What is “L is Real 2401”?

I guess we’ll have to wait 384 years to see what this cryptic message means.


#576 – L Is Real. Those 3 mysterious words have echoed in our minds since the Nintendo 64 days, where they showed up in Super Mario 64 and later in Ocarina of Time. But the question still stands: what does it mean? This video goes out to Crew member Rachel!

Footage credit: The Easter Egg Hunter
“Escape the Premises” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0
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Which Button Am I Pressing? (Blindfolded!)

You’re really pressing my buttons.


Are you so familiar with Nintendo controllers that you could recognize individual buttons without looking?! That’s exactly what Simeon and Scott are attempting today, while blindfoldedly shoving fingers into gaming input devices. Who will win?

“Escape the Premises” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0
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N64 Classic Edition Wish List

What’s next… GameBoy… or VIRTUAL BOY?!


#561 – As Reggie once said, Nintendo fans are “insatiable.” We really can’t deny it. As soon as we learned the NES Classic Edition was being made, we celebrated alright… but fans quickly turned their focus to the prospect of a Super Nintendo Entertainment System reboot. And now that we’re getting THAT this holiday, what else could we think about besides the Nintendo 64? So many must-plays debuted in 64 bits that the list practically writes itself. Watch us read off our picks for inclusion!

Footage credit: Diddy Kong Racing Wizpig Race – William5000000 | F-Zero X – arronmunroe | Goldeneye 007 – CasaRetro | Paper Mario – NomComms | Pokemon Snap – DazzaBound

“Escape the Premises” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
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Why I Love Nintendo

Contrary to popular opinion from the outside, being a Nintendo fan is not always mushrooms and sunshine. It can be unforgiving, inviting ridicule from fellow gamers, the gaming community, message board commenters, and even friends and family. But being a Nintendo fan is always worth it for me, which leads to the question I get a lot: Why Do You Like Nintendo?

From Sega to Nintendo

My gaming history stretches back to the glorious 16-bit Console Wars between the Nintendo and Sega. I owned both, but I got more use out of my Sega Genesis because kids at school would make fun of me if they knew I liked Nintendo. Sega was cool. Sega was hip. Sonic was fast with attitude and Mario was slow and boring. Secretly, I liked Nintendo as well, but my heart was with Sega. I also owned a Nintendo 64, but I had a Sega Saturn as well and that was my priority. This lasted all the way until the Dreamcast was discontinued, and my gaming tastes defaulted back to Big N.

The current console at that time was the GameCube, which ended up being Nintendo’s second lowest selling home console in history. Sony’s PlayStation brand and Microsoft’s Xbox were the new hip kids on the block, and Nintendo was accused of being a kiddie machine. Outside of a few games that were geared towards a mature gamer – like the then-GCN exclusive Resident Evil 4, Geist and a few others… the GameCube got most of its milage out of family friendly games. If you didn’t like twenty Mario Party games, the GameCube was not for you.

But it was during this era something was rekindled inside me. While Sony and Microsoft began to push online gaming, Nintendo doubled down and continued to focus on the fun of couch multiplayer – games you can play with friends in person and have a blast.

During the very successful Wii era, Nintendo’s dedication to multiplayer games was at its peak. Wii Sports, perhaps the best pack-in game ever, was a prime example of the kind of fun video games could represent. Despite how much it can be ridiculed now, I defy anyone to say that their first few times playing Wii Sports was not fun. It was a lot of fun. That’s what propelled the Wii to sales of over 100 million worldwide.

The Wii U somewhat faltered in this aspect, but the new Switch console has put a heavy emphasis on it again, with games like Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, ARMS and Splatoon 2 all out within the first few months of the system’s debut. Gaming is fun again.

Soooo, Why Do I Love Nintendo?

All that being said, I love Nintendo because, to me, it just represents a good time. When I think of the PlayStation 4 or the Xbox One, I think of shooters like Call of Duty or games like Grand Theft Auto. I’m not saying those games have no worth, or that they aren’t entertaining or even visually astounding… but when I want to just have a fun time with friends, or a game I can just pick up and play at any given moment without an investment of 40 hours a week I choose Nintendo. Gaming shouldn’t always feel like a chore where I am punching a time clock to advance.

Certainly, Nintendo does have games that fall into that category. The recent and highly-reviewed The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild does for sure as it is an adventure game much in the style of Skyrim, but where I feel Nintendo separates itself from its competitors is how that genre of games isn’t all they have. There are more than just adventure and sports games on the Switch this year. There is also fun.

Take a very simple game like Snipperclips, a co-op puzzle game in which you play as pieces of paper and you have to snip each other in order to match certain shapes or get objects from one side of the screen to the other. It sounds simple enough, but its magic is in the gameplay. I haven’t had so much fun in a co-op game in a long time… it was fun, funny, and charming – and challenging as well, as the game progressed. It’s a game that you and your significant other can play, or your younger sibling or cousin. It is the epitome of what beloved Nintendo President Satoru Iwata always believed video games should be – It’s fun for everyone.

Nintendo’s roster of happy characters and cute enemies just bring a smile to my face. I’ve used this word before, but looking at the E3 trailer for the upcoming Super Mario Odyssey is just pure magic. It is what I call “Nintendo Magic.” Playing their games can make anyone forget their troubles for an amount of time and make everyone feel like a kid again. Personally speaking, I struggle with depression and anxiety, so my choice to play games of this nature is not only a preference but a very meaningful choice as well. Nintendo makes me smile.

Their first-party games are consistently of very high quality. Sometimes their franchises don’t progress enough, but then they hit you with a Breath of the Wild or a Super Mario Odyssey, which completely changes your expectations and takes you by surprise. And I will never get tired of them.

Standing Strong

It isn’t easy being a Nintendo fan. When the two other major consoles are blowing the doors off the building with the latest Call of Duty, Metro or Assassin’s Creed games, Nintendo creates buzz with Mario or cartoonish characters like in ARMS. This comes with a price, because Nintendo and their fans are easy targets. Buying some Nintendo content can result in a mocking comment from a cashier – a friend recently told of a McDonald’s cashier laughing when he went to order a Mario Happy Meal toy to complete his collection. Playing Nintendo games can mean ridicule from people who like to point out that Nintendo’s consoles dating back to the Wii have not been in the same league as competing systems as far as power and graphics.

All of this, though, can make fans even more dedicated. There is a reason that small groups popped up around the world in major cities for 3DS gamers to swap streetpasses and puzzle pieces and play Mario Kart 7 with each other. There is a reason why holding a meet-up for the newest Animal Crossing game attracted more than dozens of people at every stop during a Nintendo Mall Tour. There is a reason why VANS made a very successful line of Nintendo themed shoes last summer. There is a reason why people love their franchises so much that just a simple title card for Metroid Prime 4 at E3 made the internet meltdown in a frenzy of wild, screaming excitement. There is a reason why people love the company so much that even PR reps (like Bill Trinen or Kit and Krysta from Nintendo Minute) are elevated to near-celebrity status. There is a reason that Nintendo can get away with having one single retail store in New York City and fans will travel from all over to visit it as if they were going to Disney World. The ridicule and snubbing we tend to get from other gamers and game publishers who skip developing games for Nintendo systems just makes me feel like connecting with other Nintendo fans is a major event. We are a community of fans who feel slighted in one way or another, and it makes us feel like we are all in this together. It is so much fun to get in a group of fellow fans and just talk about anything and everything. Attending a Nintendo Switch Preview Event in Chicago this past February was fun in part because of trying out the then-yet-to-be-released system, but largely because of being surrounded by fans, talking about games, seeing people dressed up in Nintendo cosplay, and just being one with the excited community. It was not unlike the feeling you get going to a Comic-Con – it just felt right.

Nintendon’t Sometimes, and That’s Okay

This is not to say that competing systems don’t have dedicated communities or “fun” games, nor does it mean that Nintendo is perfect and doesn’t have any faults. But Nintendo doesn’t play by anyone’s rules but their own. Sometimes that can be a bad thing, but I feel it is mostly a positive. They focus on fun, they focus on being together, and they focus on gaming together. There is a level of fun that online playing just can’t compete in comparison to couch multiplayer. Hitting someone with a red shell in Mario Kart, or stealing all of their stars in Mario Party may be the source of “ruined friendship” memes, but the competition of playing right next to a friend is just a level of satisfaction that can’t be matched. Even though I enjoy a fair share of “mature” games, I will almost always choose the fun of Super Mario Odyssey over the carnage of a Grand Theft Auto. And I will definitely choose a company that will always continue to offer those games to me even when they offer the M-rated stuff.

The Nintendo Magic is why I fell in love with Nintendo. It’s why I put up with some of their occasionally questionable decisions. Their games, characters, and universe just never cease to make me smile and it makes me happy… and isn’t that what gaming is supposed to be about?


Eric “Flapjack” Ashley has been a Nintendo fan for almost his entire life! While he also has a special place in his heart for Sega, it is Nintendo that gets him worked up and the franchises that capture his imagination and wonder. Flapjack is hopelessly in love with Animal Crossing. When he is not playing video games, he is a social media guru, assisting numerous organizations with their outreach and promotions, and he is also a big horror movie buff. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram: @flapjackashley.

Video Game Pricing Through the Ages

No wonder Nintendo has so much money!


#537 – Video games… kind of an expensive hobby, no? Ever wondered if gaming used to cost more back in the day, or if the prices have only gone up? When you take inflation of the US dollar into account, the information is quite interesting!

“Escape the Premises” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0
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N64 Masterpiece: Super Mario 64

I’m still trying to figure out how we skipped from Super Mario 3 to Super Mario 64…


#517 – Super Mario 64 is a landmark game – a revolution in our industry. And recently, we had a young viewer named Rachel who watches our channel faithfully who asked us to “focus on some Mario games that people don’t talk about anymore, like SM64 and SM64 DS.” So that’s exactly what we’re going to do today! Watched some footage as we discuss this incredible step forward in 3D gaming, and see if you don’t have the urge to go and pick up your old three-pronged controller! Footage credit: Super Mario 64 – Matthewmatosis

“Escape the Premises” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0
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My Parents Are the Bomb (at Dr. Mario)!

Went back home to get schooled!


#512 – After such a bragging episode that came yesterday, it’s time for Scott to get his humble pie and get owned by his gamer parents! Dr. Mario is right up their alley; experienced virus-busters that they are.

“Escape the Premises” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
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Why We Are Nintendo Fans

Because Nintendo does what everywon’t.


When is the last time you stopped and asked yourself the question: Why AM I a Nintendo fan? That’s exactly what we’re doing on the NF YouTube channel today – join in the comments!

“Escape the Premises” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
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Yamauchi and His Enemies

The Iron Fist in the Silk Glove.


Hiroshi Yamauchi was one of Nintendo’s former presidents, who oversaw the company through its formative years of becoming a video game powerhouse. His leadership style was harsh, and his legacy is controversial. He was a very different man than Iwata or Kimishima that we have come to know and love, so let’s take a look at how he differed and how he helped Nintendo become what it is today.

“Escape the Premises” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
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How Switch Combines Past Systems

No idea why they didn’t mention the Virtual Boy at all…


The Nintendo Switch is the product of over 30 years of hardware manufacturing. Its designers learned a lot along the way, and have kept the best features of each console that proceeded it. The result is a Nintendo system that has a little bit of everything!

“Escape the Premises” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
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Best Nintendo Christmas Present Reactions

Fun exercise for the day: Decide which children depicted in the videos you would adopt into your family.


Ah, Christmas. The most wonderful time of the year. We’re just a few days away from Nintendo fans all over the globe, tearing into neatly wrapped packages of NES Classic Editions, amiibo, and 3DS consoles. Before that time we’d like to take a few moments and reflect on the past, when some of the most excitable kids in existence received their own Nintendo gifts that left an unforgettable mark on history. We have these children to thank for entertaining us with their over-the-top displays of joy and gratitude. Let’s get in the Christmas spirit and eagerly anticipate the joy that Nintendo gifts bring!

Shot by Alex Campbell

“Escape the Premises” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
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There was A Mario Paint 3D?!

As we always love to remind you, look up the Donald Trump / Mario face-puller mash-up.


Another canceled game from the mysterious mind of Miyamoto has come to light! It was an N64 follow-up game to the SNES Mario Paint. How intriguing!

Shot by Alex Campbell

“Escape the Premises” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0
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All Nintendo Console’s Final Games

Depper. Large. These are the words you must put in the title of your game if you want it to be a success in Japan.


Some games get the honor of singing the sweet swan song for their console as it passes into history. We’ve found each game that Nintendo and 3rd parties published last for every console – enjoy!

Shot by Alex Campbell

“Escape the Premises” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
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Which Nintendo Series Evolved Most?

It takes BILLIONS of years for games to get good – duh.


Nintendo and their franchises have been around longer than the two of us, so which series have evolved the most during that time?

Shot by Alex Campbell

“Escape the Premises” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
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Ranking All Nintendo Controllers

I love every Nintendo controller, but some are easily better than others. Today we’ll take a look at my personal ranking of Nintendo’s controllers from best to worst, and the reasoning behind it. Remember, this list is entirely my opinion and yours could be completely different.

 

7. Wii U

Wii U Gamepad

The main problem I have with the Wii U gamepad is when a game gives me the option to use the Wii U Pro Controller, I use the Pro Controller every time. While the touch screen is insanely helpful for a map in Splatoon, or item management in The Legend of Zelda, the gamepad never had a very compelling reason to justify the second screen in my mind. I only ever used the off TV play a handful of times, because the resolution on the gamepad leaves much to be desired.

 

 

6. Nintendo 64

 

 

The Nintendo 64 controller was designed for people with 3 hands. I only ever knew of a few games that even used the D-Pad because it was located off to the side, but I loved the control stick and the Z-button as a trigger was amazing.

 

 

 

5. NES

NES-Controller-Flat

Simple. Clean. Classic. It doesn’t get much easier than this. The fact that almost anyone can pick up an NES controller and play because of its simplicity is amazing. Truly a monumentous achievement when your original controller still holds up so well today. The only thing holding this one back is the square design. While it looks amazing, it can become uncomfortable to hold during extended play sessions.

 

 

 

4. Virtual Boy

Only used to its full potential a couple times, but easily the best part of the console. The L and R buttons located on the back is fantastic and the dual D-pad was great for added control. Created with a mirrored design meant that games that only used one D-pad let the players pick which one they wanted to use, so whether you were left or right handed you could pick what felt comfortable.

 

 

 

3. Wii

242196-nintendo-wii-remote-plus

 

Not everyone loves motion control gaming, but the Wii did it right. The controller was designed to be similar to a TV remote for ease of use with all demographics. They nailed it. The main thing I didn’t like about it was the 1 and 2 buttons were far down on the controller, but they were usually used for menus and map anyhow. As an added bonus you can plug in the nunchuck attachment for added control-ability or turn the controller sideways and it essentially becomes an NES controller. Brilliant.

 

 

2. GameCube

 

ABXY? Check. L and R? Check. Dual analog? So close! The main thing holding this controller back in my mind is the tic-tac C-stick. There’s a very good reason it’s many peoples go to controller for Smash Bros. to this day. Very comfortable and great button placement. You could even update your default controller to the Wavebird for wireless gaming.

 

 

 

1. SNES

SNES-Controller-Flat

 

Nintendo took the NES controller and improved on it in every way. Rounded so it was more comfortable, added buttons for more functionality, but still incredibly simple and user friendly. It really doesn’t get any better than this.

 

 

That’s all of them, folks… for now! I can’t wait to see where the NX will end up on this list. Be sure to let me know how your list compares!


Scott and Simeon recently ranked all of Nintendo’s consoles! Check out Part 1 and Part 2 to see how they stack up!

Ranking All Nintendo Consoles Worst to Best (Pt. 2)

It was tough saying one Nintendo console was better than the others.


Today the crew disagrees on the best of what Nintendo has to offer! It’s part 2 of ranking Nintendo’s consoles!

Shot by Alex Campbell

“Reformat” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
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Ranking All Nintendo Consoles Worst to Best (Pt. 1)

We didn’t include the Pokemon Pikachu because… well… It’s embarrassing.


It’s a two-part spectacular! Today, Scott and Simeon agree on the worst of Nintendo’s systems.

Shot by Alex Campbell

“Reformat” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
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Looking Back at the N64DD

Of all the games to port to the N64DD… they picked Sea Man.


Today the Crew revisits floppy disk technology as the talk about the N64DD! US Edition Discovery Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b64Bx0WKh7M

Shot by Alex Campbell

“Reformat” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
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Quoting Star Fox to Strangers

There was one clip that didn’t make it in because there was a tree between Scott and the camera, but he did his Arwing impression and flew right inbetween that Instagram girl and her poor boyfriend!


Join us for a trip through the Lylat system! We are speaking to strangers ONLY on Star Fox quotes!

Shot by Alex Campbell

“Reformat” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
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