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Monday, September 19, 2022

15+ Years after Nintendo NSider Forums Closed, Reunite HERE!

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - NSider was a formative place, and some users are still talking together.

Fifteen years ago, Nintendo of America's Nintendo NSider Forums were abruptly put into a read-only mode (September 17, 2007), and then the entire thing was deleted a week afterward (September 24, 2007). This was devastating to a younger me, and it still discomforts me to think about to this day. I can't understate the influence having a very large and popular Nintendo discussion forum was to my upbringing and development to the person I am today. KoopaTV certainly wouldn't exist—the whole founding team came from that forum. I'm sure folks didn't know that decisions made, say, 18 years ago on an Internet forum would decide their identity now.

Anyway, imagine you're on NSider. September 16, 2007, everything looks fine and normal and highly active. The next day, the front page is replaced with this message that NSider will close indefinitely beginning that day, and you can only look at a read-only version of the forum for a week. Afterwards, the read-only message is gone, and so is the forum that you might have had your childhood on.

Nintendo NSider Forums update Wii DS closed indefinitely notice NOA_Andy September 17 2007
It's not a good look for the Wii and DS to have to be associated with the forum shutting down.
(When NSider first opened, Nintendo's current consoles were the GameCube and the Game Boy Advance,
though the DS and Super Smash Bros. Brawl speculation was huge for the forum.
Just don't let the mods catch you sharing your friend codes.)


Younger people—or anyone else who loved it—who only have experience with when Nintendo ran Miiverse don't quite have the same amount of pain we did. Unlike NSider, Miiverse had over two months notice that it would be closed, which actually provided time for people to go and archive almost the entire platform. NSider is very poorly archived, and 2003–2007 was before people widely understood archival techniques and the importance of it.

One of the interests of Muku6 (not to be confused with fellow moderator HUMUHUMUNUKUNUKUAPUAA), a former Knight of Hyrule (one of a small group of hand-picked users from Nintendo of America given forum moderator powers—you can imagine that means they worked closely with Nintendo employees on helping run the forum) has done valuable work in trying to collate what has been archived with the Nintendo NSider Forums, as well as other, even older Nintendo online community ventures such as Nintendo Loudhouse and Camp Hyrule. This is very valuable work. Muku needs help, though. A big part of how she does her history work is by getting in touch with other people who happen to still have things saved.

One way of doing so is by her Discord server, simply called The NSiders. That said, it's not just a historical archive—this Discord server of over 100+ people who were all formerly part of Nintendo's official online communities is also an active and bustling social place. Besides discussing games, there's several real life channels, an art studio (NSider famously had many talented graphic artists), a book club, pet photos, and more.

It's not particularly my social group—it's mostly comprised of Power On users who were on that very popular general non-game chat board (I was the top posting rank on NSider—unfortunately named Plumber—primarily through the roleplay board and game discussion, and I mostly avoided Power On), but I still appreciate the talks on there. We're a... mature bunch, and we've mostly, with age, developed into respectable people with less interpersonal drama than what you'd find on NSider over 15 years ago. Though I think I'm mostly the same. At the very least, NSider social problems like rankism and sucking up to the moderators aren't a thing on this Discord server. And, of course, you can share your friend codes (and even swear!) without an issue.


The NSiders Discord emotions Nintendo NSider Forums emoji smiley indifferent
The emojis partly consist of former NSider emoticons, including the best emoticon of all time, smiley_indifferent. (Top right.)
Just know that :| has a powerful connotation to it, and you should use it very sparingly and precisely.
(Also, shout-out to the Miiverse Yeah! button being an emoji. Extremely good for reactions.)
...Also I changed my Discord to dark theme just for this screenshot to avoid people decrying my use of light theme.


Anyway, message spaik#7181 (SUPER_SPIKE from NSider—his passion, apparently, is finding NSiders and asking them to join) and/or Muku#1756 directly on Discord if you would like to join “The NSiders” server. It's open only to people who were part of Nintendo's former official communities, though. You can also message me in the comments section of this article! If you're reading this after 2022, you should assume that the server is still open unless I edit in otherwise in my italicised footer.


Just for completion, Ludwig's screen name on NSider was ANTIROCKETCLOUDY, which is how you'll find him named on The NSiders Discord server. NSider had a thing where almost everyone's names were in all capital letters, and Ludwig chose to maintain that, even if it's obnoxious to read. If you're too young to know what an Internet forum even is, that's pretty sad. There's a whole discussion you can have about how Discord is not a suitable replacement for forums (including bad searchability and how it's not indexed or part of the greater Internet), and Reddit has even more social problems and less individualism and sense of community than classic message boards do, so there's been a big gap in Internet discourse ever since—consider NSider a sort of golden age of Nintendo discussion. Social media is also a poor replacement.

6 comments :

  1. I was still in high school in 2007. I was barely getting used to mainstream social media. I don't think I ever even knew about this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, forums were pretty much pre-social media, in the same timeline as when AIM was popular.

      Delete
    2. I mean, I joined NSider in April 2006 when I was 11 years old so I was part of it and not even in high school yet in 2007 unlike you. I even got my parents to sign the form that people under 13 had to have in order to join NSider without breaking the rules, unlike most kids back then who just broke the rules and were banned when they got caught.

      Delete
    3. Without telling people how old I am, I'm proud that people on NSider always thought I was older/more mature than I actually was.

      Delete
    4. Well, I was a very shy loner sort of person, even in my high school days. I'm much more sociable nowadays, at least when it comes to on the internet.

      Delete

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