Peronal Update: Finished Winter Quarter


It’s been a long and exhausting three months, but today I’m officially done with winter quarter. I still have finals to do this coming Tuesday and Wednesday, but I am done with classes! And unless I really screw up my finals (which I don’t think I will) i’ll also finish off with pretty good grades as well. My lowest grade at the moment is a pretty high 70(i missed one assignment and the class didn’t have much work to begin with, that really screwed me over) but if I do well on the final I’m pretty sure I can bring that up to a low to mid 80.
It’ll be nice to have some time off to rest and binge watch Daredevil season 2 when it’s released tomorrow. Plus this will hopefully give me more time to play games to review, at lest for a couple weeks. And if everything goes according to plan, sometime next month I should be able to upgrade my equipment and start doing current gen reviews! So over all, I’m really happy at the moment. I hope you all are having as good a day as I am. Feel free to tell me how your doing in the comments.

A Poor Mans Tip Jar



Donate Button with Credit Cards

So, i don’t like asking for things, but this has become something of a necessity.In order to keep doing what i’m doing with this blog (and hopefully expand in the near future) while also being able to live, i’m asking for your help. I’ve now added a tip jar to my page and any donations you can give will be a great benefit to me and my family. If you can’t spar anything, that’s fine; believe me, i understand that times are hard. But if you like what i do and you can throw a few bucks my way, i’d appreciate it a lot. If you do, i’ll add you to my Contributors page with a link to your personal or professional page.

Anyways, thank you for your time.

Turning 24: Where I’m At and Where I Hope to Be Next Year


This is my third year running this blog, and while I’ve had a lot of fun talking about movies and games, I’ve failed to really talk about myself in any meaningful way. This is mostly do to a lot of mental and emotional hangups I have that cause me to assume that no one really cares about what I have to say, and thus I kind of stop trying to say anything at all. If you fallow me on twitter, this is why most of my tweets are just retweets of other people. In fact, every review I write is hard for me as I have to get over the idea that no one wants to read what I have to say and just tell myself “this is for me, not them. I want to write this so I’m going to”.
But today I’m making an attempt to get over this and try to become a more personally engaging critic or whatever it is you can call me. So here goes nothing…..Today is my 24th birthday….
And I feel like a failure. In fact, just knowing this day was coming has had me in a state of depression as it always does, but this time it’s been so much worse than normal. Part of that is due to feeling like I haven’t accomplished anything in my life so far. I mean for Christ sake, I’m 24 and I’ve just started to get an understanding of what I want to do with my life, I’m effectively in my second quarter of college and I’m still living with my family. It’s hard for me not too look at my surroundings and the situation I’m in and not think “i should just give up”. It would be so much easier to just quit school, get some shitty job and live out the rest of my life like a goddamn hermit.
Fortunately for me I’m either too goddamn stupid or too goddamn masochistic to do that. I’m staying where I’m at as long as it takes, and I’m getting where I want to go. So now I’m going to look at where I want to be heading this year, where I hope to be next year and what my over all plan is.
In terms of my personal life, I’m doing really well this quarter and I plan on keeping that up. I’m hoping to transfer after two years and majoring in Journalism and minoring in Film (in case the “game journalist” dream doesn’t pan out) but for right now I’m looking at things one quarter at a time. I am also hoping to move into my own place some time this year. I’m thinking something small, I’m not buying a house, but a two bedroom apartment and split the rent with someone. That’s the dream as of right now. Sometime this year I’m also planning on moving away from this blog to a more cohesive one. I want to take the lessons I’ve learned working on wordpress so far and use that to make the web page nicer looking and more cohesive. I also plan on doing a lot more editing, which my early work was sorely lacking (looking back at all the typos I’m kind of shocked anyone bothered to read my stuff in the first place).
As far as blog or professional stuff goes: I want to post something every day. Be it trailer impressions, reviews or editorials, I want to post something every day for the rest of the year. I was told I should aim to post 1000 words a day, but with school that’s going to be hard too do. Lets call that a “stretch goal”. I also want to go from 211 followers to 500. That means I want to more than double my current follower count, but I think I can do it if I really try. I would also like to do more video work, but i’ll need a much better computer for that. Hell, I tried to record some footage of Downwell to play over this and make this a video feature, but once I hit record the frame rate dropped to around 8FPS so, yeah, I’m going to need to upgrade my shitty laptop before I can work on that, and I have no idea when that’s going to be doable. Whatever, I like writing more anyways.
Also on the “professional” side of things, I want to get a piece of my writing liked or reblogged by either Laura Kate, Bob Chipman or Jim Sterling. I don’t care if that’s on facebook, twitter, tumblr whatever. But those three have been a major source of inspiration for me, so that would be a huge “i’m going in the right direction” moment for me.
And now the big one: I’d like to get some work published or become a contributor for Indie Haven. Long term goal is to get to work over at Destructoid, but I think Indie Haven would be a great start.
So, to recap my goals for this year are:
Make one new blog post everyday
get up too 500 followers
make a new, more focused blog/webpage.
Do more in depth/personal posts
Upgrade to PS4 or better PC
Get writing like/shared by one of my personal heroes.
Move out
get work published by a major (well, major to me) site.
Keep killing it at school

Hopefully by this time next year i’ll be on my way to not feeling like I’m wasting my life. And to those who read this, who’ve liked and commented on my work, thank you. It means more to me than you will ever realize. I know it may sound silly but to me that is validation that I’m not just wasting my time doing this.

Doing Sexy Right: A Look at Ghost in the Shell’s Major Motoko Kusanagi


5By William Shelton

Earlier this month Metal Gear Solid 5 was released and with it came controversy over the design of one of the female characters. I haven’t played the game yet so I’m not going to comment on Quiet’s clothing but I will say Laura Kate did a great video summing up her thoughts and you should all go check that out. What I want to talk about is the anime Ghost in the Shell which I started watching for the first time a few days ago. I’m only about eight or nine episodes in, but one of the things I’m loving about this show is how well the creators handled the sexulisation of the main character, Major Motoko Kusanagi.

1The first thing I noticed about both the show and Kusanagi’s character was her ridiculous outfit. The Major’s default costume is little more than a corset and thong. It was impossible to ignore the titillating nature of the outfit or how absurd it would be to ware into combat, but I rolled my eyes and went with it. Comic books and other anime have long since taught me to except this kind of ridiculousness so long as the character was well written. I mean, what could you reasonably ask for in an anime, a woman in sensible footwear and body armor that protects all a characters major organs, yeah rig…..

2Oh….this changes things. I don’t remember if the Major underwent this costume change in the first episode, she did in the second which was more of a combat operation than the first was anyways. This simple costume change helped to establish a lot about the Majors character and in my
opinion it also helps justify the “corset and thong” she wares throughout the show. By having the Major switch into combat armor for the more action heavy segments we learn that she’s well aware of the danger that comes with her job and that she’s not foolish enough to go into battle unprepared. She’s a Soldier and more importantly she’s a Professional and she acts like it. This is expanded in a later episode when she is undercover at a press conference wearing a Formal Uniform. Again the viewer is shown that the Major knows what’s appropriate for the situation at hand; she’s attending a professional event and she dresses accordingly.

3“Okay,” I hear you ask “but how does that justify the sexual nature of her normal outfit”? Personally I feel that this helps sell the idea that she just likes looking sexy. While there are plenty of valid arguments against the justification that a fictional character “chooses” to dress sexually, to me it works better here because, unlike so many other female characters, the Majors sexual dress never puts her in danger. You wouldn’t be able to disrobe her in a fight and her armor covers the parts of her that are actually important, not just the fun “important bits”.
I still prefer her more toned down look in the spin off…reboot…reimagining…thing that was Ghost in the Shell: Arise, but I’m still glad the original show brought us a character that was allowed to be sexy while also knowing when to drop the titillation. Kusanagi’s sexuality never infringes on her ability to be bad ass because the creators crafted a character who knew when not too be sexy. Nor is it possible to ignore her sexuality because she has so little issue flaunting it. She looks good, she knows it and she wants you to know it as well….just not in the middle of a firefight.

4I completely understand why some women may disagree with me on this issue, and I’m not going to attempt to say their wrong for feeling that way. If you’d like to discus this further please feel free to take to the comment section.

Question: What Would Make You Consider Funding a Patreon?


patreon-logoSo, I want to make this very clear: as of right now I have no intention of starting a Patreon or asking for donations. I’ll take any if you want to give them, but I’m not asking. Yet. See, I would like to make a career out of this. I really, honestly would. But I’m waiting until I can do reviews of more current games. Plus, I’m going back to school this September to get a deeper understanding of Journalism to make myself more creditable. I’ve been thinking that when I can afford to get a PS4 I’m going to create a new account and try and focus more on games (as much as I love movies I feel they’ve begun to take up too much blog space). But for right now I just want to have a more general conversation about what you would need to see in order to make funding a Patreon worth you’re money from me or anyone. What kind of content would you want too see? How often would you want it? What kind of rewards would you want in return? Leave a comment below and let’s get a discussion going on.

Gamergate: The Worst Thing to Happen to Gaming Since E.T.


images   How long has it been since the words “Gamergate” has broke into the popular lexicon like a mentally deficient Chestburster? Wikipedia says the “movement” started back in August 2014. If that’s true, then I would like to congratulate each and every “gater” for their accomplishment. The speed at which Gamergate when from an adorable grouping of imbeciles to the festering wound of embarrassing bigotry that oozes out of the mouth of every subhuman neanderthal with a controller or mouse and keyboard proves once and for all that light is not the fastest force in the galaxy, but rather the infection rate of internet stupidity is. So I lift my glass to you all: here’s to making the world a worse place in just 11 months.
Now, because I know that most “Gaters” are illiterate (I mean, how else could you think “video games should be censored” and “video games should be less sexist” are ever remotely the same) let me spell out for you exactly what I think: Gamergate is, with no exception nor hyperbole, the worst thing that has happened to gaming since E.T. caused the crash of 1983.
Even with Video games being at their most popular and the time being ripe for a massive cultural perception shift to make it more universally understood that video games are an art, Gamergate has forever changed the image of gamers from “Basement Dwelling Nerds” to “Pants Shitting Lobotomized Toddlers” crying not because some one is taking away their toys, but because someone dared make toys that weren’t for them. Gamergate isn’t a cancer, as cancer is natural, unavoidable for some and, more importantly, treatable. Gamergate is poison, one that the gaming community is overdosing on.
A couple of days a go I uploaded this image to my tumblr page….

tumblr_nryu8qj7YS1uv2zsio1_1280…and the response I got was one of the most disgusting things I’ve witnessed in a long time. One of the first comments on the post started with “This bitch needs a slapping” and from there it was nothing but constant derailment. It was literally too much to comprehend for these numbskulls that calling for censorship and calling for more diversity in character and experience are not the same thing.
A lot of this stupidity comes from the misunderstanding of what we calling for diversity are actually asking for, so let me clear this up for all the dumb asses in the room. See, none of us really care that there are games with Iron Bikini Armor, Impossable Proportioned Women or even All White Casts: this issue is that these are in most games. I don’t care that Duke Nuken is a Sexist, I don’t care that GTA5 had an all Male cast, I don’t even right-wing xenophobia that makes the entirety of the Call of Duty franchise. See, with each of those games I can ignore. I can just move on and find another game that more appeals to me. But for women and people of color, this is much harder to do as a lack of representation leads to these two groups almost always seeing themselves as sex objects or as villains.
This. Needs. To. Change.
Now, I like big tits and big, testosterone spewing guns in my games as much as the next heterosexual guy does, and yes, as much as most “Gaters” do as well. But the fact is, I am one person, one part of the gaming’s worldwide fan base. So why is it that nearly every game that comes out seems to be aimed at me? Why should it be a rarity for a game to feature a playable female lead when women make up nearly half of gaming’s fan base?
What Gamergate doesn’t seem to understand is that NO ONE IS TRYING TO TAKE YOUR TOYS AWAY. We are trying to make gaming more enjoyable for more than just Cisgender Heterosexual White Men, and it’s gamergate that’s actively fighting this. You’re not fighting against censorship or for the integrity of artistic vision, you’re fighting to keep “the other” out. And frankly, you can go fuck yourself.

Patreon and the Future of Video Game Journalism


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A while back, if asked what my favorite video game cite was I would have said The Escapist in a heartbeat. With shows from Bob Chipman, Jim Sterling, James Portnow and Dan Floyd and their various artist, I could not have been happier with the sites line up. In fact, I was so happy I did something I’ve rarely ever done: I turned off AdBlacker. Even though I hate ads I wanted to make sure that these great content creators were going to be paid for their work. But as of right now, none of them are at The Escapist. Instead, they’ve taken to Patreon, and I think we’re all better for it.

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While most people who try talking about “ethics in games journalism” today are really more interested in harassing women, people of color or anyone who liked “Gone Home”, there always was one question that I felt had some weight behind it: can you really give an honest review to a product when it’s makers are playing your bills? While there is still some debate around this topic, on a purely consumer front it is somewhat difficult to ask that we believe in the integrity of a game review when right before it we’re watching an ad for the game in question. With so many of the ads on game sites being for games, and knowing how petty some developers and publishers (let’s be honest, it’s mostly the publishers) can be, it’s easy to see how a negative review could lead to ads being pulled, meaning lost revenue for the site. Whether or not this is the wide spread epidemic some say it is is unknown to me. But the fact is, the Patreon model makes this irrelevant.
Back in May, 2013 Laura Kate and two others founded indieHaven, a news and review site focusing only on indie games. The site is still going today, funded totally by Patreon; they make $0 based off of ad revenue. Unfortunately they only make around $55 a mouth through their 15 backers (I will be making a post promoting them, by the way). While this may not seem like something to boast about, let me ask you this: how long do you think IGN would last if their core audience when down to 15 people tomorrow? You need to regularly be pulling in thousands if not millions of views to make a living off an ad based platform. While I’m sure no one at indieHave would object to making more money, the fact is the Patreon model allowed them to create the content they want and give it to an audience who wants it regardless of the size of that audience. This is the kind of thing the game journalism industry needs more of.
But as much as I love the work the team at indieHaven are doing, I wouldn’t say that this is “the Future of Video Game Journalism” if they were the only example I had. Asking the entirety of games journalist to work for $55 a month would be unsustainable, I get that. Luckily not all creators have the rotten luck indieHaven has (for real people, go help there guys out. They deserve it), and have found a rather large audience willing to contribute. The Extra Credits team uses the platform to fund their “Extra History” show (one of their only non-gaming related shows), and are making $11,000 a month. Greg Miller and his team (who all quit working at IGN) are making over $20,000 for their “Kinda Funny” webshow, and Jim Sterling is making over $10,000.
The fact is, most of these are outlier and likely not indicative of the averaged Patreon user, but this platform gives creators an avenue to make a living while only being answerable to those who want the content. This means that creators can focus on creating the content they want rather than trying to trying to make that content marketable.
This is, in my opinion, where the future of video game journalism should be headed. But as it is with all things, the system isn’t perfect. Just like with the ad-based model, limited views and followers means that consistently creating quality content isn’t enough to make a living off this model as the indieHaven example shows. And speaking as someone who can hardly afford the games I play, it can be hard for some of us to give cash where as watching a 30 second commercial allows us to contribute to our favorite creators in some way. The way I try to handle this is by spreading information about my favorite creators and letting others know about their Patreon campaign, but this doesn’t always help. My promotion for Laura Kate and Chandra Free’s Patreons when largely ignored, but my promotion for Bob Chipman and Jim Sterling (two rather well known figures already) are still getting views.
This model isn’t perfect, but I do feel it is better than the currant ad-based system most games cites are working with today. Not only does it free the content creators from the fear of losing ad revenue, but it also makes the experience better for us on the consumer side, as no one likes sitting through ads (unless I’m watching movie previews in the cinema. Those I like). I’m sure there are other advantages and disadvantages I didn’t talk about, so feel free to discus in the comments.

Should Games Allow Players to Skip Combat?


I’m going to let you all in on a little secret: there will never be a truly great film version of “The Great Gatsby”. Good? Sure, but never great. Why? Because what makes the book a classic is inherently literary. We remember this book not only because of it’s themes and characters but because of Author F. Scott Fitzgerald’s pros. This means that the barrier to entry to fully experience this story is that you must be 1) literate, 2) specifically in English as something is always lost in translation and 3) be a literate in enough of an academic sense to be able to not just read the words that are written, but also able to dismantle and decipher the text. This seems like it’s asking a lot, but in truth most of us reach this level of understanding by 9th grade. So, what does this have to do with games? Well, as we make strides to make gaming a more inclusive hobby (something I very much support) the idea has popped up that games should allow players to skip combat or game play sections they find to difficult or cumbersome to get through. Along with this came the allegation that players who disagree with this are being selfish, trying to keep games wholly exclusionary to those who have the time and energy to play through them. And yet, the more I think about it the less I can get behind the idea that game play should be skipable, but at the same time I want more people who want to play games to be able too. So today i’ll be giving my thoughts on the topic and see if some middle ground or new understanding can;t be reached.
In order to talk about this we have to come to a shared understanding of two questions: 1) What IS a “game” and 2) what kind of games are we talking about?
The first, for me, is simple: A game is any entertainment product that requires input from the audience. From the slow and methodical combat of “Dark Souls” to the QTE’s of “Heavy Rain” to even the simple act of having to think of what terms to search in “Her Story”, what makes a game a “game” is the necessities of player input. And while I don’t like saying something “isn’t a game” this does mean that one joke punchlines like “black screen simulator” are disqualified due to the fact that once you boot it up, no further input is required.
The next question is a little more important. What kind of games are we talking about? This is hard to answer as I see the idea that game play should be skipable or have a “super easy mode” applied to almost all games. I’ve seen people say Dark Souls should have an Easy mode; i’ve seen people say they would love to experience the story of Bioshock if they didn’t have to play it and i’ve seen others who just want to watch the cutscenes of a game with out having to play it. Now, my basic reaction to this is all the same: if you were to put in a comedy movie and skip all the jokes you’d probably be better off watching a different kind of movie. To me, if you don’t want the hassle of playing a game you’d probably have a more fulfilling and enjoyable time with a non-interactive form of media. Not only would you not have to bother playing anything, but both books and movies prioritize story more than games do so if all you’re looking for is a good story that’s were you should be looking. But if you are indeed wanting to experience the story of a game in particulate but don’t want to play it, well, that;s what you tube is for. But this really only applies to cutscene heavy games, so lets take a look at why this just doesn’t work with other games as well.
More specifically, lets look at Bioshock. This is one of the games I saw someone mention by name when talking about games they don’t want to play but would love to see the story for. At this point the entire tumblr post I was reading lost my interest entirely, because not playing Bioshock is just like not reading “The Great Gatsby”. Bioshock’s story is, in part, a metanarative about the nature of interactive story telling. The game calls into question wither or not you are in control of your actions in game, or if you’re a slave to the games mechanics. To experience the story of Bioshock with out playing it is literally cut out a major theme of the game.
Another franchise I saw called into question was Fallout. These games give you world changing opportunities that is an obvious draw to many people, but some don’t want to bother with the combat. This seems understandable, until you think about what those world changing opportunities really are. The newest Fallout games ask you to make choices and live with the consequences, and just like in real life, some actions lead to violent consequences. While you can play these games as a pacifist, that road limits the choices you can make. So naturally some players may want to make the darker choices and see the out come with out having to deal with the combat. Okay, that seems understandable. Until you realize what they are really saying is “i want to act like a massive asshole and suffer no real penalty for doing so”.
Now, while this next bit isn’t exactly the same, it still bothers me. This is the idea of an Easy mode of the Souls games, and the new From Software IP, Bloodbourn. The point of these games is to present a challenge to the player and see if they can overcome that challenge. To ask that that challenge be made easier is literally to ask for the artist to compromise their art. I’ve often said that Dark Souls is as much a puzzle as it is an action game. However, if taking this comparison a bit farther, Dark Souls is the Action RPG equivalent of a 10,000 piece puzzle. The barrier to entry for Action RPG’s shouldn’t be that high, to demand that Dark Souls be made easier is like saying a player who’s skill only lends them to puzzles with a couple of hundred pieces shouldn’t be asked to get better.
And this is the major issue with the idea of skipable combat in my opinion: it demands that all players be able to beat all games. This is an issue because it means you can no longer demand anything of your audiences. You cannot require any skill from players because not all players have the ability. You cannot require the player think because not all players are smart enough. To ask that games make game play skipable or to have game play deprioritized is litterally to ask to make skipable or to deprioritized what make games unique and worthwhile.
Yes, 100% of people who want to get into gaming as a hobby should be able too. This does not mean that 100% of the gamers need to be able to beat 100% of all games made. Personally, I’m fin with gaming being mainstream, but on a game by game bases, I think creators should aim for niche appeal and let “main stream games” simply be the games with the largest niche audience.
Now, there is one thing I do think is worth mentioning I the tumblr article did make me think about, but I don’t agree with the conclusion made. What about people who want to play games but can’t due to conditions like arthritis? Should they not be allowed to be gamer because they can’t hit the buttons. Again I think 100% of people who want to game should be able too, but when the claim was made that the games themselves need to compensate for this factor that I disagreed. The issue here isn’t the games, but the hardware. What this group of players should be asking for isn’t that the games be made easier, but for controllers that better suit the needs of arthritic gamer.
Another common argument that is made about why games should let you skip combat and get to the story is that games are the only medium that locks content behind a “skill wall”. And while this is true in that you can technically experience all of a book and all of a movie even if you don’t understand a word or a scene, this isn’t true once you look at this on more than a surface level. How many people have you talked too about the theme of a book or show only to be told you’re “reading too much into it” or how many times have you yourself said the same thing. You may be able to experience all the content, but with out a certain understanding of how literature and film work, you’re not getting the full experience, are you?
In short, either get good, get a different game, or admit this isn’t a hobby you’re truly invested in. There is nothing wrong liking movies more than games or admiting you just don’t like games. There is nothing wrong liking games that are premade to be easier than others, and there is nothing wrong admitting that a game simply isn’t in your wheelhouse. Not all games are going to be for all players. Personally I don’t much care for Racing, Sports or 1v1 fighting or car combat games.
If you like impressionist art more than surrealism, fine, but that doesn’t mean Salvador Dali owes you an impressionist painting, and you’d be better off just going to a different artist. And believe me, you will have a better time finding entertainment that’s already made in a way you like more than you will when asking for entertainment you don’t like be changed to your liking because you wont understand why people liked it before.

Globalization vs Cultural Relevance: On the topic of American Standards of Racial Diversity in Non-American Products


“Because, in fact the problem is not that Witcher 3 has no black characters, it could (as I will speak later on). The problem is how you demand it. How you demand foreign culture to bend over and match your own sensibilities”. This was said by Author Patryk Kowalik in his article Love Letter to Person Who Demands Racial Quotas in Witcher 3. His anger over the topic is best summed up in a latter line “…you’re telling them to change it because it’s not American enough”, a statement he found so important he had to bold it in his article. As this is a topic that’s been on my mind for a while and as this article was something of a more neckbeard-y version of an argument I kind of agree with, I thought now was a good time to do a write up on the topic.
The idea that us Americans might need to take a step back when talking about diversity and look at where the product came from came to me when I saw a post saying that Anime (an animation style from Asia) needed more black characters. The latest information I have on the rascal demographics for asian countries have Japan with 98.5% ethnically Japanese, South Korea being around 96% Korean, and China having 91.60% ethnically Chinese as of 2010 (this info is the oldest and very well may not be representative of the china of 2015, but as of right now this is what I’ve got). Knowing this, the idea that these underrepresented any group of people feels wrong, as they are made by and are perpetrating the culture that made it. Or so I thought.
Something I didn’t know, and something that makes this conversation more complicated, is that most Japanese Anime is made with the knowledge that the medium has an international fan base. The Anime reviewer I learned this from (I forget who it was, sadly) even when on to say that most of the more popular anime titles in the USA are “westernized” so much that they aren’t true reflections of Japanese culture. Armed with this new knowledge we get into the heart of the matter.
The “Witcher” franchise is made by Polish developers, based on Polish novels written by a Polish Author based on Polish folk lore. However, this wasn’t sold to an exclusively Polish audience, and it isn’t made to give outsiders an insight into modern Polish culture. This was another fantasy game sold to the world that ignored the existence of most the worlds population.
When it comes to American products there is no excuse for not adding more diversity. White American’s only make up 20% of the population, yet we are 80% of protagonist in all American media. I have never played a game with a set protagonist that was black. Most of the movies and TV shows I watch have white main characters, and most of those that don’t are based around the idea that not being white sucks. It’s clear to any one paying attention that American media has a race issue. But is it fair to apply these standards to products made in foreign countries by foreign creators that accurately reflect foreign ethic demographics? I don’t have a real answer for this, and I don’t trust anyone who tries to say the do and that’s it’s a simple answer.
But for all of this, here’s a question I think is more important: should the consumer even care? The fact is, if you are the member of an underrepresented group and a game comes out that doesn’t represent you, it’s country of origin doesn’t stop you from being underrepresented.
In the end, I agree that us Americans can be a bit arrogant and can jump the gun in judging non-american’s by our own standards, but I also can’t blame those who are growing tired of asking “why don’t I exist in you’re fantasies, why can’t I also be a hero?”

Polish Ethnic Demographics from  wikipedia.

Polish Ethnic Demographics from wikipedia.

Should Nintendo Give Up on Console Development?


indexWe’ve all heard this before, haven’t we? For a long as I’ve been a gamer, each new console generation was greeted with at lest one guy saying “Nintendo should stop making consoles and just make games”. Over the years this outcry has only gotten louder. When the Wii was released, with it’s dated graphics and radically different control scheme at lest half the conversations I heard revolved around how this was a bad move. But in the end this didn’t effect Nintendo, as the Wii went on to sell over 100 million units, smashing sales records and becoming a world wide phenomenon. But six years, in 2012, the Wii U launched and today the system is still suffering from poor sales. And now the cries of “the Wii sucks” have turned into smug “we told you so”s.

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But the one thing no one is arguing over is that Nintendo’s ability to make great games. The newest entries of Smash Bros, Mario Kart and Super Mario Bros still metacritic in the 80’s to 90’s and their new IP Splatoon has received rave reviews so far. Knowing this, the question has to be asked: Should Nintendo just make games and abandon console development?
There are those that seem to think so. I found articles from Kotaku, What Culture and Forbes that all argue along those lines. To some extent it’s hard to disagree. Long time games who are use to buying a new console every few years may find it harder and harder to spend $300 on a system when you know you’re only going to use it to play the new Mario, Zelda and Smash Bros. But what if you could play a few rounds of Mario Kart then switch to Bloodborne without having to turn one console off and another on? I can’t say I don’t understand the appeal of that.

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But here is the thing people to often forget: Nintendo is the last real game company. Playstation and Xbox are both minor parts of Sony and Microsoft. The very second video games become unprofitable neither of these companies would think twice about axing there game divisions. And could you blame them? Sony makes Movies, Music and TV’s and Microsoft is still making computer hardware and software. If video games go the way of the Dinosaurs both these companies will be fine. Nintendo, on the other hand, needs video games to be a thing in order to live on. Unless they hit the next pop culture sweet spot before gaming collapses like they did when they got into game development, they’ll die when gaming dose. Microsoft and Sony both have money on the table, but Nintendo are gambling with their livelihoods that gaming will keep being bankable. This means that Nintendo want to keep gaming alive as much as gamer do. If the gaming industry were about to crash like it did in the 80’s, Nintendo are the only ones who have to fight back against it. Sony and Microsoft could just cut there losses and call it a day, and then there’s no more Playstation, no more Xbox and most game developers would lose their jobs as most big 3rd party developers only work on those two systems.
So no, I don’t think Nintendo should stop making consoles and, to be honest, I’m getting a bit sick of hear people say they should. We need some one with skin in the game. We need some one to need us, and Nintendo id the only game company where that holds true. Yes, their hardwear isn’t the best and a bit gimmicky at times. And yes, Nintendo have pulled a lot of stupid stunts for awhile now (artificial amiibo shortages and the crap they pulled with youtubers comes to mind), but as the gaming community stands right now, we are much better off with Nintendo here, making their Wii’s and Wii U’s than if they weren’t.