If Nintendo fans have popped Splatoon into their Wii U recently, chances are they have seen the cryptic “DPD4MO loves bacon” Miiverse posts that are all over the plaza. Over the past few days, these “in-joke” references have gone viral in the Splatoon community, creating the new official meme of Inkopolis, at least for the time being. Even though these posts started only a week ago, the DPD4MO messages have spread like wildfire, with sometimes the whole plaza being filled with supporting Miiverse entries.
As the story goes, these bacon-loving comments were started by now-famous Splatoon YouTuber and live-streamer DPD4MO, as he put out a message to supporters urging them to post the strange meme to signal that they were fans. As for his claim to fame, DPD4MO runs a live-stream in which he talks and games with his fans across a wide range of 1st-party Nintendo titles, encouraging interaction while building a supportive community. Perhaps due to the weird hype reference or the interesting side-effects of in-jokes and memes on gamers, his Miiverse trend has caught on, leaving many players wondering what is happening within the Splatoon community. As is usually the case with inside jokes, while this may have been started by actual DPD4MO fans, often times the Miiverse posters many not actually get the reference, simply piggybacking on the emerging popularity of the trend rather than really understanding its meaning.
As a whole, the outbreak of “DPD4MO loves bacon” posts illustrates an interesting trend within the Wii U community, as even though the communication system of Miiverse is relatively de-centralized and loosely organized, sometimes meme-like references from popular streamers and YouTubers can really take off. This highlights a growing need for stronger celebrities and personalities within the Nintendo community, as although there are a large number of lesser streamers, having a small number of popular gamers that are marketed by Nintendo could unify the Miiverse community and allow for greater fan enjoyment and build stronger brand loyalty. Although the “DPD4MO loves bacon” posts are in-jokey and slightly grade school, it signifies a hungry, avid, and younger market for 1st-party Nintendo internet celebrities, which are certainly some large shoes to fill.
Although this “DPD4MO loves bacon” trend will have certainly blown over in a week’s time, its implications will still be here. Although Nintendo wants to keep fans relatively separated due to safety and privacy concerns, this meme illustrates that there is definitely a community that is craving interaction and will go outside of the Wii U parameters to find it. Larger Nintendo-supported streaming celebrities could meet the needs of this group, gaming with players and encouraging fans to both watch videos and continue playing Nintendo 1st-party titles. This then would create an emotional investment and a rallying point for the community, creating a safe and supportive environment for fans to enjoy Nintendo games together. So even though the “DPD4MO loves bacon” comments are sure to be fleeting, they support the idea that Nintendo should create or at least encourage a more socially-conscious network, bringing everyone in on the meme, rather than mostly isolated and confused.