Podzilla 1985

Thursday, January 09, 2014

Nintendo - How One Generation Could Have Changed Everything

If the Wii U is a joke, I don't see the punchline.

I've been a long time defender of the Nintendo Wii U, and the Nintendo brand as a whole, and I stick to my guns that they're the most innovative and enjoyable systems on the market. From the original Nintendo Entertainment System to the Wii U I've enjoyed my time with that beloved plumber and his hardware more than any other machine or mascot.

That's right, read it again.

But even I, the most humblest of internet personalities, have to concede that the Wii U has not lit the world on fire like I had hoped. Numbers don't lie, and the XBox One and PS4 have outsold the Wii U to the extent that a lot of people are worried that the latest Nintendo offering is already on life support.

VGChartz lists the Wii U selling a reasonable 220,732 systems globally the week of Dec. 28th, while the PS4 and Xbone sold 465,686 and 290,762 respectively the same week. If my memory is correct, and God knows it usually isn't, the Xbone and PS4 have already outsold the Wii U, at least in North America, in a few weeks compared to the entire Wii U's life span.

That's just not good news, folks. Unlike the general public, I hold out hope tha
t Nintendo can turn it around though, much like they did with the 3DS and Sony did with the PS3. Both systems got off to a very rough start and both systems, the 3DS especially, has enjoyed great success in the years since their release.

The biggest hurdle Nintendo is facing is the lack of a general direction or personality for their hardware. The big N has always been an innovator, and during the golden era of gaming you knew that the NES and SuperNES was head and shoulders above anything the competition was trying to sell you. Nintendo dominated the charts throughout the eighties and early nineties, but really started to lose its steam when the n64 went toe to toe with the Sony Playstation. That would be the last great battle they would know, as the Gamecube was greatly overshadowed by the PS2 and original XBox. Once the Wii came out Nintendo was already in an uphill battle to stay relevant outside of its handheld division, and though the Wii was a knockout in terms of sales, it greatly hurt their reputation with the so called "real gamers." Though designating someone as a "real gamer" or "casual gamer" is an ignorant argument, it can't be denied that gamers believed the hype and a lot of them turned on the one time titan of gaming.

The Wii U aimed to cater at that hardcore demographic by upping the graphics and third party support while keeping the innovation, but perhaps it was too little too late. It is a cool machine and one that I play quite often, but you can't say that it outsells or gets more attention than Sony and Microsoft's new gear.

And that's where Nintendo screwed up. The Wii U came out a console generation too late. It is superior to the Xbox 360 and PS3 in almost every conceivable way, but it came out in the final years of those systems life spans and just a year before the One and 4 took the game world by storm.

In my opinion, the innovation and sheer enjoyment of the Wii U's library outshines the upgraded ports and lackluster titles the Microsoft and Sony consoles have offered us so far. And that's without even diving into the Wii U's backlog of virtual console titles. It combines nostalgia, innovation, and power in a way that no other system does.

But no one cares, because the XBox One and PS4 are newer, shinier, and strikes a better cord with those so called "real gamers." You know, the ones who call you a faggot online and refer to you as some kind of nigger no matter what color you are.

But imagine if the Wii U had come out at the same time, or perhaps a bit before or after, the Xbox 360 and PS3. In fact, what if we rewrote history a little bit. Let's put the Nintendo family in this order - NES, SNES, n64, Wii, and Wii U.

"But Shannon! The Gamecube was awesome, why take it away? It had Melee!"

Settle down, Porkchop.

The Gamecube was a good system, but aside from a handful of games I really enjoyed I can barely remember its library. Meanwhile the Wii was filled with so much shovelware that it became a permanent black eye on Nintendo despite its success, and compared to the PS3 and 360 the system was woefully under powered and outclassed. Those Gamecube games I did enjoy would have felt right at home on the Wii as the two systems felt so graphically similar, and with the added first rate games from the GC maybe the Wii would have developed a much better reputation. Imagine how embraced and beloved the Wii would have been, back when its innovation wouldn't have been so hampered by its subpar graphics.

The original Wii's graphics would have held its own against the PS2 and Xbox, and it would set the Wii U up as a contender against the next generation systems and their fancy HD graphics and online capabilities.

I also would have changed the name of the Wii U to, I don't know, ANYTHING THE FUCK ELSE. Never have I seen more confusion over a new systems purpose, and that's counting the sudden influx of people referring to the original Xbox as the Xbox One. Nintendo should have just stuck with the horrible "Project Cafe" name. It may sound ridiculous, but at least people would know it was something new and not just an add on or companion piece.

And maybe, just maybe, if the Wii had directly competed with the PS2 and Xbox, and the Wii against the PS4 and 360, that lacking third party support would have resulted in a more even playing field between the three companies.

The Wii was like a beautiful assassin. She blinded Nintendo with her assets while getting a blade behind their back to stab them. For all of its profit it may have sent its parent company into a slow death that is being held off more or less by the success of the 3DS.

But, if it had just come out one generation earlier, I might have been able to boast about my blatant Nintendo bias without the little bastards at my store laughing to my face.

Fucking Nintendo.........I love you.

*hugs Mario doll tightly*

And, as a side note, the sites not dead yet, bitches.

In a few weeks, definitely.
Post a Comment