It's almost as if the system itself doesn't have to be good; as long as Nintendo's well-known mascots are somewhere in the vicinity I will give in, even if the game is a lazy remake of its previous version. Mario Power Tennis? The same exact game that was on the GameCube except with Wii controls. Pikmin? Resident Evil Archives? If you have the GameCube versions just stick them into your Wii and you have the same game. There was a time where I wanted every single game that was released on a Nintendo platform no matter what it was. Knowing this, I always cling to the pleasant memories of the Nintendo of yester-year. I sit and wait for these amazing games that I remember playing years ago. Now, for every Donkey Kong Country Returns and Kirby's Epic Yarn there's a My Baby Boy and Summer Sports which is like Deca Sports which is like Wii Sports. But still I sit, waiting for the faintest whisper of Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. Not only is it embarrassing, it's almost pathetic.
The gaming world passes Nintendo by, offering things that the company hasn't touched - DLC, online gaming, achievements - and instead of joining the masses of Call of Duty and Red Dead Redemption I sit and wait for the next Mario adventure. Occasionally, I'll turn my back on Nintendo and grab hold of a God of War or Super Street Fighter but as soon as I hear the adorable squeak of Kirby everything else is abandoned. I forget about the months of using the Wii Remote to play Jenga in an attempt to enjoy something that was better left as a board game. Inevitably, something happens that leaves me feeling ashamed for still holding onto the company. I see games getting low reviews and I think, "Oh god, why do I still have this thing?" When friends ask what games I'm playing I always hesitate in admitting that it's a Nintendo name, even if it's a first party title. "Kirby's fun," I say, "I already beat it ..." while I listen to their adventures with Fallout New Vegas or Halo Reach and hear, "Yeah I beat the main story, there's still more to go back and get," or, "They're coming out with another map pack so I'll be putting Halo back in." And then I turn my back on Nintendo again to join the rest of the gaming world, but while I take out the giant spiders of Castlevania I always glance back, secretly waiting for Nintendo to do something that I can maybe brag about like I did years ago.
As long as Mario is around I always flock back to the company which almost seems to give Nintendo a free pass to produce lame games. But with its competitors stepping into the casual market and coming out with better products, maybe now Nintendo will step up and become the company I remember. Or I can be ashamed of them for another gaming year.
Briana Lawrence believes that all men, women, and zombies are created equal.