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)
A while back, an app called Rainway was announced that let you stream PC games to your Nintendo Switch. This app was created by a company called Rainway Inc, and was intended to be released on the eShop (in beta form) sometime during May 2017.
Unfortunately, that never really came to pass. For whatever reason, Nintendo was slow to get back to the developer about the program, and hence the only information we have about its release is that ‘the beta was planned for November’.
But fortunately, all isn’t lost here! Why? Because while Rainway may have gotten delayed, another program to do the same thing has been released for free online!
Named the REMx Launcher, this program lets you stream PC games to your Nintendo Switch by simply running a program on your PC and configuring a few network settings. No eShop, no Nintendo approval… just follow the instructions below and you can get it working right now:
So here’s what you have to do:
First, check the IP address of your PC. You can do this by either using the ipconfig command in the command prompt (CMD.exe) or by looking in Network Settings on your PC.
Next, run the REMx program on your computer. You’ll need to give it admin access for this to work, so keep that in mind if you’re security conscious here.
Then go to the Nintendo Switch and use the web browser trick. It’s a bit long for me to write about here, but you can see a handy guide to using that in this forum thread at the Digiex forums.
Once you’ve got it working, type in your PC address with port 8081 after it. Like this:
Note for the Tech Challenged: Do not type in 127.0.0.1, that’s your localhost IP address. Type in the IP of your computer instead.
Voila, you can now stream PC games to your Nintendo Switch system. It’s a pretty simple set up, and one you can get video instructions for by watching AeonRipper M’s YouTube video on the matter here:
So don’t bother with Rainway. Just set up this program, and you can stream PC games to your Nintendo Switch without waiting until November or what not.
But hey, what do you think? Is this something you’re going try out now it’s available?
Or are you just going to wait for the more… official app to be released instead?
Post your thoughts on the matter here or on social media today!
REMx Launcher (GBATemp Forum)
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!
Back in late 2015, a popular Super Smash Bros called ‘Project M’ was shut down. This mod tried to remake Super Smash Bros Melee in Brawl’s engine, but was unceremoniously taken offline after the team talked to a lawyer and realised Nintendo could potentially sue them over the project due to its increasing popularity.
However, while some of the developers simply went back to playing (or modding) Smash Bros, others decided they wanted to make their own game. So they formed Wavedash, a studio seemingly dedicated to making it a Smash Bros spiritual successor for the eSports scene.
And well, now they’ve formally revealed it online! Here’s their game, Icons: Combat Arena, in action:
As you can see, it looks almost exactly like Super Smash Bros, minus the Nintendo IP and good graphics.
Which admittedly isn’t always a bad thing. Spiritual successors should generally be pretty similar to their inspiration. Just look at Yooka-Laylee or Bloodstained if you need proof of that.
However, even those games have their differences. Yooka-Laylee has original abilities and a completely different setting to Banjo-Kazooie. Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night lets you summon monsters to help you in battle. Heck, even the infamous Mighty No 9 had an interesting combo system.
Icons: Combat Arena has none of that. It’s basically Super Smash Bros Melee 2.0 with worse graphics and music.
Worse still, some might say the similarities go from ‘homage’ to ‘plagiarism’. After all, there are characters that look exactly like reskinned versions of Fox, Marth and Ganondorf, complete with movesets eerily similar to their Super Smash Bros counterparts.
Add on top of that a cheap as chips art style, and you have a game that arguably looks closer to Mole Kart or other mobile ripoffs than its own product. A Smash Bros ‘lite’ title that lacks all the charm of the original series.
It might be a hard sell for the public too. Why? Well, think of it this way:
Super Smash Bros itself sells mostly based on the IP featured in it. The competitive scene for the game is relatively tiny compared to its audience as a whole. Stuff like this:
Probably sold the series more than featuring it at tournaments did.
But Icons: Combat Arena can’t rely on that. No one knows or cares about these characters, and the whole appeal of ‘making your favourite characters fight each other’ is completely gone here.
And that’s a killer for a game like this. Just ask PlayStation All Stars. Decent game, but at the end of the day people didn’t care as much about the characters from God of War, Bioshock and Fat Princess as they did about those from Mario, Pokémon and Zelda. The IPs just didn’t sell the game.
Icons has that problem even worse. As a result, it’s going to be a hard sell to the public.
However, it doesn’t get better with the competitive scene either. For all Icons tries to appeal to them, it’s going to be an uphill battle.
For one thing, a lot of dedicated fighting game fans don’t really care much for Smash Bros or Nintendo as a whole. They’re already kind of annoyed the likes of Smash and Pokken are appearing at tournaments like EVO.
So they won’t be much happier about this one. It’s everything they don’t like, minus originality.
Add how the actual Smash Bros scene has roundly tore it to pieces on Reddit, Smashboards and YouTube, and you’ve got a game that’s going to find it quite hard to build an audience. One that’s not interesting enough for Smash fans and not unique enough for non Smash fans.
So sorry Wavedash. You may have designed Icons: Combat Arena as a replacement for Smash Bros, but it seems most of the community isn’t interested in it at the moment. It’s just too similar to the original series for its own game.
Instead, I think it’s time you went back to the drawing board. Reconsider the game, think up a few major ways to make it stand out from Smash Bros and in general, redesign the art style and assets so they look a bit more professional rather than like a Chinese mobile app clone.
Otherwise, I really don’t see this game catching on at all. It just doesn’t feel interesting or polished enough for a good spiritual successor.
Icons: Combat Arena Reveal (Smash Bros subreddit)
A while ago, it was announced that Call of Duty WW2 would have a Nazi Zombies mode. This was good news for fans of the series, since Nazi Zombies was one of the most popular parts of the entire series.
However, that’s all we knew about it originally. Yeah we knew it existed. But we didn’t know if it would be a return to the good old days of World of War or Black Ops.
Or some sort of weird copy that didn’t understand the appeal of the original. We didn’t know.
Until now that is! Because a video has leaked online showing zombies mode in Call of Duty WW2!
Here it is in case you haven’t seen it yourself: