Amidst all the Zelda cheering and Joy-Con rumbling, Nintendo slipped a less exciting piece of news into their Switch event. There will now be a yearly fee if you want to play games online, a new service for Nintendo. It’s a tough pill to swallow for a userbase used to playing online for free. Now that we’ve all gotten over the kneejerk response and loosened our grip on our wallets a bit, I thought I’d bring up some discussion about this new structure.
The release of Super Mario Run on iPhone has sent shockwaves through the mobile gaming community. Lattes have been spilled all over the world and sideways caps have been adjusted forward, as hipsters are faced with the social dilemma of paying money for a videogame.
While it has only been several days since Nintendo officially unveiled the NX as the Switch, and likewise revealed a list of development partners, as seen below…
It’s been a pretty good year. Not a great one, but pretty good. We’ve seen some heavy hitters on 3DS with Fire Emblem Fates and Kirby Planet Robobot, and intense console action with Star Fox Zero and some memorable Splatfests. Dragon Quest 7, Federation Force and Color Splash are brand new games that just released with tons of content. Pokemon Sun & Moon is right around the corner, and set to be the biggest Pokemon adventure yet. Despite a handful of 3DS games though, next year looks a bit empty. It’s even worse on the Wii U front, with nothing Nintendo-related besides Zelda. Yooka-Laylee is gonna be great too, but there’s an ominous dark void after March. Nintendo has been tight-lipped about NX on a level without precedent. Fans are getting frustrated, confused, and feeling a bit left out.
I have spent the last week trapped in an emotional prison and I can’t take it anymore. I am absolutely fuming with anger after playing through Metroid Prime: Federation Force. It is a well-crafted game, and this is a big problem. Next Level Games have poured tons of resources into what is fundamentally an INSULT to Metroid fans. They’ve wasted 20 hours of my life, and KILLED the Metroid franchise by gutting the structure, butchering the art style, and offending my entitlements as a traditional gamer who has supported Nintendo since the NES.
Thank you for rejoining me after Part 1. As stated earlier, this part will focus on video games in regards to artistic interpretation. So, in order to hide the fact that this part was done months ago and I simply cut a longer article in half so I could loaf for another month, let’s begin. And what better place to start than with the elephant in the room, Fire Emblem.
Fire Emblem: Fates appears to be doing well in America, despite the wishes of a small, yet loud minority of consumers who use social media to harangue Nintendo of America, hoping to boycott the game and see it fail, operating under various protest hashtags. Of course, after the massive success and nearly nationwide sellout (which I can attest to as copies were at the time of writing incredibly hard to find, even in my rural area) they’ve switched gears into becoming “awareness campaigns,” because if it’s one thing Twitter needs more of, it’s useless hashtag slacktivist nagging.
I played about 5 hours of Star Fox Zero today and I’m just so excited that I have to write out these impressions and clear up some things about this game immediately. There’s a lot of confusion going around about the controls and quite frankly, it’s all fucking bullshit. Game journalists spinning this propaganda are a bunch of IDIOTS who can not be trusted to form an opinion, let alone provide one to the masses. Kotaku, IGN, Polygon, the usual clusterfucks that everybody should know to avoid by now have all given this game bad reviews because it threatens their 2 dimensional way of thinking. It’s the same fucking bullshit ZombiU and The Wonderful 101 endured, they see this game as a threat because it’s another heavy hitter on the Wii U that threatens to take their normal games away. I want to throw that mindset in the bin and fucking burn it. There is room for every game to be beautiful. The controls in Star Fox Zero are outstanding, and this game is absolute quality.
Recently EA have spoken in secret about the Nintendo NX and their lack of plans to develop for it. They outlined a bunch of things that Nintendo is required to do in order to be blessed with EA’s fantastic library of quality games. To sum it up, they want Nintendo to “provide a market for sports games” by throwing millions of dollars on sports advertising. They just want a userbase that will buy sports games. Sound fair?
A close examination over the opposing outrage narratives concerning Fire Emblem.
There’s quite a lot of discussion on the internet in the past few days concerning the censorship of video games, pressure from so-called “Social Justice Warriors,” and pressure from so-called “GamerGaters.” The crux of this discussion appears to center around the latest installment of the Fire Emblem series, Fire Emblem: Fates, although there has been other recent controversies concerning games like Dead or Alive Extreme 3 and Fatal Frame: Maiden of Black Water.
Concerning Fire Emblem: Fates, a subquest involving a character named Soleil, who seems to be a female of a bisexual orientation (1 of 3 possible for humans, at least before Tumblr existed), could be romanced by an avatar character of the player’s design. The context of this romance appears to be that Soleil seems to get weak-kneed around cute girls of her type, which lessens her effectiveness in war and impedes her quest to become “smooth,” in her (fan translated at this point) words. The player character concocts a magic potion that makes the imbiber see people in opposite genders (1 of 2, at least before… oh, I already did that joke…) causing Soleil to see people in the opposite gender that they are. This medicine is supplied to Soleil in clandestine means, which to say, her drink was spiked. Hilarious hijinks ensue. This is obviously squarely in 90’s sitcom territory, or something out of the romantic comedy manga Ranma 1/2. The outcome is comical, and at the end the misadventure allows the player avatar to get closer to Soleil and say that she finds interacting with the player character “fun,” regardless of the unawareness of her medication. Who could possibly object?
Minecraft has been announced for Wii U! Finally! Weeeeeee! Woohoo!! GET EXCITED. Finally this game comes to a console that makes sense. With a second screen and giant touch interface on the Wii U GamePad, Minecraft will finally be playable on consoles in an intuitive way.
The build up to E3 this year saw the hype train going at full speed. With Nintendo’s show being a big secret, everybody had their own wild predictions. However we saw one name mentioned more than most: Metroid. It just felt like it was “time” with Retro Studios project being a secret, and no real Metroid being released in almost a decade. I was hyped for this too, because why else would Retro Studios open a Twitter account right before E3? The gaming media also helped set up the disappointment, with articles like “Why Metroid should be announced” and “Metroid Prime devs tease E3” right before E3. It wasn’t “Donkey Kong devs tease E3” despite that being their most popular, and most recent game. So when you deconstruct this hype, it didn’t follow much solid logic. Does it ever? Regardless, expectations were set to Metroid and hopes were high. Then we got this…