No Michael Pachter, Japanese Games Aren’t Irrelevant

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.

Thank you.

Source:

Japanese Games Are Still Irrelevant to the Mass Market, says Michael Pachter (Gaming Bolt)

Dr. Kawashima’s Devilish Brain Training Launches in Europe This Week!

Later this week, Dr. Kawashima’s Devilish Brain Training will be released for the Nintendo 3DS. A follow up to the popular DS titles, this new one has a demon version of Kawashima trying to help the player improve their concentration and working memory.

But this is more than just any old Brain Training game.

Oh no. Because unlike the others in the series (and most other Nintendo games for that matter), Devilish Brain Training has stayed in release date limbo for years as far as Europe and Australia were concerned.

Seriously. It was originally launched in Japan in mid 2012. After that, it came out in America (as Brain Age: Concentration Training) in February 2013.

After that… nothing. The game just got stuck in limbo for four years.

And no one really knows why. Nintendo obviously had plans to release it here. It gotten onto their release schedule in pretty much every year since that point.

Yet for whatever reason it just never came out. The release date stayed as ‘TBA’ for years on years. Like someone at the company was paranoid it’d offend some group or another. Or that some legal dispute was going on behind the scenes with no end in sight.

But finally it’s all over. Finally, Devilish Brain Training will be released in Europe and Australia this week.

Which raises another question. Will anyone actually buy it?

Because to be honest, I’m not too sure how popular Brain Training is any more. The series kind of peaked in the DS era and mostly faded into history when the 3DS came onto the scene.

And this is backed quite heavily by the rumoured sales for the title. Indeed, despite being part of a series with many games selling around the 20 million mark, Devilish Brain Training has seemingly sold less than a million copies worldwide. It just came out too late to ride any trends.

Still, maybe that’ll change in Europe. Maybe us Brits are more likely to give this a go despite the demon version of Dr Kawashima being involved in it.

Or perhaps it’ll just fade back into history as quickly as it entered. Either way, it’s finally out, and people can stop wondering about its Europe release date from here on out.

So what do you think? Are you interested in the title?

Or has the appeal of the whole ‘Brain Training’ genre kind of wore off by this point?

Post your thoughts on the matter (and more) at the Gaming Latest forums today!

Source:

Devilish Brain Training Game Page (Nintendo UK site)

Another 10 Underrated Gaming Channels to Check Out in 2017!

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…

Pikasprey Yellow/Blue

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?

No?

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…

Nermfulness

Subscribers: 1,196

Because Nermfulness is extremely dedicated to The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild.

How dedicated?

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?

Loeder

Subscribers: 21,436

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.

MML’s Commentaries

Subscribers: 669

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.

TheZZAZZGlitch

Subscribers: 13,087

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!

Continue Reading…

Shiny Tapu Koko Released for Pokémon Sun and Moon

A while back, Nintendo announced that a special shiny version of Tapu Koko was going to be released for Pokémon Sun and Moon. This was as part of a Japanese movie campaign, and let players use a form of the Pokémon otherwise impossible to get in the normal game (legendaries like Tapu Koko are ‘shiny locked’ by default).

However, this annoyed a few non Japanese fans. After all, why was Japan the only ones seemingly getting this Pokémon? Why give out these shiny versions of Pokémon in only one region?

It all seemed like a bit of a waste. Or more precisely, another opportunity where those outside of Japan got a bit screwed over.

But now that’s all changed! Why? Because now the shiny version of Tapu Koko is being given out through the game’s ‘Mystery Gift’ functionality worldwide! As a result, people in Europe and America can download it to their game too!

So every Pokémon Sun and Moon player can get this version of Tapu Koko until the promotion ends on August 14th 2017.

But how good is it? Is it worth getting this version of Tapu Koko for anything other than collection’s sake?

Definitely. Tapu Koko is one of the best new Pokémon in the entire game. An Electric/Fairy type Island Guardian legendary from Melemele Island, its useful ability and moveset has made it a fixture on a number of tournament winning Pokémon teams.

And well, the format of the giveaway makes it even better. Why?

Because as far as I know, Mystery Gift isn’t limited by your progress in the actual game. You can use Mystery Gift the minute you start the game and get said Pokémon the second you reach the first city.

This means you can get a Tapu Koko before even the first Trial. Which is pretty damn impressive given how normally it’s only available after defeating the Pokémon League at the end of the whole game.

So yeah, get it as soon as possible. Because once you do, absolutely nothing will put up much of a fight afterwards!

Super Smash Bros. For Nintendo 3DS

Super Smash Bros.
for Nintendo 3DS

*please keep in mind this review is entirely from my perspective and differs from people to people.*

Let’s talk about crossovers. Crossovers are when two or more characters from different media come together and interact with one-another. In most crossovers, the creators like bringing out the best of each character. For example, their famous quotes, special moves, and more. In this case, I’m talking about Super Smash Bros. for the Nintendo 3DS. In this game, you have the option to play as one or more of your favorite Nintendo characters in a handful of game modes. “Settle it in SMASH!”

Characters

 

“Battle it out as your favorite Nintendo characters!”  -Nintendo

This ain’t a joke. Who wouldn’t want to play as everyone’s favorite plumber Mario? How about some of the newcomers: Mega-Man, Villager, or Zero Suit Samus? Oh yeah, and Lady Palutena, too. Don’t forget who some of us have been mumbling about- Mewtwo. Personally, I was disappointed when I heard Mewtwo couldn’t make it to the new installments of the games. Rumors around the internet explain it was due to a lack of space left during the development of the games. It would’ve been nice to use Mewtwo’s Mega Evolution (introduced in Pokémon X and Pokémon Y) as it’s Final Smash. Thankfully, Nintendo fans were praised by Masahiro Sakurai (Creator of Super Smash Bros. among other games) and the rest of the game’s developers, which made it possible to add Mewtwo into the games as a DLC only if you’ve bought both 3DS and Wii U versions. Anyways, you get to play with over 40 Nintendo characters. One negative thing I’ll have to add is: how come some of the characters feel like clones? Correct me if I’m wrong, but wouldn’t you agree that the Koopalings are basically the same? Look at their Final Smashes for instance. I don’t blame them for being siblings, but couldn’t they have had their own special Smashes?

Music

The music in the new installments of Super Smash Bros. consists mostly of remixes from songs in their respective games. These remixes are awesome though. Most returning and new stages have a bit of a ‘rock and roll’ feeling to it. The music is clear and crisp and the quality of the music makes you believe as if you’re right in the stage. In my opinion, the best one I’ve heard so far was the Kalos Pokémon Trainer Battle, which is used in Pokémon-themed stages (Prism Tower and Kalos Pokémon League). most of the time.When you’re in a standard smash match, don’t you just love deciding which stage you’ll want to fight in? Whenever I’m playing on a stage in the game, I can’t help but hum to the beat of the various tracks this one game has. Am I wrong? Be serious. I know you do that too… Right?

Different Ways to Play

Besides your regular Smash Matches, they’ve added a heap of new content. According to the Official Super Smash Bros. Website, “There are three sub-modes in the Stadium: Multi-Man Smash, Home-Run Contest, and the all-new Target Blast.” In Smash Run on the Nintendo 3DS, players choose different paths as they proceed along a map and fight against waiting computer opponents.There are tons of other ways to play and enjoy this game.

 

Pit from the Kid Icarus series is shown playing Smash Run, exclusively on the 3DS version.

Overall Score

The Super Smash Bros. series are games I always enjoyed playing, but finally having the ability to play it on the go is something else. This really changed the way Nintendo earns its money. There ARE some downsides though. First of all, I believe the game takes a little bit too long to start up. Not to worry though. The New Nintendo 3DS (or should I say: the Smash Bros. Machine) is going to fix that. Another negative thing about the game is the clones (Hence the Koopalings). There are other clones, but I should probably not talk about them as they’d probably enrage some fans.
Another thing I noticed was the Assist Trophies and summoned Pokémon running on 30 frames per second, but I don’t really find that as a bother. Oh yeah, there are also a handful of glitches. Here’s a funny Yoshi Glitch found in the game:


This glitch turns other players into colossal combatants — so huge they fill the entire screen.To perform the glitch, player 1 must select Yoshi and the game must be set to Multi-Man mode against CPU fighters. Once the battle starts, Yoshi uses his Standard Special move, Egg Lay, to capture opponents inside shells. When the encapsulated fighters pop out of Yoshi’s egg shells, they will be transformed — overgrown, clumsy, and careless. Upon successfully performing about 8-9 Egg Lays, the behemoth-sized battlers finally meet their demise once they become too big to fit on the screen. -NintendoNews.com

In conclusion, I give this game a 9.2/10. It’s a fantastic game that rejuvenates the hype we had during our childhoods as we played through the original Smash Bros. for the N64. Not to mention the built-in rage when you play for Glory. The glitches found during gameplay can be a bit frustrating, but that shouldn’t be the cause for not buying this game. With a price of $40 on the market, who wouldn’t want to buy a game this great?

 

Note: This review may or may not have obsolete claims. This review was made 3 years ago, when I was a sophomore. Please disregard any typos. If you feel a claim is fake, comment about it.