The Next Splatfest Has Been Set for North America!

It is that time again, Splatoon fans! Nintendo of America has once again announced another Splatoon Splatfest scheduled for next Saturday, August 8, 2015. The theme for the upcoming Splatfest is Marshmallows vs. Hot Dogs!

This will be the third Splatfest for North America, as the first two were themed Cats vs. Dogs, and Roller Coasters vs. Water Slides, respectively! The first two went extremely well and garnered a lot of positive attention and feedback, as well. Participation was high, and I’m sure it is expected to be high again.

Will you be participating in next Saturday’s Splatfest? Are you Team Marshmallows or Team Hot Dogs? This Splatfest is poised to be fantastic as it comes after the BIG update for the game, as well! Exciting times to be playing Nintendo games!

As always, gaming is meant to be fun, so keep gaming!!


Nintendo Concludes the Facebook Hackathon Naming a Winner

For the last two day, Nintendo and Facebook have been running a Super Mario Maker-inspired Hackathon at Facebook HQ. facebook-mario-hackathon-4The two-day competition was essentially an opportunity for Facebook employees to work together in groups to create a new Super Mario Maker stage. As these groups created their stages, they were judged and a winner was selected. That winning group now has the opportunity to share their stage online when the game is released on September 11, 2015, which will represent the entire company.

Nintendo used this partnership event as a means of continuing to promote their upcoming sure-hit game centered around level creation of Super Mario Bros. games. Many people seemed to wonder about the point of the event, but it appears to have been a success for what it was intended to do.

Facebook Tests Super Mario Game Created For Mario’s 30th Birthday Video – ABC 11 News

The winners were declared and their created stage called “Ship Love” was selected from over 150 different stages.

The folks from TechCrunch also shared the experience below.

It’s always amazing to watch Nintendo do what it is that they set out to do every time they let us know their company philosophy, which is to put smiles on the faces of the people who interact with their products. Are you looking forward to playing the Facebook-created stage, “Ship Love”,  when the game releases? Are you as excited about this game coming out as I am? (Haha, just a bonus question, there)

As always, gaming is meant to be fun, so keep gaming!!


Splatoon is Bringing 2 New Weapons for Your Splatting Pleasure

Ahead of the BIG August 5th update for Splatoon, Nintendo is releasing two new weapons later this evening. Nintendo has been very good about keeping new content coming for this game, and yet again, they are not disappointing.

Tonight at 10pm EST/7pm PST these new weapons will be live and available.

Are you looking forward to testing out these new weapons? Will you be practicing for the BIG update to get your splat skills sharp?

As always, gaming is meant to be fun, so keep gaming!!

Hold On, Easy With the S.O.S.’s and Smoke Signals…

So it seems that Splatoon is “saving Nintendo”, at least according to Fortune. Nintendo released their Q1 financial report for fiscal year 2015 and the company has posted an operating and net profit. This is the first operating profit that the company has posted since 2012, and it’s a very welcome sign.

For all of the financial report details visit:

Consolidated Financial Highlights

For the issue at hand, though, it’s interesting that the narrative that Fortune led with was that Splatoon is “saving” Nintendo as if the company was in need of saving. Now, I am not blind or “damage controlling” anything here, just hear me out. Sad Crying MarioEver since Nintendo concluded the previous generation (DS in the handheld market and the Wii in the home console market) there has been a constant din signalling the fall of “the Great Nintendo”! The doom and gloom articles, the negative press spin, the cry for of failure, the inevitable demise and bowing out of our beloved “childhood gaming company” from the big boy field!

In a sense, Nintendo’s successes of the previous generation haunted them coming into the current generation, as many “analysts” saw the lack of continued momentum from the company’s most successful selling hardware devices (both handheld and home console) as  a sign of some “end” to come. One thing I’ve noticed in this age of rapid information exchange, a lot of people feel it’s necessary to be first with everything. First to break the news, first to predict an outcome, heck, even first to comment on a forum thread. So, this desire to be first has caused many to play armchair psychic, and the thing about human nature is, when we say something, whether it’s due to ego or something else, we tend to want to make sure it is proven to be.

So, you have people who predict the fall of Nintendo, reinforce their statements pointing to distorted information and call it facts, then when the climate changes despite their efforts, they do a complete 180° turn-around. This current environment is a breeding ground for a certain narrative that has taken root in the gaming industry. The media falls victim to it, then they try to keep up with their prior statements, and pass those sentiments on to the people they influence. Case-in-point, the recent article by Fortune referenced earlier.

HappyNewYearMarioHere’s the thing, for the majority of the life of both the Nintendo 3DS and Wii U, the systems have been selling at a profit. With over 57 million 3DS units sold, and over 10 million Wii U units sold, Nintendo hardware is doing fairly well (mainly the 3DS). When you add that to the nearly 15 million amiibo that have sold since their initial release, the continual million-seller games for both gaming devices, and future planned titles, you get a company that is not in need of “saving”, but one that is doing well with even more room for growth.

I think it’s important to be better stewards of our language. Things we say can absolutely have huge impact, so continual negative language can truly cause irreparable damage. Not just in the video game industry, but on the whole there can be lasting consequences. But sticking to the gaming industry; many people don’t realize people should really understand tolerance in all of their interactions.Metroid Blast 2 By creating a narrative that alienates a large group of people, animosity and resentment can form. And on the whole, how senseless is it to have a prevailing amount of bad feelings among the people in a community comprised of people who are supposed to be having fun, playing games. I am not saying that competition doesn’t set boundaries and force opponents, but it also doesn’t (or at least it shouldn’t) linger beyond its own bounds. Favorite companies have fans, some die-hard, and others casual. That’s not a bad thing, but accosting fans of a different gaming company just because they are not a clone of yourself is short-sighted and downright detrimental to the thing you claim to love. My point is, Gamers, don’t let these outrageous and sensationalist narratives cause you to become the biggest problem in this industry; an industry that is, for many people, an escape from problems in the first place.

Just remember, gaming is meant to be fun, so keep gaming!!


Nintendo Made a Couple Over-Night Deliveries

Ok, as I was finally about to turn in and get some sleep this morning, what seemed to be shaping up to be a slow news night/morning immediately became a deluge of information. Even as I was contemplating punching out another post or two, there seemed to be no end to the information drop.

Miiverse UpdateNintendo has implemented the recently announced Miiverse redesign that quite a few people have found reasons to take issue with. I have found myself only waiting to see how it would all turn out. After checking it out for a few minutes in the wee-hours of the morning, I can say it has potential. The only drawback I can see is the 30-post limit because some of the gaming discussions I have had with Miiverse friends have gone quite far into the multiple post range. Not sure that 30 will be an issue, but in the end I hope it really isn’t.

The other big delivery was the news that on July 31, Super Smash Bros. will be getting aSmash Tourney Bracket huge update! Long-awaited features, such as tournament mode, are finally making their way to Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS. Along with Tournament Mode comes YouTube functionality that will allow players to directly upload replays (a la Mario Kart 8). There are also some paid DLC Mii Fighter costumes like King K. Rool, Chrom, and Smash hoodie sweatshirts with more to be revealed tomorrow. There will also be new stages to battle on, as well. We will be getting both Peach’s Castle and Hyrule Castle stages (N64 remakes), both of which are also paid DLC stages.

Are you excited about the new features for Super Smash Bros.? Will you be using Miiverse more for your gaming conversations since this new update?

As always, gaming is meant to be fun, so keep gaming!!


What Will Nintendo’s Mobile Strategy Really Be?

On March 17, 2015 Nintendo announced a partnership with DeNA, a provider of mobile and e-commerce websites, based in Japan. Word of the partnership came at what was termed a Business and Capital Alliance Announcement in Japan. Mr. Satoru Iwata and Mr. Isao Moriyasu were both present to give the announcement.

Iwata-san began speaking about past and current perceptions in regards to the strength of the mobile market worldwide. Perceptions that would have many believe that the mobile market is overtaking most dedicated markets, including the dedicated gaming markets for both home and handheld. Of course, he pointed out some of the discrepancies in that argument, but also acknowledged that there is benefit in embracing that trend.

That is where DeNA enters the picture in conjunction with Nintendo. The aim of the partnership is to create an experience wherein they are able to bring the strength of huge Nintendo IP together with the mobile expertise of DeNA, and put out a successful hit!

Nintendo and DeNA aren’t just looking to put out a single hit, though. They are looking to release 5 different game over the course of the next 2 years through March 2017. The first of those five game is expected to be released later this year.

NX Announcement SlideBecause they understand that people are expecting a lot from this partnership, and they realize there are many different gaming genres, each title will take advantage of a separate genre to make sure all gaming tastes are satisfied.

In addition to this strategy,

Nintendo is looking to “construct a bridge between smart devices and dedicated video game hardware that connects consumers to our dedicated video game systems. For the consumers who are connected with Nintendo through smart devices and interested in Nintendo’s IP we would like to provide even more premium game play experience on Nintendo’s dedicated game platforms…instead of trying to seize each other’s demand, dedicated video game systems and smart devices will benefit from the synergies created between them.

Nintendo together with DeNA will jointly develop a new membership service which encompasses the existing Nintendo 3DS, Wii U, the new hardware with a brand new concept, NX, and smart devices and PCs, and Nintendo will be the primary party to operate this new membership service. Unlike the Club Nintendo membership that Nintendo has been operating, the new membership service will include multiple devices and create a connection between Nintendo and each individual consumer regardless of the device the consumer uses. This membership will form one of the core elements of the new Nintendo platform.”

This partnership is rather unprecedented, but it also has massive potential for both Nintendo and DeNA, but also may create some things in the gaming industry that will go unrivaled for quite some time.Satoru Iwata and Isao Moriyasu

How much of an impact do you expect the DeNA partnership to have? Are you excited to find out more about what these companies are releasing? Which are you most anticipating, Nintendo’s first mobile game or the new membership service? Or both?

Lastly, I want to say, I know that much of this info is not new, however a deeper look can always give better perspective. I hope you enjoyed.

As always, gaming is meant to be fun, so keep gaming!!


The Hacking Has Commenced…and You’re Confused?!

A few days ago, I wrote about Nintendo’s Facebook Hackathon event that is currently taking place at Facebook HQ. Over these next couple days, teams are brainstorming and putting their heads together to come up with unique stages in order to create the best one for a chance to have their stage included in the game with it releases on September 11 of this year.

Through social media, Nintendo is periodically keeping fans informed of the event’s progress.

This updating is, of course, baffling to some people as it is Nintendo and that is the world we live in. One comment I saw on the Nintendo Facebook Page really got under my skin a bit (I’m laughing about it now, smh). I won’t name him here, but if you’re curious enough you should be able to find his comment here. But, as the first posts began to roll in from Nintendo this guy says:

Nintendo has sunk pretty low to be selling out to facebook in this way. Call me disappointed.

Now, my first reaction was to point out so many reasons why this comment was so off-base. Let him know that this is exactly what promotion is. Find out exactly why someone would be on Facebook to bash Nintendo for working with them…and then I realized, what was going on for real!

Internet Troll

So after I got a grip, I came across a series of tweets that really prompted this quick post. Someone who often makes incredible Youtube videos about Nintendo shocked me with tweets wondering what exactly it was that Nintendo was doing with the Facebook partnership…this one I will share only because I respect him enough to help.

followed by…

A response to a tweet, but none the less…what is there to be confused about? It would be one thing if he were a lay-person who doesn’t really follow Nintendo information, but as someone with an inside track, he should know that the more people whose hands Nintendo gets Gamepads in, the more likely those people are to want more. A 30th Anniversary celebration is a nostalgic occurrence, and because of that, the smartest thing to do is strike a chord with the heartstrings of the most people they can before launch and continue through an extended period of time. Come on, that really shouldn’t be that difficult. As the event is two days, with video footage to come afterward, and the level to be available later, it drums up more excitement among many different types of people.

When you watched the NWC and saw Super Mario Maker, did you get excited? If so, you may have already decided to get the game. Nintendo doesn’t need to sell you on it anymore, but for employees at Facebook who may have been too busy, or even decided to skip the NWC in favor of possibly different console presentations later in the week, to work in groups, to play a game that is fun and nostalgic, and done over two days is a brilliant idea. I promise you, tonight when those FB employees go home between their work sessions with the game, they will be thinking hard about how to finish their stages and what to add to them next. That is how you create buzz for a game.

You think maybe leading to the release of the game, there will be a lot of ads on FB? Maybe we will see clips of the Hackathon repeatedly online…just a thought.

Look, I’m not saying Josh was trolling, because I seriously doubt that he was, but what is different about this event and bringing Youtubers to Redmond, WA to get info and play demos for a few hours? Different ways to get the games into people’s hands and the info into people’s minds is smart and it may not always be the usual suspects going hands-on, but that is far from pointless!

As always, gaming is meant to be fun, so keep gaming!!