DragonKnight (User)

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The Nintendo Paradox

DragonKnight | 552d ago
User blog

I'm sure the "Nintendo can't catch a break" crowd will chime in on this blog with their staunch defense of the company, and that's fine, but this blog will discuss what is, in my opinion, an honest look at the reality of Nintendo and its fans.

We all know Nintendo. There isn't a single person who has gamed on even one console that DOESN'T know Nintendo. They are the Old Guard of the gaming world, and a company that's been around for well over a century. Many would say they are the creators of arguably the best first party games to ever exist, and have probably the most recognized mascot in the world with Mario.

The problem is though that no one is allowed to criticize them. The way I see it, there is a conflict in how Nintendo is perceived in the gaming world. These perceptions make it impossible for anyone to even look at Nintendo in a less than perfect light without a flood of defenders, ever ready to strike. You have the Old Guard, veteran and "saviour" of the gaming industry opinion that many use to demand that Nintendo be given nothing but the utmost and absolute respect. Then it seems that Nintendo are also judged as one would a child trying out new things, and you can't get upset with them for any mistakes they have because they are just learning. These opinions present a problem.

It will never be admitted, at least not completely, by Nintendo fans that Nintendo rehash ideas. It will never be admitted that Nintendo have lost touch with the gamers who grew up on the NES and SNES systems and continue to offer experiences mostly geared towards a different audience. It will never be admitted that games like Pokemon have been the same thing for decades when there are groups of Pokemon fans screaming for a different, more expanded experience. To say these things is to be attacking Nintendo when in reality it's just critiquing ancient practices.

The recent conference Nintendo held called Nintendo Direct was incredibly underwhelming for many. A lot of talking, apologizing for lack of the first party content promised at launch, and vague trailers to show that some games actually do exist sums up Nintendo Direct. It was a conference designed specifically to keep voice of "dissension" quiet. More of a "take our word for it" conference, Nintendo is stumbling with the Wii U, and it's a surprise given their confidence and backing of the Wii in its launch window.

Regardless of how Nintendo is handling things in the public eye, the problem is that too many try to silence any negativity against Nintendo and yet have no problem with negativity against Sony or Microsoft and it's very puzzling to me. Just because someone may have a problem with Nintendo's approach with things, in no way means they are writing Nintendo off as a quality company in the industry. It's a perfectly normal and accepted convention to have constructive criticism. How else would anything improve if no one was allowed to discuss what's wrong?

I suppose that that last sentence is the real question. I wonder if any can truly answer it. What is wrong with Nintendo? Or, if you don't want to answer that one, then answer this one... Why can no one criticise Nintendo?

zerocrossing  +   550d ago
What is wrong with Nintendo?"

Well in my opinion, They have been struggling for some time to keep relevant in an industry where the game has changed (pardon the pun) the vast majority of gamers these days seem to prefer titles seen on the PS3 and 360 since they are perceived to be geared toward the hardcore audience, so in order to combat this they appeal to their loyal fanbase with rebuilds and sequels of their already well established franchises all while drawing in the more casual crowd with fun and easily accessible titles, when they do release new IP's and 3rd party titles they usually retain the quality most of us have come to expect from Ninty (note Xenoblade & Pickmin).

Nintendo aren't above criticism, I've criticised them enough myself with what they pulled with the Wii abandoning the core gamers, the problem I've noticed is a lot of people pointing out what's wrong with Nintendo tend to miss the point of why they chose to do whatever they did. Look at the discussions/articles regarding the recent Nintendo Direct with people stating the usual "Doom for Nintendo" the way I see it is they knew their consumers had some concerns/issues regarding the lack of future titles being announced and the poorly optimised aps, so they addressed them and announced their plans to rectify these mistakes and concerns and went on to announce their plans for releasing new titles in the coming months and what to expect further on with the Wii U, it mite have felt a little underwhelming for some people but we don't need to make a big song and dance over everything.

Nintendo are on good form as they stand now, I only hope they keep it up.
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SilentNegotiator  +   550d ago
"the problem I've noticed is a lot of people pointing out what's wrong with Nintendo tend to miss the point of why they chose to do whatever they did. Look at the discussions/articles regarding the recent Nintendo Direct with people stating the usual "Doom for Nintendo" the way I see it is they knew their consumers had some concerns/issues regarding the lack of future titles being announced and the poorly optimised aps, so they addressed them and announced their plans to rectify these mistakes and concerns and went on to announce their plans for releasing new titles in the coming months and what to expect further on with the Wii U, it mite have felt a little underwhelming for some people but we don't need to make a big song and dance over everything"

But they've changed their approach with hardware. They're no longer selling a system that's well designed for dance/exercise games and all those things that brought them from plummeting success to back on the rise. They can't expect the same old approach of casually releasing an occasional title in the same IP line as they did with the Wii.

They didn't have to give up on that success for the hardcore. And if they do, they can't approach the hardcore as half-assed as they are. Their online community is a joke, even considering it's a brand new community. No online community, no DLC sales. No DLC sales, no point in living in the hardcore world.

Doom? No.
Bad planning? Absolutely.
PopRocks359  +   525d ago
As with the 3DS, they've tested their waters. Now that they have an idea of what their market wants and needs, they can cater to those issues and make the software lineup a lot stronger. The 3DS didn't become a mega seller over night and it seems the Wii U will be the same way.

But I completely disagree with you about their online community. Miiverse is huge and active. Look at the Rayman Legends delay videos on YouTube. Many people have a voice to Nintendo and to other publishers and developers because of it. If utilized properly, they can use that to their advantage with DLC sales and software library expansion awareness.
Welshy  +   550d ago
I tend to look at Nintendo in the same kind of scenario as Call Of Duty (bear with me here).

Nintendo were so massively popular because they innovated and brought gamers a new, fresh and exciting experience with Zelda, Mario etc. But as time has gone on it has just been put on a repeat loop of the same thing with a new lick of paint. In itself it isn't a bad thing if you love those games, but as a company for gamers, before long you will become a dinosaur and be totally irrelevant to the people that put you up there in the first place.

Just as in the same light COD4 was super popular because it was a fresh, exciting experience that took online gaming at a console level to new heights. But now time has moved on and they no longer cater to those who MADE it popular because they enjoyed the fresh, new experience and just want to release the same thing over and over with a new skin and minor tweeks.

Innovation is no longer innovation if you repeat it over and over. Nintendo need big change to get me back as a gamer on their platforms.

I loved my Nintendo games when i was younger and was dazzled by the experience, now 23yo, Nintendo don't cater to me anymore when i was part of the generation who made them so popular. Why should i buy a Wii U for example just to play HD Pikmin and we all know HD Zelda and Mario are coming plus ports of games i played as much as 2 years ago on my PS3.

The 1st party stuff is predictable and no longer exciting and the back catalog of my PS3 isn't there, so it's a redundant platform in my opinion.

Most publishers are straddling the ling of catering to a progressive gamer innovating and sticking to roots while implementing parts or mechanics that allow casuals to enjoy too. Look at EA with Mass Effect and Dead Space etc, while Nintendo have stuck almost 100% to the people who don't mind the same thing over again and don't want change or innovation.

If gamers want "old" Nintendo who innovated and brought new exciting games, characters and worlds to us, then this barrier of invincabilty around them needs to go and people need to raise their voices and stomp their feet to let them know they don't want 6 more years of reformatted Mario instead of mercilessly defending them against any and all criticism despite how correct and relevant that complaint may be.
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Ducky  +   550d ago
... the 2nd blog on the front page is about Nintendo rushing towards a GameCube-like disaster, but it seems no-one can criticize Nintendo.
SilentNegotiator  +   550d ago
A blog warmly welcomed by people that totally didn't misunderstand the intent of the content.

/s
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DragonKnight  +   550d ago
@FatOldMan: I give your reply a 2 out of 10 on the troll meter. Clearly you can do better than that. But, the only way that'd be possible is if you actually read both my blog, and the comments on the other blog you mentioned and made the correlation between "no one can criticize Nintendo without being attacked" and the attacks that have already begun.
Ducky  +   550d ago
I didn't see any major attacks except maybe one comment? Otherwise, it looked like a healthy discussion with different people offering their opinions.
Or maybe I just live in a rose-tinted fairyland.

I'm not sure what you're expecting. That people should be allowed to criticize Nintendo and no-one should present any counter-arguments?

If you want to criticize Nintendo or anyone or anything for that matter, go right ahead. Just don't expect everyone to agree with you... especially when you're labeling the other side as a group in denial.
Nothing is above criticism, and that includes your own opinions.
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Game3s  +   549d ago
If i go through your comment history we will see that you criticize people who criticize Sony does that mean you are trolling because you disagree with them?

Just because someone disagrees with you does not mean they are trolling, your opinion is not fact.
SilentNegotiator  +   550d ago
They're the "innocent" one.

For 6 years, they had a system clearly designed for children, soccer moms, elderly, etc ("everyone"). The attitude has become that criticizing Nintendo is like criticizing children's toys or a medicine ball or whatever the elderly like these days.

For many years, they have had games that follow closely to design of their predecessors. Not like game sequels, but like the same games almost being made over and over in the manner of generations. The attitude has become that Nintendo games are a "legacy" and "don't fix what isn't broken", so "attacking" Nintendo is like attacking Bach or Beethoven.

Attempts at hardcore Wii games were scarce, so they were treated like something special. "Attacking" them at the same level of any game was to be "ungrateful".

It's time for some people to learn, however, that Nintendo is just another developer/manufacturer. They are no longer doing the Wii thing anymore. They are now (re)entering the world of hard/core games and WILL be criticized like anyone else. If you enter the Colosseum, you're a fool to expect to not be attacked by lions like anyone else.
DragonKnight  +   550d ago
What I found interesting was that Mario Galaxy 2 had a lot of content that was essentially a copy pasta of the first Mario Galaxy. Stuff like music to even some level designs were essentially ripped right from the first game. But, of course, since the time frame between the two games was so large, Nintendo were geniuses when they reused level designs and other assets since most would have moved on and forgotten, or the new audience wouldn't have known any better.

But you see, Nintendo gets to get away with that because of the perceptions that exist about it as a company. Criticizing Nintendo is quite simply not allowed. Not without more backlash than you could ever hope to deal with.
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PopRocks359  +   525d ago
So the act of reusing assets constitutes a perception that a lack of original content is FACTUAL?

That logic doesn't ring with me. Each generation of the Ratcher & Clank games use the same assets but with new weapons and enemy designs. Ocarina of Time and Majora's Mask share the same engine but they are nothing alike in design/story/mood etc. Banjo-Kazooie and Banjo-Tooie are exactly the same in this regard. Need I even bring up Assassin's Creed or Gears of War?

Pulling back to your original point, Mario Galaxy 2 is exactly as the title suggests; a sequel to Mario Galaxy. So to expect something completely different is rather naive. Yes, it uses the same engine and assets, but it has completely different levels and abilities. It's worth noting that Yoshi is not in the first game and playing with Yoshi will provide a different experience depending on the level (sometimes you have to swing from point to point with his tongue or you have to feed him hot foods to run quickly).

"Criticizing Nintendo is quite simply not allowed. Not without more backlash than you could ever hope to deal with."

I have to wonder if you simply take the act of disagreeing with your assessment as an attack. You seemed fully prepared for a lot of fanboy rage. Either way, my point stands; you're entitled to your view and I have no intention to tell you anything other than that I disagree with it.
ZoyosJD  +   550d ago
you have such a black and white perspective of everything you cant see things for how they really are.

conflicting opinions is at the heart of debate just as much as it is the motivation for the actions of the few as well as the majority.

compromise and understanding in a debate is entirely possible. it is just very diffucult when one begins with a perception that everyone is either with you or against you.
DragonKnight  +   550d ago
@FatOldMan and ZoyosJD: Apparently you don't know what criticism is when Nintendo is concerned. Take a look at the criticism that Sony and Microsoft receive, then take a look at the criticism Nintendo receives and try telling me it's the same thing. If you actually think it is, you're part of the problem. Again, actually LOOK for "criticism" against Nintendo and see the difference in the kind of criticism they receive against the others. And then look at frequency.

Even in this very blog you can see the people who see the true state of Nintendo vs. the people who think everything is equal.
Ducky  +   550d ago
"Even in this very blog you can see the people who see the true state of Nintendo vs. the people who think everything is equal."

You have somehow confused your own opinions as facts, with anyone who agrees with you as someone who sees the 'true state', and anyone who disagrees is part of some problem.

It's the internet, I don't have to try hard to find criticism on any subject... and a low frequency or quality of criticism can mean a lot of things, such as people not even caring about Nintendo.

In the end, you're just complaining about there being less people who share your opinion.
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ZoyosJD  +   550d ago
Try googling "Nintendo is doomed", guess what?

1,070,000 results.

"Wii U is doomed"

284,000 results.

Like we needed to do that in the first place...

Nintendo only needs to look at it's software sales vs. competitors to see where we criticize them most.

Nintendo aren't wrong just because they cater to a different audience...just look where they have been..."between 1963 and 1968, Nintendo set up a taxi company, a love hotel chain, a TV network, and a food company".

Everything you could ever suggest to Nintendo would merely be from your viewpoint. Do you really expect Nintendo to cater to 200+ million viewpoints.

I could criticize Nintendo all day, but they are doing a lot better than someone complaining about not having enough complaints.

Maybe you should try addressing the cause, and not the effect next time and maybe we could have been talking about how Nintendo could better manage its resources, rather than how you managed to miss the 1+ million pages on the internet about how "Nintendo is doomed".
mamotte  +   550d ago
Because Sony and MS dont have anoyone to protect'em.
mydyingparadiselost  +   549d ago
I will criticise them for not scooping up Vigil at the THQ auction. Help make it happen! change.org/petitions/nintendo- buy-developer-vigil-formerly-of -thq
LOL_WUT  +   549d ago
Good read ;)
Phil32  +   549d ago
The only rehash here is DragonKnight whining about Nintendo and its fans yet again (ironic that HE rates someone as a troll, but I guess it really does take one to know one.) The fact that you took the time to write up a multiple paragraph rant shows his dedication at the very least.

Generally, you have to be a fanboy to think that one company is treated better than another. Oh, wait... (If that wasn't clear, I'm calling you a company zealot.)

Reminds me of that IGN story where users were having persecution complexes and basically arguing that IGN would never defend Sony like they did with Microsoft.

God, I try to think N4G will get better, but there are so many fanboys and company zealots on this site that greatly outweigh the sane people who would rather play video games than console wars that this is difficult to continue thinking. You sure you guys are gamers? We should want ALL companies to do well, not just the ones you like and have some pathetic diehard dedication to.

"the problem is that too many try to silence any negativity against Nintendo and yet have no problem with negativity against Sony or Microsoft"

You do realize it works for any of the big three, right? Sony fans have no problem with negativity towards Nintendo and Microsoft either, and so forth. The hypocrisy from you is astounding, but again, I know your history so it's expected from someone like you. :/

"But you see, Nintendo gets to get away with that because of the perceptions that exist about it as a company. Criticizing Nintendo is quite simply not allowed..."

Nah, you don't have some sort of complex at all, nor do you have an agenda either... Not.

"Apparently you don't know what criticism is when Nintendo is concerned. Take a look at the criticism that Sony and Microsoft receive, then take a look at the criticism Nintendo receives and try telling me it's the same thing. If you actually think it is, you're part of the problem. Again, actually LOOK for "criticism" against Nintendo and see the difference in the kind of criticism they receive against the others. And then look at frequency."

This is the very definition of stupidity and looking at things how YOU want to see them instead of how they really are. "Wah! Nintendo isn't allowed to be criticized but my favorite companies are!"

I would imagine if Nintendo fans were the loudest it would be because Nintendo is attacked the most, and people are sick of it. E.G. Nintendo should go third-party, Nintendo is doomed, how can the Wii U be saved, Nintendo should go smartphone only, only fanboys are interested in the Wii U, etc. Not that hard of a concept, but when dealing with fanboys, I realize that logic isn't used with most of you.

They're freaking game companies. Grow up, people. I obviously need to grow up, too, since I even bothered to even respond to this condescending and contradictory garbage of a blog post when I simply shouldn't have given a shit, as who really cares what some anonymous N4G user with a notorious history has to say. However, my quest to make N4G a better place rolls on. It's a futile thing to do, but eh.

I think congratulations are in order, though. Congrats, DragonKnight, on another Nintendo-hating rant that makes you look like a Nintendo employee touched you in a naughty place as a child and you never forgave the company for that.

Hopefully some of you outgrow playing console wars and start focusing solely on playing video games, regardless of the system. I'll probably get disagrees for this comment, but I guess that will only prove my point about the state of this site.

Ah well.
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Game3s  +   548d ago
Well said but no more wall of text please XD
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PopRocks359  +   525d ago
I suppose a better question would be why can't people argue those criticisms? I'm all for the concept of people thinking freely and even disagreeing with what I think or feel.

But, for this website in particular, the criticism of Nintendo often devolves into outright hatred and animosity, particularly toward anyone with the gall to say anything other than "[X-Nintendo game/system] is old and/or sucks."

To me, there's a degree of unfairness. One can argue that Nintendo's franchises have extremely lengthy histories. Those franchises have existed since the 80's. Are you honestly willing to tell me that Skyward Sword is the same as the original NES title? There are some who enjoy the changes they make to a formula that has worked as part of great game design for the better part of three decades.

It's not always "You CAN'T criticize Nintendo." In my case at least it would be, "I politely disagree with your criticism."

And there are many legitimate criticisms to cite for Nintendo or something Nintendo related.

-The NSMB games do little for innovation
-Online Nintendo consoles make buying digital content a hassle
-Nintendo does little to entice third party developers
-Certain aspects of online gaming have not yet been embraced

And you can go further back and look at the N64's cartridges and the Virtual Boy. Like any part of the realm of creativity, ANYTHING is subject to criticism. But understand that there will always be someone who will disagree for one reason or another.

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