Our exclusive editorials about the 3DS and its games, as well as Nintendo as a whole.
As any Nintendo fan likely knows, Michael Pachter has a… tendency to make some rather stupid arguments in his analysis. He claimed the Wii would fail in 2006, then said the same thing over and over till the console generation ended.
He argued that home consoles would be finished in 2014, with the likes of the PS4 and Xbox One being non existent.
Add his constant comments on Nintendo going third party or his rude attitude towards Satoru Iwata back in 2016, and you’ve got that someone no one in the gaming world takes seriously.
Which his latest ‘argument’ won’t be changing one bit. Why? Because Pachter quite literally calls Japanese games irrelevant. He does this in an interview with Game Bolt stating that:
Japanese games don’t matter in the larger scheme of things, You are talking about 2 million units, I mean, a piece of crap like Mafia 3 sold 5 million units, and that game is a piece of crap. So, no, 2 million units is a rounding error, that doesn’t matter. No one is making money off of that.
It’s a very general view, and I guess I can see where he’s coming from.
But at the same time, his arguments also have a lot of flaws in them.
For one thing, they kind of assumes that every Japanese title is niche and every Western one isn’t. Because hey, Persona 2 (a niche title) only sold 2 million copies whereas Mafia 3 (a less niche one) sold 5 million.
But that’s not the case in any region of the world. In fact, a large percentage of games in the West also sell as much or less than Persona 2.
And that’s absolutely fine. If you’re making game for a niche audience (or as part of an unpopular genre in general), it will sell less than a mainstream ‘shoot everything’ title would. That bullet hell shooter, that super hard platformer, the visual novel or comedy RPG… they’re always going to sell less than the likes of Call of Duty or Halo, regardless of their quality.
Yet that’s not something that makes them irrelevant. I mean, imagine if you applied that logic to the real world. Could you really say every other restaurant is ‘irrelevant’ because McDonalds sells more on a daily basis? How about that all drinks sellers outside of America are irrelevant because Coca Cola has so much of the market?
You couldn’t, because many of these other products and businesses are not directly competing with McDonalds or Coca Cola.
So you’d compare say, the top soft drink brands, or the top beer brands, or the top tea brands with each other, not with the market as a whole.
On that level… Street Fighter V might be a success, since it’s popular in the fighting game community. The Resident Evil games may be successful, because they’re popular among survival horror fans. And while Persona 5 may not be up there with Final Fantasy or Dragon Quest, it’s still pretty popular and well liked among RPG fans.
That’s what really matters here. Not whether one or two niche titles from Japan compare to one or two less niche titles from Western developers.
And this is especially true given that said niche/mainstream titles are only a tiny part of their respective markets.
Seriously. Go and compare Mario, Pokémon, Zelda, Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, Smash Bros or Splatoon to mainstream Western games. Those (and many more) sell at roughly the same level, because they’re also mainstream titles meant for a general audience.
If you want to compare your Western triple A games to anything, compare them to Japanese triple A titles like these:
Not the niche titles that aren’t aiming to sell 20 million copies in the first place.
But Pachter didn’t do that, because comparing mainstream titles to other mainstream titles would show that the Japanese gaming industry is not ‘dying’ or ‘dead’ compared to the Western one.
It’s like saying the ‘Western’ market is dead because you compared Shovel Knight to Pokémon.
But hang on, you argue. Doesn’t Pachter discount Nintendo as ‘different’ to Japanese games as a whole?
Yes he does. Problem is, with that logic you could argue a lot of questionable things. Remove what’s considered ‘outliers’, and you can twist the truth into anything.
I mean, imagine if you said ‘social networks aren’t that popular, with the exception of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat’. That’s pretty misleading isn’t it? You’ve cut out four of the most popular social media sites and made a claim that’s very clearly wrong by any normal way of thinking.
Or how about some others?
If you ignore the USA, UK, Australia and Canada, English isn’t a popular first language worldwide
Ignoring Disney, animated movies haven’t done that well in the last decade
Eh, no one uses search engines any more. Assuming Google doesn’t exist
Either way, it’s the same case here. You’re basically removing the number 1 player in the Japanese gaming market if you pretend Nintendo doesn’t exist. Or is somehow ‘different’ from the rule.
You may as well by saying this:
And that’s the case here. By comparing niche games to mainstream ones and deliberately leaving out any evidence that disagrees with his theory, Pachter is being dishonest and making the Japanese video games industry look worse than it actually is.
So no, it’s not ‘irrelevant’. The Japanese gaming industry is doing just fine.
You just need to stop comparing apples and oranges here.
Japanese Games Are Still Irrelevant to the Mass Market, says Michael Pachter (Gaming Bolt)
Last year, we posted about some underrated YouTube channels. These channels (including Boundary Break and Slopes Game Room) were struggling to get viewers at the time, and so we decided to post a few articles to give ‘em a bit more attention.
And oh boy, did our plan succeed. Indeed, since the last two underrated gaming channels articles were posted, almost every single one on both lists has skyrocketed in popularity! Shesez has watched Boundary Break get to over 180,000 subscribers! Dan has seen Slopes Game Room soar past 41,000. Heck, even the less popular ones like BlueJackG and Source Gaming have seen their YouTube subscriber count explode since being featured!
So with even more great gaming channels struggling to get attention, we’ve decided to make another list.
Here it is. Here are ten more underrated gaming channels that desperately need more views and subscribers!
Starting with an interesting Pokémon channel you may not already know about…
Subscribers: 48,125 (main channel), 3,261 (extra channel)
Well, two YouTube channels anyway. Because while most people on my list tend to stick to a main channel for all their videos, Pikasprey runs two separate channels based on video game obscurities and fan works respectively.
And oh boy are they both worth subscribing to. Why?
Because their content is incredible unique. For example, have you ever wondered whether you could make Pokémon Red and Blue completely unwinnable? Like, to the point the save file is virtually bricked?
Me neither, but Pikasprey provides a really interesting video on the topic none the less, involving a save file where the player has no money, no trainers to fight, no access to any Pokémon with Payday and absolutely no way of entering the Safari Zone to get HM03 and HM04.
Or how about an actual unwinnable battle? Because he’s set up one of those too. Complete with a situation where an underleveled Primate will be stuck using Rage against a continuously healing Dewgong until the end of time (or until he somehow misses the same attack 20 times in a row).
It’s a really fascinating set of videos, and kind of provides a sort of Stryder 7x or Pannenkoek2012 type experience for Pokémon fans.
Which is also something you can probably say about our next choice too…
Because Nermfulness is extremely dedicated to The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild.
Well, let me illustrate this in one line:
He brought a Lynel all the way into Gerudo Town from the top of a mountain a good few miles away.
I’m not joking:
And it’s not the only example of his… interesting experiments. Oh no, he’s also brought Lynels to stables, the Shrine of Resurrection, Fairy Fountains and Calamity Ganon to mention but a few. It’s like he thought “What’s the the most insane thing I could do?” and realised that transporting Lynels around Hyrule was exactly that.
It’s actually rather intriguing, seeing all the weird places you can bring these terrifying creatures without the game glitching out on you.
But what if you’re a bit bored of Lynels?
Well, that’s no problem either! You can instead watch him steal a sheep from a farm in Hateno Village and lure it off to his house one piece of fruit at a time:
Definitely an interesting channel to watch, especially if you’re fascinated by Breath of the Wild and all the detailed game mechanics it has.
But enough about glitches and video game mechanics for now. Are there any underrated video game music remixers on YouTube?
Certainly, with Loeder being a great example of one. As you may know (thanks to our recent interview), Loeder’s speciality are eight bit covers of modern Nintendo music. Or in other words… he redoes songs from games like Zelda Breath of the Wild, Paper Mario Color Splash and Super Mario Odyssey in the style of a title from the NES era.
And well, he does a damn good job of it too. Just listen to his awesome version of Hyrule Castle from Breath of the Wild:
His redone version of Sand Kingdom from Super Mario Odyssey:
Or his NES style rendition of A Fearsome Foe from Paper Mario Color Splash:
If you need some good examples. So check his videos out, they definitely deserve more views than they’re currently getting.
Which is also something you can say of our next channel as well. Why?
Because it’s possibly one of the most underrated, unknown video game analysis channels on the entire site.
Seriously, watch his video on Wario World’s questionable game over design or game design trends in the 3D Mario titles and tell me he really deserves only 667 subscribers. I mean, these are poorly researched rants or lists. They’re fairly detailed analysis videos about games and series that people often ignored.
Yet for whatever reason, the YouTube machine decided that Mr Rants with a Facecam in the Corner somehow deserves a thousand times more subscribers and views for screaming incoherently while playing Five Nights at Freddy’s. It’s kind of heart breaking really.
Either way, while I don’t agree with all the ideas presented in the videos, they’re definitely something more people should take into consideration, and make the channel well worth checking out.
Which is also something you could say about this channel, for much the same reasons. Because TheZZAZZGlitch is quite literally the Pannenkoek of the Pokémon series. Perhaps even more so that Pikasprey before him.
No joke. He even has his own video talking about parallel universes in Pokémon Red and Blue!
As well as a video talking about completing Pokémon while pressing the A button as few times as possible:
It’s like Mario 64 and Pokémon Red and Blue were designed with eerily similar design philosophies. Or at least analysed by people with similar attitudes towards challenges and speedruns.
But don’t think his channel is purely Pannekoek’s as applied to Pokémon. Oh no, this guy is also a master of arbitrary code execution bugs. Like this one that uses an item in Pokémon to affect a completely different game on the system:
As well as many more interesting videos as well. So if you’re a fan of Pannekoek or Stryder7x and want a slightly less well known alternative… The ZZAZZGlitch is your man. Check out his channel right away!
Are you a fan of the original Paper Mario games? Want a new experience that doesn’t revolve around hundreds of identical Toads and Thing stickers? Maybe feel like the games are a bit easy overall?
If so, you’re in luck! Why? Because a new Paper Mario ROM hack has been released that greatly ups the difficulty of the original title! This hack is known as Paper Mario Pro Mode, and adds such interesting features as:
- Improved enemy AI
- New attacks (including extra mechanics in boss battles)
- New badges to find and areas to explore
- Extra enemies added to existing ones (like Boos in the Toad Town sewers)
And quite a few other interesting additions as well. Here’s a trailer showing some of them in action:
As you can see, it’s a really impressive mod, and adds the kind of challenge many fans of the original might want in a Master Quest type deal.
Yet the mod is only part of the package here.
Because in addition to the hack itself, modding tools for the original Paper Mario game have been released as well. This means you’re able to edit the original game much more easily than ever before.
And that’s great news for Paper Mario fans. Remember, mods for games like Super Mario World, Sonic the Hedgehog, Pokemon and the Zelda series have added a ton of replay value to their respective franchises, and led to all manner of great projects. The Second Reality Project, Mario 64 Last Impact, Super Mario Star Road… the list goes on!
So to see something similar for Paper Mario… well, that means we should be getting a decent selection of new Paper Mario fan sequels as well!
It’s great news all round, and means both the hack and tools are well worth checking out! So get to it Paper Mario fans! Give them a shot today!
Star Rod Modding Tools + Paper Mario Pro Mode (Origami 64 Forums)
In the last few weeks, I’ve seen an interesting trend occur online. Put simply, a lot of people have started to treat video game glitches like they’re a bad thing, and decided that their existence in a game is somehow proof the developer got lazy.
And this can be seen on my videos for games like Breath of the Wild. I’ve seen people call out the QA team for every instance where I managed to get Link to clip through a wall. I’ve seen others say that Nintendo is lazy due to allowing these bugs to get into the game. Heck, in some cases I’ve even seen joke comparisons to Sonic 06. As if the presence of these glitches in Breath of the Wild means its an obvious beta that was rushed out the door as quickly as possible.
People assume this stuff is possible only because Nintendo is competent:
However, this isn’t necessarily the case.
Yes, it’s possible a game could be rushed out early. Or simply wasn’t tested properly for whatever reason. Something like Action 52 might be an example of that.
But a game isn’t necessarily bad (or broken) just because it has a lot of glitches.
There are a few key reasons for this. Reason 1 being that ambitious games will almost always have more glitches than unambitious ones.
Obviously there are a few exceptions here. Mario & Luigi Paper Jam is glitchier than Dream Team for instance. Despite being built on the same engine with a lot of recycled content.
But for the most part, an ambitious game will have more glitches than an unambitious one. Take Pokémon for example. The original games were ridiculously ambitious, and had to really struggle to fit all the content in a single Game Boy cart.
As a result, they’re packed with glitches. That’s because the way they were coded was optimised for size rather than error checking. They had to fit a lot of code onto small cartridges.
So to get it to fit, things were skipped. Checks were removed. Etc.
And the resulting games are perhaps some of the most glitch filled games in history, with everything from glitch Pokémon like Missingno to being able to wrong warp to the Elite Four or even rewrite the game’s programming on the fly.
However, that doesn’t make them bad. They’re amazingly fun games which set off a huge fad back in the 90s and maintain a steady fanbase even today. It’s just that due to how hard they tried and how many technical boundaries were pushed, glitches crept in.
What’s more, the same goes for all manner of other great games throughout history. Super Mario 64 (and its DS port) are littered with glitches, but that’s in part because of all the ground breaking ideas and tech they put into practice. No one had ever made a 3D platformer quite like Mario 64 before, and Nintendo themselves were learning as they went along. So again, glitches crept in.
The same goes for almost every Zelda game. It goes for Smash Bros Melee and Mario Kart. GoldenEye, Crash Bandicoot, the classic Sonic games, the classic Mega Man games… the list of great games filled with bugs goes on and on.
Yet it’s not just ambition you have to consider here.
It’s also plain old game testing limitations.
Put simply, no company can ever find all the bugs in a game. It’s impossible. Every piece of software in existence has more potential flaws and security problems than can ever be truly fixed.
And this is magnified up to eleven when the games are released to the public. Remember, Nintendo’s testing team is both limited in size and strapped for time. They don’t have months or years to test every minor wall and character interaction in the game. Nor do they have the unlimited time and resources to fix every little thing that might be found.
So while they do the best job possible, things will slip through the radar. Or they’ll be marked as ‘won’t fix’.
Then when you add however many million players into the mix (Breath of the Wild has sold about 3 million copies so far), those things will get found. There are simply more players looking for glitches (or just playing in ways unforeseen by the development team) than there were doing QA testing.
Let’s not forget how much free time gamers can have either. Again, remember that for Nintendo’s in house teams, quality assurance is a job. They have to move between one game and another every few weeks or so to make sure all of said games work well. They can’t test Breath of the Wild forever.
Players on the other hand… they can. They could spend eight hours a day looking for bugs in the game and do so for years. They could test every wall and object in the game. See how every character interaction goes.
Hence they’ll find more glitches. Look at Stryder 7x and Pannenkoek2012 for instance. They play almost nothing but Paper Mario and Super Mario 64 respectively.
So guess what? They find numerous bugs in these games.
And when speedrunning communities and glitch focused sites and YouTube channels (who like the ad revenue these glitch demonstration brings) are factored into the equation… well, a game is likely to be broken to all hell within weeks or months. It’s the same sort of situation as with computer cybersecurity. Microsoft might try to patch all the issues in Windows, but they can’t really compete with the hordes of security researchers, bored users and hackers trying to find said issues for their own personal gain.
So don’t worry too much about glitches in games. They’re bad if they cause problems, but for the most part they’re simply a fact of life that you cannot ever avoid. Every game has them, and every ambitious game will have them by the thousand.
They do not necessarily mean a game was poorly coded, not tested properly or tossed out the door by the development team.
Earlier this year, The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild was released to massive critical acclaim. With an expansive and content filled world, fantastic characters and fun gameplay mechanics galore, the game has become one of the highest rated titles in the entire Zelda franchise.
Like Zelda 1, A Link to the Past and Ocarina of Time before it, it’s become a modern classic.
And just like those other Nintendo classics, Breath of the Wild is filled with fun glitches to try out. From auto healing on a horse to clipping through walls and getting objects stuck in houses, the game is absolutely jam packed with interesting bugs for the bored player to mess around with.
So join us, as we go and look at some of the best glitches you can do in Zelda Breath of the Wild!
Blood Moon Clipping
Starting with an extremely interesting one based around the game’s Blood Moon mechanic. Basically, if you haven’t played Breath of the Wild, Blood Moons appear on random days and reset most of the game world to its default state. In other words, they cause enemies and weapons to respawn so players can fight/get them again.
It’s a clever mechanic, and a neat way to keep the open world lively once the player gets powerful enough to clear it out. However, Nintendo didn’t think of certain effects it might have on the game.
Like in this case, what happens if an enemy respawns on top of the player. So what happens?
Well, Link gets shoved through the floor, that’s what. And in Hyrule Castle (where Blood Moons can only be activated by a campfire), that has some… strange effects:
Such as being trapped under a Guardian Turret until you warp out or reload your save file. Or being forced into deadly Malice until Link keels over due to the poison.
But most interestingly of all is what happens when you try this on a Turret near the Sanctum. Why? Well, see for yourself:
Link goes straight through the castle! The results are absolutely spectacular.
Cause yep, you can see absolutely everything in the castle from one spot. Yet that’s not all that’s interesting here.
Oh no, the game’s physics for the castle… weren’t really built for you to come at this angle. So the game absolutely freaks out with things like water physics, with Link doing stuff like floating up 20 feet through invisible water or even being able to swim diagonally down a stream of water coming from a chamber at a higher elevation.
It’s quite a sight to behold, and definitely worth checking out if you’ve got the free time. But before you do that, I think it might be time to look at another bug in the game…
Kilton Lag Hell
One which exists because Nintendo forget a minor failsafe in Breath of the Wild. Namely, forgetting to check if an object was on the spot where Kilton’s shop appears before it loads in.
Okay, maybe that’s a little harsh. They do check that to some degree. If Link is sitting on the spot where the shop should be when night comes, it doesn’t appear. Instead, it waits until Link is a certain number of metres away and looking in the opposite direction first.
Unfortunately for Nintendo, that’s all they bothered to check for. So if a horse, giant metal crates or a Guardian happens to be on the spot where the shop should appear, it will appear like normal. And that’s when things go a little out of control:
That’s because the game’s engine is designed to push overlapping objects away from each other. But things like horses, boxes and Guardians are giant objects with lots of parts and various laws of physics applied to them.
The engine cannot cope with this at all, and the frame rate basically falls to about 3 FPS as a result. It doesn’t quite crash, but it’s clear the game is about to, and it’s possible a few more objects there would send it falling down like a house of cards.
Either way, that’s not all the bug does either. Oh no, when a box or object is inside Kilton’s shop, where do you think Kilton ends up?
Well, he gets pushed out of the shop, that’s where. So not only does the game lag to hell and back, but poor Kilton gets stuck wandering in circles outside the shop as well! It’s pretty cool really, especially given how he has animations you will never be able to see in normal gameplay.
Oh, and talking about overloading the game…
Permanently Lost Inventory
The developers of this game also overlooked what would happen if your inventory was full before being given a piece of armour by an NPC. Now, for those that don’t know, you can have a maximum of 5 pages of armour pieces in your inventory at any one time. You’ll never get there of course (since even with all Amiibo and DLC you won’t reach page 5), but that’s the limit.
This is fine when your next armour piece is from a store (you get told you can’t buy it), or a chest (it automatically closes itself back up again). Both situations have fallbacks to cope with this unlikely situation.
Talking to NPCs… usually doesn’t. So you’ll go and say, ask Riju for the Thunder Helm, and this will happen:
Yep, it’s just gone forever. No message or anything. Just whatever item you were going to get being permanently erased from existence.
It’s the kind of thing that’d usually be a pretty serious bug. However, that’s not really the case here.
Why? Well for one thing, 90% of armour handed to you by NPCs is optional. If you lose one of these:
- Thunder Helm
- Rubber Helm
- Champion’s Shirt
- Zora Greaves
It’s awkward, but you can live without it. And while the Zora Armour being lost can make part of the quest unwinnable, this situation will never happen in normal gameplay. You would have to be out of your mind to have filled five pages of armour before going after the Divine Beasts. It’s like running out of sand in Super Mario Bros 2. Or locking yourself out the Nautical Exhibit in Luigi’s Mansion 2.
It could happen, but if you’re not doing it deliberately, you are the worst player on the planet. Still, if you’ve got a file you want to screw up, it’s one to try out.
Still, back to less ‘dangerous’ bugs now. With a well known one called horse clipping that lets you bypass walls in the game.
How does it work?
Well to put it simply, if you jump off a horse, save in mid air and reload, the game puts you behind the horse when the game restarts.
What it doesn’t do however is check if there’s a wall there. So you can move a horse up to a wall, jump off, save in mid air and reload to clip inside it.
Normally the effects of this are pretty limited. You go up to a cliff, use the glitch and then realise that there’s another wall behind the first one. So you’re trapped in about 6 feet of empty space with no way out.
But this changes when buildings are involved. With a Sheikah Tower, Link can clip inside the tower itself and realise the light pillar isn’t solid. With a house, Link can actually end up standing on someone’s bed (maybe even with them in it!).
And in a few other cases, he can end up inside objects like rocks, dead Guardians and random obstacles. These also turn out to be completely hollow on the inside.
So yeah, go and experiment with it if you’re bored. Because depending where you are, absolutely anything could happen here…
Shrine Wrong Co-ordinate Warping
Which is also something you can say about this shrine glitch too. Basically, it lets you change where you enter the shrine from, allowing Link to end up out of bounds.
So how does it work?
Well to begin with, you’ll need to find a shrine and enter it. Once that’s done (and the auto save made), return to an older save file and go to a ledge you can jump down from.
Next, press A to jump down and pause at the same time. Save the game, and then reload the file with the shrine…
Voila. The cutscene goes all wrong and Link ends up starting miles away from where he should be. Usually this means a trip to the endless void (since he loads outside the shrine’s walls), but occasionally he can also appear in walls, on top of high ledges or even in the final room next to the Monk!
You just have to hope you get lucky punk!
On Top of a Shrine Roof
But hey, if you don’t want to rely on luck, there’s another way out of bounds in a shrine too. To use it, first pick the Kah Okeo Shrine on the South Tabantha region.
Once you’re there, make your way to the giant tower of blocks you destroy with bombs. Now here’s where it gets a bit nuts.
Basically, land on the platform, then blow it up with you nearby. You’ll plummet into the pit as the tower crumbles, and when the game reloads…
Link will be on top of the shrine’s roof. That’s because your destinated spawn point was the tower, which doesn’t exist.
So as a fallback, the game placed you at the same position on the nearest piece of ground available. Aka, the invisible roof.
Have fun gliding into the distance!
Horse in a House
Or maybe not, because there are a few more interesting glitches to look at next. For example, have you ever wanted to ride a horse inside a house?
Eh, nor do most people. But thanks to a bug in Tarrey Town, you can!
To use it, start out by going to the town while its being constructed. You’ll notice at least one giant rock that hasn’t been removed to build a house yet.
Next, ride your horse onto the rock. It’s surprisingly easy to do if you hold L and carefully make the horse saunter up.
Finally, finish the sidequest and come back.
You’ll notice the rock is gone, but your horse is nowhere to be seen. So where is he?
Well, enter the house where the rock used to be, and you’ll find he’s trapped on the 1st floor (2nd floor to you American types). Yeah, good luck getting him down from there, since he’s too big to fit through the door.
But hey, at least you can ride him around someone’s attic! That’s interesting I guess?
Hot Spring Storage
Regardless, let’s move onto something new. Namely, a neat way to auto regenerate health in Zelda Breath of the Wild!
No, you’re not reading that wrong. There’s a way to auto regenerate health while riding a horse in this game. It all has to do with a glitch called ‘Hot Spring Storage’.
What do I mean by that?
Well in this game, there are hot springs you can heal Link by having him stand in them. Fair enough, that’s how they’ve worked in Zelda games for a while now.
But Breath of the Wild is no ordinary Zelda game. Oh no, the save system… is a tad broken.
Why? Because it doesn’t clear the game’s memory when you reload a save file. At least, not until Link touches the ground.
That’s fine if Link is on the ground when it reloads. But if he’s on a horse?
Then effects carry over from the previous save state. One of which is that hot spring healing effect mentioned earlier.
So what you want to do is to stand in a hot spring with the water up to about Link’s knees.
Next, reload a save file while you’re on a horse.
And then just watch. Link will start automatically healing there and then, and will continue auto healing until he gets off the horse! It’s a pretty cool trick for getting through dangerous places (like snow covered mountains), since the healing often overrides the weather damage!
Just don’t try and do this after standing in icy cold water…