Masahiro Sakurai Opens Up About TGS: "The Comments Tend to Get Rough"

The internet doing its best to ruin online events continues.

By Ben Bayliss

October 15, 2020

The internet is already an unbearable place, and personally, I feel it’s becoming even worse. With coronavirus sending the world into a new age of everything-is-now-online-because-we-can’t-really-travel, events and conventions have taken to online video platforms, making use of virtual sets and more. However, one thing that’s always prominent with online events is the live chat section in which the real-time conversation/reactions move so fast that you often only read a letter before it’s yeeted off the screen. It seems Masahiro Sakurai doesn’t like the digital audience either.

Speaking in his column in Famitsu, (Thanks, Siliconera) Masahiro Sakurai, director of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate has opened up about the Tokyo Game Show that took place entirely online this year and topped 31.6 million views.

However, he was apparently watching the stream as well as helping out and shares that, “I felt like the comments tend to get rough.” He explained that “I had the impression that people instantly started to mount and self-assert. I couldn’t stand it, so I did things like closing the comment bar. Unfortunately, there are practically no solutions to this.”

With online events, the live-chat can certainly be a draw for people, sharing a moment with thousands, if not millions of other users. However, the nature of these events is nothing more than a spam fest or those using anonymity to spew rude comments continuously. Slow modes can help slow the spam, and followers only or subscriber-only chats can also limit how is able to communicate, but it’s still a tricky situation.

NintendoLife brings up a past event in which Masahiro Sakurai saw online harassment for snubbing Waluigi. He’s also had to defend himself over the number of Fire Emblem characters in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.

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Obviously, the state of live chats during digital events is nothing new, but could Masahiro Sakurai’s comments point to select future streams having comments disabled entirely? I personally close the comments sections myself during events.

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Ben Bayliss

Based in the UK and adores venturing through FPS horrors and taking photos in pretty much anything with a functioning photo mode. Also likes car games.

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