Game Reviews Games (not MMOs) 4 Comments

The Short, Uneventful Life of My Mii

Header image was created by Mr. Murf and is pretty great.

Part of being a blogger and podcaster is, ostensibly, keeping up with the latest trends, and so it was that last week I installed the new Nintendo mobile social network, Miitomo. I had some pretty strong moral misgivings about the whole deal, but I figured that 80% of my Twitter feed couldn’t be that wrong, and I hated to miss out on what seemed to be a lot of hat potential.

Indeed, Miitomo is rife with hats. You’re encouraged right from the outset to make a little character that looks like you, and through virtual point stores and Plinko-style games you amass hats and dresses and weird costumes that make you look like a loaf of bread.

The interaction in Miitomo is also quite different. Instead of posting status updates or short tweets, you’re given questions to answer. Sometimes they can be pretty innocuous, like “What do you like about cats?”, whereas other times they’re pretty obviously bait for their intelligence databases, like “What was the last thing that you bought?”. (I mean, clearly all the questions are intelligence-gathering, just some are more blatant than others.) Your Mii hangs out with friend Miis, talking about the people you have in common and sharing information.

And it’s here that I started to feel antagonistic towards Miitomo. The questions it asks can feel pretty personal (“Describe your perfect wedding,” for example) and I’m not necessarily game to share that with every person I know on Twitter and Facebook.

Other times I just don’t have the emotional energy to answer this stuff, much less make it entertaining for an audience. “What’s your definition of friendship?” Man, that’s a pretty heavy question for answering on the bus at 8:30 a.m.. Like, I’ve got things to do, y’know?

On top of it all, it turns out that while I’m not paying attention my Mii is going around to all of my Miitomo friends and asking them to write about my best qualities, an awkward question that I would never actually ask. Hey, nice person who I have interacted with twice on Twitter, let’s talk about why I’m so awesome now! It’s so terribly not Canadian to burst into someone’s virtual home and demand that they say why they like me. “But I don’t know you very well.” “Too bad — put on this hat that looks like a slice of pizza and answer the question!”

Rather than let my Mii wander aimlessly, starved for content and fresh outfits, today I logged on, erased all my data, and deleted the app. I think Miitomo is a lot like Snapchat — something I would have loved when I was a teenager and endlessly fascinated with myself, but now just a little too personal and exhausting to maintain.

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  • Reply
    April 5, 2016 at 5:46 pm

    I like it, but I do wish the core were almost anything else. I don’t like the questions.
    Murf´s last post: #MurfVs28: 1991 is for Sonic the Hedgehog

  • Reply
    April 6, 2016 at 12:59 am

    Oh wow, thanks for the warning. Was on the brink of checking it out but I guess I’d react in a similar way :)
    Armagon´s last post: Completed: The Nonomancer: Graybeard’s Revenge

  • Reply
    April 6, 2016 at 1:02 am

    As I commented when Keen was looking at Mii with glazed incomprehension, my strong feeling is that this app is emblematic of the almost incomprehensibly huge generational shift that is currently barely being recognized, far less acknowledged, by anyone over twenty. The last time there was a shift in cultural norms even close to this was the 1960s and that is going to feel like a golden age of inter-generational respect and empathy compared to what’s coming this time.

    We’ve all grown up and lived our lives in an extended period where it’s become increasingly normative for all the generations to borrow each others clothes, figuratively and literally. That is going to stop. This is a harbinger. One of many.

  • Reply
    Ethan "Isarii" Macfie
    April 6, 2016 at 9:38 am

    Apparently at 26, I am already too old for this shit.
    Ethan “Isarii” Macfie´s last post: Playing Alone Together and Pay-to-Win

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