About two weeks ago I read an article over on Eurogamer that made a little concerned for an aspect of the future that I am not actively a part of. It's about Nintendo's amiibo figurines. Up until now, or the now that was two weeks ago, I had mentally put amiibos in a category of physical objects that could interact with specific video games to bring about some type of cosmetic change. I knew that these figurines were designed with the Wii U in mind and that the New 3DS had an amiibo reader in the handset, but before writing this article, I didn't know that there was a separate reader that could be connected to the standard 3DS.
Oddly enough, now knowing that I had a system that was compatible with these little figures made them somewhat desirable. But then knowing that the figures only work with certain games came back to the forefront and the game where they have the most effect is Super Smash Bros. which is a game that I've found that I don't really like.
The point of today, is that the use of an amiibo, granted that the Wolf Link amiibo being the one in question, is that it's currently being packaged in a bundle with the HD release of The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess will allow access to an otherwise inaccessible dungeon created for this re-release. Presumably this amiibo bundle will not be the only way to buy the Wolf Link Amibo, but what I've found disturbing is linking (no, not intentional) the ability to access features that are already in the game is limited to people who have this particular figurine. That does not sit well with me.
Now, most amiibos that are in production sell for about $12-20, but there are a handful over on eBay that are upwards of $70, but surprisingly, at least for me, most range between $10-20. Will that new exclusive dungeon be worth that $12-20 price tag, which what it amounts to is a $12-20 DLC that comes with a free figurine. Although I assume that Nintendo might offer the dungeon as a paid DLC that doesn't require the use of the Wolf Link amiibo
What my fear is, is that the HD Twilight Princess bundle will be a limited run thing, and then you will have to buy the Wolf Link amiibo like a normal person and I just hope that there isn't a run on Wolf Link, otherwise that price is going to jump due to people buying places out of their stock and then scalping them like Iggy Koopa looking for his next fix.
And after some additional reading, I see that something similar will be happening with the upcoming Mega Man Legacy Collection, when you "Use the original Mega Man amiibo™ or new gold Mega Man amiibo™ to unlock 11 Nintendo 3DS exclusive challenges." Sigh. I guess I'm just/still an old curmudgeon stuck in his ways of viewing and playing video games.
Although this does remind me of the hubbub from a while back about physical game discs that require an additional DLC-type purchase in order to access the content that is already on the physical disc. But at least in the case of Super Smash Bros., Nintendo was smart about not allowing the use of amiibos when players fight each other online as that would lead them into the dreaded pit of Paid-2-Win.
But you know what? In the end, I think I'm okay with some of the uses of amiibos. Cosmetic changes in games? Sure. In-game buffs that aren't compatible with online play? Yeah, okay. Show the locations of hidden items? Why not! What I'm not okay with is making exclusive content accessible only to people who have a particular amiibo, especially if amiibos have a limited run and don't forever come packaged with the game. Their use for Mario Maker is perfect.
Yeah, I'm a curmudgeon. No doubt about it.
I'm going to go play with my abacus now. Psshhh. Calculators.