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Does Nintendo's attitude put you off buying their stuff?


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Wait what, we now hate Nintendo because they won’t let you pirate their games? Nonsense. Disney comparison on point, imagine what Micky Mouse would react if I just started a 24/7 stream of the original Star Wars.

 

And the other point about them becoming stale because they don’t make new IP, apart from the big 3 (which has innovated in each generation), there’s Pokemon, Splatoon and Animal Crossing etc. And you also actually used the term “intellectual property”. 

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It’s a difficult one. They’re probably the most backwards and anti gamer of any gaming company.

 

They make awesome games but they are also really stale now. Feels like they’re followers now rather than innovators which is both a good thing and a bad thing as we doing get trash like the GC controller and waggle anymore.

 

But it’s sad that we don’t really get new IP any more and they’ve dumped their middle tier stuff like fzero, wave race and starfox so now all we get is the odd AAA Mario or Zelda and lots of filler.

 

It doesn’t help that they’re recycling Wii-U era stuff. I feel like switch has been their make up console but hoping they move on this year with new stuff 

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28 minutes ago, mikeyl said:

And the other point about them becoming stale because they don’t make new IP, apart from the big 3 (which has innovated in each generation), there’s Pokemon, Splatoon and Animal Crossing etc.

 

To be fair, I'm not sure those are the best examples to use to demonstrate Nintendo looking to create new things; while Splatoon is only one generation (5-and-a-bit years) old, the other two, well, they're old enough to vote (and are famously well-saturated 'IP's themselves). Also, I'm absolutely being thick here, but what's the third of the 'big three'? Mario, Zelda, and...?

 

[plus Pokémon, famously, isn't exactly a Nintendo property, at least not in the same way as their wholly-owned series are]

 

Of course, I'm not sure that the Sony approach of "release 15* variants on a theme of 'generic action adventure' through five* different studios" is one I'd consider superior to Nintendo's reuse of the same characters/settings through a range of different genres. Plus, more than most Nintendo suffer from "damned if they do, damned if they don't" syndrome: they'll endlessly face criticism for not releasing new entries in lapsed series (see e.g. F-Zero, Metroid, Advance Wars), and at the same time take a hammering for consistently releasing new entries in their other ones. Too many beloved franchises spoil the broth?

 

I think I actually enjoy Microsoft's "throw money at a wide range of studios and see what they produce" approach most of all, as it at least means some of the quirkier games and studios get to put out things with more polish than is usual. Certainly I'm interested to see where Double Fine and Obsidian go with their shored up finances! I'm also one of the odd people who thinks Rare's output has been decent under them - they've consistently put out interesting, varied titles, even if they're often types of game I've no interest in (hi, Sea of Thieves). Of course, murdering Lionhead was less great. And Ensemble studios. Of the platform holders, only Sony really outdoes them on the 'over-zealous euthanisation' front (alas, poor Psygnosis).

 

 

*numbers may have been plucked from the air for dramatic effect

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One thing that has always really annoyed me is the fanboys that act as though butter wouldn’t melt in Nintendo’s mouth. They have this persona of friendly/family orientation but they’re not.

 

I always remember getting a speech at a dev conference years ago from the head of Nintendo Europe and him banging on about working with your head, not your heart. This really hit me as people get into the industry because they love games and it’s a passion. It’s also the classic saying ‘you can tell it’s made with love’ but they don’t think like that, they really don’t. They’re cold and calculating, they just happen to be really clever with it too.
 

I won’t stop playing Nintendo stuff, as they make good games, but I don’t treat them with the giddy admiration a lot of people do.

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Yes and no. Aside from the SNES Classic Mini, I haven’t bought a Nintendo console since the fat DS, as I get wary of their hardware re-releases (GBA SP, DS Lite) being better than the first. I know that everyone produces new models of hardware, but MS and Sony mostly stick to boxes under the TV with performance improvements that you can take or leave. Meanwhile, the first version of every Nintendo handheld is arguably the worst (Switch excepted, although I wouldn’t bet against the announcement of a new model with improved performance.)*

 

So there’s that, and also their previous reliance on certain classic franchises which I’ve never really loved. Things like Metroid, Smash, Pokémon and Zelda - I’ve always picked them up at budget prices after the fact and still rarely enjoyed the format. Now I’m not here to dunk on those games, but when you rely on the same series so much it can be a bit disappointing if you were never a fan of them. At least they’re branching out with new things like Splatoon and Arms.


And then there’s their general weirdness. The stomping of emulators but either not providing a means to get hold of old games or charging silly amounts for a ROM collection. The whole Smash/Slippi thing. The limited availability practices (including limited availability of ROM collections.) Things that would make people lose their shit if Sony or MS attempted them.

 

At the same time, I’ll probably buy a Switch eventually (and they’ll announce a new Switch model the following day), and I’ll probably play Zelda (apparently “no but this one’s totally different though and you’ll enjoy it”) so I can hardly blame them for doing all of this.

 

*I know I literally bet against this in the 2021 predictions thread. A hardware refresh is coming, just not this year. Probably.

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Honestly the only thing that's slightly annoying is their attitude to fan projects, Sega and Microsoft have shown you can take a much more supportive attitude without any of the legal bullshit that we're told it'd lead to.

 

It's also just kind of hypocritical, you see inside their studios and they have like, fan art everywhere so on one hand they clearly appreciate the community and the response, just not when it becomes interactive.

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And to answer the question... I'm a huge Nintendo fan, mostly of their older output.

 

Their constant money for old rope routine, and this shift towards turning their games into collect all the things for... what? There never feels like there is a reward half the time.

 

But, I still love their first party stuff for the most part, with the exception of Pokemon and party games.

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Nintendo is exhausting.

 

They do great stuff, but they stumble through everything, often forgetting IP and tech the rest of the world adopts, and then rekindling passion in the weirdest of ways, while wondering why nobody likes game X. Every so often they knock it out of the park. I tend to forget about Nintendo, then have a few months of zealous Nintendo-sessions, and fade out again.

 

I both love and hate them, making me want to chuck the Switch and enshrine it at the same time. Whereas Sony is more of background hum: only annoying when you pay attention to it.

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They don’t have new IP but Mario Odyssey is exciting and innovative, Breath of The Wild  is exciting and innovative - the Switch as a console is exciting and innovative, and just generally they make the best games, so no. I might complain about Wii U re-releases but I didn’t buy a Wii U so the likes of Mario Kart 8, Pikmin 3 and Mario 3D World are of value to me. Being totally honest the Switch is probably the greatest console I’ve ever owned. 

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No, but I’ll never forgive them for how much they wanted to charge me for repairing my joy con (I didn’t pay, so now I’m stuck with a broken joy con).

 

How can the repairs cost more than a new single joy con? Madness. 

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Yes. 

 

My problems with Nintendo are threefold:

  1. Company is run by accountants and hardware lacks quality... they always skimp on quality of the hardware. Having been spoiled with the One X, Series X and also a decade of Apple products I just don't like the plastic fantastic feel of Nintendo hardware. I find the Switch in handheld mode uncomfortable to use in terms of buttons and it also suffered from Joy-Con drift which still hasn't been fixed 3 years in. They also use low quality screens in most of their handhelds. Of course Microsoft and Sony were also guilty of this with Xbox One/PS4 generation (launched with outdated Jaguar CPU) but they at least are on top of their game right now with Xbox Series and PS5. I also enjoyed the quality of the Vita with that gorgeous OLED screen. I wish Sony would still do handhelds. 
  2. 80% of what they release are ports or even ROM dumps with minimum effort and maximum price
  3. Their software prices in general are very high and you often pay double or triple versus any another platform and the offers of 1st party software rarely dip below 70% of the RRP (e.g. 40 EURO in my currency). This makes gaming on Nintendo platforms the most expensive of all. Combine that with point 2 where they're selling WiiU remasters for top price and you can count me out. 

That said... I respect Nintendo, I cannot imagine a gaming industry without them and their software is unique and of incredible quality across the line. They also mostly shy away from all the shitty practices of the industry (e.g. gambling mechanics, MTX) except on mobile that is

 

So for now I sold my Switch and am enjoying my 3DS/2DS handhelds with a nice library of games. 

 

A high quality Switch Pro console might lure me back in but knowing Nintendo, it won't be much different from the current Switch model. It also wouldn't do anything to address my 3rd point, ridiculously high software prices (where is the Switch "Value" series 3 years in?). 

 

In terms of their IP: they are fully in their rights to protect but I do think a slightly less hostile approach would be more beneficial for their popularity and also their forgotten franchises. But I cannot blame them for this. 

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