When my fiancee tells her friends that she’s engaged to a fairly devoted gamer she is almost universally met with reticence; those ‘I feel sorry for you’ little smiles, vacant head bobs and the ubiquitous ‘oh… that’s, um, cool’.
This is because, even though G4 Tech TV, Spike and the Sci-Fi channel would have you believe otherwise, we are not mainstream. Realize that even though you know more gamers today than you ever have in your life, the majority of our country still asks if we use Nintendo Tapes(???) for our xBoxen. We are gaining momentum, yes. Our industry is becoming a huge cash generator and more people than ever are joining the cause, but we’re not at the point just yet where more than 10% of the populace doesn’t think of us as basement dwelling dweebs.
I have heard, both directly and indirectly, that I:
- Seem too much like an adult to be a gamer
- Am too ‘smart’ to like video games
- Look like a linebacker, not a nerd
- Am surprisingly mature for a gamer
- Make too much money to like toys
The obvious deficiency in these statements (linebacker?) doesn’t need to be discussed, neither does the ignorance they betray. What does, however, need discussion is the fact that we, as gamers, are viewed in a very specific light by the ‘outside’ world. What needs to be discussed even further is the fact that it is 100% our fault.
Boo. Hiss. Blasphemer! n00b! h4x!!!
Look, I know you’re cool. I really think so. I’ve likely popped your head off a few times in UT but you got me back in COD. We hang. I lose to you in Catan almost every night. The above statement isn’t actually about you. It’s about those that represent us to the public.
The funny thing is, it isn’t actually the real public I am talking about. My mother doesn’t know who Phil Harrison is. My fiancee, who herself is a badass Gears Girl, would glaze over if I told her that Peter Moore made some crazy announcement. And Reggie? This post is actually about Reggie.
Reggie thinks we’re idiots. He has to. It’s either that or he hasn’t yet finished the fourth grade.
Seeing as I have an implicit trust in Nintendo’s desire, and absolute ability, to make a lot of money from its sometimes rabid fanbase, I have to give some sort of purchase to the idea that its new ‘Everyone’s a gamer’ approach might also be steeped in planning and forethought.
That said, am I the only one who heard Reggie say that the Wii Zapper would be packaged with Mario Kart Wii? That is what he said. I have been reading/writing/speaking this language for pretty much most of my 28 years on this island Earth and there was absolutely no denying that this is what he said.
“… and like the Wii Zapper, the Wii Wheel will come packaged with Mario Kart software!”
Are there going to be two versions? Do I have to pick the Zapper version or the Wheel version? Will both come in one gigantic pack? Why would I want the zapper for Mario Kart?
“But Don, that is not what he meant at all. Of course the Zapper isn’t coming packed in with Mario Kart. That’s just plain stupid. You are taking his statement out of context.”
Yes, I realize that is not what he meant. Yes, that would be completely stupid. No, I am not taking his statement out of context. The sentence immediately preceding:
“Like the Wii Zapper, this custom steering wheel has the potential to level the track for beginners while offering a new feel even if you started racing with Mario Kart 15 years ago.”
This statement confirms it! Just as the Wii Zapper has this potential (and thus gets the pack-in treatment), so to does the Wii Wheel! There is no other reason to outline the leveled playing field or new feel for Mario Kart players, right?
Now we’re divided. Some of you get where I am going with this. Others think I am just picking apart Reggie’s statements to make myself feel smart. The fact of the matter is, however, that I feel exactly like the idiot Reggie thinks I am.
You see Nintendo doesn’t actually give a shit about me. I have the terrible feeling that it doesn’t actually give a shit about you either. Nintendo gives a shit about Nintendo. This is its right, of course, as a free enterprise in a capitalist society, but I have staunchly defended Nintendo since I was a child and feel, as many of you, some sort of bond with the company and its product line.
Fan service isn’t ‘revolutionizing’ the industry with a console woefully unable to connect to the rest of the world. Fan service isn’t producing franchise games and sequels just because you know they will be bought. Fan service is definitely not speaking to your fanbase – more appropriately those people who will be making business decisions that will directly impact your fanbase – like you don’t give a fuck about what you’re saying.
Don’t get caught up with the single (though completely viable) screw-up mentioned here. Reggie is a goddamned FONT of grammatical, factual and directional error. When he speaks I hear only that he is doing the least work possible to get by. I hear him rambling on, inappropriate pauses to give hollow weight to what amounts to absolutely bullshit phrases. I hear a total disregard to the very people who pay for his terribly fitting suits, Frankenstein hair gel and lavish executive lunches.
Do we buy this shit? Are we really this stupid? Can Reggie really stand up there, say whatever the hell comes to mind and be supported in his expectation that it really doesn’t matter; that we’ll just listen, smile and throw money at him?
If you think I am being nitpicky, please go to your local YouTube and type in his name. After two or three attempts at spelling it correctly (don’t worry, you’ll get results with any spelling), you will find a goldmine of bullshit. I suggest shortly thereafter searching for video of our fair president. I think you will see that they are not unlike one another in their utter inability to actually give a flying fuck about those that put them in power.