We all know at least one fanboy. They are loud, elitist, brash, irrational, and most of all toxic. These kinds of fanboys are just bad for the industry. And sadly, Nintendo fanboys seem to be some of the worst.
This is the first part of a four part series we have planned looking at each type of fanboy. From Nintendo to PC, they all have them. So buckle up friends. It’s going to be a wild ride.
***First, A word of qualification*** Should you be a fan of Nintendo, yet follow the model of being a gamer first and not a douchebag, this article is not directed at you. This article speaks only to the most zealous and devout in the Nintendo Fandom.
Right, so we all know the long seated reign of Nintendo in the gaming world. If gaming was a belief system, then Nintendo would be something along the lines of a Divine Prophet or Angelic Redeemer. Nintendo sits as one of the most revered and respected model gaming companies in the industry. They speak to their fans, listen to gamers, innovate with new technologies and ideas, explore new horizons, all while providing a steady stream of quality content to their audience. They only have one small problem….their fanboys.
Yes, Nintendo boasts the oldest and noblest of gaming entities. While at the same time supplying the most paranoid and virulent of the fanboy nations. Their most devout fans have shown time and time again to be isolationist, console and brand elitists, paranoid, and worst of all: they assist in the perpetuation of “Fake Gamers”. Such claims can be proven too, and we will explain why they are a detriment to our beloved past time.
Firstly, let us address the most common plague of the gaming community, console/brand elitism. This is the assumption that “your” brand is not only better than all others, but claiming outright fallacies toward the betterment of such a brand/console. Alongside the denyial of any or all shortcomings, regardless of how objective they appear. Now, this is predominantly an issue with PC gamers Vs. Console gamers debate, but that isn’t one we care to bring up at Coin-Drop, it’s simply irrelevant. We recognize both sides have benefits and personal preferences, and we recognize that it solid talking points. Yet to ensure peace, we won’t kick sleeping dogs.
Yet the concept of elitism assails other areas too. Buying a game solely because of a name or brand doesn’t in and of itself encourage the developer to expand. If a company can rehash the same game every year with a fresh coat of paint you’d bet they would. If they received the same result with a rehash, why risk less in an attempt to launch a new IP? Then they aren’t going to want to expend resources or time on new IP’s if what they have works. That’s basic economics, and we have seen game companies do this time and time again: CoD, Forza, Madden, FIFA just to name a few. Nintendo may stick to their established IP’s most of the time, but they at least try to innovate those brands bringing fresh ideas to old favorites.
What is also truly striking is that CoD fans have been known to venture to new franchises or similar titles in the past. “The Great CoD cloning” of 2010-2012 for example. FIFA and Madden fanboys were the ones to complain about the games basically receiving updates to Dossiers every year. Yet with Nintendo’s fanbase we don’t see this. It’s very easy for fans to fill their hard drives with games that aren’t Nintendo only titles. Yet seldom is this the case with die hard fans. Nor have we ever seen Nintendo fanboys commit any sort of self-reflection with their beloved Mario or Zelda franchises as others have with FIFA and CoD.
Nintendo fans still buy outdated NES consoles in droves for the nostalgia factor alone. Even though ports and remakes of the game exist at far cheaper the price of original sets. You can make the investment, ease of use, or even collectors arguments, but the zealots take it a step further. Nintendo is sort of changing this a little bit with their Super NES Classic Edition and the addition of Star Fox 2, which never saw the light of day in the first place. But all this doesn’t really deny the fact die hard Nintendo Fanboys have an odd form of consumerist worship
Secondly, I would like to draw attention to a very specific event which recently happened between Zelda Breath of the Wild and Horizon: Zero Dawn that The Jimquisition wrote about.
This is but one of many events that show the depth of Nintendo fanboys descent and paranoia. Other events haven’t been as well documented and are mostly described in Reddit posts. Essentially the article reveals that fans of Zelda: Breath of the Wild – henceforth referred to as Zelda BotW – found the ratings on Metacritic to be… unsatisfactory.
Many fans believed that Sony had sent their own zealots to purposefully bring down the aggregate scores of Zelda BotW in some meaningless attempt to bring more attention and praise to Horizon: Zero Dawn.
(Please note I haven’ played either title and as such, I have no direct bias on either game)
Now a normal person would say perhaps BotW was simply over hyped, or the appeal wasn’t there for whatever reason. Or that Legend of Zelda has become more a meta joke than anything else. The point here is, the first thing that should come to someone’s mind shouldn’t be a “CONSPIRACY!” Especially since if like the rest of us, you liked the game for your own personal reasons, a few critiques won’t ruin the experience for you.
Gamers do tend to suffer from at least some derision every now and again. We are, after all, a wide and sweeping group who all enjoy the same style of entertainment. As such, we have enough issues from ignorant News stations and others who claim gaming is a detriment to those who play. We don’t need silly “Ghost wars” just because the “nostalgia factor” is wearing off. Don’t get me wrong, Horizon: Zero Dawn has its issues too, but it at least tried to innovate. Zelda BotW is that same Zelda game we’ve played many times in a row now. Difficulty in combat being more toward Dark souls doesn’t count either because that’s becoming the industry standard. The graphics were PS3 era looking, the color palettes were uncanny, the contrast was deadly, and the memes are the most notable thing about the game now.
What’s funny too is Zelda BotW still got better marks from critics even BEFORE this whole thing started. A few reviews came out for Zelda BotW that didn’t fit the status quo, and such brought the score below “The Best Game Ever” and people began to cry foul, and blamed it on Sony’s offering and fans.
What’s more is even though Zelda BotW tried new things for the series, none of these were new to games as a whole. Everything had been in one game or another in some form or fashion. It seems to me it’s because it’s fans are fine with stagnant, they are okay with spending $300+ on a new console than $60 just to play 1 game, and that 1 game is is held up entirely on nostalgia. (If you bought the Wii U version disregard). This is all not to say that Zelda BotW is a bad game. On the contrary it’s far from it, but nostalgia alone isn’t going to carry you forever. You have to try new ideas instead of just gimmicks (looking at you motion controls).
Lastly, I’d like to touch on a bit of a controversial opinion I have on gaming. Many of you won’t share it, and that is fine.
I would rather have devotion in the fanbase than simple population in gaming.
Fake Nerd culture, that is to say, mainstream nerd culture gains a lot of support from Nintendo fanboys parading stuff about as if it’s gospel. For example, Pokémon is a franchise that hasn’t really changed much in its ~20 years, same for Mario, Same for Legend of Zelda. This has caused them to be used in order to gain “gamer cred” by people who are looking for an easy shot at the culture. The Cracked, Buzzfeed, and Feminist Frequency crowd use them to gain more traction with larger crowds.
Ever heard the terms “Oh yeah, I’m a gamer, I play Legend of Zelda” or “I’m a big fan of gaming, I play a lot of Mario Brothers”. Just look to Pokémon Go for a perfect example. When it first came out it was THE hottest thing. Now just after a year over launch? It’s pretty much dead as a door nail, no one does it anymore. It was the trendy thing to do, and everyone, including non gamers got into it just to see what it was about. Look at all the Twitch Streamers or Let’s players who decorate their rooms and backdrops with Nintendo products in place of say: LITERALLY ANY OTHER GAMES. Hipsters are ruining gaming…
Let’s not forget IGN’s little fiasco where they listed the top 100 games of all time and put Super Mario Brothers 3 at number 1. Oh, you can bet the Nintendo fanboys and fake nerds drank that up day and night. Meanwhile, us Pure-bloods looked on in shock and amazement at how the fuck can they actually quantify games… it’s like Evil, you really can’t measure it. What’s worse is that nearly every celebrity they brought on for that 2 hour long carnival of cringe had a chance to talk about a Nintendo game at one point. It’s almost as if they knew some specific group was watching.
Now I know this is more of a personal viewpoint, but fuck me is it annoying. Walking into a Spencer’s or Hot topic, or Gaming store. Only to be bombarded with posters and books and music of Nintendos major brain children. And it’s not always unique. It’s usually stock footage or a random knick-knack. And if I have to hear the Zelda theme or the Pokémon battle music one more time, there won’t be enough scrubbing in the world to clean the blood from the walls.
“Gaming culture”, and I hate applying that label, survived for years on its own. Away from the major populace, and we thrived and were happy, we were content. Now we’ve got every motherfucker in the world chopping at our heels to be in “the cool kids club”. All because some specific function, just couldn’t keep their mouth shut.
In conclusion, Nintendo Fanboys truly are the worst, because they have done the most damage. They’ve moved gaming into the major spotlight. They constantly buy the same stagnant games while ganging up on anyone who brings up any sort of actual, legitimate criticism to foster real improvement. Instead, they allow ideas to stagnant and fester, becoming easy sales with little to no improvement. Show me someone who plays only what Nintendo puts out that ISN’T a child and I’ll show you someone who isn’t doing gamers as a whole any favors.
I don’t bring these concerns to light out of hate, or in any attempt to start a console/flame war. I bring them up because no one is perfect, and there is always room for improvement. Yet, the ones who appear to be dragging their feet the most is the Nintendo crowd, and it’s such a shame that Nintendo’s greatest roadblock is also their strongest boon.
Nintendo isn’t the only one with fanboys though, so look forward to my rant on Sony, Microsoft, and PC elitists in the future.
Coin Drop. Unbiased, Unfiltered
This opinion piece is written by Park Robinson and doesn’t necessarily represent those at Coin-Drop.com