I love Nintendo and always have. They created a slew of franchises that helped me fall in love with video games and those same franchises continue to excite me to this day. But not everyone feels that way. In fact, some people feel that Nintendo has been releasing the same game over and over again for years – if not decades – and I don’t really understand that.
If it weren’t for Nintendo, gaming likely wouldn’t exist today. At the very least, it wouldn’t exist in the same fashion. We wouldn’t have Playstation and we certainly wouldn’t have Xbox. If you ask me, video games would be relegated to the PC if it weren’t for Nintendo’s efforts to revitalize the gaming industry like it did with the original Nintendo Entertainment System.
Atari’s buyout by Warner was the beginning of the end. Video games were being spun off like some “toy of the year”. A fad and nothing more. But those within the video game industry saw video games as an entertainment pillar – similar to that of the music and film industries.
After the fallout caused by Atari and its suitors, Nintendo quite literally saved gaming. The NES hardware was second to none in the console space and the creative minds at Nintendo knew how to make the most compelling content for that hardware. This is how we became blessed with the pillar franchises: Super Mario Bros, Legend of Zelda, and Metroid.
Perhaps more important is the trend that Nintendo established with the sequels to these landmark games. Super Mario Bros. received a drastically different sequel in North America. As did The Legend of Zelda and Metroid. And this trend has never changed (with only a few exceptions). Each subsequent game that Nintendo releases tries something new while retaining some familiar aspects (such as graphics, characters, and themes). But not one is exactly like the last.
Yet there are these Nintendo “haters” who insist that Nintendo only “rehashes” the same games over and over again. This statement only proves that these people haven’t been playing Nintendo’s games. If you think that The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword is simply a rehash of Ocarina of Time, you’re simply insane. Both games do many things differently while still retaining the core that makes a Zelda game a Zelda game. The same can be said about just about any other Nintendo game. And don’t try to tell me that Metroid Prime is a rehash of Metroid 1. Or Smash Bros for Wii U is a rehash of Smash for N64. That is simply incorrect.
I wanted to discuss this because you see hypocrisy like this all the time – even outside of Nintendo. Take Call of Duty for example people have been complaining about the franchise going stale for a long time. They claim that each game is just more of the same. Yet when a new entry does branch out and tries new things (see Advanced Warfare or Infinite Warfare), people are bashing it for being different. I don’t get it to be honest.
What do you think? Are Nintendo’s (or anyone else’s) games unjustly considered rehashes of previous titles? Which titles truly deserve to be called a “rehash”? Sound off in the comments!