Hundreds of games are made every year. Massive, AAA games. Indie games, mobile games, and all kinds of games in between.
Most games are eagerly eaten up by one market or the other. There's a clear consumer base for most games. But every once in a while, a special game comes along. It's not a hit with most people, some might even think it's stupid. But it hits all the right notes with a small group of individuals. Games with tiny, niche fanbases like this are usually very special. Near and dear to the hearts of those that played it. Usually it's just a one-off game, not even a series. Sometimes it has a sequel or two. Sometimes the fans eagerly await the rumored sequel with bated breath.
And sometimes the company responsible for it decides that they need to shit all over everything and fuck everything up for everyone.
I am very upset.
This is not good. This is not good at all.
One of my favorite Gamecube games, Chibi-Robo, has gotten a new sequel. It's had a few in the past, which tried but never quite lived up to the original. The original Chibi-Robo was a weird little game. But it had really smart game design choices, and it had a heart. It was a shame that they could never quite recapture the same spirit of the original.
So Nintendo got the bright idea to turn its failing game series around with Chibi-Robo Zip Lash for the 3DS. Yeah, let's just take this very niche game that people really loved and make it into a big-time seller everyone will love!
NO. THIS IS NOT HOW YOU FUCKING DO IT NINTENDO. THIS IS NOT RIGHT. YOU CAN'T JUST FUCKING DO THAT. YOU CAN'T TAKE A BELOVED GAME CHARACTER AND SHIT ALL OVER HIM IN THIS WAY.
Chibi-Robo isn't my beloved little robot with a heart of gold anymore. He's a sham. He sold out, man. With his fucking PEZ CANDY. PEZ is paying him the big fucking dollars now. He doesn't need to care about helping people anymore. Character development, what? No, he's got big money now. Cheebs is rolling in the dough. He spends his time snorting crack off of the most expensive hookers he can buy. He's got trophy wives, literal ones. He buys attractive women and has them solidified in solid gold. They die, but it's a beautiful thing. Until they start to smell at least. But that's what FEBREZE BRAND AIR FRESHENER IS FOR, RIGHT? BROUGHT TO YOU BY CHIBI FUCKING ROBO MOTHER FUCKER.
Zip Lash is honestly not too bad of a game. It's nothing special, but it's tolerable. It's uninspired, and unoriginal. But I mean, your kids probably won't know any better. If you hate your kids, definite recommendation.
It's a platformer, like Nintendo is famous for. Jump around, collect shit. Use the little plug on your butt to solve simple puzzles. Fight enemies by aggressively whipping them with your butt plug. You collect trash sometimes and need to plug into random outlets to charge up, JUST LIKE CHIBI-ROBO DOES.
It's honestly okay. There's some weird gameplay things, but it's okay. It feels soulless though. Nothing really stands out about it, it just feels generic. It feels like they had a checklist of what makes a good platformer and what makes something "Chibi-Robo".
It's like the Adam Sandler movie of Nintendo games. Anyone that knows better will think this game is shit, but most people would be able to play through this and think it was decent. Meanwhile Nintendo gets by on shipping out a shit game stuffed with product placement and cashes in on a literal piece of shit with a junk food advertisement stuffed inside.
I don't usually mind product placement, but in Chibi-Robo of all things? It feels abrupt and weird. It doesn't feel natural at all. When I first saw a treasure chest open and fucking PEZ flew out at me, I was confused and scared. I wanted to laugh, but I wanted to scream. It was uncomfortable, like when a waiter jerks off in your drink but you're out having Mother's Day brunch with your mom. You don't really wanna say anything, you don't want to ruin her special day. You don't wanna say "Hey, don't nut in my orange juice" in front of your mom.
Nintendo has done product placement well in other games. Pikmin 2, one of my favorite Nintendo games, uses it pretty well. It feels more fitting. But Chibi-Robo is supposedly environmentally friendly and shit now, since when would he support big business? All those plastic bags and wrappers from the junk food he's collecting, is he gonna properly dispose of that? It never shows him throwing it out. It never shows if he's recycling them.
Chibi-Robo is a fraud. He only cares about the environment for the tax write-offs. He's a greedy corporate pig.
One of the stupidest mechanics in the game is the "Destination Wheel". You can't pick which level you play, you spin a wheel to randomly choose. And if you can't roll the right number, you play a level that you already played.
And the easy way to make the wheel land on the right number? Use the coins you collected to purchase the correctly numbered panels to replace the ones you don't want.
Cheebs is looking to milk you of every cent he can. He started from the bottom, cleaning the floor with a toothbrush and helping a dysfunctional family reconnect. And now look at the monster he's become. He wouldn't even let you choose what level to play without paying his tax.
Nintendo has stated that if Cheebs doesn't get his act together, this could be his last game. And though the thought of losing a loved one initially filled me with dread... I welcome it now.
This is not the Chibi-Robo I once knew. This is not the happy little robot I once loved. Now he's just someone that I used to know.
Put the bullet in his head, Nintendo. End it. Can't you see he's suffering? Success has ruined him, he was a one-hit wonder. He doesn't know where to go from here. Let him die. Let him leave with whatever shred of dignity he has left, before it's all gone. It's all downhill from here for him. He's gonna shoot up some heroin and die in a pool of his own blood and vomit after slitting a prostitutes neck and fucking her corpse. End it before he crosses that line.
I'm begging you.