Sometimes the "hardcore" gamers (as they like to deem themselves) really annoy me. Not only are they elitist tossers but they're also narrow minded. This dawned on me a year or so ago when Nintendo made that jump from being a back pocket obsession to mainstream giants. Even though I'd argue Nintendo has always been a mainstream brand.
For me the so called "hardcore" are the narrow minded now. All developers need to do is include some blood-smattering, a range of weaponary and a multi-player mode. Forget the single player - it's going to die if things continue this way. I know people that buy a game and never even touch the single player and I'd hazard this number is creeping up. How frightening.
While the casuals are enjoying games like Wii Fit, Zack & Wiki and more traditional titles like Super Mario Galaxy the hardcore are playing Halo 3, Call Of Duty 4, Far Cry 2, Gears Of War 2, Resistance 2, Fracture and... well I could go on.
The point I'm trying to make is that the so called "hardcore" seem constantly to be on Nintendo's back these days. Where's Zelda, where's Mario, where's that game I've played before? Do these people really not understand that Nintendo have just untapped a whole new market and are still adapting to it?
I'm a Nintendo fan, I hated their E3 conference, I will not buy one Wii game this holiday season. But this is Nintendo. Surely a company gutsy enough to release the only financially profitable console this generation should be respected? A company that can not fall back on the sales of televisions, hi-fi's and Windows.
It pains me to hear people say Nintendo have lost the plot. They provided us with, what I think, is the best game this generation in Super Mario Galaxy. But of course the so called "hardcore" probably haven't played that game: a) it's on the Wii; b) it's bright and colourful. No-no... need to upgrade my Call Of Duty 4 XP and hit prestiege mode again.
The casuals played Super Mario Galaxy. They enjoyed the pinnacle of level design from a man who apparently has "lost the plot" but by the same margin is the greatest video game developer of all time.
Now to emphasise - I love games like Call Of Duty 4 and Gears but will these games be memorable in 10 years like Super Mario World, Sonic The Hedgehog, Ocarina Of Time. Will they still play well? Super Mario Galaxy will still be the perfect game it is today in 10 years time. Just like Super Mario World is still as playable as ever. Just like Ocarina Of Time.
Nintendo have just unlocked a new audience. It's trial and error from here. They'll make some wrong choices and they'll make some right choices - but you can always be sure that beyond their profit margins they'll have the industry at heart. I'm not sure you can ever say the same for Microsoft or Sony.
As "hardcore" gamers maybe it's time we opened our eyes a little. Of course Wii Music clearly isn't designed with us in mind (and it takes me off on a whole tangent as to why publications aimed at "hardcore" gamers like us are even reviewing a game clearly aimed at kids) but for every Nintendogs there has been a New Super Mario Bros. on the DS.
I think as gamers we need to be a lot more open-minded. If we constantly demand multiplayer space marines I fear the industry is going to choke at some point. That's not to say I think Nintendo have made all the right decisions this generation - I just worry the "hardcore" are killing progress.
Originally written for get2sammyb.co.uk.