Home / Editorial / Nintendo Shoots Itself In the Foot…Again

Nintendo Shoots Itself In the Foot…Again

It’s official, Nintendo has lost its fucking mind.

I…I almost don’t know what to say to this but this picture sums up my thoughts quite nicely.

Right now. These people should be replaced by…anyone. Go outside and pick a few random people off of the street, hell, you could even bring in a small colony of monkeys and cut them loose in the offices. Anything would be an improvement at this point.

Why in the holy mother of fuck would you even consider charging for the services offered by the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection? To be blunt, the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection is hardly worth the price of admission as it is but, at the very least, I’m not paying for it so it’s not too hard to swallow. Now, that all changes since Nintendo has announced the “Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection Pay And Play.” The mere thought of paying for something as lackluster as the service offered on the Wii and DS Lite makes me sick to my stomach.

In the past, I haven’t been very vocal about how much I despise the Nintendo WFC but I figure now is as good a time as any to vent. My biggest problem with the service is not the lackof services. No, what really brings my blood to a boil is the “Friend Code” system, which is utterly convoluted in concept and even more so in execution. Instead of, God forbid, taking a page from Sony or Microsoft and creating a simple online infrastructure in which each user signs up for a single username that covers all games (ala the Playstation Network or Xbox Live), they choose instead to give each user a series of numbers (usually 12 or so) for them to memorize and hand out to friends. What fun that must be!

“Hey buddy, my Friend Code is 392847-496073! What’s yours?” I mean, that’s obviously much easier than telling your friend “Hey, my online name is The Game21x” right? Want to know the best part? You have a different Friend Code for each online game you play! Doesn’t that sound like fun? Worst of all, some games don’t even allow you to play online if you aren’t playing with friends.

Another of my many annoyances with the service is the incredible restrictions and regulations Nintendo is putting on developers who want to implement online functions in their games. It’s like they want to make their online services as user-unfriendly as possible. Communication in a Wii game is next to impossible or convoluted as all hell due to Nintendo’s restrictions. There are no games on the Wii that support voice chat, and even fewer that allow for even basic forms of text communication, even between friends.

As it stands now, there are…what…4 games on the Wii that support online multiplayer (Pokemon Battle Revolution, Battalion Wars 2, Mario Strikers Charged and Medal of Honor Heroes)? While there’s likely a few more I’ve missed, but the Wii’s online catalog is sorely lacking in comparison to its closest competitors, the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3.

All of these problems with the service, and all of a sudden you expect us to pay for it? Seriously? Please tell me this is all one big joke so I can have a good laugh and go back to respecting you again. I can stomach paying $50 a year for Xbox Live because at least Microsoft provides the illusion that I’m getting my money’s worth, and I’m placated by that. The only scenario in which I could see myself paying to play Wii games online is if Nintendo does a complete overhaul of the service and offers something similar to Xbox Live. This would mean a completely new policy on online play, and a release of the choke-chain currently around the necks of any developers wishing to develop online-capable games on the Wii.

Honestly, I don’t see any of those demands being met and as such, I will not be joining the “Pay And Play”party any time soon. Nintendo, I really hate to say this but you have devolved into a shadow of your former self. In this longtime gamer’s (and longtime Nintendo fan) opinion, Nintendo is, in a purely business sense, doing everything right with the Wii…while screwing gamers over in the process. I hate to be so blunt, but Nintendo needs a wake up call, and fast.

About Justin McBride

My name is Justin McBride and I’m a guy who enjoys writing, playing games and writing about playing games. Sound lame enough yet? Well, I have other interests as well such as hanging out with friends, watching TV, going to the movies from time to time, surfing the internet, listen to good music, drive at speeds I shouldn’t be driving at and so on. The problem is, that’s all stuff everyone likes to do, so why write about it? Oh wait, seems I just did. Oops.

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  • First

    First.

  • brain3000

    I have to say, nice overreaction to the situation. I was at the session that this was announced, and all that was announced was that there was going to be a separate, paid service in addition to Nintendo WFC. IN ADDITION TO. So far, the only things that have been announced about Nintendo WFC “Pay and Play” is that it is an addition service, and that it will be fee based. Nothing else has been announced. The time to go off on a rant is when details of the service are announced, because I will be standing alongside you if the service proves to be woefully inadequate.

  • thegame21x

    Perhaps I did overreact to the news. I fully understand that this service is in addition to the current service offered by the Nintendo Wi-Fi connection. At this time, however, I do not see any real reason for not being angry at this news. Perhaps when the full details are announced I will feel differently. Perhaps this blog post will be justified. Either way, we’ll have to wait and see.

    In the event I am wrong though, I will post a retraction.