Thursday, December 11, 2014

Nintendo in the Internet Age

Mario, Matrix impressions are so "90s."
This week's PopMatters post is a look at my Nintendo-sanctioned online time.

Jorge and I are still mad at Nintendo for flagging our New Super Mario 3D World YouTube video.  That whole episode pretty much sums up Nintendo's scattered online approach.  Sometimes they're remarkably forward-looking and sometimes it feels like they haven't been paying attention to what has been happening to the world over the past 5-10 years.

Mario Kart 8 has been spectacular, except when I'm getting flagged for uploading content via the YouTube integration that is part of the damn game.  Smash is adequate, but the bare bones implementation and sketchy net code suggests that Nintendo still sees this as a couch game and (possibly) a tournament game.

On the philosophical side, playing Nintendo games online is a big mental departure from how I've always conceived of them.  The original Mario Kart is still the same game it was in 1992, but Mario Kart 8 is already on version 3.0.  I'd say most of the changes are good, but it still is a shift from the way those games will be remembered and developed.

Being connected to everyone also means your community gets a lot bigger and (for me at least) your ego gets a lot smaller.  I may have been able to beat most of my friends, but the global arena is downright brutal when it comes to competition.  Again, that's not a bad thing, but the fact that even Nintendo's series and the culture surrounding them are facing the Internet's globalizing force.

Enough writing; I need to get back online before all those kids leave me in the dust.

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