The award was presented in recognition of the technological achievement of the D-pad, which radically changed how people interact with their video games and, by extension, their televisions.
Nintendo received the award in Las Vegas during the Technological & Engineering Emmy Awards, which kicked off this week's Consumer Electronics Show.
The D-pad first debuted on the controllers for the Nintendo Entertainment System® in 1985, and has been standard on all video games controllers ever since. The D-pad replaced joysticks and represented an early example of how Nintendo was willing to shake up the status quo in the search for a better gaming experience.
"Nintendo has long been a pioneer in the way that people interact with their games," said Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime. "Our commitment to pushing the envelope continues today with our motion-sensitive Wii Remote controllers, which again rewrite the rules. We are grateful for this award and thank the academy for the honor."