Amiibo

Last year, Nintendo started the Amiibo line up. The figurines which have an MSRP of $12.99 can connect to your Wii U or New 3DS by tapping them on the gamepad or touch screen. There are several different games that the Amiibo can connect to, the most noteworthy being Super Smash Brothers Wii U.In Smash Brothers you can level up your Amiibo, creating a powerful AI to play with or against during those lonely winter months.

Nintendo, in adding the Amiibo lineup has also extended the list of products they failed to let consumers have access to; or even a fair chance at obtaining.

Amiibo are quickly selling out online and offline, becoming almost impossible to find only a few days after their release (depending on where you live.) Nintendo has released limited information on this issue, the only Amiibo the company has confirmed will receive restocks is Marth.

Anyone who jumped on the Skylanders train a few years back will remember the difficulty of finding all of the figurines. This was later solved after the holiday season and many players have completed collections of the original Skylanders. Although the limited availability was frustrating, it didn’t feel like a mad dash to grab everything in sight; We knew Activision had more on the way.

amiibo2

Skylanders also didn’t require more then one copy of the figurine. Unfortunately, Nintendo has stated that you will need to re-purchase any Super Smash Brothers Amiibo you wish to use with Mario Party 10; as the data will over write your Super Smash Brothers data attached to the Amiibo.

This is not the case with Nintendo and the Amiibo.

Nintendo is a family focused company. Their games are geared towards young kids, and families. With this in mind, how is Nintendo expecting good feedback from their customers when their child asks for a Villager Amiibo for their birthday and they can’t find one?

What about when Super Smash Brothers came out? Did you have any difficulties finding the Gamecube controller adapter which will only be compatible with the new Super Smash Brothers for the Wii U? Yeah, you aren’t alone.

Nintendo created a device with an extra tack on price, forcing you to either purchase their new fighting pads or the adapter. Rather than just allowing the Wii U to function with the Gamecube controllers, something they seemed to have no problem working into the design of the Wii.

However, the problems don’t stop there.

Or rather, they don’t begin there.

SONY DSC

A recent trip to EB Games included the discussion of Nintendo’s limited availability of the Majora’s Mask New 3DS XL. This brought up the subject of the Wii.

For those of you new to the Nintendo band wagon (welcome aboard!) or new to gaming in general, you might not remember the mad chaos that was the release of the Wii.

The Wii, released back in 2006, was a hit worldwide. The console caught on, and it caught on fast, out selling both the Playstation 3 and the Xbox 360 during its life span. There was a problem with the Wii though, you couldn’t find it anywhere! Many families drove for hours from store to store looking for a Wii for Christmas, retailers would put up a “We have Wiis in stock!” sign, only to take them down a few moments later.

The EB Games employee I spoke with explained that he would have over ten people waiting in the store for the shipment, even though he would tell them multiple times the shipping manifest didn’t say they were getting any Wiis in. Still, the customers waited, and waited. Only to be disappointed.

The recent New 3DS XL announcement for North America was a big one, and the unveiling of the limited edition Majora’s Mask New 3DS XL was an even bigger deal. A deal that Nintendo couldn’t handle, even though the evidence that this would be an insanely popular system was there.

Majora’s Mask has been demanded for the 3DS as a remake ever since the Ocarina of Time was announced. Although Ocarina of Time is considered by most to be a better game, Majora’s Mask does have a cult following and is still respected for many reasons. Which is why many (myself included) don’t understand how Nintendo couldn’t expect this to be such a hit.

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The New 3DS XL isn’t just a small upgrade in processing power. Looking at the footage shown from the Nintendo Direct conference it is a significant upgrade. The C-stick will allow for more control over games (although I have to admit it doesn’t look like it’ll be comfortable to use) and allow exclusive games to start arriving for the New 3DS XL. Not to mention the improved 3D, which admittedly is not required, will be a welcome addition to the system.

Why do we tolerate Nintendo acting the way that it does? For the same reason that we tolerate Ubisoft’s 3 broken games in one year (Assassin’s Creed Unity, Far Cry 4, and Watch Dogs.) Yet don’t like the idea behind Micro-transactions in many of our online or mobile games. It’s all about the money.
As long as Nintendo keeps gaming cheaper then the other two leading consoles, with a suggested MSRP of $45-65, versus the MSRP of $69.99 for the Xbox One or Playstation 4; we will continue to love Nintendo the way that we do.

Gaming culture has evolved from the 90’s, moving more towards the cost of gaming versus the quality. The abnormality in this change is the mobile market, relying heavily on micro-transaction games that typically aren’t well received in the end.

We, as gamers have decided we do not like extra charges for DLC, map packs, or any minor addition to console games. Spending over $60 on most titles, we have a problem justifying the extra cost. And that is where Nintendo does well in most cases. Excluding the Amiibos, Nintedos recent venture into DLC through Mario Kart 8 has proven to be justified pricing; offering both DLC packs for just 11.99. If you purchase both DLC packs you receive a total of 6 characters, 8 vehicles, and 16 tracks. Additionally Nintendo throws in eight new colors for both Shy Guy and Yoshi.

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Besides the DLC, we are applauding Nintendo for giving us little to no stock on new items that Nintendo couldn’t possibly of seen to be unpopular. If Nintendo suspected the Amiibo wouldn’t be popular, why would they try and market it at all? The concept for the figurines would of been discarded rather then pursued.

2014 was ever so boldly proclaimed the ‘Year of Nintendo’ by many, and when we look at the way that the company has been behaving: It just doesn’t make sense.

I will be purchasing a New 3DS XL. I have a Wii U currently. I love Nintendo, the games that they release, and the great times that it has provided for my family over the years. I do not support the lack of stock in the case of the Wii, Amiibo, and the New 3DS XL Majora’s Mask Edition.

The reality is game developers can get away with a lot, but Nintendo more so then anyone else. The nostalgia attached to the company allows us to look at the company through rose-colored glasses, instead of critically analyzing what they are doing. The Amiibo is just the beginning of Nintendo’s latest trend, and I highly doubt a end is in sight.

  • Selena Ciliza

    This wreaks of serious supply-chain incompetence more than malice to me.

  • Agreed

  • vbgenechten

    Idiotic new article. And a really really idiotic one. So many dumb statements it hurts my brain to think of how someone could actually seriously say this.

    You are talking about how 2014 showed us how Nintendo is a bad company, even tough you go back to the Wii days, that are what? Almost ten years ago? You also complain about a limited edition being limited… You serious? It sucks that you couldn’t get one, but who knows how many of those consoles were being preordered.

    You have a point about the Amiibo and the GameCube adapter tough. They should have been clear about those and just be clear about them not coming back. But even that point gets ruined by a dumb statement like “Rather than just allowing the Wii U to function with the Gamecube controllers, something they seemed to have no problem working into the design of the Wii.” Yeah… What a stupid company is Nintendo to not support the controllers from a 3 gen old console… You can’t even use last gen controllers on the other consoles so why is this Nintendo suddenly being evil when they don’t support controllers from 3 generations ago? Even the newer Wii’s stopped coming with NGC ports built in after a few years….

    And how many games will be new 3DS exclusive do you think? We know about one game at the moment… The other ones are better on new 3DS but you can still play them on the old one. We’ll be able to count the exclusives on one hand. And even then you can probably play those games on their next system so you don’t have to miss them.

    • So the thing with journalism is you need a catchy title. If I entitled my article “How when nintendo released the wii, and then the amiibo, and then majoras mask 3ds xl, it showed us they aren’t a very nice company” that wouldn’t go over very well with the public or my editor-in-chief.
      I’m sorry that I couldn’t put a bigger title for the article. The title is called ‘click bait’ and almost every large journalism site does it. You pick a controversial topic in your article and then slap it as a title.

      The Majora’s Mask 3DS XL is not entirely Nintendos fault. I will say that. However, that the US has had a much larger chance to pre-order most of these hand helds, while other countries are being ignored to quite the extreme(Including Canada). Believe me, I could write a whole other article on the topic. I’m not that upset I missed it. I could see it in person, and there will be other hand helds that I like and can purchase. would it of been awesome to have one of my favorite Zelda games art on a 3DS? YES! yes it would of! I’m sure most people feel that way.
      We still can hold Nintendo semi-accountable for it. They never said how many 3DS’ will be out there, they are very vague with the “limited edition”. and you would think that if the hand held is selling well, why not make more?

      Is it stupid to wish that a developer would make a console fully backwards compatible? The thing is consoles take up space. if I could sell my Gamecube AND my Wii, I would save a considerable amount of space. Between wires, controllers, and the system itself.
      Consumers are starting to believe that we cannot ask for things from the companys. We have to take what we are given, shut up, and enjoy it. We don’t have to do that. The reason I didn’t bring up Microsoft and Sony consistently is this is not an article about them. This is an article about Nintendo, who comes under the spotlight because critics are starting to say the company is the best for consoles, and we need to keep supporting them.

      As far as exclusives go, I cannot predict the future for how many will hit the New 3DS. I don’t see how developers could ignore using the C-stick into some of the main controls, which is why the games become handheld exclusives.

      • KevinSchimes

        That’s not even an excuse to complain. Backwards compatability for a 15 year old console? That’s been done ONCE, wit the PS3, and even then they effectively skipped the PS2 BC after 2007. Before 2000, you know how many consoles had BC? None. It’s a convenience, not a necessity. Complaining that Nintendo didn’t do enough when BC doesn’t do anything for them from a business standpoint (other than MAYBE convince a few early adopters to jump in sooner than they would otherwise) is just petty.

        And that’s ignoring the issue of Nintendo wanting to drop the GC controller with the Wii U in the first place. There’s a time to move on from everything – if Dualshock wasn’t safe, nothing is.

        Lastly, Nintendo has returned most of the things you complained about to stock. My friend last weekend got a GC adapter at Nintendo World and a couple of amiibos that were sold out a month ago. This isn’t an issue of Nintendo suddenly being dicks, it’s an issue of them understocking due to (presumably) bad supplying and (definitely) the goal of focusing as much on profit as possible. Since, y’know, them being the “nice” company helped them run several consecutive fiscal losses.

        • KevinSchimes

          Forgive typos and such, the mobile interface is weird here. Also, a correction: I forgot about the Atari 7800’s BC.

      • Agree with you here about consumers accepting what companies want us to these days. What happened to the days of backward compatibility? Why is there’s need for a WiiU pro controller when they have a few different controllers they could make work

        • vbgenechten

          Because they have to move forward? The Wii U pro controller is much much better than any controller I have ever used and if they had to keep sticking with old controllers that would have never happened. The Wii remote would have never happened. Heck, we would still be playing with D pad and two buttons if they had to keep sticking with old controllers.

          Companies have to move forward. That can’t happen when we expect them to keep inserting support for old consoles. Nintendo is the only one getting backlash because they aren’t supporting a 15 year old console. Even tough Sony and Microsoft don’t even support the previous console.

          I can say that as much as I want but you won’t see that because you are like a little kid that says I want this. Now give me this or I’ll keep complaining and expecting that from you.

          Sure, companies should listen to us, but we should stay realistic. And demanding support for 15 year old controllers isnt realistic. It’s dumb and unnesecary…

        • What do you mean, “what happened to the days of backward compatibility”? The Wii U plays the entire Wii library and supports all of its controllers.

          You only need the extra adapter if you’re trying to jump back two generations, which is something most consoles have never done. The 3DS plays DS games but not GBA games. The DS plays GBA games but not Game Boy games. The Wii plays Gamecube games but not N64 games.

          • Did i specify nintendo about backward compatibility? No i didnt

            • KevinSchimes

              When you elaborate by saying something about Nintendo and nobody else, you sort of make it seem like you meant to say it that way.

              • I said i agree with an above comment about the consumer buying whatever we are told

                • KevinSchimes

                  You can’t tell me what you did and didn’t say to try and deflect my point here. My point was that you can’t get up in arms about defending yourself when you left a major hole in your comment. What you said was that you agreed, and then you went on a tangent about the “olden” days of backwards compatability, referencing only Nintendo in doing so. Hell, referencing one optional Nintendo device that people CLEARLY aren’t being convinced to buy, looking at the $20 price you can get it for on some sites.

                  But again, your flawed argument wasn’t my point in the above comment. I was only stating that you can’t jump to defend yourself when there was clearly a flaw that somebody pointed out.

                  • When did I ever specify Nintendo? I spoke about a Nintendo controller in a new sentence? Oh the whole comment must be about Nintendo then

        • KevinSchimes

          There never was a day of true backwards compatability. The Wii U is about as BC as you can get, next to the PS2 and if you wanna stretch it the PS3 (only because of the early PS2 BC and that whole Guitar Hero controller fiasco). The Pro Controller was necessary IMO because we finally have a true, non-gimmick controller for any Wii U game. The Classic Controller and CCPro both needed a WiiMote, and the GamePad as much as I love it is a gimmick. Even the sponsored GC controllers need a WiiMote or (if we’re talking original GC controllers) an adapter that Nintendo made to shut up whining fans because GC controller is the best evar!!1 for some reason. Besides, if you hadn’t noticed, practically any game that uses the Wii U Pro Controller allows Classic Controllers too; Nintendo for some reason loves throwing away possible money for the sake of giving you as much choice as possible in controller selection. They’ve done the exact opposite of what you said in that regard.

          If you can name a time when any console was fully BC in every way, please tell me because I’m drawing a blank outside of the Wii and Wii U. Most consoles stop at emulation and in the PS2’s case memory card support.

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