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Feature: The Weird World of Video Games

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Weirdness makes the World go 'round

Sometimes it feels like this video gaming hobby of ours can be a dreadfully serious business. We worry about the direction of brands we love — in many of our cases, of course, Nintendo — or perhaps we get hot and bothered about what games are coming, those that aren't, or a myriad of other things. There are also issues that have undeniable importance that come to the fore, whether it's tackling sexism, excessive violence or unscrupulous business practices.

That's all fine, and we wouldn't be enthusiasts if we weren't passionate about gaming, and we shouldn't shy away from tackling contentious issues. But we've had a lot of them recently. GTA V has been prominent, and not just for its mere presence, but it arguably pushes the boundaries of acceptability with an increasingly notorious torture scene. We've also had review score shenanigans once again, with both the new GTA and, in our case, The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD, as some gave it a perfect score and others had the audacityincluding us — of awarding a score as scandalously low as 9. It brings sweat to our brows.

And again, that's fine — well, obsessing over scores arguably isn't, but we've been there in other articles — but maybe we should now take the chance to chill the heck out.

A while ago we introduced the 'Weirdness' tag, which is used for non-news that we like to share because it's funny, bizarre, or funny and bizarre. For some, including the writer of this article, it may even be their favourite tag — video game culture is delightfully weird, full of humour, self-awareness and just juicy humanity. It can be a bit like Trekkies or Star Wars addicts (Star Warsies?), and we often love such a wide range of things. In the Nintendo universe alone we may love Mario, Animal Crossing, Zelda (of course), Kirby, Kid Icarus, Yoshi without Mario, Luigi, Metroid and more; some produce incredible art, others videos, and all sorts of bizarre activities take place in the name of gaming.

And it's wonderful, it's the power of gaming and, in particular, Nintendo nostalgia. And sharing that culture should and is a part of our overall goal here at Nintendo Life. Games can be a serious business, but they're also meant to be a bit of a laugh, and gaming culture — the really good bits — remind us of that.

And so below is a selection of our favourite Weirdness stories so far. Forget GTA V, forget whether The Wind Waker HD should have got 10/10, just forget all of that for a few blissful minutes; you can click on the headings to see the original stories.


Theories on the Inside of a Poké Ball

We do like a nice infographic here at Nintendo Life, and this one had a go at outlining key theories to how a Poké Ball actually works. Are the creatures really stored as digital data alone, are they shrunk down and crammed into the ball, or is it rather like Doctor Who's TARDIS and a lot "bigger on the inside", with the 'mon living in a lovely environment? PETA, as we pointed out, will no doubt vigorously campaign for the latter until they figure out that it's a video game.


The wacky world of Nintendo at E3 2013

While Sony and Microsoft spent E3 comparing processors and shouting about exciting new features, such as games on discs that can be shared and the ability to watch TV on your TV — to be fair, lots of games were also shown — Nintendo stepped back to deliver its own Nintendo Direct, avoiding an inevitable onslaught. Beyond that broadcast the company was out in force on the expo floor, and in typical style got up to some shenanigans that neatly summed up its approach to gaming; the picture above may be one of our favourites of all time, while Ninty emphasized fun over polygon counts.


If only Monster Hunter was released on the Game Boy

The title and image say it all, really.


Level-5's favourite character poll doesn't go to plan

Here's a tip that we'll give for free — if your online poll gets hijacked by trolls, politely asking them to stop may only make things worse. Level-5 had the honourable idea of letting fans choose their favourite characters from its games, but unfortunately some decided to make the whole thing a bit of a mockery. To Level-5's immense credit it produced a wallpaper with the silly winner — above — regardless, to show that it could take a joke at its expense.


The mysteries of evolution are solved, Pokémon is the Answer

What if God was one of us, as some song lyric once asked? Well he might like a bit of Game Boy and Pokémon, that's what.


Picking an original Pokémon starter, always a tough call

We didn't realise when sharing the video below that gamers would actually have to choose one of the original starters in the upcoming Pokémon X & Y, but it's a dilemma that many of us will have to face. Perhaps this video with help, then? Probably not.


Tipsy celebrities play the Wii U at Comic-Con

What happens when you offer celebrities free alcohol and snacks, and maybe even cash, to show up and play your video games and be photographed in the process? This happens, and we just really like that picture, above.


Mike Tyson was / is rubbish at Punch-Out!!

"I couldn't even beat Glass f****** Joe" — the immortal words of Mike Tyson to a polite member of the paparazzi when asked about the iconic NES game that, for a time, had his name on the box and his likeness beating up on Little Mac. The former heavyweight would eventually take on his nemesis in the video below; it's intense stuff.


ABC News tells all about the 2Dees and 3Dees

Just, wow.


A rather impressive 1DS spoof

Hats off to whoever produced this spoof, as it's pretty impressive. The 2DS got teased by some after it was unveiled, mainly by people for whom the device isn't even intended, but whoever put together this mock 1DS website — copying the official Nintendo website to perfection — deserves a shiny penny. Playing a handheld on the TV, surely madness! Unless it's called the Vita TV of course, when it can be argued as game-changing, apparently.


So those are some of our favourite Weirdness stories to date, though we had to leave out some doozies to stick to 10. Let us know about some of your favourites in the comments below.

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User Comments (22)

GloryQuestor

#2

GloryQuestor said:

I'd like to see the 1DS someday. It'd probably be even cheaper than the 2DS, and having a big HDTV as your top screen? If scaled right, that would actually be pretty awesome. :)

Gioku

#3

Gioku said:

I loved all those articles. The Weirdness tag is probably near the top of my list for reasons why I love this site so much! :D

Well, loved them all, other than the 2dees and 3dees... that was painful... >.<

Yoshis_VGM

#7

Yoshis_VGM said:

I can understand her calling the Wii U a Wii at first (I call it "the Wii" all the time), but as a reporter she should've corrected herself. But for the 2DS and 3DS, there's no excuse. We've had some form of the DS since 2004, people should know how to properly pronounce it at this point in time. And the 2DS has the same graphics resolution as the 3DS, just without the 3D. This is why reporters do research before writing articles and doing news videos!

DestinyMan

#8

DestinyMan said:

It's always a good idea to take a moment off of serious stuff and be light-hearted for once. I still love that Donkey Kong picture back from E3. And I still think the 1DS, despite the odd name of "1 dual screen" when it only has one screen, might not be that bad of a device. The "2Dees and 3Dees" woman just needed to have their technical head examined.

Araknie

#9

Araknie said:

Seeing Tyrion Lannister go serious about games was the top of the pop for me. Maybe because i love GoT, but look at the face and what's holding, only a bazillion implications. xD

And the video...oh the video.

greyzi

#12

greyzi said:

This is so much fun! You may also want to visit: “Emospark holds the power to create worlds, and fill them with life”. It also powers your digital world with independent life. EmoSpark is that indefinable, indescribable energy that will make the digital world truly alive, more than mere machines or avatars"

kirby95

#14

kirby95 said:

Ah yes, I remember the PokeBall one, claiming it to be Time Lord science and then speculating with @TwilightV the consequences of breaking one, such as Crack in Time or a Black Hole being caused. Say, do any of the NintendoLife staff or other users like Doctor Who too? Just wondering. Anyway, love the Donkey Kong picture.

Shambo

#15

Shambo said:

@DestinyMan I love that picture! And the woman shouldn't be announcing 'techbytes' if she's even capable of making this many errors without even knowing. A 1Dees could be awesome, like a gameboy micro... Therefor I would get one without second thought. But didn't DS stand for 'Developer System'?

ThomasBW84Admin

#17

ThomasBW84 said:

@kirby95 I'm a Doctor Who fan :) Though I should say I'm a fan of the 'new' Doctor Who, from Christopher Ecclestone onwards. The new doc is going to be epic, by the way...

biglee

#18

biglee said:

@GloryQuestor Do you mean you wish Nintendo would release a console where you play games on your HDTV and use a controller with a touch screen built in? Hm that would be a great idea ;-)

Phle

#20

Phle said:

The 32 GB Wii gets a price cut? New 2Dees with lower resolution than the 3Dees? She should have mentioned the 1Dees and the "new Wii controller" just to go all the way. Unless she actually had no idea what she was talking about, which is probably the most likely theory. That woman should be fired unless her colleagues pulled a prank on her.

triforcepower73

#21

triforcepower73 said:

@Phle She had no idea what she was talking about. No wonder Wii U sales are bad, if Target and the news are advertising it as a normal Wii with a cool new controller.

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