What's With All the Nintendo Hate?

Alex Phillimore Alex Phillimore: (alex.phillimore-deleteme[at]-deleteme-direman [dot] com) 2014-01-25 04:37:38

What's With All the Nintendo Hate?

The title of this article is a genuine, heart-felt question: what's with all the Nintendo hate?

I don't get it.

I don't get this popular mentality permeating the gaming journalism landscape right now in kicking Nintendo at every opportunity.

"Watch Dogs might be cancelled on Wii U because a shop in Italy cancelled some pre-orders!" is one of the latest digs at Nintendo that all the big sites have picked up on, and their articles more often than not conclude with, 'This makes sense because Nintendo didn't meet their sales forecasts'.

Another recent one is sites such as IGN and Destructoid putting up articles about Yoshi's New Island on the 3DS looking awful and playing simplistically. I checked out the gameplay videos; the game is highly reminiscent of Yoshi's Island and looks like it'll be great fun. It's incredibly poor journalism when these sites function more like personal blogs, where one editor can give their opinion on something rather than just reporting the news and letting people make up their own minds.

It is dangerous to have this personal, subjective approach to gaming journalism, as an editor has a lot of sway over how their viewers perceive something. If they entitle an article, oh, I don't know, 'This Yoshi's New Island trailer just makes me sad' (Destructoid) people are automatically going to go into that article expecting it to be bad - the headline shapes their opinion and encourages them to jump on board with the negativity. If they disagree and think it actually looks pretty good, voicing their opinion will be going against the editor's article, and they're bound to run into challenges in the comment section.

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These sites often aren't delivering news as much as they're putting a personal spin on gaming rumours for the purpose of page views, which is a shameless form of journalism. What's worse is the trickle-down effect - the big sites such as Kotaku, IGN, Gamespot and so on receive these rumours from 'credible sources' and then the smaller sites that nobody has really heard of paste the same information in the hope that they can cash in on some of the search result clicks of their bigger brothers - the result is that a stupid rumour such as Watch Dogs being cancelled on the Wii U, which should have been resigned to the source that natively put it up until confirmation from Ubisoft, gets put out on literally dozens of sites. It's an unproven rumour - and yet it's treated like fact from some sites reporting on it, and others use it as a pinion to undermine Nintendo for the sake of it.

Do you think, maybe, that's one of the reasons why the Wii U isn't doing so well with core gamers who frequent gaming sites? Perhaps it's not all about the hardware - maybe some people are put off from buying the Wii U because of this constant - and I mean constant - barrage of hate against Nintendo's latest home console shaping their opinion for them and driving them away from it.

Nintendo isn't a perfect company, which is something I will reflect on in my next article. Nintendo has its flaws and there is a reasonable case to be made that they should change up their business model to an extent. But please, for the love of God, will armchair gamers put a sock in it with their 'advice' on what Nintendo should do to 'save' their company? And will journalists give it a fucking rest with the unfairly negative coverage of the Wii U?

Oh, and will people seriously stop it with this shit about putting Mario on iPhones?

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