Oh, Nintendo, how much I love you. I really do, the quality of their games, particularly their first party games, is usually outstanding. As a company I respect the way that they often operate in ways which they consider to be the best, following their own philosophy of gaming, despite this often being against the prevailing industry opinion. I like the way that they often refuse to bow to populist fads and pressure; they are often market creators rather than followers. This love, however, is often hard won because Nintendo often make it extremely difficult to love them as they have picked up a few corporate habits which are infuriating even for hard core fans. Firstly, I get incredibly frustrated by their product launches. I, alongside many others, faithfully bought my DS and then 3DS shortly after their release date, only to be later infuriated by the release of newer versions of both consoles after a comparatively short amount of time. There are 3 versions of the DS. Within a short time of the 3DS’ release we bore witness to the 3DS XL. Nintendo have an awful habit of releasing up-dates after a year or so or slashing prices after a few months making you feel like a complete idiot for forking out full price for a console which became either updated or much cheaper. The price cuts are a result of the next Nintendo gripe that I have. The launches of their consoles are usually weak. They very rarely launch a console with a strong line-up of quality games, sometimes even with no new first party titles at all. Sales are therefore slow and prices get cut. Even a hardened fan will feel let down if they are made to feel that they have wasted their money by buying on release days. I know that Nintendo want to make sure their first party titles are of the highest quality and I thank them for it; but would it kill them to have at least one on a new system? Both the WiiU and 3DS have suffered from this problem. The 3DS line up is now excellent with Fire Emblem, Luigi’s Mansion 2 (amongst others) and X and Y on the way (not to mention the new Mariokart and Smash Brothers on the horizon); but the initial launch titles were fairly underwhelming. The WiiU is a similar story. Finally, I always feel that Nintendo have never really got the hang of effective advertising. Many first party titles barely receive any advertisement at all in Europe therefore missing the potential of demonstrating the outstanding games that Nintendo have to offer. The WiiU has been let down badly by Nintendo’s marketing strategies in Europe. Not enough was put into making sure that people understood the concept of the console and why they should pay money for the Wii upgrade. All of these factors combine to give Nintendo a worse reputation than they deserve. As a huge fan, I find this disappointing as they deserve so much more. I can forgive these foibles. This is the company that gave us Pokemon and a legion of other insanely excellent games and franchises. I just wish that Nintendo would sometimes make it easier to love them.