Nintendo is Leaving Their Family Friendly Image Behind

Brandon Lyttle writes: "Known for iconic characters like Mario, Kirby, Link and Samus; Nintendo’s largely known as being a family-friendly company when compared to rivals Microsoft and Sony. It seems now more than ever that it is embracing more mature themes and content on their systems. This cultural shift could reinvigorate Nintendo’s franchises if they continue to embrace it."

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FallenAngel198440d ago

Nintendo has embraced mature games for generations yet people frequently overlook them to continue believing Nintendo only produces child friendly games. Why would that narrative suddenly change now when said mature games have existed on Nintendo consoles prior?

Nebaku40d ago

Well, Nintendo has always allowed 3rd parties to publish mature games on their consoles.

The narrative won't change until Nintendo themselves do a first party game that is truly more mature than what they've done in the past.

Theknightofnights40d ago

They have done that quite a few times with titles such as Geist and Eternal Darkness.

Madmoose40d ago

No it won't. That's too inconvenient for the haters & easily brainwashed. As games such as Eternal Darkness & Conker exist & still didn't shut these idiots up

alex10159440d ago

Bayonetta is basically a 1st party. Splatoon 2 Octo female is pretty sexualized.

DJK1NG_Gaming40d ago

Nintendo published many M rated games
Switch - Bayonetta 1-3
Wii U - Bayonetta 1-2 & Devil's Third.
Wii - Disaster Day of Crissi by Monolith Soft
GameCube - Eternal Darkness & Geist
N64 - Perfect Dark and Conker Bad Fur Day

King_Noctis40d ago

Xenoblade 2 is also a very sexualized game.

Gaming_Cousin40d ago

Resident Evil 4 was Gamecube exclusive at one point

kreate40d ago

What's the game shown on the switch screen that's on this article's thumbnail?

tehpees340d ago


Its not that simple. Once you have an image engraved in your brand and you have a target market set for who you cater to its extremely hard to break that image, especially when you take a certain route with your income focus. It seems like its changed because Nintendo stuck to their guns that there is a market for every type of game on the go and not just JRPGs or niche Japanese or Indie games. Since they've successfully shown shooter players there is an advantage to playing these games on the go fans of that genre have come over and experimented with the idea but nobody knows for sure how big the market is or if it will stick.

Thats why it looks like things have changed but it remains to be seen if it has.

SuperSonic9139d ago

Whoever wrote this article is so stuck in the past.

+ Show (6) more repliesLast reply 39d ago
Madmoose40d ago (Edited 40d ago )

Straight up truth & great points. I have been saying the same thing for a couple generations now. After Mortal Kombat 2 on the Snes, all of that went out the window. Yet just as haters are gonna hate, sheeple are gonna sheep. And in doing so parrot well busted myths & stereotypes since they can't seem to think for themselves.

psuedo0m ago
I can to think for myself! See I just did

Aaaand, what does any of this nonsense even mean? Eh, nevermind. Why try to make sense out of the senseless?

psuedo40d ago

I can to think for myself! See I just did!

Segata40d ago

I think what has truly changed is Nintendo is marketing M rated games themselves and happily. In the past they either would not or do a half-assed job. Did anyone remember Nintendo pushing for people to buy Ninja Gaiden 3 or Devil's Third? No, they quietly published them. Sure they made a big deal about Bayonetta..until it came time to do an ad. Now they make amiibo of M rated games. Proudly feature them in directs and paid for the distribution of Wolfenstein II. Nintendo is bordering on boasting about them. That's the main difference.

BeardRanger40d ago

Exactly, Bayonetta being prominently featured in Sm4sh was a huge endorsement by Nintendo of an M-Rated franchise. It's part of what led me to write the article.

Also Senran Kagura: Reflexion actually getting a western release. It's exciting times for Nintendo.

Concertoine40d ago

I actually remember seeing Bayonetta 2 ads all the time around release. Saw some on Adult Swim even. It appears Nintendo deleted the old ads when they put up new ones for the Switch version so I couldn't give a view count. Also, I don't think Nintendo really WANTED people buying Devil's Third. They almost didn't release out of Japan and bowed to fan backlash.

I don't think things have changed too much, Nintendo just has a tendency to focus ads on certain games rather than others. Other non rated M games like Project STEAM and Wonderful 101 were put out to die by Nintendo with hardly any ads.

I do think the success of more niche games like Fire Emblem Awakening and Bayonetta 2 has taught them the value in promoting such games though.

MADGameR40d ago

There are mature games on Nintendo handheld/console, but the handheld/console lacks a lot of power AND those mature games they have are NOT exclusive.

Noclos40d ago

Exclusives define the the whole console.

Switch is all about Mario, Zelda, Splatoon, Pokemon, Kirby and Bayonetta.

There isn't anything wrong with these titles, but its a fact that these are so friendly, except Bayonetta.

HentaiElmo40d ago (Edited 40d ago )

@fallenAngel when was the last time you saw a Nintendo first party game with blood on it or better jet with a mature rating.
But but they allow 3rd party to publish mature games on their systems. Nintendo have never done a game rated higher than teen

Apex1340d ago

Exactly. If people know Nintendo they should go back and look at their games catalogue from the Nes all the way through to the wii. It’s just the reluctance to embrace tech when everyone else does which hurt them when the ps1 dropped,. Sometimes they are right not to and other fines they are right to like 4K.

Madmoose39d ago (Edited 39d ago )

Lmao at this one. You mention embracing tech and then mentioned the ps1. During the ps1 era they actually had a technically superior console. Hell, they also had a superior console in the GameCube is well. The simple fact is around the GameCube era is when they openly & unhesitatingly stated that they weren't going to keep chasing the tech dragon.

So it's not like they couldn't have done the same thing pretty much any and every company can & has done since the beginning of consoles, they simply made a conscious decision not to. And while they maybe didn't embrace a medium such as the CD format during the ps1 era (or if we're honestly talking with Sega since they were using disc prior), they've always embraced tech.

Just because they didn't do it the same old way we've all become accustomed to with simply beefing up the cpu/gpu doesn't mean anything. They went with tech in their own/other ways such as the Wiimote, the rendering techniques used in Killer Instinct & the first DK Country, the mode 7 scaling and all of that stuff, and even one of the first 3D console games StarFox among other things.

It's funny how enbracing Tech these days to some people has just come to basically putting a better a faster CPU and graphics card in a console & pretty much calling it a day. Hell, even Atari consoles could do & did do that.

CrimsonWing6918h ago
I think you got Manhunt 2 confused. The Wii was definitely censored. I know because I was bummed when I bought it and found out.

Naw, just like BMX XXX, it wasn't. The only thing I remember is that Rockstar whoever the hell it was in their corps was trying to not get that adult only rating. So they themselves may have did what they had to do to avoid that. In any case again, just like BMX XXX, it was definitely less censored than the ps version.

Apex1339d ago (Edited 39d ago )

@madmoose, I didn’t mention who had the superior hardware, I mentioned fheor lateancy in adopting tech sometimes. Staying with cartridge for the sake of loading quicker over CD like the ps1 was an example.

+ Show (4) more repliesLast reply 39d ago
PhoenixUp40d ago

That depends if Super Smash Bros will be T rated again with SSBU

PCgamer9840d ago

Yeah I'm surprised nintendo allowed games like lux obscura which has sex and nudity on the switch.

Madmoose40d ago

Really? When they've allowed MadWorld, funded Bayonetta & had no problem not censoring Manhunt 2 (where you actually performed the murderous acts with the Wiimote) while it was neutered more for the ps2?

PCgamer9840d ago

Nintendo does censor cleavage, sexy clothes, or even underwear in some of their games that's why I was surprised after playing lux obscura that there's actually nudity and sex in there but it was allowed.

CrimsonWing6940d ago

I think you got Manhunt 2 confused. The Wii was definitely censored. I know because I was bummed when I bought it and found out.

Dan5040d ago

Umm the Wii version was WAY more cesored than the PS2 version.

psuedo40d ago

Not really. Any game that gets released on any other console (besides exclusives or due to not making for cost) what Console has banned a game from its console that any other has not? It usually is the ratings board that does the banning of a game with the AO title anyways. See Manhunt 2, or San Andreas after Hot Coffee was made.

If Nintendo banned non family friendly games they would not be in business. Non family friendly games is like half the market...maybe over?

G3ng4r40d ago

Eh, some games are a little more extreme than others but did you know ps2 had the only censored version of bmx xxx? Switch isn't at all a leapfrog tablet. Literally every console since the current esrb system has had mature rated games.

Segata40d ago

Platinum almost had Bayonetta wear more clothes in Bayo 2 with Nintendo costumes. Nintendo told PG to have here worn more revealing outfits. Also, have you played Xenoblade 2? That game got the SJW's at ResetEra all upset for all the revealing boobage.

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 40d ago
DarXyde40d ago

Manhunt 2 or Bayonettta, anyone?

I guess I don't really understand the reason why mature vs. Non- mature content is even a discussion. I never understood the reputation they had for "kiddie games" either. Isn't it a little immature to need bloodshed, sex, etc. just to feel that you're playing a game "for adults"? I think a game like Splatoon accomplishes a lot of the experience that rated M shooters provide. If I had to summarize, to me, it's like saying "I need some sleep" vs "I need some ****ing sleep": both accomplish the same thing, one is just edgier.

Madmoose40d ago (Edited 40d ago )

In my honest opinion I just think that it's a way that grown ass men and women justify playing with toys. See if they believe that there is precious little box for games on it or for adults, then that maybe helps them sleep better at night or something. What's even worse is that to further validate their purchases, they seem to have to criticize & mocj others who aren't gaming ga ga over the toy that they chose or gaming how they see fit. Which is pretty insulting, condescending and begging for the question to be asked of who the fark do these people think that they are?

I never understood the distinction even myself. As you can see grown ups excited for & playing games like Animal Crossing, spiderman & Viva Pinata while there's more than a few kids are playing Grand Theft Auto, god of war, and PUBG. Games are games to me. And IMO, any gamer truly worth their salt really doesn't make the distinction between a so called 'mature" or "kiddie" game. They just enjoy the hobby and all that it has to offer. And what's not for them, they simply don't play or include in their routine. Just like anything else in this world

What I find so damn funny in the years of this going on is that it's been predominantly the adults who are that concerned about this sort of shit rather than the children. As many of the kids I know, (especially ones in my life personally) have never had any qualms about which system we sat them down in front of.

In fact, they were eager to bounce back and forth and get the different experiences. Where as you have grown ass men acting like fingers are going to fall off & their sexual orientation is going to change if they touch a controller not belonging to the one(s) that they favor or seem to worship.

Edit: just want to make sure everybody got the memo to not worry about rowhineimus prime is saying in any Nintendo related article. If you manage to get through one of their comments, you pretty much have seen them all

BeardRanger40d ago

I completely agree, games are games. The issue is that "mature games" simply have different audiences and a reluctance to commit to mature themes can limit stories that would otherwise benefit.

No one should worry about looking mature, it's a silly thing to get worked up about. I generally prefer Mario games to most First Person Shooters.

I do think that some Nintendo franchises, namely Metroid and perhaps Legend of Zelda could benefit from a willingness to explore mature themes. Not for the sake of edginess but because there are mature themes I think those franchises are otherwise equipped to explore.

DarXyde40d ago


If you mean for the sake of narrative, I do feel that the Legend of Zelda has done this quite well, especially with Majora's Mask.

Otherwise, I'm in total agreement. I can honestly say the more light-hearted games for all ages this generation are actually my favorite games (though Persona 5 and NieR: Automata are mature games that I thoroughly enjoyed as well).

DarXyde40d ago


Well said, mate. I definitely feel that criticizing a "kiddie" experience projects some personal insecurities on the part of the player.

I play what I like: Mario, Crash Bandicoot, Zelda, Gravity Rush, and many more. I also enjoy a ton of more mature games. I'm about the experience.

A fun game is a fun game. I think people lost sight of that.

RobtimusPrime40d ago

Rather than talk sh*t about a commenter you disagree with, how bout you point out why you disagree with them, 'Mommosse.'

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 40d ago
Benjaminkno39d ago

Because older people in their 30’s need to play games that make them feel their age.
It doesn’t matter what the gameplay is like or if it’s the same garbage they’ve played before.
They want sex, violence and graphics because that’s what adults want out of video games.

Gameplay, innovation and new ideas are secondary in the age of mindless violence. It’s a pride thing. It’s gotta be “cool”

I’m in my mid-30’s and I have more fun playing Mario kart and splatoon more than I do CoD or Fortnight.
I play games to feel like I kid again, duh.

syphon3240d ago


Venox200840d ago

I play it as well..such a great game! interesting, would it be possible to get a remaster? but I know nothing would replicate some moves like they been done with Wii controllers.. nintendo switch maybe?

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