of the Hercules no Eikô series, and aided in development of Super Smash Bros Brawl.
  • skip Ltd. — Developer of GiFTPiA (Japan only), the Chibi-Robo series, the bit Generations series (Japan only) and Captain Rainbow for Wii.

Defunct second-party
  • Clever Trick — Developer of Echo Delta (cancelled). Developer became defunct in 2003 when its parent company, Marigul Management, was liquidated the same year.
  • Param — Developer of Doshin the Giant. Developer became defunct in 2003 when its parent company, Marigul Management, was liquidated the same year.
  • Saru Brunei — Developer of the GameCube title Cubivore: Survival of the Fittest. Developer became defunct in 2003 when its parent company, Marigul Management, was liquidated the same year.

Former second-party
  • Factor 5 — Known for Star Wars: Rogue Squadron series.
  • Rare — Although at one time under a 49% ownership by Nintendo, Rare is now owned by Microsoft. It was responsible for such titles as Donkey Kong Country/Land/64, GoldenEye 007, Banjo-Kazooie, Battletoads, Blast Corps, Perfect Dark, Jet Force Gemini, StarFox Adventures, Conker's Bad Fur Day, and Killer Instinct. It has, however, developed games for Nintendo handhelds during Microsoft's ownership, including Diddy Kong Racing DS and Viva Pinata: Pocket Paradise.
  • Silicon Knights — Developed Eternal Darkness and co-developed with Konami on the remake of Metal Gear Solid, Metal Gear Solid: Twin Snakes.


A third party developer is one that is not tied to any specific system. Those listed here have expressed explicit support for Nintendo systems, with some developers creating games exclusively for Nintendo systems.

Current Exclusive to Nintendo systems
  • 5TH Cell - Developer of games Drawn to Life, Lock's Quest and Scribblenauts for the Nintendo DS.
  • EA Salt Lake — Formerly known as Headgate Studios, it was bought by Electronic Arts and is now creating games exclusively for the Wii and Nintendo DS.
  • Fall Line — Salt Lake City, Utah-based game developer formed by Disney to create games exclusive to Nintendo systems.
  • Firebrand Games — Develops racing games, such as Codemasters' Race Driver: Create and Race for the Nintendo DS. It is developing for the Wii as well.
  • Fuse Games — A British Pinball game company who made Mario Pinball Land and Metroid Prime Pinball.
  • Headstrong Games (formerly known as Kuju London) — Developer of the Battalion Wars series of games; this studio is exclusive to Nintendo. Currently developing the Wii-exclusive The House of the Dead: Overkill for Sega.
  • Jet Black Games — Created by former developers at EA Canada, it have announced that it will license and develop games exclusively for Nintendo's hardware.
  • Jupiter — Developer of the Nintendo DS game Spectrobes, the Pokemon Pinball series, The World Ends With You and Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories among other titles.
  • Image Epoch - Developer of several new IPs for DS and Wii, including Luminous Arc, World Destruction and Arc Rise Fantasia. All currently released and planned titles are for Nintendo systems.
  • Nibris - Polish developer which intends to publish exclusively for Nintendo systems. Titles currently in development include Sadness, ROTR, several WiiWare titles, and more
  • Shin'en — Developer of the Nanostray games for the DS.

Not Exclusive
  • Artoon — Created Yoshi Topsy-Turvy, Yoshi's Island DS, and Span Smasher.
  • Atlus — Developer of the Nintendo exclusive Trauma Center series , Etrian Odyssey series along with a number of other games.
  • Capcom — Has developed and published a number of games for Nintendo, including those from the esteemed Zelda (portable) franchise. Developing/Developed the Wii exclusives Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles , Sengoku Basara 2 , Monster Hunter 3 (originally developed exclusively for Sony's PlayStation 3), and Zack & Wiki: Quest for Barbaros' Treasure.
  • Cing — Developer of the Nintendo DS games Trace Memory and Hotel Dusk: Room 215 and the forthcoming Little King's Story.
  • Dimps- Developer of Dragon Ball Z: Budokai and Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2 for GameCube and the Sonic Rush games for DS.
  • Grasshopper Manufacture — Led by Goichi Suda, is responsible for Killer 7 for the Nintendo GameCube, Contact and ""Flower, Sun and Rain"" for the Nintendo DS, and No More Heroes for the Wii.
  • Hudson Soft — Now belongs to Konami; its first collaborated game with Nintendo was Wario Blast: Featuring Bomberman. Hudson Soft also develops the Mario Party series, though its involvement with the Mario franchise has dated back to Super Mario Bros. Special, which was released around the same time as The Lost Levels.
  • iNiS — Developer of the rhythm games Osu! Tatakae! Ouendan and its Western adaptation Elite Beat Agents.
  • Konami — Created the Nintendo GameCube exclusive DDR: Mario Mix and the Wii exclusive Elebits. Recently developed Dewy's Adventure and DDR: Hottest Party for the Wii, along with other projects, such as Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes.
  • Mitchell Corporation — Developer of Polarium and Magnetica titles for the Nintendo DS.
  • Namco Bandai — NBGI had published many anime titles on Nintendo platforms like One Piece,Gundam, Dragon Ball Z, etc, along with the Soul Calibur Legends and Tales of Symphonia. Nintendo and Namco have collaborated on several games such as Pac-Man Vs., Star Fox: Assault, Mario Superstar Baseball, and the Donkey Konga series; belongs to the Triforce arcade system.
  • Natsume (company) - Publisher of games in the Harvest Moon series for North America.
  • Nexon - Developer of MapleStory DS, based on the massive multi online role-playing game (MMORPG), MapleStory.
  • Next Level Games — Creator of the Mario Strikers series and Punch-Out for the Wii.
  • Sandlot - Developer of Dynamic Slash for Nintendo.
  • Sega — Nintendo's former rival in the console market, Sega has since brought a number of its popular franchises to Nintendo systems, including the Sonic the Hedgehog series, the Phantasy Star series, and the Super Monkey Ball series. It also created Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games, the first game in which the respective mascots for Nintendo and Sega have appeared in an official game together.
  • Spike - Developed the Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi series for the Wii.
  • Square Enix — Nintendo has in the past published Square Enix's games for the Western market, including the popular Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest series of games. The popular RPG publisher has licensed Nintendo's characters in the past, developing Super Mario RPG on the SNES and Mario Hoops 3-on-3 and Itadaki Street for the DS. The company is currently developing the highly anticipated Dragon Quest IX for the Nintendo DS, the first main Dragon Quest game on a handheld system. On December 2008, it announced that the next Dragon Quest game (X) will be on the Wii.
  • Team Ninja — co-developer of Metroid: Other M.
  • Treasure Co. Ltd — Founded by ex-Konami employees, the studio has previously worked with Nintendo to make Wario World and Mischief Makers. The studio is most notable among gamers for the Nintendo 64 formerly Japan-only (now on Virtual Console) game Sin and Punishment.

  • Flagship — Nintendo, Capcom, and Sega, founded the joint venture Flagship to develop games and assist in the development of games. As of June 1, 2007 Flagship was closed. Working with Nintendo's game designer Shigeru Miyamoto, it had developed The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages and Seasons, The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap, Kirby and the Amazing Mirror and Kirby Squeak Squad.