Project M was an incredibly popular mod of Super Smash Bros. Brawl that shut down development recently due to growing fear that Nintendo was planning to take decisive legal action in the near future. We thought this raised an important issue, so we made it our discussion segment for this week's episode of Nintendo Week, our Nintendo-themed podcast here at Gamnesia. After briefly reviewing Project M's cancellation, we turned to the bigger question: what should Nintendo do when faced with situations like these? Check out the discussion video above for our full thoughts, or keep reading for a brief, brief summary.
The answer we all land upon is that Nintendo should absolutely be okay with projects like these! It's shown for years that it only affects a small number of Nintendo's most dedicated, passionate fans, and it isn't at all hurting what Nintendo does with their officially-sanctioned titles. Moreover it's important for Nintendo to keep their goodwill in an era when they're frustrating YouTubers with their copyright policies and losing a good amount of the positive sentiment they previously had.
Alex takes the conversation much deeper, though, and argues that Nintendo should take inspiration from the PC space and actively embrace projects like these—some of the world's greatest and most popular games exist only because modders worked their magic and the copyright holders approached them positively about it. One need look no further than Dota 2, one of the most popular games in the world right now, which Blizzard spawned off of a fan-made mod. Furthermore, when passionate content creators get scared away from creating games that benefit Nintendo, they're going to make games that take attention away from Nintendo instead. Given that it holds the most beloved IP in the industry, Nintendo's going to be the source of a lot of creative inspiration, and the more they let people like that slip away to create competing games, the faster Nintendo's grasp on the industry will slip away.
Of course, this is only the tip of the iceberg. For more discussion, and a lot of elaboration on the points described above, be sure to listen to the discussion in the video above, or check out this week's episode of Nintendo Week, which is embedded in the blue player below.
If you like this discussion, you can subscribe to Nintendo Week on iTunes, where we release new episodes every Wednesday. If you don't like long-form podcasts, you can subscribe to us on YouTube, where our discussion segments are uploaded on Thursdays, and these select snippets from the rest of the podcast—which we call NWC—are uploaded throughout the week. If you like what you hear, we'd love it if you leave us a review on iTunes, where you can find episodes covering tons of other subjects, or send us your feedback! We'd love to know what you think of the show, and how you think we can improve it.