Nishijin Pachinko

Nishijin Pachinko. All about the fabulous company

What is Nishijin Pachinko?

The exciting world of pachinko is nearly a century old. The first most basic machines were invented in the 1920s. Based on the Bagatelle child toy version of an American game called “Corinth game” (first produced in Chicago), the earliest pachinko machines were an immediate hit. They offered candies and toys in return for the best, and in just a short time during the 1920s, they were found in nearly any candy store.

Bit by bit, they became truly popular with kids, who called them “pachi pachi” after the sound they produced. The pachinko industry really took off in the 1930s. After a brief halt because of the World Wars, pachinko was reintroduced in Japan after WWII. An innovation by Shoichi Masamura called the Masamura gage arrived in 1948, completely changing the game for good. In the new machine, players could win more than one ball, so it wasn’t a long time before pachinko companies like Pachinko Palace started operating.

One of the first ones was called Nishijin which would produce millions of pachinko machines in the decades that followed. Nishijin pachinko eventually became a subgenre with a variety of hits available in pachinko parlors across Japan.

The Nishijin Company

Nishijin originally started producing pachinko machines in 1951 in Kyoto. The word nishijin describes a colorful weaving of fabrics that was characteristic for the area. The company’s first logo featured a gazelle. Nishijin rebranded in the early 1970s after achieving fantastic success with its pachinko machines.

During that time, it introduced the “Shiroi Kamome” line (translated to white bird), changing its logo to an outline of one or several flying seagulls. Although the company achieved its peak during the 1970s, it is still active today and produces a variety of popular electronic pachinko machines.

Characteristics of Nishijin Pachinko Models

Nishijin has created thousands of pachinko machines, always following the latest trends on the market. The Nishijin pachinko models in the beginning were “Barrage” machines, which were later banned. The company adapted to the new market trends, released Renpatsu-shiki machines as well as the earliest tulip vintage pachinko machine models.

Right before the 1970s when restrictions on Renpatsu machines were lifted, Nishijin started developing ALL-15 models with autoloading features. Modern Renpatsu-shiki pachinko models were introduced next. One of the major Nishijin pachinko machine models came in 1971 with the release of the Nishijin 1200. Known as Model A and Recycler, this model was based on the Front overflow models before it, but the drain tube was now moved to the back for a more streamlined design.

Nishijin Pachinko Machines Today

Nishijin’s success continued well into the 1980s and 1990s. With the increased demand for pachinko machines in the 1980s, manufacturers moved from mechanical models to electronic ones. These were the earliest modern pachinko models that most of today’s machines were based on.

Thanks to the early success of Nishijin pachinko models, they are a pretty great prize for collectors. You can buy these models for as little as $40 or $50 online, depending on the make, model, and of course, the condition and features of the machine.