Source Gaming will be hosting a LIVE podcast. The podcast will start an hour before the Smash broadcast. During the broadcast, we will mute ourselves so everyone can enjoy listening to Sakurai. Once the broadcast is over we will begin SourceCast # 6.
A Special Guest
Please note: The following is an opinion article. You are allowed to disagree.
With the announcement of the Final Smash Broadcast (10 A.M PT, 7 AM in Japan), I decided it was the perfect time to prophesize the following message: Hype Responsibly.
Note: The original version stated that the “Expand Dong” meme originated from the Smash Bros community. This is false, and has been removed from the article.
(The only acceptable song to listen to while reading this post.)
I don’t want to sound like a big ol’ party pooper, but there’s a difference between being excited about something, and being ‘blindly excited’. Being ‘blindly excited’ for is to let your own imagination run wild without any basis on reality. Of course, everyone has their own bias, but it’s important to recognize it. Since this is mainly a Smash Bros. speculation/ research / community oriented blog; I’m going to talk about Smash in particular. I hope that everyone that reads this remembers the message and applies it for other games/ medium because I think hype culture in its current form is dangerous to our actual enjoyment of products.
Saying that it’s very likely to have 4+ new characters (in addition to Cloud) is just complete ignorance on how long development time takes for each character. Characters take many months to develop, and aren’t just pulled from thin-air. In order to get a deeper understanding of the character development process, I have compiled all the character related stuff Source Gaming has translated in one place. If we get 4+ new characters (in addition to Cloud), I will write a Case for article on any character (that is mentioned in the first comment). Any. Pick the worse one.
If you want to make a good prediction, then you need to do your research. It’s like if I wanted to make predictions about the football league…in a foreign country. I could make a prediction and maybe I would even get some things correct. But I had no basis for my prediction, and in the end it’s total bullshit. Just because you talk about something quite often it doesn’t mean you actually understand it. A lot of people discuss politics but too few actually understand it. Re-tweeting Trump’s latest gaff does not mean you passed Intro to Political Science.
Most people are not interested in talking about ideas. They just want to talk about people, places or things. Most content creators on the Internet don’t talk about what actually goes into the development process of Smash. They/ their audience are far more interested in what character is the center of the spotlight this week. Over the past few months it’s been: Rayman, Shovel Knight, King K. Rool, Wolf, Inklings, Tabuu and now Banjo and Kazooie who are seen as the “shoo-ins”, characters that were most likely to get in, or just the current fan favorite. The community has been moving from one fad to another in terms of character support. Most of the time it’s just based on an idea that “sticks” based on self-imposed fan rules.
I don’t want to insult any fans of characters, but having a realistic expectation of the character’s chances getting into Smash is important. It’s totally fine to love the character that you do, but recognize their weakness in addition to their strengths. Jumping on people just because you don’t like the character isn’t right. You trampling on other characters does not make your favorite character more likely, it just makes you a bully. Far too many times character discussion has turned into a violent shouting match as both parties have been too immature to carry an actual discussion on a character’s chances. It’s been something that we’ve always aimed for in our articles, and the staple of the Case for series. If there’s a primary goal I’ve had with Source Gaming, it’s been to create a deeper and fairer understanding of gaming itself. If fans will continue to be oblivious then the community will simply never mature.
I’ve stated this before on a SourceCast, but the Smash community has been born from hype. It seems that it only knows ‘hype’. After all, we are the community that created the “Wombo Combo” meme. I think hype is an integral part of the Smash fanbase, but there’s no doubt it has suffered from it. Most of the time, we are more interested in having shouting matches and “scoring points” against each other than actual discussion. This is something that I’ve been trying to change through the existence of Source Gaming, and by attempting to lead by example. Sometimes I fail, but I’m working on improving the community and I’d like to think everyone who reads this blog regularly is a believer in that mission.
Rampant hype also destroys sensibilities and drives people who have realistic expectations insane and away from the community. There’s been times where I’ve said, ‘I don’t think that will happen’ and people JUMP on me like I was a ticking time bomb. It makes having a discussion less fun as everyone is looking to attack someone, or at least expect to be attacked for their opinion. This kind of behavior encourages hive-mind thinking and circle jerking, which is just a waste of everyone’s time.
It’s not fun to be on the opposite end of the argument, and I’m sure everyone who is reading this has experienced it sometime. So if you have an opinion that counter-intuitive to the community’s thinking: then you have an obligation to share it. Don’t worry about the down-votes; screw the haters. As long as you are willing to have an actual discussion and not just attack someone then you are entitled to post your opinion. I get it, I’m asking people–who are largely anonymous on the Internet to not be an asshole…which is very unlikely. If I can make a difference in ten people then I figured this article was worth it.
If you want to hear more about Hype Culture, then I strongly suggest: I hate Hype Culture.
If you are going to hype– hype responsibly. Bring a source or two with your hype and good luck.
I’m aware that I’ve been writing a lot of opinion/ culture articles lately. Don’t worry, I have a couple of research projects I’ve been planning but writing these articles have been helping me discover what my own thoughts are on the video game community and video game journalism. I guess you could consider this, Approach to Handling Leaks and Rumors, Why Localization Occurs, Localization and Censorship some of the basis of my own understanding. I’m still maturing as a writer, and my thoughts are subject to change. Anyway, if you want to hear my thoughts on a certain topic then let me know in the comments below.
Mains: Yoshi (64), Game and Watch (Melee), Wario (Brawl), Wario/Pac-Man (Smash for 3DS/Wii U)