Nintendo UK recently uploaded a new commercial for Splatoon, focusing on the new update’s features. You can watch it below:
amiibo X Super Smash Bros.
Nintendo UK also uploaded another commercial focusing on the amiibo utility in Super Smash Bros. Wii U and 3DS. You can watch it below:
Masahiro Sakurai on player’s reaction to extra features in games
The guys at SourceGaming translated Sakurai’s latest Famitsu column where he talks about the lack of acceptance of extra features in games by some players and the way some people review/judge games because of it.
Since I found it interesting, I quoted it below, but you can also read it at the source:
Famitsu, Vol. 485
“Don’t Need This, Don’t Need That”
Many years ago, a certain game review organization awarded unnaturally high marks to a thoroughly unremarkable and uninterestingly simple puzzle game. It was the epitome of the demerit system: in other words, because the game had no extraneous features warranting demerits, it ended up earning a high score.
One could hardly call this the proper way to review a game. Suppose a convenience store stopped selling all beverages other than water. Even if we don’t like everything they have for sale, I think we’d all like to see some variety.
I recently took a look at user reviews for Fire Emblem Fates, and what stood out to me was the overabundance of comments saying “I don’t need this; I don’t need that, either,” especially in comparison to reviews of other titles.
One such feature users commented on was the ability to invite your companions into your house and stroke their heads and faces to raise your affinity level. Basically, you bring them into your room—regardless of whether you’re married or not—and give them a rubdown. Even I chuckled to myself the first time I played: “What is this, Pokémon? Nintendogs!?” Some reviewers, however, went one step further and said, “We don’t need this!”
I’m not a big fan of dating sims myself, so I can’t say I don’t understand their disinterest to a certain extent. At the same time, however, the feature in question doesn’t have any impact on one’s ability to complete the game, so if it bothers you so much, then don’t use that feature.
Say you buy a boxed lunch and it happens to contain a variety of foods, including one you hate. Even if you love everything else about the meal, are you going to single out the one food you dislike and lambast the entire meal for it? What about the people who happen to love that food? Is a meal only worth it insofar as it caters to your each and every preference?
Developers include all sorts of bonus features simply because they want to provide a little something extra for the fans. Even if one were to remove these bonus features from the game, it doesn’t mean that would “make room” for something else. That isn’t how it works.
If you approach game development with a demerit-based mindset, it doesn’t leave much room for anything extra, and games become pretty dry—and that’s just no fun.
Even Smash Bros. is one big ball of bonus features, jam packed with unnecessary content. “I don’t need this; I don’t need that, either,” some may say. To take an extreme point of view, everything aside from Free-for-All Mode is technically “unnecessary”: all the items, all the Final Smashes, all the stages aside from Final Destination. But if you were to take all of those extra features away, all you would be left with is a bare-bones, niche-market game.
I think there are some people who actually want that sort of game. There’s something appealing about a minimalist approach. But I think it’s painfully obvious Smash Bros. is not being marketed toward that niche market. I’ve intended to create a fun and exciting party game—the exact opposite. I mean, parties themselves are “unnecessary” to begin with. That said, there’s plenty of value in a game jam-packed with extra content.
And while some people demand the removal of various “unnecessary” features, there are also plenty of others who feel the exact opposite about the same content. I think it’s perfectly fine for a game to include a variety of content, even if some of those features appeal to others more than yourself.
The bonus features used to plump up a game are admittedly not designed with all users in mind. People are going to play the way they find the most enjoyable, and some users find more enjoyment in certain features than other people do. At the same time, games are a form of entertainment, so I sincerely hope people realize that “user abstinence”—not using unwanted content—is also a valid option.
From a developer’s point of view, I suppose it’s better not to force users to play these extra features in order to beat a game. Making users play a bunch of minigames only invites unwanted criticism, and I think that makes sense.
However, so long as that bonus content isn’t integral to completing a game, I think developers should be free to create what they like. After all, even if you don’t use a certain feature, someone else out there might absolutely love it.
I completely agree with Sakurai, if you don’t want to play around with a game’s extra features, then don’t, but don’t take away other people’s fun! I want to rub my Fire Emblem characters, damn it! XD
Chris Pranger shares thoughts on game localization
Nintendo Treehouse’s Chris Pranger recently appeared on the Part Time Gamers Podcast where he talked about the localization process, including things like production costs, labor, decision-making and regional markets. During the discussion, he explained how difficult it can be to localize a particular game, using Xenoblade as an example, and how sometimes it’s necessary to take risks and lose some money to please a small group of fans. You can read that quote below:
The hardest thing for everyone to understand and to accept — and I’ve seen this first hand in the company, that this is typified — people think that obviously they’re right, and what they like or dislike has to be the norm. Why would it be otherwise? And they just say the classic “Why do you hate money? Why do you hate money, Nintendo?”
And it’s like “What are you talking about? We’re trying to make…obviously it has to make calculated risks, but at the same time, one of those risks…and I mean they’ll bring up games that are very Japanese games, like Captain Rainbow for instance. They’ll bring that up like “Look how many people want this. Don’t you want money?” And we’ll be like “Yeah, we do want money, which is why we know it’s a colossal waste if we ever try to localize that in this current market, because look at you people. You don’t make up a big enough group.
The hardest part for people to realize is how much money it takes sometimes to make a game like…if it’s a Japense game, to bring it over the States. Not just translating and then localizing and marketing, but if it’s a game that has substantial voice text, oh my goodness! That is a collosal cost to bring that over. And some games you look at and you’re like “Well how are they going to bring that over?” and it’s like “Well, they can’t.”
You look at something like even Xenoblade Chronicles. People love that game, you know, within a certain group. That game is not the type of game that just pulls in enough to justify the costs on that. So that’s like, we got it in the States by luck, that NoE decided “Oh, we’ll take the fall. We’ll localize that.” Okay, cause someone is going to have to eat the costs somewhere, because that game is guaranteed to not sell enough to justify how big that game is. You know, hundreds of hours, all voiced. That’s a lot of money that goes into that.
And people are like “Why do you guys hate money?” We don’t. That’s why you literally can’t make everything. And people don’t like finding out that their fanbase is actually too small to justify the costs of the thing they want.
After reading this, please think next time before you start complaining about your favorite game not being localized, ok!? o.0′
Shovel Knight: Plague of Shadows DLC
Nintendo UK uploaded a new video interview with Sean Velasco and Nick Wozniak from Yacht Club Games as they talk about the upcoming Plague of Shadows DLC for Shovel Knight. You can watch it below:
Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate August DLC
Capcom uploaded a new trailer showcasing the recently added Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate DLC. You can watch it below:
Monster Hunter X
Capcom recently released two new weapon trailers for Monster Hunter X, focusing on the Bow and Heavy Bowgun. They also released a new batch of new screenshots dedicated to the game’s weapons and hunting styles. You can view it all below:
Dragon Quest VIII
Square Enix released a few more screenshots of Dragon Quest VIII. You can view them below:
7th Dragon III Code: VFD
SEGA uploaded a new trailer for 7th Dragon III Code: VFD today introducing the game’s world. You can watch it below:
Yo-Kai Watch Busters
Level-5 uploaded another batch of live-action Yo-Kai Watch Busters commercials. You can watch them below:
Mighty No. 9
Engadget recently interviewed Mighty No. 9’s producer Nick Yu and he commented on how the game is shaping up, why it was delayed and gave some messages to the fans, among other things. You can read the full interview here.
NintendOn interviewed Vicarious Visions’ co-founder Guha Bala at Gamescom, where he had plenty to talk about the Nintendo collaboration in Skylanders SuperChargers, as well as a few other topics such as the decision to continue using a portal rather than the GamePad’s NFC functionality in the latest game. You can read the full interview here.
And that’s all new for today! I hope you enjoy it my fellow Nintendo fans! ^_~’