E3 2015 and Beyond: Stop Gamer Entitlement, Play Nice

(Originally published on ScrewAttack approximately 2 years ago. Enjoy!)

Even when I’m not actively engaging with anyone on social media, I still pay attention to the daily ambiance of the gaming community, 7 days a week. I use it as kind of a yardstick to help determine the “climate” of the gamer environment, if you will. Certain events seem to draw the ire of the community (including 2014’s debacle that rhymes with “Framer Mate”), but what I can count on yearly is the crybaby bullshit I hear after every…single…E3 event.

Being disappointed over not hearing your dream game announced is understandable, but that line is crossed with a rocket-powered, flamethrower-laden 747 when people start:

  1. Decrying another user’s excitement over a game announcement because it conflicts with their own.
  2. Loud and raucous declarations that the offending game company in question is “going down”.

Before I go into more detail, there is something that I need to get off my chest: VIDEO GAME COMPANIES DON’T OWE US ANYTHING!

This should be a mantra that we repeat to ourselves while comfortably meditating pre-E3 so we don’t get the false impression that we are entitled to anything!

Before knocking out your fellow gamer online and getting your feelings all in it, let me be the first to say…

Now that we have a clear head, let me discuss my reasoning behind why we should respect each other and not expect too much from our beloved video game companies.

Companies Owe Us Nothing

Ah! The above-stated sentence that probably first got your panties in a bunch, and I know what you’re thinking: “but they need to listen to us in order to remain profitable”. Well, let me be the first to say that you are only one voice screaming among the millions of others who may (or may not be) asking for the same thing. Bottom line: video game companies need to make a profit yes, but here’s the kicker…what they see as profitable may differ from yours!

One major example of this in action is Reggie Fils-Aime’s statements regarding Earthbound’s release on Virtual Console. He stated that markets like that are “very niche“, and that they had to consider the costs of localization efforts before going forward. And there you have it, folks…

Have you considered that in the general scope of things, weighed against MILLIONS of other fans and a company’s return on investment, that what you’re requesting may be “niche”?

Considering the millions of dollars and assets that go into video game development, there is a little thing out there called return on investment, or ROI, that influences it all. For illustration purposes, a graph is displayed below.

In order for a video game company to move forward, they have to consider whether or not their profits will generate an amount larger than their investment! If they plug those numbers into the above formula and it comes out negative, they won’t do it! It’s almost as if video game companies have to try and make profitable decisions in order to keep the lights on and the doors open. Who knew?!

In regards to what I witnessed on social media, I saw people bitching about: Final Fantasy VII ‘s HD Remake, Star Fox Zero’s new control scheme, and perhaps the most vocal, Metroid Prime: Federation Force. Again, voicing your concern is one thing, but what I witnessed in countless forums and social media diatribes makes me sick!

Have we all forgotten why we’re in this hobby in the first place? What happened to the old days of talking video games with our pals and sharing in each other’s joy?

in a creative industry that has been humming beautifully for 30+ years, gamers have proven time and again how passionate they are about their hobby, and have expressed concern that companies are not actually hearing them. Any half-baked business out there understands (at least on a rudimentary level) the importance of pleasing the customer, but many of them have to consider the investment of time and money before moving forward.

For example, each of the “Big 3” video game companies have a social media presence where they post information on new releases and news. Think I’m playing? Here’s there Twitter accounts!

Nintendo’s Twitter Accounts

Nintendo of America:@NintendoAmerica

Nintendo: @Nintendo

Microsoft XBox’s Twitter Accounts

XBox: @Xbox

XBox Support: @XboxSupport

Sony Playstation’s Twitter Accounts

Playstation: @PlayStation

Ask Playstation: @AskPlayStation

Just what you’d imagine under each Tweet; TONS of interaction! Talk about free market research! With this information, marketing professionals within each company will “gauge interest”, much like what I do when I’m perusing Twitter or Facebook. This valuable information gives them an idea of what works and what doesn’t.

Have faith that they hear what you’re saying and move on with your day! Don’t assume that what you want is what everyone wants or that the company feels will be profitable.

“They’re Gonna Fail…”

This is truly a disgusting sentiment that I see daily online that needs to die! Since when do any of us dictate (and sometimes encourage) when and how, if ever, a video game company dissolves?! Are we really that disillusioned? Time to revisit Planet Earth…

Many of these companies are insanely wealthy, and as a result, can withstand years and YEARS of losses before having to shutter their doors. We all scream for innovation, yet shoot it right out of the saddle when it’s staring us right in the face. Just like any other tech company, video game companies continually have to push the envelope in order to deliver a superior product. Whether we chose to adopt it or not is entirely up to us!

But here’s where we all fail: we TALK DOWN TO THE PERSON WHO ACTUALLY ENJOYS NEW RELEASES OR CONSOLES! 

“Oh, that game’s shite…”, “FUCK that game!”, “#PCMasterRace”…”Consoles are dying”

The list goes on and on and ON! Sure, you may have wanted your favorite company to deliver a specific game or idea and became disappointed when it wasn’t released, but you fail yourself and your fellow gamers when you bag on someone else for actually enjoying it!

This will be the point where I tell you that I’ve absolutely enjoyed every handheld and console release by Nintendo that I’ve ever played since the NES! i’ve also enjoyed games like Silent Hill Homecoming on my PS3 and Left 4 Dead 2 on my XBox 360, along with countless newer Steam games like The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth and Oh Sir…The Insult Simulator. And that’s what we should all be….DISCERNING CUSTOMERS THAT ONLY BUY WHAT WE LIKE!

It shouldn’t matter if we don’t like every single offering that our favorite companies deliver, because there WILL BE someone out there that enjoys it, and we should RESPECT THAT! If I truly want to set the Internet on fire, I’ll express my undying love for Square’s Final Fantasy: Mystic Questwhich is BOUND to attract a troll or two who doesn’t agree! I don’t afford any these sorry individuals my time, and if you are ever bagged on for something you love, give them a big smile/middle finger and send their punk ass packing!

So is your favorite company going down anytime soon? Unless one of them commits an act about 20 times as damaging as the events leading up to the Video Game Crash of 1983, I’d say that we’re all pretty safe, despite the insanely vocal detractors who may WANT them to crash!

Don’t Be a Troll

You want to know what’s the best part about being a grown-up? We can do WHATEVER WE WANT! Whether that be hiking the Swiss Alps or going on a crazy 18-hour video game binge, we as adults have that power. And the majority of us will plow on and do EXACTLY THAT regardless of what some random hater may say! Are we really going to stop enjoying something simply because we encountered someone who doesn’t agree with it? I didn’t think so.

Yeah, some trolls out there with thousands upon thousands of followers tend to be very loud in their efforts, but here’s one thing they all are: ONE BIG PILE OF SHIT! ANYONE who goes out of their way to hate on something someone else loves:

  1. Contributes NOTHING to society at large.
  2. Actively seeks conflict and never has a genuine exchange with anyone.
  3. Thrives on anarchy to stay “relevant”.
  4. Are ultimately insecure with themselves.
  5. Rarely talk that tough if you were to encounter them in real life.

I’d encourage any of you good folks out there who have come across a troll to DELETE THEM OUT OF YOUR LIFE! If they bring you no joy and only seem to burn down everything they touch, chances are that they’re a troll and they have NO BUSINESS telling you what to enjoy! You like playing Daikatana or Duke Nukem Forever? PLAY ON, I SAY! Because honestly….

WHO GIVES A SHIT IF YOU ENJOY IT?! IS IT CAUSING ANYONE ANY HARM IF YOU CHOOSE TO ADOPT A CONSOLE OR PLAY A GAME THAT THE MASSES FEEL ISN’T “UP TO SNUFF”? ABSOLUTELY NOT!

Video games in and of themselves are a deeply personal hobby that differs between users, and if someone bitches about your decision to game on a specific console or title, ask yourself this: why are they so threatened by my decision?

I GUARANTEE that any hater out there won’t be able to answer that question logically, so hit that “Block” button, unpause your game, my friend, and enjoy!

If you yourself are a troll, it’s not too late. Delete your existing accounts, start fresh, and remember that there is a human being on the other side of that monitor or touchscreen! Time to start acting like it!

Petition to Shut Down a Game? Just Stop…

Let me begin by being the first to say that I’ve been waiting for a great Metroid game since Metroid: Other M (yes, I really did enjoy that game). Talks online has been hinting at a looming release for awhile now, so when I sat down to watch Nintendo’s Digital Event, I went in with high hopes. So what was my reaction when I saw Metroid Prime: Federation Force announced? Get this: EXCITEMENT!

Oh, I’m sorry. Were you expecting disappointment? Anger? Outrage? Sorry, but no. And I’ll tell you why.

For anyone paying attention to the Digital Event, they’d notice a few things right off:

  1. The trailer in question was short and ambiguous.
  2. No definitive release date was set (Available 2016).
  3. The gameplay still looked unpolished.

So what did I get from the Metroid Prime: Federation Force announcement? That Nintendo is actively working on a Metroid game and judging from its short trailer and tentative release date, anything is possible! We all need to CALM DOWN and realize that: 1) 2016 is still 5 months away, 2) a January 1st, 2016 release date is highly unlikely, and 3) have faith that Nintendo is well aware that we all want a Metroid game featuring Samus Aran and they WILL deliver it when the time’s right!

And speaking of “right,” I’m sure tired being just that!

I’m also old enough to remember how loud people bitched about the Gamecube and how Nintendo “will go down” after making what some felt was a “shoddy production decision”. What happened a few years later? People began to fondly remember the excellent games that came out on it, such as Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures, Luigi’s Mansion, and yes, Metroid Prime!  Despite early outcry, the Gamecube came back with a haunting vengeance and many of its best titles command high prices on auction sites like eBay.

Given Nintendo’s longevity in the market, I’m with Reggie on this one: “play the game, then we can have a conversation“.

Closing Words

The majority of the folks that I call friends have the decency to respect each other’s opinions. These people are an absolute joy to talk with, and the conversations we have are uplifting and amazing. Even better, I continue to meet new ones on a daily basis! And that’s the way that it should be.

If you’re here, chances are that you enjoy video games. I encourage you to reclaim that childhood wonderment of turning on your console and completely immersing yourself in the digital world laid out before you. Did any of us walk around back then feeling like video game companies “owed” us anything, or did we simply enjoy the game? I feel that the vast majority of us fall into the latter category, so let’s start acting like it, play nice, and get excited like we used to! Game on, gamers!

Lumpz the Clown OUT!

Clowny links below!

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