Brownie Brown is a subsidiary of Nintendo, founded on June 30, 2000. The name "Brownie Brown" has an interesting meaning; the Brownie part is said to be a hard-working elf, and Brown is the name of the elf in the logo, thus "Brownie Brown" literally means hard-working Brown (the elf). The company is based in Tokyo, Japan, and they specialize in the role-playing genre. The company has mostly former Square developers, most of which worked on Legend of Mana.
The company has become known for their work on role-playing games such as Magical Vacation, Sword of Mana, and Mother 3. Being a small developer the company started out by making the Japan-only game Magical Vacation, it was directed by Nobuyuki Inoue and with a battle system designed by Takeo Oin. Afterward the company took on multiple projects at once, with Takeo Oin working with Square-Enix and Koichi Ishii on Sword of Mana and Nobuyuki Inoue working on a sequel to Magical Vacation called Magical Starsign and with Shigesato Itoi on Mother 3. After Sword of Mana was complete, Takeo Oin continued to work with Square-Enix and Koichi Ishii to make Heroes of Mana and then went on to work with Mistwalker and feel plus on Blue Dragon Plus. Currently Brownie Brown is working on Livly Garden for the Nintendo DS. They're also working with Level 5 on 2 projects, a mode for the first game of Professor Layton Second Season, Layton Kyouju to Majin no Fue, and a new game called Fantasy Life.
On February 1 2013, it was announced via a statement on their website that Brownie Brown would undergo restructuring to focus on new things while still putting things learned in the past too good use. The restructuring would also result in renaming the company 1-UP Studio, Inc. Additionally, Brownie Brown founder Shinichi Kameoka left the company in 2013 to found a new independent development company called Brownies.