Believe me, I know how strange this will sound to some people. After all, isn’t Nintendo this insufferably family friendly company that always shies away from controversy, to the point of censoring even religious icons during the NES and SNES generations? It’s easy enough to understand why something like the GTA series represents everything that offends SJWs, but how can a goodie two shoes company like Nintendo be labeled anti-SJW? The answer only serves to expose the fanatical and near-totalitarian mindset of those we label social justice warriors, as well as explain Nintendo’s staying power.
Let’s begin with a reality check: Nintendo has long since corrected some of their worst NES/SNES-era censorship excesses. While even a game like Super Castlevania IV saw a bunch of crosses deleted in its Western release, the N64 Castlevanias (tremendously underrated games by the way) included explicit religious references, including a scene where the protagonist prevents an unusual, kind-hearted vampire from killing herself because “God forbids suicide”.
Meanwhile, the supposedly “kiddy” N64 boasted most of the best console First Person Shooters of its generation, and not just moderately violent classics like Goldeneye and Perfect Dark either but outright gorefests like Turok 2. Today, Nintendo is the company to thank for the brutal and sexy Bayonetta 2 being completed, as lead producer Hideki Kamiya readily acknowledged. They’re still family friendly, but they also understand that they have a lot of adult fans nowadays.
Nintendo Vs Social Justice Warriors
The fact that Nintendo primarily cares about games being fun is obviously “problematic”—after all, this implies that the game’s “message” is secondary at best, which certainly will not be sufficient when your goal is indoctrinating people. That’s why the infamous Devin Wilson’s Gamasutra blog post about Ending Gamers took a strong anti-fun stance. And while SJWs talk a big game about inclusivity, games that genuinely appeal to all demographics isn’t actually what they want, because that could mean Conservative Christians or MRAs might enjoy those games too.
Indeed, not only is the personal political, games also need to take a stand in the culture war, which a controversy-averse, family friendly company like Nintendo has nothing to gain from. As such, the big Nintendo games all shy away from the culture war and politics altogether, which frankly works to their benefit—even joke-heavy games like Super Paper Mario and Kid Icarus: Uprising manage to deliver tons of laughs without ever becoming political, and the likes of Mario and Zelda maintain their universal appeal by focusing on being fun, as opposed to telling people what to believe about specific issues. This might seem like a perfectly Neutral stance to normal people, but SJWs are as we know “special”.
If gamergate has taught us anything, it’s that these people don’t respect neutrality—hell, they don’t even believe it really exists. To them, everything is a statement. Mario, Link and Samus being “white” is a statement. The lack of openly gay characters is a statement. And of course, Peach and Zelda having to be rescued by male heroes is an incredibly “problematic” statement—so says Anita Sarkeesian, who funnily enough never complains about constantly being protected by online white knights and a male-dominated gaming press. As such, SJWs have lately complained about a whole bunch of recent Nintendo games:
- Fire Emblem: Awakening got grief for not allowing gay couples (nevermind that this completely misses the in-game purpose of pairing up characters)
- Pokemon X & Y still not having gay Pokemon also annoyed SJWs (nevermind that this would only serve to make breeding more annoying)
- Tomodachi Life’s lack of a gay marriage option caused a huge controversy, spawning the incredibly obnoxious “Miiquality” campaign.
- Mario Kart 8 got slammed for not having any characters of color (apparently now the Mii doesn’t count – possibly because SJWs are incapable of even unlocking it)
- Hyrule Warriors ran afoul of SJWs because the female villain Cia was too scantily dressed (do these people even remember the N64 Great Fairies?)
- Smash Bros. 4 was met with a lot of whining because of Zero Suit Samus, everything from her new “heels” to her skimpy alternate outfit causing SJWs to rage hard.
- Mario and Zelda games in general are obviously very “problematic”
And that’s before we get into third party Wii U exclusives like The Wonderful 101 and Bayonetta 2, both of which have been targeted directly by Anita Sarkeesian. At this points even Nintendo Demos are targeted—this gem was literally published while I was writing this article.
What really makes Nintendo an anti-SJW hero isn’t the fact that the company is frequently attacked by them but the way they respond. With the exception of the “Miiquality” debacle (which was picked up and amplified by the mainstream media) they’ve consistently ignored their complaints, exposing SJW’s as the lunatic fringe minority that they are while showing other companies that appealing to their actual fans rather than appeasing fake gamers is still a viable approach.
Sometimes they’ve outright trolled SJW’s. Shortly after both Sarkeesian and her puppet master Jonathan McIntosh panned Bayonetta 2 for its “objectification” and use of the “male gaze”, Nintendo announced that they were teaming up with Playboy to promote the game. Palutena’s so-called Stripper Pole Taunt in Smash Bros. 4 might as well represent Nintendo taunting SJWs.
It’s also worth reminding people that the gamer-hating gaming media hates Nintendo as well, and is constantly rooting against them. Just a few months after the 3DS’ somewhat disappointing launch the first articles proclaiming it dead started appearing, but that still pales in comparison to the hostile coverage the Wii U received.
Articles about Nintendo being doomed have also been as ridiculously common as they are ridiculous, especially considering how Nintendo quite recently enjoyed the most successful console generation any gaming company has ever experienced, with the Wii and DS selling more than 250 million systems in total. (Why Sony, a company that seems to be losing billions every year, never receives this kind of treatment from the gaming press might be an interesting topic for another article.)
Thankfully, Nintendo is responding in kind by essentially bypassing the corrupt gaming media middle man and delivering news directly to their fans, with their aptly named Nintendo Directs. The fact that they’re even becoming more eager to provide Demos of some of their biggest games also suggests that they wish to reduce the need for the consumer to rely on these discredited gatekeepers.
Erik Kain once indirectly pointed out how gamergate represents not just a Culture War, but also a Culture Clash, since Japanese-developed games were apparently seen as deeply sexist by many writers in the West. Nintendo and Sony are both Japanese companies, but Sony often comes across as very Westernized, leaving Nintendo as easily the most archetypical Japanese company of the Big 3, with casual political incorrectness and fondness for fanservice in all forms being part of that package.
This might annoy and even enrage the PC Police, but I suspect it reflects the sensibility of most gamers far better than the far-left gaming press. To paraphrase George Orwell: “In a time of universal SJW slacktivism, focusing on fun is a revolutionary act”.
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