Names are not covered by copyright (although logos would be). Names are subject to trademark.
Generally, yes, using the name "Ninvento" instead of "Nintendo" is an attempt to avoid trademark infringement. Generally one does this when creating a parody, as positioning oneself as such allows one to attempt to employ a "fair use" defense if or when one is served with legal action concerning the name.
Simply changing a name slightly is not sufficient to grant immunity to trademark or other intellectual property action. It's not a get-out-of-jail-free card; even if you can successfully argue "fair use" due to parody (or whatever) you generally need to go to court to do so.
If you are thinking about using marks that are similar to existing trademarks, you should consult a lawyer about the best course of action for your project. If you are thinking about using actual trademarks (that is, "directly referencing" Sony's products or the Super Nintendo, et cetera), you should definitely consult a lawyer, as you will need to obtain permission from the IP holder.