Sunday, February 3, 2013

Nintendo Fanboys Shocked That 3rd Party Developers Aren't Jumping on the Wii U Bandwagon

If there's one thing as a gamer with which I have a major issue, it's the concept of Fanboy-ism.  Fanboys are people whom, for whatever reason, back their developer, console, handheld, et cetera ad infinitum to the point of insanity.  The object of their fanatical allegiance can do no wrong, and anyone who disagrees with them just has no taste, no idea what they're talking about, or is too dense to understand the genius that is x.

XBOX 360 adherents rave about the system like it's the best thing since the HDMI port; Nintendo fanboys never stop going on about how 3rd Party titles always bypass their favorite Nintendo systems, handheld or console.  I don't often run across PlayStation fanboys, though, as their systems really do seem to have something for everybody.

As an owner of all of these systems (and sometimes two or three of the same ones), I can honestly say that I'm not that impressed with XBOX or Nintendo, most of the time.

I grew up playing the Nintendo Entertainment Systems (NES) and the Super Nintendo (SNES); for me, the greatest days in gaming are long since behind us.  Those games were the pioneers - the games that set the stage for good home gaming design (and bad design), and to which I return when I need a pick me up. 

Call me a luddite, but I just have little desire to play games that don't hold my attention for longer than a few hours.  I don't care so much about graphics, as much as I do about story, gameplay, and replay value.  

I've owned an XBOX for nearly a year, and it does a lot of things well.  Play DVDs?  Meh.  It's okay.  Motion controls?  The Kinect is pretty awesome.

But, want to play anything other than an FPS or a Sports game?  Your options are pretty limited.  To date, I have maybe six games for the system, and I don't think I've played any of them with the same kind of dedication I've paid my 3DS, DS, or PS3.

If you want a JRPG, that narrows the field down to a handful of decent titles worth playing, which is understandable, given the XBOX's almost wholesale rejection by the Japanese market.

My Wii?  I've owned that since 2008, and frankly, I use it more for the Virtual Console than I do any of the current games.  The Zelda games for the system, though critically acclaimed and certainly well-designed, just don't feel like Zelda, to me.  I don't care about the Twilight Princess, or the Sky People.  

As for any JRPG/RPG gaming?  Nintendo's handhelds are far superior in terms of their offerings in that regard.

But, the big whine we hear from Nintendo Fanboys (and girls) is that 3rd Party developers don't release games for "core gamers" on Nintendo platforms.

Well, suck it up and go buy a different system.

So, you want the best in games?  Go to a different system.

I've had my Wii U since the week it came out, and frankly, it's just not there, yet.  Much like the Wii, it's going to take time to get on its feet, and until they come out with more games, better games, and more content, in general, there just isn't going to be a whole lot going on for developers to take the bait.


Nintendo really lost its reputation as the company for hardcore gamers when they lost ground to the PlayStation.  Say what you will about the N64's cartridge capabilities, but that's not where the market was, and that wasn't what consumers wanted.  

When they finally went to a disc system with the Gamecube, it was with a proprietary disc that was awkward, and in a system that clearly had enough room for a full-size disc.  And the graphics capacity just wasn't there.

When they released the Wii, they broke ground, but presented and marketed it as a family-friendly system for casual gamers.  And it worked.  It gained them that market.  But, still, it was kids' stuff for "serious gamers."

In fact, the only arena wherein Nintendo remains the uncontested master is the handheld gaming market.  Sure, you won't get the best graphics money can buy, but you get good, solid games, and a shit ton of games that interest other gamers.

So, any image that Nintendo has that makes developers think twice about bringing hardcore content to their consoles is an image that they, themselves, have crafted.

If you want more proof of that, go to Nintendo's website.

This is a website designed for kids; designed to be family-friendly.  Everything is bright and colorful, and bubbly and happy.  This is a site that no web monitor would filter out.

Now, go to the PlayStation website.

Aside from the very creepy Sack Boy, there's a guy point a handgun on the front page.  Well...unless you're in the NRA, I doubt that's a family website you'd send your kids to to check out their newest system.

Now, to the XBOX 360 website.

Call of Duty, Gears of War, Skulls of the Shogun.  The only thing family-friendly about this front page is the picture of the family in the tiny square talking about family-friendly movies.


Now, to be fair, all of these consoles release games that are family-friendly, and perfectly appropriate for children.  Each of these companies have a bevy of games that parents can get behind their kids playing without fear that they're going to end up shooting up an elementary school.

Unfortunately for the Nintendo Fanboys who want these games on their Wii Us, Sony and Microsoft didn't build their gaming franchise based on video games meant for kids.  Nintendo was around longer as a gaming entity, and so they got the unfortunate reputation for putting out games geared towards kids, and if they want to break away from that image, it's going to take a decade or more of hardcore change, and that's not likely to occur.

So...Nintendo Fanboys - start accepting reality, and understand that 3rd Party games don't make their way to the Wii and Wii U because there just isn't that much of a market for the games.  These developers know that they have a consistent market with Sony and XBOX, and those gamers aren't very likely to grab a Wii or Wii U just to play Call of Duty.

I'm sorry.  Suck it up, and move on.

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