Comments (64)

Re: I Don't Always Agree With Shigeru Miyamoto On The Essence Of Zelda, Admits Eiji Aonuma

jobunker

I'm just going to drop my two cents and say that I really, sorely miss the influence that Yoshiaki Koizumi had on the series (the main presenter for the Switch event, guy demonstrating the HD rumbles features of the Joy con).

He drafted the stories/mood of my two favourite games in the series (Link's Awakening and Majora's Mask) and though I am pretty certain he is now working with the Mario team, I will miss the otherworldly/existential style and slightly more "adult" take on the series. Not "adult" like Twilight Princess, but like the aforementioned.

Re: Soapbox: It's Nintendo's Job To Make Switch A Success, Not EA's, Ubisoft's Or Capcom's

jobunker

I'm just gonna say it exactly the way I see it. Nintendo is dying. No I am not being a troll. No Nintendo is not doomed. But yes Nintendo is dying.

Nintendo in the current state of things is a dying brand. This is the one single explanation for why their console install base is dwindling. SNES > N64 > GameCube > Wii U.

Although the decrease in console popularity was most marked from the SNES to N64 (and what I will say here is most crucial to me), the Nintendo 64 is not the console I disfavour. The console that single-handedly shattered my image of what Nintendo was all about was the GameCube.

By then I realized a few things, most important among which being that the 1st party title experiences and IP prioritization were not interesting.

For one, I could just not fathom how they prioritized a Luigi starring launch title over a Mario game - especially since Mario 64 was in my opinion the most important game Nintendo had ever made on a Nintendo console and I still see it as such to this day (let's skip any talk of their portable titles here).

For two, I still find their aesthetic choices for The Wind Waker to be confusing and misguided (yes Wind Waker HD was beautiful, but I digress). I also first lost interest in the look and feel of Mario Kart and Mario Party games on the GameCube. The overarching point being that the GameCube, in spite of it technically competing with the Xbox and PS2 continued the dwindling console sales when it shouldn't have.

The N64, and this is key, was also technically competent. It was also as graphically impressive as the PS1 if not more so in certain respects such as GPU and higher polygon count. I can't entirely recall if this had anything to do with cartridge > CD so will not comment.

In summary, the N64 1st party output impressed me, in leaps and bounds (and I cannot stress this enough) over the GameCube. That is why I purchased a Nintendo console.

That is why MANY purchased a Nintendo console. And that is also why the arbitrary ten million that did purchase a Nintendo 64 did not purchase a GameCube in the next era.

The game experiences suffered drastically. The Wind Waker (as great a game as it is on its own terms) cannot be compared to Ocarina of Time and Majora's Mask on the N64. Luigi's Mansion and Mario Sunshine cannot be compared to Super Mario 64, Banjo-Kazooie, Banjo Tooie, Conker's Bad Fur Day. Nightfire cannot be compared to Goldeneye and Perfect Dark. Mario Party 4, 5, 6 and 7 cannot be compared to Mario Party 1, 2 and 3. Mario Kart: Double Dash!! cannot be compared to Mario Kart 64 and Diddy Kong Racing on the N64. These are cumulative experiences. No one game in a series gets compared to one other, this is what I mean by cumulative experiences.

The ONLY explanation for Nintendo's dwindling install base (and I ASSURE you that this WILL continue this generation just from merely looking at Odyssey) is that Nintendo as a DEVELOPER has lost the ability to compete and see to its strengths.

Re: Poll: What Did You Think of the Nintendo Switch Presentation?

jobunker

@aaronsullivan I don't know how to go about this without making it into a ridiculous game of words.

Dire, Dire, Docks was not "cute" at any point within the level. Many of the Mario 64 levels were also quite "quiet." That's not the way I remember them, that's the way they still come off now. The penguins in the snow world were the one cute "objects" in that world. I don't recall there being anything actually cute about the Shifting Sand Land or the Lava level.

Might I add even more tellingly that I don't recall the castle hub being exactly "cute" either. ...At least, that's not the first word I would use to describe it. Inviting, mysterious, pleasant. Cute? No. The metal mario stage was not "beyond saccharine" either.

I can very confidently say that we don't see SM64 the same way regardless of our reasons for both loving it.

Edit: I am all for evolving the games so that they don't necessarily come off as "gloomy" as some levels of SM64 were either. I don't think SM64 was the perfect game, nor do I think Mario games should aspire to be perfect, even with regards to their own self-imposed standards. Just that what we're seeing now isn't a faithful continuation of what the games ought to be.

Banjo-Kazooie, it has been said at IGN, is the perfect Mario game. Make of that what you will. For me, this means that Mario games are already entirely their own thing and have ample room to improve over let's say SM64. There was an Unreal engine Mario/Castle hub demo last year on Youtube. Although too realistic, I still prefer that to the comparatively 'actually real' city Mario was exploring in Odyssey. The Unreal demo (wisely also using the Castle hub 64 theme) conjured the right mix of austere, playful and pleasant that I once was fond of.

Re: Poll: What Did You Think of the Nintendo Switch Presentation?

jobunker

@subpopz I've played them all aside for Super Mario World. And that alone should say enough.

I think that even around the point of Sunshine (although I liked the premise of that game, and the world), the colour palette and overall design choices were a far cry from the Super Mario 64 style.

If I critiqued FLUDD then I would be "beside" what I am trying to say. The bosses were too colourful compared to SM64. It's hard to communicate this without sounding absolutely nit picky.

SM64 conserved the uniform colour styles from the previous games. Sunshine and Galaxy, and now Odyssey, all seem to insist on making the worlds seem more cartoonish and that is the only word that fits.

And whatever associations come with cartoonish: over the top, slapstick, goofy, too comical. SM64 took the extremely tight design of the previous games and evolved it into complex (at the time) graphics. To over-saturate the games with colour via eccentric objects and architecture does not help enrich the gameplay experience. Outlandish looking airships, cute critters, cuteness overload. Even Super Mario Sunshine had this kind of "cute charm" that I just cannot accept in a Mario game.

SM64 deserves all the innovation it came to stand for but as far as I can tell the game design is not evolving what SM64 brought to the table. Even the snow worlds of Mario 64 had a certain restrained charm to them. That is the kind of thing I would have liked to see in a next-gen Mario game, a restrained charm. Something inspiring and evocative without being outwardly cute. A single baby penguin looking for its mother in a largely snowy world: a restrained charm. This kind of zaniness that we are seeing as the series goes on is not what I want.

Re: Poll: What Did You Think of the Nintendo Switch Presentation?

jobunker

Purely just 'passable'. And most definitely not passable for me. Mario Odyssey was a step in the right direction in that they returned to sandbox, but what I am seeing is still just too "cute." I don't know how else to say it. Too colourful, too happy.

For instance, Bowser in a pimp suit? ...That kind of thing. It is kid fare as far as I am concerned. Mario Odyssey was the most impressive thing and still, just didn't deliver. Will unflinchingly be sticking to my Xbox.

Re: Poll: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild - Share Your Thoughts on the Latest Footage

jobunker

@HappyMaskedGuy I'm not "reasoning" much at all, I'm merely observing the reality that is latent to everyone's tight-knit emotional reactions to all of this. There is an observable, objective reality in this situation underneath all the attachments and frustrations and to me, and to many they revolve around the "attachment / the connection between Link and male." Note I did not say: "I am attached to Link as a male protagonist."

Furthermore, pointing to all the female fans of this series (I am very, very acutely aware that they are vocal and multiple and awesome) does not invalidate anything in the least that I am saying about the very many male fans. Destroying the Link between protagonist and maleness does effectively alienate the fanbase. Do I care about that outcome? Of course I don't. That does not mean the correlation is not COMPLETELY there.

The (insidious) beauty in this series is that it is completely and intentionally meta. Maybe not completely intentionally but complete in the agency between the player and the Link(ed) avatar as male - and somewhat intentional in the naming (Link). This is all part of the design or DNA that you speak of and the series is seminal, the series is a legacy, in large part due to this.

Re: Poll: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild - Share Your Thoughts on the Latest Footage

jobunker

Worth mentioning about the gender Link female talk here. The convo against the one person CharlieSmile is not that transparent or even sincere, and that in particular is frustrating me.

Changing Link to female or even having a new female protagonist is not "akin to changing genre" or a "very significant move." Those descriptors are not clearly and explicitly why it isn't getting done. Nor are they the reasons behind why people attack the idea itself.

It won't get done because it would leave millions of male fans of the series feeling like they are no longer playing a male coded game. A seminal male coded game for many millions, at that. Let's not beat around the bush about it. Changing Link to female would mean destroying that source of relational consumption for literally most men involved in playing the series. This is the single reason why it spells trouble for male fans and for no other exacting explanation outside of that.

Re: Delays With The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Due to Physics Engine and Dual Release Decision

jobunker

@JaxonH im not belittling...! Thats not even the point. There's a whole bunch of things to say and it's worth saying because at the end of the day, I'm only referring to things I've experienced. I'm not implying everyone is the same way, but IF it's been anywhere as hard for others over the years to break out of the Nintendo habitus, then it's worth calling it out for exactly what it is!

It took owning all the Xboxes in tandem with the GameCube, Wii and Wii U to finally start enjoying games that I never grew up with. It took my entire gaming life to realize that I had hardly played any games from North American developers - to notice that I had enjoyed almost exclusively games from Japanese or European developers - and that gaming climate has effectively changed today no matter what anyone thinks. The gaming is landscape is very different.

Without getting long winded. These factors all deeply influence what it's like to be a 'comfortable' Nintendo gamer today. If people enjoy Nintendo that's fine. I love their wooly Yoshis, their Vans retro shirts, their incredible zelda concerts. I don't guilt trip myself over these things, I embrace them and willingly continue to put my dollars because who cares.

But there is a very exciting world of things to try, and if you were anything like me, you had a difficult time finally transitioning to other kinds of things on offer. that's why I have no problem voicing it the way I do.

Re: Delays With The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Due to Physics Engine and Dual Release Decision

jobunker

@IceClimbers No need for you to knock my arguments by oversimplifying and extrapolating. It says nothing smart about you for doing that aside for making you sound slightly sarcastic.

For the Zelda games, they should have kept the mystery, the whimsy, and the minimal charm they had infused the series with. They did it best with Link's Awakening and Majora's Mask, with some break in those trends in the form of Ocarina of Time. Great game. But not the best because they rehashed themes from older games instead of building upon the tenants of its direct predecessor (Link's Awakening).

The reason they broke with this natural progression is because Miyamoto has a really bad tendency to overrun others around him. This is not because he is a genius it is because this is what the Japanese have a tendency to do, they make things sort of autocratic in that way. Because he was never one to tell stories, and because he loves the notion of games, that is the only way he knows how to build stuff. So he forgoes the kind of original narrative elements that others like Koizumi have designed into the games as they grew.

There's no need to talk about Halo or Tomb Raider. Games like King's Quest have achieved the same kind of thing I am suggesting. They made other characters the central focus with every new title and more importantly, pushed new stories forward. Zelda learnt nothing from Western gaming culture in this respect.

Re: Delays With The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Due to Physics Engine and Dual Release Decision

jobunker

@djtwenty9 I haven't played an FPS game since owning an Xbox One. These are standard cliches of today's gaming culture, that they are everywhere. All the other consoles outside of the Wii U get all kinds of genres to play, this is a fact.

Take a game like Color Splash or Fed Force. These games are not only repetitive... They're kind of childish too. The formula isn't just repetitive or iterative, which, hey, maybe could be tolerated by some to a certain limit (although I don't know how you can play the same stories revolving around the triforce and ganon over and over again). The formula is also becoming really simplified, or diminutive.

If you can tolerate that in your games, please proceed. But no way in hell will I stick to those kinds of games when they are clearly devolving into something reductive. No one liked the sticker formula. No one liked the look or direction of federation force. Add the (very obvious) fact that, from a story and even mood/atmospheric perspective, Nintendo absolutely refuses to be creative or take any risks. They've explicitly vocalized it. They've explained that it isn't important to them.

And most obviously of all, looking back, the titles I had a fondness for were the ones that strayed from the stereotypes like ganon, zelda, triforce, which make up the minority of the games in the series.

If you think this is just an iterative step forward for the series, go for it. But by all accounts, I have no interest in playing the same story, no matter what kind of novelty gameplay is sewn into it. I can hunt, camp, and gather food in many other games that also happen to be more complex than this one.

Re: Delays With The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Due to Physics Engine and Dual Release Decision

jobunker

@JaxonH Most people I've known in my lifetime don't own multiple consoles a generation, they own a single one. That is actually the usual thing to see.

Which makes every last obnoxious comeback of yours based on the idea of owning two systems not just moot, but indicative of what I've been saying - there's a kind of obsession with gaming that gets unhealthy past a certain point. Good luck finishing your 47 PS4 games. I'm not sure who even has the time for that.

Re: Delays With The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Due to Physics Engine and Dual Release Decision

jobunker

There really is no need to try hard to find contradictions or shortcomings in anything Nintendo, Aonuma, Miyamoto and Reggie, its top 3 idiot spokespersons, are suggesting, to notice that those buying into this game have played the same, regurgitated formulaic cr** that has been thrown at them: Ganon, Hyrule, Master Sword, Zelda, Triforce over and over and over again.

It is honestly sad to watch gamers have to gobble it up again and again. If i had known this was all that ultimately was to matter in the Zeldaverse, I would have stopped playing after Majora's Mask. But alas, I was a fool myself.

The people who still follow Nintendo, the ones who still think their will be solace as I see them actually try to save the face of games like Color Splash or Federation Force, or even this Zelda game, are people who did not discover Nintendo until the GameCube generation. I am certain that the vast majority of the fans created in the previous generations have checked out.

With all due respect, those from the oldet generations that are still around exclusively playing Nintendo stuff desperately need to get off the "drug addiction." Because that is exactly what it is at this point. Our gaming culture today is not necessarily ideal, but there damn well is so much out there worth trying and sinking one's teeth into. You don't have to be a casual or hardcore gamer - you just need to have the appetite of a gamer plain and simple. There are TONS of games to try at tons of different price points which allows you to take chances and actual risks before finding the stuff that works for you. Nintendo is not a relevant player in today's gaming culture. At best they are arthouse or niche. But they can't even be bothered to show, remotely, that side of themselves.

From mid 2015-mid 2016, Sunset Overdrive, Life is Strange and Rise of the Tomb Raider alone made it a memorable year. Not to mention tons of other things I've tried like Ori or Forza or whatever else that I can't recall at this specific moment. It's not all pessimistic on the horizon from a Nintendo perspective. There's tons to try.

Re: Nintendo Outlines Key Goals to Ensure NX Success

jobunker

They will crash and burn again. I saw it coming. They are not interested in having the NX compete whatsoever in the home console space, they want to do it their way, squarely.

What they showed is not a Zelda game. It is an amalgamation of the fads that we see in gaming. They have transplanted their obsession with fads and gimmicks 'as hardware' and now showing an obsession with making their games seem 'cool and trendy'. They are borrowing aspects from other games and making this Zelda a result of that. Don't give me the NES connection crap which I won't hear from them or anyone else. This is not the way the series should progress, period. What we saw is neither whimsical, nor mysterious, nor minimally charming in that very Zelda way. None of that is there at all. They should have stopped basing the games in Hyrule a VERY VERY long time ago. Zelda herself should have arguably just remained a remnant artifact in the game's title alone. These elements should have been discontinued after Link's Awakening, which had things moving properly for the series. If they want to make connections to archaic titles in the series, so can I, so don't throw a double standard at me and tell me that I'm holding on to things of the past.

This game is just trying to be cool and trendy, and yes there will be those that buy into it but when the time comes that most don't actually buy the products and everyone gets surprised and disappointed, it will be absolutely no surprise. Nintendo as a gaming company are in a sorry state of affairs and totally misguided. They should have managed their company better, and should have let Yoshiaki Koizumi control the Zelda franchise far more than he was ever given credit. No wonder the best games in the series came from stories he directly created. Majora's Mask and Link's Awakening will live on, but this company, and its absolutely sloppy hardware, won't.

Re: Rumour: ROM Chip Maker Macronix Drops Hint Nintendo Could Be Abandoning Optical Storage For NX

jobunker

@FullbringIchigo they are most likely going to have absolutely everything they release as a streaming based experience (new as well as old games) where you are also given the option to buy the game physically at some point or at its official release.
this is all good and fine, but I'm still waiting for something more impressive: better games, better experiences, something I find they've been lacking since the N64 days. I don't like the direction they've taken any of their IP since the Gamecube.

Re: Metroid Prime: Federation Force is Coming Sooner Than Expected

jobunker

@Onion I haven't probably read every last one of your responses to the end of the section - I am certainly going to scroll further through.

But I have to thank you for how sincerely and carefully you put in your analysis and your concerns. On an unofficial Nintendo hub, where most people probably wouldn't even necessarily comprehend the stupidity involved with Samus' character design in Other M. It's those descriptions of her character that make me cringe and remind me how glad I am that I did not put myself to play the game.

It is completely, effectively and factually ridiculous that they even dared to make her character seem anywhere at par with whoever that lieutenant figure Adam was. And it was most definitely, in fact, a direct reflection of some Japanese director's inept ability to build story around this character without levelling or detailing her out if not relative to Adam - whoever that was - and whereby that director was male.

This is totally unsurprising. And if millions out there could only explain their dissatisfaction vaguely with Other M, there are people on here who would attempt to make the premise of Samus being rather bland prior to Other M like a reasonable thing to think. And whereby those people would, in turn, claim the rest of us to be vocal minorities, trolls, or what have you.

Either way, this is just a sad revelation of the incompetencies at Nintendo in an era of evolving technology, art style (etc) where everything becomes more vivid and lifelike. Less pixelated and more lucid. Where, as such, over the process of bringing infinitely good characters like Samus to life, the designers end up generating some of their own major myopia and lack of emotional intelligence into the characters themselves.

Re: Feature: Nintendo Life's Favourite Legend of Zelda Games - 30th Anniversary Edition

jobunker

@toxibunny I don't want to go on too long in a second post but my first "impressionable-aged" Zelda as you may call it was Zelda IV (LA on the Gameboy). That was pretty damn cartoony, especially if you recall those photograph moments with Link & co. If LttP was cartoony as you so describe, then LA was that and double.

There is indeed a genuine "contrarian" phenomenon going on about The Wind Waker and if people didn't like it then and this persists in the same people for well explained reasons, thirteen years after release, then that counts as proof.

The Wind Waker is way too lighthearted a Zelda game. I'm not a Twilight Princess fan, either. To me what makes this franchise work is its tone. There is a very discreet and subtle balance that some of the games gravitate more to than the others. LA, MM, SS, Oracle, and Ocarina to a lesser extent all fit this mold. Games like WW, PH, ST, MC, and TP do not.

If you look at the games I feel don't fit the mold and find a trend, then awesome. But I really don't think there is one aside from the fact that none of them strike that balance in tone which the others do.

Re: Feature: Nintendo Life's Favourite Legend of Zelda Games - 30th Anniversary Edition

jobunker

It shouldn't be so strange to anyone who is a longtime fan why The Wind Waker made it so high. This is the way this stuff works. Whether the game is objectively good or bad (objectively even a good or bad Zelda game) it will be ranked high if there is well-earned nostalgia for it. And The Wind Waker manages this in heaps.

I despised the game when it came out, still hate it today, but there is just no denying that I enjoyed playing The Wind Waker HD. A lot. It's just very difficult to like a game which, I felt, never had anything to do with the franchise. I still feel that The Wind Waker is not a Zelda game at its core, not even remotely. It is a great game with Zelda stapled and screwed into its blueprint. On this specific point does the game merit criticism.

You can call me a purist (my all-time favourite is Link's Awakening) but when some redemption is mustered for the series with Skyward Sword, then I am totally comfortable saying that there is no such thing as a Zelda purist, and if there was, I am not one.

If the series does continue in the trend of Wind Waker going forward, then so be it, the series redefines itself for a new age, that history in the making takes over, and fans who replace others get to call the series for what it is. As it stands, the notion of a Toon Link in that graphical style and with that degree of lightheartedness does not work for me, at all, in tone.

Re: Poll: Vote for Your Favourite Legend of Zelda Games - 30th Anniversary Edition

jobunker

The vocal support for Link's Awakening on the comments is really uplifting. Love that game. Had to choose it, and Skyward Sword as the runner-up favourite. I would have checked Majora's Mask for third, but I really thought the first two needed better odds compared to the votes for the other games.

Link's Awakening offers, by far, the most creative and enduring experience (and story). Skyward Sword is the epitome of the modern Zelda experience, strengths/weaknesses and all. Compared to all the other games, it still comes up ahead to me.

Majora's Mask remains a real eye-opener. It continues the trend set by Link's Awakening in its mystery, melancholy and mood. Technical flaws aside, it is a look into what a true modern Zelda game can be, into what the modern Zelda experience is missing out on. Its story, "grafted" onto Skyward Sword's, could have made for one epic game.

Re: Talking Point: Five Key Challenges Nintendo Faces with the NX

jobunker

@Xenocity Go ahead and say that in 5-10 years when China including the rest of the world sky rockets through these data groups' sales figures in the very same way they already have intensively swayed the Hollywood market.

Data analysis is not the utter problem, with the list's group titles, but the very choice of the titles themselves (Omni gamers.. wow) and the agency of those who from a cultural standpoint make the definitions from a clearly North American perspective.

Nowhere on earth outside of the U.S. proper would names such as social gamers, family gamers, and "Omni" gamers for heaven's sake be juxtaposed for the purposes of industry analysis. Are we talking about media consumers or food here.

From the get-go, the three types of gaming scenes I put forth more inclusively describe both producers and consumers of games. Your measly list is simply a base, uninteresting mash-up or bastardization of an assortment of media consumers.

Re: Talking Point: Five Key Challenges Nintendo Faces with the NX

jobunker

@Xenocity "give 3rd parties the launch window with no 1st party competition"

this part made me really feel like responding.

I don't think Nintendo should ever be the company to do something like that. At this stage in the company's life, they have become something akin to an art house. Niche, specialized, highly tailored, even artisanal.

In no way whatsoever should their identity on the market be further compromised by handing the stage to hyper-commercial, ultra-realistic games — and I very strongly feel that this kind of game content was in question when it was suggested to give third parties a chance. Because this worked for the 3DS at launch? No, it completely failed.

Because the subject of "what the NX should aim to do" is then suddenly interesting, here is what I do feel.

If they want to win a gamer back, clean and simple.

Realize that the industry is now split down the "middle" into three distinct types of gaming scenes: (a) the New Wave of Indie Games, a direct result of the casual marketplace and the modern media landscape, where making games is becoming more accessible. This scene includes everything out of the iOS-type sector (iPhone) and not just the deeper indie cuts like Braid, Terraria, Bit.trip, etc. (b) the hyper-realistic scene, games so naturalistic, sharp and detailed that one would need a giant TV screen to truly appreciate everything that is going on in-game. Includes most Xbox One and PS4 games. Games so cinematic they simply forgot about accommodating more than one player per giant tv screen. (c) Arthouse, which most notably describes Nintendo. Other brands approximate this in other ways: Disney, classic LucasArts adventure-type stuff, Studio Ghibli in Japan. These games do not result simply from the first two types, they are not a result of mere evolving technology, or of exponentially increasing accessibility to gaming and game making. They are forever and always: operatic, artistic, something of a mix of the former two, sophisticated yet accessible, they are somewhere in between the former two types of games.

If Nintendo want to succeed, they ABSOLUTELY need to know their place here and now in the gaming sphere, know into which box out of the three they have always comfortably been in, and then make sure they simply and confidently identify the other two types of games and how they can relate to them, positively, on their home console. How they can make their home console both competitive (there simply is no other game maker in category (c) like Nintendo, but sadly also I wonder if they themselves realize what makes their games operatic and artistic anymore) - and additionally, how they can make their console popular (attract games from a and b I'm guessing — or, screen games from types a and b).

Re: Shiny Founder Dave Perry Wasn't Keen On The N64 From The Start

jobunker

@PlywoodStick "Games such as Pilotwings 64 showed off Z-buffering, perspective correct texture mapping, load management, and real time antialiasing, features of the N64 hardware which worked in conjunction with the ROM cartridge format."

I don't know if this directly indicates that the cartridge format was responsible for superior gameplay.. It is as if it does.
Either way, wow, the information was really interesting. Thanks man. Invaluable.

Re: Shiny Founder Dave Perry Wasn't Keen On The N64 From The Start

jobunker

@Yorumi It's all very comparable (to me) to the current day phenomenon of how much you value your own media, you discussed it as well a bit earlier.

It is frankly unusual to collect Blu-ray films, but we do nonetheless. We curate our own libraries and we sometimes choose to revisit media experiences in unbeatably high quality. We pay for reliable experiences such as HD rentals, etc. Chain stores like HMV continue to go out of business, but the Blu-ray format, the 'physical format' par excellence in this day and age, hasn't gone away. We still project media onto screens at the movies and use HQ film rolls to do so.

The cartridge is of equivalent positioning to me: a stance of resistance to mass commercialization, a well founded skepticism toward competing media formats even though these media formats are sure to eventually dominate the business (CD's).

I can't see Nintendo doing anything of the sort nowadays, that's what worries me as well. We could always discuss the inferiority of the systems Wii onwards, or discuss how visually ugly the games became circa GameCube, how oversaturated, and toon like everything became, but maybe we won't as well.

Of relevance though, is really that nobody should care that third party companies abandoned Nintendo's ship due to the choice to keep with cartridges. Not only did keeping cartridges seem benign technologically (more durable as Plywood put it) but he mentions the labor issues that it helped control.

Nintendo should be able to pull through in this industry, but they won't, because they themselves seem uninterested in going all the way with the perception and definition of what a "sophisticated, dedicated gaming system" should look like. A dedicated gaming system today should be refined, deep, it must go beyond being an indie games vehicle, or being a showcase for hyper realistic games, or being a nostalgia driven outlet for Nintendo's evergreen.

If the industry takes a nosedive, it is because none of the big three may acknowledge the inherent power of games the same way we still seem to credit movies and TV with: for being able to make big statements and drive ideas, aesthetics, politics, cultural.

Where are the dark spin offs? Link's Awakening was once tentatively considered a spin-off. But I'd rather take that as a placeholder for what should be considered a spin-off than Hyrule Warriors, any day. Why has Nintendo folded back to Japanese third party support? Where namely, is the European content? Where are the high-profile games on the system from Europe? There are none.

This crumbling of cultural exchange... furthermore, the lack of software creativity (Hyrule Warriors is a placeholder for a metastasis - Japanese branding shoehorned onto Japanese branding going nowhere) will drive the games industry further into a crash. Nintendo headfirst.

Re: Shiny Founder Dave Perry Wasn't Keen On The N64 From The Start

jobunker

For anyone actually interested or who wants to have a more scrutinizing understanding of media and visual performance than this turd of a perspective.

Go compare footage from the 3rd party Atlus published Snowboard Kids (N64) and Snowbow Kids Plus (PS), the Japan-only release and equivalent of the game.

You may directly see in footage of the games what kind of advantage Nintendo had by going for the more difficult, more demanding format. There is clearly superior framerate in the same way or a better than similar way, that one might call the framerate of 30FPS smoother, less plastic, than the over-accelerated 60FPS. The motion of the Snowboard Kids gameplay on the N64 is far, far more human-like, far, far less mechanical and robotic than the PS version.

If this doesn't necessarily come down to just format choice (cartridge — and my hunch is that yes, the cartridge did have something to do with it), then it may come down to a great, "generalized" approach Nintendo took to hardware back in the day. Not necessarily nowadays, but that's another story. I just don't necessarily tolerate that the N64 represented the beginning of Nintendo's downfall - I'd rather see it as the beginning of Nintendo's age of sophistication and refinement. I'm sorry but not everything comes down to sales and numbers whether you accept it or not.

Back in the day, Nintendo took a great stance by either using cartridges or simply with the very architecture of the N64. I will lean, once again, to the potential chance that it was the cartridge that made certain games, like Snowboard Kids, perform so much, so infinitely, better than the PS counterpart.

The PS experiences were more angular, more blocky, more mechanical than the N64 experiences ever were. I confidently and tentatively give the credit to the choice of the cartridge.

Re: Mario Memories: The Summer of Super Mario

jobunker

Not enough good things can or will ever be said about Super Mario 64. This was the game of my generation, and I recognize the generation that is mine with this game.

The generation of realism. The 3D rendering that brought life and intensity, the sense of space - the grandeur. The grand Mario game.

It was fresh, cutting edge, sophisticated, all these things for its time. No Mario game will ever be considered a Mario game without building on this iteration, without building upon the 64 generation. Ignoring the building blocks of the 64 generation will result in failure. Hence the not as good Sunshine, Galaxy, and 3D World games. Each one lacking in scope, in immaculacy and austerity of space.

Re: Editorial: Nintendo's Strategy Needs to be Global, With a Western Touch in the Boardroom

jobunker

Why bring in global talent when, to begin with, we have seen developmental inconsistencies for over two decades? If (hypothetically) Nintendo haven't mastered their core strengths right now, why would cultural expansion solve them?

Nintendo excels when it utilizes inventors and artists like Koizumi (one of the more narrative oriented designers) and Miyamoto, who then transform their creations into something globally appealing, something more western. What are westerners going to see that Nintendo, internally, don't?

At some point this "Japanese imaginary" died out. On the Zelda front, we got this schizoid Zelda situation with The Wind Waker and Twilight Princess. It is known that Link's Awakening (a classic I always refer to) was inspired by an explicitly Western creation in 'Twin Peaks', which Koizumi and Tezuka referred to openly, well before this Japanese-obsessed Nintendo perception ever caught on.

The problem, it should hopefully become more clear, is that Nintendo started focusing on more superficially "Japanese" design mentality around the GameCube era. For Miyamoto, what was different was the look of Toon Link. For Nintendo back in the day, it was a truly different, truly inspired, fused cultural vision in the form of Link's Awakening: an original, different story, with a franchise pre-invented in a Japanese designer's mind.

Why exactly wasn't the Mario Sunshine aesthetic well received? Why wasn't the Toon Link aesthetic and then the Twilight Princess aesthetic well-received? Why do some people find that Skyward Sword is a terrific, refreshing Zelda game? Let me reformulate: why do some find that Skyward Sword is better than both The Wind Waker and Twilight Princess?

This cluelessness around the GameCube era establishes the problem better: rather than grow the Mario franchise, we have this need to radically re-create and innovate (read: disrupt) a vision. Instead of harnessing the GameCube's competitive hardware and expanding the vision established in Super Mario 64, someone at Nintendo thought that they should inject an already quirky game with a quirkiness that became far too obvious, far too Japanese, far too blatant in its message that it is quirky. Quirky is fine, Mario 64 already had that to a right dose.

Instead of continuing what Link's Awakening had undeniably brought to the series with its focus on musical instruments, suspect yet charming people, and most importantly — an operatic and terrifically tragic display of modern Japanese storytelling, Legend of Zelda regressed with (and in the most crucial death-blow for Nintendo's content creation) a stereotypical trope, the Triforce, the Princess rescue, clearly evident, clearly obvious evil.

Re: Rumour: Nintendo NX Shipping This Time Next Year, 20 Million Sales Targeted In First 12 Months

jobunker

@TheLastLugia

With no hesitation, Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword was my second favorite Zelda game. There is no close contender.

On to the more important things about all this: yes, I know people have different opinions. The tease, here, is not which opinion is yours or mine and why it is okay that they are different. The tease is specifically that, over decades, Nintendo has put its consumers in a zone where they have wildly different opinions from one another to a degree that is irregular or unusual among media producers.

Highly unusual. The company you know is effectively not the company I know; if our exchange has anything to say about it.

Let us zoom out for a second. I brought up classic versus... What comes after, the Nintendo of today, "Nintendo's newer stuff," if you will.

I truly believe (and namely why I defend others like Quorthon on here), that Nintendo cannot survive in this day and age based on the changing, modernizing gaming atmosphere. What you played may well be meaningful to you. Yes. But this experience will not endure, this is partly why the rage-debates are so frequent.

The major disagreements among consumers must be the single best indication that Nintendo's future will not be what you and I probably knew it as. The mobile landscape, will eventually, overtake Nintendo if it hasn't already. The aesthetic, the design of mobile games, have erased the classic design emphasizing button control. Touch gameplay is not even a strong Nintendo 3DS centrepiece - it is an afterthought.

On the home console front, Nintendo will have to switch design gears real soon, because it has been losing all its attempts there as well. How incoherent has the Zelda experience been? Do you truly believe this is a matter of subjective opinion? This is a matter of design incoherence — not from my standpoint — from their own.

Whatever Nintendo does with its IP, it is not working right now for them the way they are doing it. Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword should have been the game they released instead of Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, with a better story, and better graphics. Not with any design changes. No matter what style the game was played, motion-controlled or on an N64 controller.

They are BEHIND THE TIMES. There is A MAJOR paradigm shift in the gaming industry which they have MISSED way, way, way early on! This is not just about what is going on around them in the industry. This is also about them being unable to coherently transition their design improvements from simply one title to the next (without the erratic tabula rasa they pull every damn time a new game is made).

How many game design innovations do you think Link's Awakening really had? Short answer: so, very many. The actual quirky, mysterious, lovable characters came from this game, Link to the Past did not have it to that extent. The single most concise overworld in any Zelda game that was. The ocarina itself, the music as a major narrative plot device. Above all, the extremely powerful narrative, something the heads at Nintendo would hope to never engage with again in any game going forward!

The problem with Nintendo is that they do not know how to innovate, not that they do or don't.

Re: Rumour: Nintendo NX Shipping This Time Next Year, 20 Million Sales Targeted In First 12 Months

jobunker

@TheLastLugia

The GameBoy/DS debate can go on, and on, and on.

Close caption, concise response: The GameBoy had the Godlike masterpiece that was Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening, arguably, the crowning achievement in classic game design and the easy contender for 1st place, over Super Mario 64 and Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time; its direct successor.

The DS? The DS had jack Sh** instead.

Re: Rumour: Nintendo NX Shipping This Time Next Year, 20 Million Sales Targeted In First 12 Months

jobunker

@TheLastLugia
He isn't being arrogant. He is the first among a really, really large number of Nintendo weary to put effort into his comments. Why would anyone even try half as hard given the current state of the company, I don't know. But at least he tries.

There are die-hard, loyal Nintendo customers who have followed this company from the early 90s unwaveringly, into 2015. I would be one of those. I have purchased nearly every last console and every last handheld them. And countless games on their systems, from many publishers.

On top of these facts, a few more will give you the full description of this die-hard customer. I am not the cliche. But your idea of the 'Nintendo hater' ought to give away how stereotypical your 'Nintendo customer' really may be.
1. The Wii and DS were definitely flukes. Unfortunate, unsustainable, and regressive flukes at that.
2. Nintendo may or may not go third party, this contention is the last of my worries. However, since the option is left completely open to 'may go third party' I guess I already fulfilled your two points of being a Nintendo hater. (tip: I am not).
3. Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker was a horrible, gut-wrenching disappointment of a perversion of a series the first time I saw it, and I hold the same opinion of it, to this day. Opinions do not change.
4. Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess was as bad.
5. Nintendo has made a cartoony mess of itself and its games from the GameCube onwards. In fact, I detest what Shigeru Miyamoto has done to the company after the Nintendo 64 days.
6. In the here and now, I definitely think Nintendo is history and cannot recover from the atrocities of its last three consoles and handhelds. Their hardware is based on gimmicks, people will tell you the same thing endlessly. The last great console was the Nintendo 64, perhaps a marvellous Godsend of a fluke in its own right, since its success has never been repeated again. To add to this, no future Nintendo console could hope to achieve Nintendo 64 level greatness without gargantuan, competitive, graphics to boot. Making another Sunshine or Galaxy, will definitely, deeply not cut it, the sophistication and atmospheric sobriety needs to revisit the classicism of Super Mario 64.

Conclusion and open thought: classical design itself is what Nintendo has lost. A qualitative thing to lose, a challenging thing to lose, something with deep repercussions. No wonder someone like me feels so different about Nintendo's contemporary stuff. This has nothing, whatsoever, to do with the tone that another user puts into his comments. I will never buy another Nintendo product again unless the sophistication and classicism return as seen in Super Mario 64.
This is Step 1.

Re: Talking Point: Nintendo's Approach to Transforming Franchises Clashes With Fan Expectations

jobunker

20 years ago, I got a SNES. Then, a Nintendo 64. In between, a Game Boy.
The first I am not nostalgic about but don't dislike. The other two I will vehemently defend.

I didn't like the Nintendo 64 days because of just Nintendo in hindsight... But because of other crucial, definitive games on the system: Banjo-Kazooie, Diddy Kong Racing, Snowboard Kids, Donkey Kong 64. The system anchored a commitment to Nintendo for all these different reasons.

Some argue the releases were far fewer than the PS, perhaps this was problematic, but to me, all my time spent on each game was bountiful. Since then, my experiences on Nintendo systems did not progress, they regressed. The GameCube lost a major second party developer, in Rare. The pivotal point however, has not to do with Rare, but with the aftermath for Nintendo: absolutely zero ongoing business relationships with an Independent Second Party Developer in other words, a second party developer free enough to call the shots as to the kind of games admissible for release. We had M rated Conker, and E rated Banjo, and experimental, yet fulfilling 3D worlds in the form of Donkey Kong 64, which frankly, Rare was **entirely responsible** for making into a respected franchise after DKC. Miyamoto himself expressed displeasure with Donkey Kong Country for the SNES. This is a developer who was not to take Nintendo in the right direction, ever, going forward.

Miyamoto expressed displeasure with DKC specifically due to the graphical leaps and bounds forward that the game brought with it, something he once claimed was irrelevant to fundamental and appealing gaming experiences.

These general threads of history are what have brought us to present form Nintendo. A company that had lost its potential in the gaming sphere since the GameCube, due to no healthy, mutually balanced, independent relations with a second party developer. The Retro Studios of today is a shell of the Rare of the former days — this is the take away — not that Rare are a shell of their former selves. The day Nintendo lost Rare was indeed the day Nintendo should have sounded itself off to every consumer as a company with DEEPLY problematic design philosophies. Philosophies involving the sheer refusal to make games with clean, immaculate features from Super Mario 64, and in this particular case, think about the everlasting appeal of tracks like Dire, Dire Docks, rather than most anything from the levels of Sunshine. Objective (and majority) preference for that track over Sunshine tracks do indicate the beginnings of a Nintendo that chose a quirky, off-kilter tone for their gaming experiences over the immaculate stuff of Super Mario 64 (or the operatic / classic Zeldas I will get into later).

Suspicious design philosophies in Double Dash!! and The Wind Waker, two games supposedly boasting a STILL graphically potent hardware system — both so different from one another, and still, and this is clear as day, they converge to tell one simple thing: Nintendo unquestionably took Cartoons in a 64-bit Heightened Reality to a Truly Displaced, Truly Comical Cubic Era.

Coinciding and Correlating with the departure of Rare, this was the crash of Nintendo's console era and one they have never recovered from. The hardware power of the GameCube only indicates one more thing. The problem is not just with Nintendo's "seemingly absent" hardware fitness today, it rests deeper with its destructive design ineptitude.

To only add salt to the wound, this Japanese game maker dismisses in unbecoming corporate style the crossover Mario content in the simultaneously classic and progressive Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening, the most quintessential one of them all. One should look at the Iwata Asks for Link's Awakening on 3DS to see that they campily dismiss the way Mario content could cross over to a Zelda game, and that today, this could not "pass."

As handhelds continue to flounder and lose market presence, and the iPhone era takes over, a casual yet involving experience like Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening could only live on in Nintendo's home console line.

Enter the last beacon, of the last hope, of the last bastion, Nintendo actually has left that keeps it existent: the fans waiting, en niche, for a sign that all is not over, and that Zelda will come back to evangelize everything that has ever been and ever will be for pure entertainment's sake.

But Zelda won't actually return, not the way you would have hoped for, not the way you know deep down, will satisfy you. The stereotypical narrative tropes of the Triforce, of Good vs Evil, and of unabashed steam-punking are and will all be there to indicate to you, since E3 2014, that this game is just not the game you have been waiting for.

Nintendo is Dead.

Re: Analyst Thinks Nintendo Is Already Winding Down Wii U Ahead Of Nintendo NX Launch

jobunker

I've read through literally each comment so 300 comments in or not, I want to stake a claim too.

1. I think the GameCube really killed Nintendo.
2. Nintendo has seen darker days (see 1.)

The Wii U is in a bad spot but I can't say I haven't enjoyed the console and haven't gone out of my way one side of the Atlantic to buy my sister one on the other. And over what, over Mario Kart 8. The clincher is that Nintendo consoles have existed in our homes throughout our lives and it is telling when a sister's intentions for a console somehow spell out your own history and connection with a particular console generation.

In the N64 era, she tried playing Mario Kart 64 when I wasn't there, only to force the cartridge in so hard, she broke it. She'd gone out of her way.
During the GameCube days, she did not realize another Mario Kart existed or might be worth trying (did she play it once or twice? through enticement? can't remember, and who could blame her, she would never know the All-Time Scourge in Nintendo Release History, in Double Dash!!). During the Wii and eventually Wii U days, we played Kart obsessively, or drunkenly with others on hot summer nights.

This - these trace-anecdotes - all truly replicates my own personal sentiments with Nintendo's consoles throughout the years. And I comfortably say this when I say that the Wii and more importantly, the Wii U era, are not Nintendo's darkest times, not even objectively so if I held true and steady to my point of view.

In my opinion, because this may be forever-contended with, Nintendo is still paying as a company, largely, holistically, and in "consumer-trust-retribution" or whatever the term is for it, for the obscenities, bogus, aberrations in gameplay and design which they have dealt their most cherished brands in the GameCube generation, with Mario, Zelda and Mario Kart.

The only reason I accept moving forward with Nintendo today is not just because I forgive lightly "as a loyalist" because Wind Waker, even the step down from 64 to Sunshine, and Double Dash!! (far and away the biggest franchise fall) cannot be forgiven easily, as passable as "mere games" as they were.

The reason I am where I am today with Nintendo is because I still have that last remaining sparing ounce of trust for them. And because they themselves know (and we know they know) that they have disappointed, at least a couple generations over, their dedicated fans with this or that release.
We can debate the GameCube's trials and tribulations endlessly, but I don't really want to. TL;DR take: the look of their games became overly cartoonish, even babyish, infantile in this era; it needs no further evidence than in the horrendously ugly, disgustingly unrefined look of Double Dash!!

The last shred of brand trust is in our hands, directed conservatively toward them. ...All things considered, in my (conservative) opinion, the Wii U was a more satisfying, enjoyable experience than the GameCube was. This is why I am still on board with them today. Not because of what comes later, or how things might turn out. Because of simple, sober hindsight: the Wii U era was a truly better era for me.

Nintendo will eventually, either release

1. A good old reliable title come NX launch (Super Mario, Mario Kart, F-Zero, Mario Party, WaveRace): if it ends up looking as jaw-droppingly impressive as what we'd gotten in the N64 days, they've automatically won me over.

2. An AAA Zelda launch title. If the Zelda game wins over critics, I'm sold. If it falls flat the way Twilight Princess did, I'm out for good.

Basically, in the failed form of the alternatives, Nintendo will have proven once and for all that they can no longer replicate the success I've come to expect of them. They will have definitely sunk in this outcome, in the larger industry.

Re: Iwata: Nintendo NX Will Surprise People And Change Their Video Gaming Lives

jobunker

To the people still defending Nintendo restlessly, I pity you. I have followed this company from the youngest age and played everything they've released inside out. Never gave a rat's a** for the Xbox or PS systems.
Nintendo will continue to sink if they don't come back (with, as foundation) an extremely capable piece of hardware (as good or better than the competition).

You can twist this, edit this, adjust or re-describe things any which way you like — absolutely nothing will pull them out of the dirge they're in without incredible, game-changing, envelope-pushing hardware. And I've waited for the day the pressure came back to bite them in the a** since the GameCube and their cartoonish, half-a** Double Dash and Wind Waker designs.

It will be a fun ride to the end.

Re: Feature: The Wii U is Two Years Old, But How's it Doing?

jobunker

A solid B- from me.

I won't be getting Super Smash Bros. for the first time. Brawl did not hold my interest. Bayonetta 2 on the other hand: simply a massive surprise for me in that critics just love it.

Bayonetta, combined with good eShop exclusives (like Teslagrad), and great replay value in Mario Kart 8 earns it a B-.

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