Friday, December 30, 2011

Shinjuku through the years, from 1969 to 2004

We are getting a little off-topic today, but I came across a video that is too nice not to share. It illustrates the extraordinary development Japan went trough from the 60s to the 80s of the last century; the period that coincides with Nintendo's 'toy period', which is the focus of this blog.

The video shows how Shinjuku - one of Tokyo's wards or neighborhoods - changed from an area of predominantly low-rise buildings to the current center of high-rise offices.

Demonstrated clearly is the huge increase in whealth and economic power, from a country recovering from the aftermath of the second world war, to its status as second economy in the world. At the same time, these images provide some context for the toys featured on this blog, showing the time period in which they were created.

For thirty-five years, from 1969 to 2004, some photographers regularly took photos from the same viewpoint looking at the west-side of Shinjuku.

The first picture is taken in July of 1969. In Nintendo terms, this is the time of N&B Block and the Love Tester.

A few years later, in 1973, the first skyscrapers appear. Nintendo had just released Ele-conga and Mach Rider.

Four years later, and quite a few more tall building have been erected. This was the period in which the first Nintendo video games arrived: the Color TV Game series.

Another five years and more building activity later, the area has started to look somewhat like its present shape. At this time, the Nintendo Game and Watch multi-screen had seen the light of day, and the Famicom was just around the corner.

You can watch the video below.

1 comment:

  1. That is interesting, I love to see that type of time lapse in pictures. It really puts the pace of change into perspective.