News Article

Talking Point: Wii U - Revolution or Evolution?

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Is the Wii U innovative enough, or just a big DS?

When looked at logically, perhaps there is a valid point to be made about the Wii U. Admittedly, launch is a while away, and further details on the console and its capabilities will no doubt flow in the coming months, but the focus of this article is simple: will Wii U ‘disrupt’ the industry and allow Nintendo to set the trends for gaming once again?

The Nintendo Revolution. Remember that?

It’s easy to forget that when the Wii was first announced, it was initially called the ‘Revolution’. Announced at E3 2005, Nintendo made it clear that this was a console that would change the way games are played, opening gaming to new audiences and experiences. Whatever your opinion of the Wii Remote and Nunchuk, as well as peripherals such as the Balance Board, it cannot be denied that they changed the face of gaming. Controller methods like this had been tried in previous generations — the Power Glove being an infamous example — but with the Wii, motion controls had arrived in the mainstream.

A key element of the huge sales of the Wii, along with competitive pricing, has been the platform’s control method; there is no escaping that fact. The Wii Remote and Nunchuk have enhanced conventional gaming experiences such as Super Mario Galaxy, and the sideways Wii Remote also performs as a conventional, NES-style controller. Beyond this, some of the major software successes have included Mario Kart Wii, Wii Fit and the Just Dance games; these titles use the controllers or Balance Board to provide experiences that were not previously considered as big selling experiences. The Wii changed that perception.

It’s clear that, in this case, Nintendo identified and defined the next step in gaming, and Microsoft and Sony have flattered Nintendo’s innovation by joining the motion control experience. Gamers loyal to Microsoft and Sony may carp, but many probably own and play the Kinect and PlayStation Move, respectively.

Is Wii U an heir to the Revolution’s crown?

Considering the impact of the Wii, it was interesting the see the muted response to the Wii U unveiling at E3 2011. There was enthusiasm in some quarters, but also plenty of journalists struggling to decide on an opinion. There was also a rather drastic drop in the Nintendo share price, as investors showed clear concern with regards to the concept and its potential commercial success. The slightly vague presentation video didn't help, and raised a couple of different questions: is it a standalone tablet, a new handheld? Once attendees got their hands on the device, it became clearer that the so-called tablet was the new controller, and that the Wii U would incorporate Wii Remote and Nunchuk combinations as additional controllers. This backwards compatibility opens the possibility of some interesting multiplayer opportunities, one angle that Nintendo seemed keen to emphasise.

As our own Wii U preview suggested though, this isn't a console that necessarily inspires instantaneous gasps of excitement. The controller clearly has various technological delights: gyroscopic capabilities, an inward facing camera, the ability to ‘stream’ the console’s game in progress, as well as touch controls on the hefty embedded screen. The demonstration videos even showed interactive elements where the touch screen could interact directly with the TV, a swipe or gesture sending objects between screens.

Nintendo gamers may look at the Wii U controller and, in a sense, feel some deja-vu. Touch controls that involve drawing, tapping and swiping, as well as an inward facing camera and gyroscope controls. Sound familiar?


One thing that is clear is that many of the proposed interactions and control gimmicks of the Wii U have already been used prominently on the DS ‘family’ of consoles, with the 3DS adding features such as motion controls to the mix. Aside from the potential interaction between Wii Remotes and Wii U controller, there is arguably very little in the Wii U that can’t be achieved on a 3DS system, or multiple systems for multiplayer experiences. Let's look at some examples.

There has been talk of the Wii U controller being used for displaying maps and inventories in major releases, allowing item selection and navigation with a simple tap. It is safe to say that this is prominent in DS titles, with Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass providing a perfect example of how this can be done. The idea of items being ‘swiped’ from one screen to another has also been done on the DS, a flick of the stylus moving an object from the touch screen to the top screen.

Much has also been made of the Wii U's gyroscope controls being used for a ‘shield’ demo, as well as the screen being used to view a world from different viewpoints. The 3DS already does this, with gyroscope functionality, as well as the potential uses of outward facing cameras and augmented reality capabilities. Of course the 3DS is significantly less capable in terms of graphical prowess, but in terms of concept and functionality it stands up well to the Wii U pad. As a result it isn't surprising that Shigero Miyamoto has voiced the idea of the 3DS acting as an extra Wii U controller.

Is the Wii U enough to capture the wider market?

Just to be clear, we are not suggesting that the Wii U is without potential, nor are we implying that it’s not going to be a lot of fun. What we are suggesting is that, arguably, the Wii U doesn't provide the same sense of gaming revolution as the Wii unveiling in 2005, as the concept includes many well known features of the best selling handheld console of all time, the DS. Perhaps the developers of the console saw the gaming experiences that the DS could deliver, as well as the features being implemented in the 3DS, and took their inspiration from these sources.

However, in a world of smartphones, tablets and technologically superior motion controlled gaming from Microsoft and Sony, it's becoming more difficult for Nintendo to shine as innovators in the field. With so many competitors innovating and invading the lucrative ‘casual’ market, if you can pardon the term, it's a concern that the Wii U won’t grab attention as successfully as the Wii. It is questionable whether the concept behind Wii U, and the impression that it will make on a consumer, will have the same commercial impact as the Wii. Similarly, while some suggest that 3DS sales are slow to gain speed because of the similarity in form-factor with the DS, will the Wii U suffer in similar terms because it looks like a tablet device? Let's remember that not all consumers are gamers who research and read about consoles in detail: some are swayed by marketing and first impressions alone, and it is a valid concern that the Wii U controller will be lost amongst other gadgets that, to the untrained eye, all look the same. If the next offerings from Microsoft and Sony incorporate some form of Kinect- style motion tracking, they will be able to distinguish themselves from rivals such as Apple and Google's Android service, whereas the Wii U may be perceived as the Nintendo iPad.

Perhaps this is a pessimistic view, and maybe the coming months will prove these fears to be unfounded. Nintendo and major third party developers are no doubt experimenting with development kits and producing brilliant ideas to excite customers and sell the concept; time will tell.

What do you think? Is Nintendo raising the bar of innovation with the Wii U, or is it running out of ideas? Share your thoughts with us below!

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User Comments (115)



y2josh said:

It will be like the Gamecube was to the 64. That kid in the video wasn't screaming so wild wild and crazy (kids) because he got a Gamecube. And to answer the question, running out of ideas.



daznsaz said:

dont know what to say to this article not gonna bash nintendo though so ill wait till ive woke up and read it again



erv said:

I think nintendo wants to make sure the newer demographics lured in with the wii will come to love gaming more.

Looks like they are going to succeed. But we all know they need to make sure not to get trumped by competition within a 3 year timeframe, so they need quality hardware and a huge head start in order to compete properly and not promote their category but have those people stick with nintendo instead of buy competing products.

I think it will do much better than most of us give it credit for. Nintendo stock, anyone?

edit: oh, and give us that monster hunter online. Insta-buy



MasterGraveheart said:

I think the Wii U will pay off big for Nintendo.

However, I also think the gaming industry is running out of ideas as a whole. Sony's been ripping off Wii from the get go and now seem to wanna rip off iTouch for Vita and Kinnect with PS4.

Nintend remains the innovation leader.
Sony, for now, is the power/hardware leader.
Microsoft is the happy middleground.



Blaze said:

Well, tbh, as I know it's not a Nintendo Ipad I'll happily buy it and know it's something new.



GTWarrior77 said:

In my opinion, the Wii U is more of an evolution than a revoIution. It looks to me like Nintendo just took what is already working and improved on it. That's fine by me.

Will the Wii U enjoy the the same sales success the Wii did? not so sure. With the Wii, Nintendo created their "own" market by turning non gamers (parents and grandparents with money) into gamers with their casual approach. I don't see casual gamers rushing out to buy the latest and greatest gaming console with hd graphics and a tablet because of the very fact that they are casual gamers.

The Wii U will definitely attract more "hardcore" gamers but I doubt that it will fill the void left by casual gamers not upgrading, in regard to sales. I hope I am wrong about this.

The Wii U is a day one purchase for me though.



Tasuki said:

I have to agree with Y2Josh and that was a perfect analogy.

When the N64 was first heard of with its Polygon graphics and open game play everyone that I knew had to have one There was just one thing wrong with it, it use cartridges where else everyone else was using discs.

Now enter the Gamecube and there wasnt anything really special about it except for the fact that it was a Nintendo system that finally uses discs, something Nintendo should have done like Sony and Sega did with the previous generation of systems.

Than BAM the Wii and it was like the N64 all over again with it revolutionary motion control and its VC, but oops its lacking HD something that Sony and Microsoft have this generation. Now its the WiiU and oh look it has HD something that they should have included in the Wii.

Hopefully as the writer of this article said hopefully maybe its a little early to tell but so far its not looking good.

As for Nintendo running out of ideas I wouldn't say that as much as that they dont have any ideas at the moment.



IronMan28 said:

It's an evolution, of course. But does that mean it's not a good thing? I think sometimes the evolution is just as good as the revolution, look at the SNES. I hope this turns out to be more like that than the Gamecube, at least from a sales standpoint (I loved my Gamecube, but third party support was pretty bad). I think it's a strange concept and a bit tough to sell to people who aren't already believers in Nintendo (such as myself, and even I have my doubts about this and the 3DS making sense down the line).



JimLad said:

I wouldn't know if they are running out of ideas. It seemed that way from E3 because they had no proper games of their own showing off what the system can do. But then how do we know what they're holding back? They could have all sorts of amazing software being developed for it. Then again they may just be making the same old stuff with some touch screen functionality.

It is hard to draw differences between WiiU and the DS, just like it's hard to draw differences between iPad and iPhone.
For those of us that aren't really into handhelds it presents a great oppertunity. Local multiplayer gaming without the need for splitscreen. It's not a new idea by any means, but one that has been made easier at least for two people. Also getting the features of the DS on a home console is like a dream come true. I just prefer big screen gaming you see, and so do my friends.
As for how the screens can interact with each other, that could be what makes WiiU a revolution.



Kirk said:

It's innovative enough but I'm more worried about it simply doing all the other stuff properly that we've come to expect from our modern games consoles; online, graphics again, 3rd party support etc.



Vinsanity said:

Stopgap. It's a stopgap. It's a competitor to the 360 and PS3 5+ years after they came out. It's Nintendo's Dreamcast. And the 3DS has proven that they won't have good games at launch of for months afterwards. And Operation Rainfall has proven that they'll screw things up with gamers again somehow. A ton.

I bought a 3DS because my DS Lite busted and I LOVED my DS, so I kinda need hardware to play DQIX and Okamiden and Monster Tale and whatnot. But if I didn't have to, if my DS Lite still worked, the 3DS would be dead to me. The Wii U is dead to me, because I have a PS3. And my Wii? Literally collecting dust. And I was a HUGE Nitnendo supporter last year. I have Epic Mickey, Sonic Colors, Kirby's Epic Yarn, Sakura Wars So Long My Love, No More Heroes 2, Fragile Dreams....I'm not one of those d-bags that have been saying this the whole time; i love my Wii. Which is why I want something to play for it. But the Wii U? Go to hell Nintendo



J-Forest-Esq said:

If I'm being honest, just the fact that it's HD is enough for me to buy it, but that doesn't mean I don't have any reservations. The screen is a nice idea, nothing more, and certainly not gobsmaking, but I just think it's a bit on the large side. And those circle pads make me wonder how comfortable the thing's going to be, give me a joystick for a home console any day. I liked the freedom the Wii remote and nunchuck gave your hands, they weren't cramped up the whole time. All these cameras and hoojamaflips in the controller don't interest me at all. I don't like using the word, but they seem a bit gimicky. I booted up Face Raiders once, and never used it since, so anything similar on the Wii U is a waste of time. Keep the gyroscope though, that's dandy. I'm also worried about how developers are planning on using the screen. I'm not sure I want to be continuously looking down at the thing in my hands, and then having to swipe at it, or whatever. On the other hand though, I want it to be used for more than just a menu screen, which seems inevitable.

Then there's the problem of the fact it's called the "WII U". It's possible many of the "casual" crowd won't distinguish it from a regular Wii, thinking perhaps it's merely an overly expensive add-on controller. The vague E3 presentation didn't help either, for about the first five minutes I thought it was exactly that, seeing as there was initially no new console to be seen. Not to mention that there weren't any first-party games on show. All in all, it was a pretty shoddy presentation. Having said all that though, it will be interesting to see what people will come up with, but it's certainly not worthy to take up the Revolution's mantle. However, that doesn't necessarily mean it won't be a great console, it's got a lot of potential, I just don't want to see that abused. If you see what I mean...



NintyMan said:

There can be so many ideas that can come from something like this that it would be silly to not say that it'll be innovative and unique. Let's think of the consumer for a bit. Some random person hears about a console from Nintendo that will have the power to take the video game off the TV screen and into a controller with a screen with the TV being off game mode. The controller will also add an advantage to the player playing against his friends with normal Wii remotes. If that doesn't sound cool to a consumer, then I don't know what is.

Now, it is a step up from the Wii. Nintendo didn't just put the Wii name into the console for nothing. That was a move to make it familar to people. After all, the Wii name has sold millions so what sense would there have been if they knocked it off? The real question is if the Wii U can sell just as well as the Wii, and it couldn't be impossible. It would be hard, yes, but it could still do very well. This console does have potential and I'm confident that it will do well.



Ecto-1 said:

I think this is an evolutionary system. They are taking some of the best elements from not only the Wii, but also the DS, and incorporating elements that have become the standard on the competing systems. I'm very interested in the console and the entertainment it can provide, but I want to see more before I decide to spend another couple hundred dollars on hardware. I want to see the tech and how it is being used for games. I will say that I kind of doubt that Wii U will enjoy the same phenomenal success as the Wii.



NGpenguin said:

I really do have a mixed opion on Nintendos new console.
I find that it could be used as a great tablet to anyone who likes to draw.
I think Nintendo could be planning an art acadamy, from the drawing of link, in the preveiw. i just have one question .... Is the main point of the wii u the tablet-like controller? Or are they hiding some other, "special" features?

Ill stick with Nintendo, saying this: Nintendo IS raising the bar of innovation with the Wii U.. beacuase i think they have something up their sleeve..
were just going to have to be pateint.. >D<



Lordy said:

I don't really care if it's "innovative" or not, as long as the lineup of games is solid. I loved my N64 as a kid, and was quite excited when the Gamecube came out, actually. I really couldn't care less about motion controls. I had just as much fun gaming before they entered the scene. Either way, I'm looking forward to the WiiU. Sure, it's not completely new and exciting like the Wii was. But is it really that disappointing? It's not about the system, it's about the games.



bubby444 said:

i think every part of the wii u is going to be fantastic i cannot wight for it to come out



hYdeks said:

I think yes this is a great evolution for "hardcore" games, but the wii remote and nunchuk is probably better for casual, despite me thinking that the wii remote and nunchuk is still the best way to play a shooter.



JayArr said:

They are just ripping off the Dreamcast and (hopefully) doing it right thanks to technological advances.



triforceofcourage said:

Evolution. Not revolution. They've taken things they've already done and altered them, to fit a home console. GAMES will be the selling point for me. If the games don't live up to what the wii-U is cappable of, then I won't buy it. Also I think online play is a must. Nintendo is falling so far behind online, and if I can't easily and reasonably play with my friends (or strangers) online in games that do deserve online play, I will not buy it. Nintendo needs to embrace online, to allow other publishers on their systems to do the same.



moosa said:

You guys couldn't think of one gameplay concept that couldn't be done on any existing game device to date? Really?



childofacid said:

Still waiting for a lime green Wii... The Wii U better come out in more than one color and not just wait till the end of its life cycle.



jerryo said:

it is a large DS. so yeah basically it is evolution.

they are indeed running out of ideas because they first explored unknown territory, then others found green and just ran all over the place.. DS and Wii were the revolution.

It's ok. some times it good simply to relax and follow until you get something really different and good. they have the luxury of being able to do that.



Ceviche_Stiles said:

Yea the WiiU has no "new" features worth calling it a revolution. But I consider this a good thing. All of the features on the WiiU have already been used in some sort of way on a nintendo platform. Now that they have everything combined, they can move to gameplay improvement! Nintendo needs new and better games. Now that companies don't have to think of a brand new concept every time they develop a Nintendo game, they can focus on gameplay improvement, graphics quality, game content and so much more! Personally, I think this is exactly what Nintendo needs, and I think they knew that.



ThomasBW84 said:

I'm glad the article's getting a mixture of opinions about the WiiU concept. To step off the fence, I'm actually really looking forward to the WiiU; combining the touch screen controller with home console power and game experiences, I think it'll be a lot of fun. Games will be important, yes, but I'll be picking one up on launch, simply because there will be new Nintendo experiences with a new type of controller, and some great visuals.

The point of this article was to look at the bigger picture, and I'm worried that WiiU won't capture the mainstream as well as the Wii. The reasoning behind this is in the article, but my personal concern is that Nintendo is a gaming company that relies on profits and success from consoles and games to satisfy shareholders. It is well known, on the other hand, that Sony and Microsoft gaming divisions have run at a loss for significant periods of time, but the losses are swallowed by the profits of the company's other departments. These companies can take a loss on gaming but be happy to gain their place in the market, whereas Nintendo can't fall back on sales of TVs, DVD players, PC operating systems etc. If Apple or Google make a significant play for the gaming markets with tablet devices, the WiiU may miss out on some consumers.

I really hope I'm wrong, but this could be a difficult few years for Nintendo in pure business and commercial terms.



Spoony_Tech said:

The WiiU will be defined by its games and its games alone!

Like skyward sword I just hope Nintendo doesn't take 5 years to really utilize the system. Now I'm talking about their major franchises not party games. Look at the fact that Nintendo is not really using street pass. It should be in every game they make in some form.



NiaLovesNinty said:

This is a fantastic editorial, even though I feel this site is starting to head toward the pessimistic side. As someone said before, I could care less if it's an evolution or revolution (I'm thinking more evolution though), as long as the bring the games that "I" want, then i'll definitely buy this system. I'm cautiously optimistic if you will, but i'm expecting good things since a lot of devs are backing this thing already and saying good things about it. We'll never know how awesome it is until we know more so, just wait and see. Don't dismiss OR embrace it too early. We'll see in due time whether it'll be great or just a "stop-gap" (a term I believe has been taken out of context by the person who said it and people have been running with).



chiptoon said:

A little less mass market success could be good in the long run. less Just Dance, more Star Fox.

I've not been let down yet by Nintendo yet, so its a day one purchase for me.



DrCruse said:

I think it's WAY too different. It's not innovative at all, it is just the DS concept applied to a home console. But I'm afraid that the unorthodox controls will detract from the games in the same way that the Wiimote detracted from the Wii's games. Nintendo seems to have forgotten in recent years that the games make the console, and instead are focusing FAR too much on hardware.



Doma said:

Running out of ideas for sure. They're trying to cram almost every previous control method/concept into one device. I smell failure.



GTWarrior77 said:

Like other people already mentioned here, it's all about the games. For me the console doesn't have to be revolutionary, but the games better be.



Kyloctopus said:

HD sounds great, video chat, camera. But I think most people buy for content. You don't want to buy a console that has no exclusives and features. Which Nintendo has mastered just a bit. Wii Fit, Mario Kart, Wii Sports Resort, New Super Mario Bros Wii etc. Now with HD more developers would probably put their Splinter Cells and LA Noirs on Wii U.
Becides I don't think sales has been a problem. They won in gamecube era, DS era, GB, GBC and GBA era.



turtlelink said:

Evolution. Its pretty much Nintendo playing catch up with the other two companies by adding HD and creating a better online. It also seems like a non-portable DS. I hope they're not running ideas but this makes me feel like they are.



kkslider5552000 said:

It depends entirely on how well games will use the ideas. However, this gaming systems leaves open the ability for games to do seemingly everything. What lack of innovation, it's the only innovative thing Nintendo has right now if anything, Did you see all the crazy stuff you can do with it? If that stuff is as good as it looks, Wii U will be amazing.



Hokori said:

I just hope 3rd parties realize they DONT have to use the screen controller for every game, that was the downfall of the wii MOST companies thought they HAD to use the wii remote's motion, where Nintendo actually did it right with there games and didnt add if it wasnt needed. It was the same with the DS and touch screen, Yoshi's Island didnt use it.



JumpmanZ said:

I agree with JimLad on the way two screens interact with each other. You can aim a slingshot in Zelda by holding up your controller to the screen, aiming with the gyroscope, and pulling back the sling on the touchscreen.

In Mario & Sonic at the Winter Olympic Games 2014 you could throw snowballs from the controller to the TV in that one weird (but fun) dodgeball event.

There's just a new dynamic to it if the screens aren't attached to each other.



Punny said:

I think the Wii U is more of an evolution than a revolution. Better yet, it's a hybrid of Nintendo's best ideas over the last few years. I do think that using the controller to play a game while somebody else uses the TV is revolutionary, though.



Squiggle55 said:

I agree. I wouldn't mind if the screen was just a map or an inventory or even just pretty pictures. Or like that mario video just a streaming of the game itself on the controller. What I hope more is that 3rd parties realize they can completely ignore the wiimote and nunchuck functionality, and that Nintendo only uses them for Wii2 sports and that sort.

I also really like the idea of using my 3DS as a controller, that'd be an easy way of giving lots of people in the room traditional controls and a screen.



TingLz said:

Considering there were many negative emotions until it was tried out, it may be beneficial to allow retailers to have demos before and after release



speshalmon said:

I told my girlfriend who loves the Wii about the Wii U and she didn't care and I'm worried others will feel the same, besides the Nintendo faithful like us.

Edit: Hopefully she'll change her mind when I buy one.



SilverBaretta said:

I think the Wii U has enough of an innovation that it will feel fresh to an extent, but it will also feel very familiar, and to be honest, I think that's what I like best.



Justaguest said:

it just feels so much like ds/3ds having tablet as touchscreen and tv as second screen. i already have three versions of ds and i dont want a “fourth one”. why couldnt they just make wii hd then i would probably finally buy a home console after long time. But i wish them success, i think they are returning to hardcore fans again(i am talking about home console gaming ..ds was always hardcore enough;])



bro2dragons said:

Can you really revolutionize an entire industry every 5 or so years? Is that even possible, really? I expect the next Nintendo console to, once again shake things up, and this one to just push forward the great direction in which we're already heading. It's the pattern we've been seeing. The SNES didn't change gaming... it was a more powerful NES with more buttons and memory. The N64, however, did revolutionize things. The GameCube just enhanced the N64, but the Wii followed to change everything like the N64 did. Now the WiiU will build upon the Wii framework, and the next system (can I start a trend by nicknaming it the "Nintendo DREAM"since it only exists in my mind?) will change everything again. I think a lot of people expected far too much, and are thus too "let down" to realize just how much potential there is in this thing.



RyuZebian said:

Wii U is nice, really. It opens up new possibilities for gameplay, which is what I want from a new console. I praise Nintendo for this great innovation!



jbrodack said:

I supported the wii for a while and saw it as a big innovation but this just seems thrown together. The fact that there will only be support for one controller just confirms that. If they thought it through they might have designed a smaller cheaper screen that integrates into the controller better not this tablet design they have now. They didn't go as far as they could have with motionplus games and they are falling behind in motion technology especially with kinect out.

They are expecting to lure hardcore gamers with the wii u but have only shown gimmicks so far and not detailed plans of a superior online network which is very much needed. They can still make the system good if they sort out all the details and put out great games but for now it looks like it will struggle to find an audience.



WolfRamHeart said:

Evolution. It does look like it is going to be a stopgap console until the Microsoft and Sony get their new systems out. The Wii U is just a giant DS, not like that is a bad thing but it is hardly revolutionary.



SteveW said:

I'd love to have a DS player adapter for the Wii U! but probably not... they will want us to buy them as Virtual Console games....



X-145 said:


PS CEO: " We need a new product to boost our sales higher yet! What do you guys have in mind?"
PS Designer 1: "Well, i was thinking just an add-on to the newly released PS4"
PS Designer 2: "But it sould be a stolen idea..."
PS Designer 3: "...And have a stupid and extremely obvious name!"
PS CEO: "Outstanding ideas, as usual. But what should this...this Add-on-stolen-stupid-named product be?"

E3 2015...

PS CEO at E3 presentation area: "...Introducing the Playstation Touch! A tablet-like controles with a 6.3 inch touchscreen! It can stream full games on to the controler, use gyroscopes, and LOOK! It has a pretty ball at the top!"
PS Fanboy: "Playstation's done it again! Such innovation!"


Am I the only one who sees this happening?



bboy2970 said:

I don't feel like its to similar to the DS at all. At least in some applications. Sure the DS may have to screens but those 2 screens are always in the same place and cannot be moved. With Wii U the second controller can be used as a sort of window into the gaming world. The TV displays what it would normally display in a game but then this controller in your hand allows you to look around the rest of the game world unseen by the television. Only used in applications such as map screens does make Wii U look redundant but if developers are hopefully more creative than that, Wii U could be a real game changer. I say Nintendo is rasing the bar. I have faith that Nintendo can and will do great with the Wii U (despite that name...)

@X-145: No you're not. I agree with that statement but get ready for the mob of PS lovers to come bearing their torches and pitchforks...



Slapshot said:

I don't know one single person outside the internet that is excited about Wii U and that is what worries me the most. Unless there are multiple games that truly show off the systems capabilities - I'm not talking about HD, I've got a PS3, 360 and Laptop that are already capable of that - I will not be buying the system at launch.

I do think that the Wii U has a high probability of putting the company into rough times, and the statements that Nintendo keep making have me think that they know this as well. I think a cheap traditional system like an HD Gamecube that could be sold for $249 - $300 - or less - would have been a better stopgap than this, and that would allow more time for them to expand on this Wii U idea.

As for third parties, they will make some exclusive games at first, but just like we have seen with Move and Kinect, the system will get little additions added to the same games that are developed for the other systems before long. It's just too risky of a market to create exclusive games for Wii, Wii U, Move and Kinect at the moment. That is why we are seeing the explosion in the Indie Markets and Digital Downloads lately - cheaper to develop and easier to make money.

I think that the phenomenal 3DS will push Nintendo through any rough times if they happen though.



Megumi said:

I was told my jaw was gonna drop from this thing....why hasn't my jaw dropped...I WANT MY JAW TO DROP!

...Well whatever, not as great as the Wii's or 3DS's entrance, but it'll be fun anyways. (also, Pikmin 3 will look epic)



SazMelthic said:

Nothing can't be original, all of It was ether done before or was thought up by some one else.



heebeegeebee said:

It will only be truly revolutionary if it's compatible with the vitality sensor. I think that's something that's never been done before.



nmozdzier said:

^I still don't see how the vitality sensor is useful.

But the one big thing different from the DS is scale, and a lot can be done with that, and the two screens aren't connected either, which can also add more to it.



Gamesake said:

It's a great idea (tablets are so hot right now). I've found the only gamers complaining are the ones who wanted the Wii to live forever and the ones who love their PS3 so much they weren't looking to buy Wii U anyway. I used to wonder how PlayStation had any fans left, I've decided they're an option for gamers who hate change.



komicturtle said:

Ok, you have to admit- that picture with the Playstation Move controller looks just like the Wii Remote and nunchuk being shown in the same fashion- don't deny that...

But anyhow, looking forward to WiiU. No doubts in my mind.



MeloMan said:

Since we mention "a big DS", a thought just came to mind that we would could see the return of a friendly feature of days forgotten... the ability to play handheld games on our TVs. With the WiiU, playing a 3DS game minus the 3D functionality as well as DS games should be a possibility. There's just as many pros about the WiiU as there are cons right now, so... guess we'll just have to wait for more details to trickle in...



Squiggle55 said:

I love that idea. We should be able to use our handhelds as controllers for Wii2 games AND stream our DS games the other way to the big TV screen.



Chris720 said:

Nintendo are lagging behind the other competitors, however, Nintendo have never been about having the newest tech but more on affordability and innovation.

However, as time goes on companies are slowly running out of ideas, we've gone through joysticks, we've gone through motion controls... what's next?

Wii U will improve on what the Wii did, yes... however, the Wii attracted casuals and hardcores and broke the barrier between them. The Wii U feels like it'll bring that barrier back and welcome hardcore gamers more than casuals.

The Wii U just... iisn't innovative, it's an iPad with buttons and 2 circle pads.



C-195 said:

Evolution, the Wii U isn't going to revolutionize anything, although sony will probably copy the design, AGAIN.

If the next Nintendo console is VR at an affordable price, that would be revolutionary!



Sean_Aaron said:

A tablet add-on does seem like a great idea, however I'm just not feeling anything about this is "buy at launch" - I'd still rather prioritise getting an iPad.

That doesn't mean I won't get a Wii U a year after launch, but the more time goes by the softer that decision will get...for now I'm content to watch out for those few remaining "must have" Wii games.



armoredghor said:

@Gamesake speaking as a guy with 4 friends that are hardcore sony gamers, they don't mind change. One of em' wont play it because he's waiting for a new nintendo franchise because we've 3 platforming marios on the wii and mainly sequels to old series. another is just a hack/slash or adventure gamer who doesn't see the point of motion control because motion control doesn't fit well in that genre, another has & enjoys it for what it has but can't find enough games for it. and the last one used to have it in its first year but traded it for PS3 to play other styles of games. Other systems still have innovations in their games but they are a lot more subtle.
back on subject. I think the WiiU could be a great system but it is too soon to tell. I am hoping for a second WiiU controller option for the sake of 6 player gaming plus 3DS controllers. I don't remember seeing any more buttons on it than I classic controller. It will likely have great online multiplayer options & big 3rd party hits so that we can experience what we've been missing out on.



Tare said:

I'm in between evolution and revolution. But not when I look at Nintendo, but when I look at it's competitors.
For instance, what will be the next big draw people to buy the PS4? Or Xbox? Better graphics? Well okay, maybe. But if you want the best graphics (Say it with me now) you play games on a computer.

I like Nintendo because they give me an experience, I can't get on the PC. The XBOX is held up by FPS's which is fine, and the PS3 has a few little numbers that set it upart from its friends(?) But the experience I can get from an Xbox/PS3 I can get from my lovely overpowered beast. Alas Nintendo makes games that would feel awkward on any other system, but it feels right at home on their's.

I'd like to think, people are getting smarter. People don't want to shell out money for a slightly updated thing that feels exactly the same as the last thing they shelled out money for. If the WiiU wasn't different, why would you bother with it at all? Change is good, that's always been Nintendo's strongpoint.



Henmii said:

It's neither a evolution or a revolution. It would have been a evolution if a upgraded wiimote (with maybe some new features) would be the main-controller. In my opinion that would have been better!

I wouldn't call it a big DS either just yet. It's to early to say that.

As far as first-person shooters go: If they all use the Wii u controller it's a devolution (for Fps), since we all know the Wiimote is the ideal controller for Fps!



thesignpainter said:

nintendo will run out of ideas two years after i die, which i plan on never doing, so i think we're okay.



nothankyou said:

To be honest, I'm tired of all this gimmicky controller stuff. It can be cool when used properly, but there are probably less than 20 games that actually have good Wiimote controls.
I just want a Nintendo console that goes back to basics.
In fact, if they just released a new online-capable Nintendo console that used Gamecube controllers, I would be overjoyed.



CaPPa said:

Isn't evolution a good thing? It could be put that Nintendo has been pioneering all these different ideas and the WiiU is the culmination of them. It could also be a revolution though, as I thought that the controller showed some amazing applications that are way beyond what we have on the current consoles.

One thing in the article that I don't agree with is "in a world of smartphones, tablets and technologically superior motion controlled gaming from Microsoft and Sony, it's becoming more difficult for Nintendo to shine as innovators in the field". They just put out the first glasses free 3D system (albeit terribly marketed) which is pretty innovative. I also don't find Kinect or Move to be superior motion control devices, different yes, perhaps more technologically advanced, but not superior. Move has more accuracy and Kinect has body movement; but they often seem to be laggy and I haven't played any games as good as Red Steel 2 or as fun as WSR.



timp29 said:

Seems to me Nintendo is combining the Wii and the DS. And why shouldn't they? Both have unique aspects that work well in their respective ways.

There is no point trying to be innovative if there is no viable technology that brings something new and meaningful to gaming.

Dual screen - as many buttons as you need effectively AND the system does not tie up the TV. This fact will sell consoles in the eyes of parents. Video calls as well!
Gyro sensor - works brilliantly for aiming in OoT 3D.
HD graphics - a bit late to the party though
3D??? - I'm sure Nintendo is heading down this path, but the technology (TVs) to support it won't happen until 2015 at least. At least they've got the experience from the 3DS.
Exclusive titles - Mario, Zelda, etc - Let's face it, the systems are all becoming pretty similar. Eventually it will come down to exclusive titles and maybe extra functionality, like being a media centre

Too late to the party - why would you buy a Wii U if you own a PS3 or 360?
Rushed launch - will we see any decent launch titles
3rd party support - Nintendo talks the talk, but it will take a while to see if consoles sell and if owners buy 3rd party titles.
Motion control - has already been eclipsed by competition. I must say kinect looks like it has so much potential, although motion controllers still do things it can't.
Extra functionality - probably lacking? The Wii U will have to pretty special to sell units to people who own other HD consoles.

All in all, I think the Wii U has more going for it than against it. But still, I don't think it will do as well as the Wii. The dual screen is new, but with HD and 3rd party support, they are only equalling the opposition, not exceeding. It will sell, but as many have already suggested, it will be the gamecube all over.

Marketing Nintendo! You better make the most amazing HD Mario and HD Zelda of all time, have one of these at launch (possibly bundled) and advertise the crap out of it.



SuperSonic said:

@48 Thank you! Exactly what I was thinking! More people need this point in their heads, instead of them bashing on Nintendo for not revolutionising.

@54 You are not alone, my brethren... this and more is expected by me from Sony.

@84 Why would I buy the Wii U if I owned a PS3 or 360? Because it's not a clone system; it's different. It's Nintendo innovation and originality. It would have way better exclusives. It's remote involves way more interaction. It's definitely going to cost less than "599 US dollars(...riiiiidge racerrr...)". It's more powerful than PS3 or 360. Possibly longer (more content) games (25GB discs to 9GB discs). I can still play my Wii games on the Wii U after trading my Wii in for it (Gamecube? I luckily still have mine). Video conference. Ability to stream (that solves so many problems). That's a group of 10 good points. Would anyone else need any more reasons?

I LOLed at the second image's resemblance to a black Wii remote and Nunchuck. It just reminded me of the future's Sony PS4 touch screen tablet remote which was completely innovated, like Tomita's 3D! ...(snickers)...



Gamer83 said:

It seems a bit like NES to SNES to me, except SNES improved on NES in a lot of ways. Outside of providing HD visuals on par with the competition, I'm not sure I like what Nintendo is doing. That controller is definitely not appealing.



CowLaunch said:

As I expressed in a thread a while ago, I think we're edging towards a time where the handheld console and home console are the same thing, or maybe even an arrangement where Nintendo dominate the handheld market, and strike a deal with Sony or Microsoft to be able to take games from the portable system and play them on their consoles.



JimLad said:

I hope they make use of the tilt sensors in the controller as much as anything.
Tilt sensing was the only real useful thing to take away from the Wii Remote. That and the IR pointer, which the touchscreen will replace and do a better job I feel.



SigourneyBeaver said:

I hope it isn't seen as a big DS by the third parties. The huge gap between the screens is an immediate difference that could throw up problems if the system is approached like a DS.



Malkeor said:

Yeah I don't care what Nintendo says, they are just building upon their old ideas, perhaps failed ones, and looking at the competition and seeing how things could be made better.

I don't know about revolution but...evolution is a better word if you look at the whole context of things.



rjejr said:

"A key element of the huge sales of the Wii, along with competitive pricing, has been the platform’s control method; there is no escaping that fact."

While I agree price was a big factor, if not the biggest, the "control method" would have been useless without Wii Sports being included in the box. I bet the Wii console holds the world record for percent of units to not have a single game purchase.

Also, evolution is ok. I'ld like to see a comparison between Wii - WiiU and PS - PS2. I don't recall PS2 adding anything besides graphics (and an optional HDD slot used only for FFXI.) I'm a really long time gamer but PS2 will always be my favorite system (thank you Jak, Rachet and Sly.)

The WiiU is a late to the party PS3/Xbox360 competitor, and it will NOT sell as well as the Wii, but if it sells at all it will be a success if people buy games for it. That's the Wiis unfortunate legacy - great selling console, lousy game sales. The WiiU needs to sell games. Hopefully it will, the world doesn't need anther Dreamcast or Saturn.



Mr_Nose said:

Both words apply. In over thirty years of home consoles, only Nintendo has released radical changes to how a video game is experienced.

When every other major console adopts those changes, you have your revolution. Nintendo's history of evolutionary concepts, almost always become wide-spread, or revolutionary, to the industry.

You're an extreme hater, uninformed, or blind to not see it.



zeeroid said:

In my opinion, the Wii U is the culmination of a lot of ideas that have built up over the past decade and change, including concepts such as the Dreamcast VMU, Nintendo's own DS platforms and the original Wii.

While the Wii was an interesting (and wildly successful) experiment in new types of gaming, I think it was always a bit too limited to have widespread and long-term appeal for core gamers. And I honestly believe the Wii U will be the system to achieve that, cynics be damned.

In fact, I think the best thing about the Wii U is that it isn't taking too many risks. The underlying gameplay improvements it offers are not enigmatic, simply because they've been done before. And I think that the types of console experiences that it will offer will be staggering in creativity, scope and fun.



Scribbler said:

Evolution... if not merely a lateral shift. Anybody remember GCN to GBA connectivity back in the early 2000's? This is exactly what it reminds me of... except wireless... ...and high definition... ...and no real games for it!

Seriously! If you're going to convince people (including shareholders) that your new home console is worth the silicon its stamped on, show some real games that demonstrate how it can be beneficial to games and a home for innovation. I've been burned far too many times by a neat concept and cool tech demos only to have the actual system be a waste of raw potential. And so far, that's all I see for this system until we start seeing some real innovation on it, not just proof-of-concept talk.

And also, it seems like Nintendo has contracted a little bit of Sony-itis in thinking that the Wii name and an odd concept alone was enough to convince the gamer public and shareholders. I can see why stock prices dropped after the announcement. Pride comes before the fall, Nintendo. Don't push it.




Evolution. Its the hybrid of the revolutionary DS and Wii - many of the facets of which iOS, Microsoft and Sony have cribbed - b honest. 3G connectivity aint all that anyway - I have devices with it in myself - not a biggy.

The Wii and the DS were two of THE MOST successful video games consoles of all time ffs, why would Nintendo want a new console that introduces something completely new? Why not create a hybrid console with some extra features and facets (eg. direct interactivity between the Wii U controller imagery and the television imagery)?. The third parties love it for obvious reasons.

Some of the comments above are fair, but some are laughable. What does the PS3 have to do with it? Compared to its rivals and pervious consoles its been largely a failure. Hello? PS3 is the one wh has "lost the battle"...LOL

Anyway, I'd get it any day of the week over the overrated ipad and we don't know EVERYTHING about it yet.

Maybe the uncertainty stems from the poor E3 presentation of the device?



Edwrd said:

One thing I got from reading this article, innovation doesn't mean throwing the past away. Maybe the title should add another word "revolution, evolution or innovation", i guess that waters down the beverage so to speak.



Omarzuqo said:

I hope it flops immediately and Nintendo ditches it in favor of the regular wiimote just like what happened with the sixaxis for Sony.



StarDust4Ever said:

Every two generations, Nintendo creates a revolution. The NES was revolutionary new console that saved America from the Video Game Crash of 1938; the SNES was an evolution of the NES. The N64 was a revolutionary console with its analog stick and raytraced graphics in 3 dimensional space. The Game Cube was an evolution of the N64. The Wii, as we all know, is revolutionary with its motion-controlled games. The Wii-U, just like Super-NES, denotes an evolution.

In the same light, Game Boy Color and Gameboy Advance were evolutions over the revolutionary Game Boy Classic. Likewise, the DSi and 3DS are evolutions of the revolutionary DS system.



BulbasaurusRex said:

Even the least amount of research will tell consumers that the Wii U still uses a TV screen as its primary form of output.



Noire said:

Unexciting? Can I choose that instead?

Though I suppose a lot of that has to do with how bad the reveal was. I honestly thought it was another peripheral after watching the presentation, not to mention next-to-no games were shown. I don't see how you can do so well one year with unveiling the 3DS and then turn around and drop it so hard the next time.

... But it will have Smash Brothers! ...which you won't see for like another three or four years.



timp29 said:

Yeah, the reveal felt suer rushed. Like the information was leaked, so that nintendo had to slap some kind of presentation together last minute so that they didn't lose momentum on the console. Some developer probably did the dirty on nintendo and broke a non-disclosure agreement. Judging by the amount of ass kissing from the EA games guy, maybe it was them

Also awesome typo to stardust, 'NES saved america from the video game crash of 1938' I did a little lol



RonF said:

Well, did Nintendo had a choice? The casual market is moving to cheaper software and the even easier interface found in iOS's gadgets. In other to keep relevant, they introduced an unique 3D experience in the 3DS and now a novel tablet/TV experience in the Wii U. I don't think they should be worried with Microsoft and Sony regarding the casual market but rather with Apple, as it shouldn't be difficult to offer a similar gameplay with the iPad and Apple TV.

As they are loosing the casual market, they are trying to get a better hold on the hardcore. Nintendo is counting in their old fans (us) as well as some new converts recruited from the casual market during the Wii/DS era. To appeal to this market they need third party support, reason why the new controller sports the regular number and positioning of buttons of more traditional devices. It is well established that most hardcore third party developers are uncapable of thinking outside their limited view and provides adequate controllers to anything they are not used.

Will it work? I don't have faith in most of the third party developers to really use the Wii U controller in any meanifull way as I believe it is a very traditional industry with very little space to inovation, despite the fact it is considered a creative medium. As such, I don't think the Wii U will appeal to the hardcore market outside Nintendo fans. The big question is how much of the casual market captured by Wii will be retained by the new console. I don't know the answer but a compeling marketing support and meaniful software will be necessary at launch. We will have to wait and see.



luminalace said:

I think things are being looked at the wrong way. One more generation with just Wii motes wouldn't have worked. Trying to Up Sony and MS in hardware specs for PS4, X720 would be too risky. Nintendo have again thought outside the square and if the Wii brand continues to attract casuals while keeping us fans happy, then Wii U will be a bigger success.
Next Gen needed a new disruptive console and the Wii U is it!



alLabouTandroiD said:

Before E3 i thought they should go with a mixture of Kinect and Wii Motion Plus. That would have been a big evolution in motion controls imo.
But then again i'm not sure if motion controls work that well with "hardcore" games...

While many games (like Wii Sports, Wii Sports Resort, Just Dance, Boom Blox, Wii Fit, Call Of Duty, PES, Silent Hill and Metroid Prime 3 and Metroid: Other M ) sure had revolutionary controls there's also a lot of evolutionary games on the Wii.
Games that only used the Wiimote for a little twist on the traditional controls (like No More Heroes, Donkey Kong Country Returns, Mario Galaxy, NSMB, Kirby's Epic Yarn, ...) and arcade games you can easily play at home now (House Of The Dead series, Ghost Suad, ...).
While at the moment i can't imagine big revolutionary ways to incorporate the new controller into single player experiences it doesn't mean they won't be there. At least it could make playing games easier by doing complex actions or menu heavy operations with a simple touch on the screen. Or incorporating it as a camera or a scanner like in the Metroid Prime games could add to the atmosphere of the game. And there's always a chance of small sections which also could make games more intense. (Like holding it like a message board in a protest the main character takes part in. Or holding it upon your head to prevent you getting wet from rain.)

And in my eyes it could definitely revolutionize multiplayer gaming. Aside from the concepts Nintendo showed during E3 i can see a game where player 1 drives a truck via Wiimote and player 2 is on the back with a weapon to shoot enemies that are coming from literally everywhere. That would be a cool use of the new controller in my book.
So i see potential in it and hope the dev's are inventive enough to make games that wouldn't be possible without the new controller. Please still use Wiimote and Nunchuk where it makes more sense though.

Jango-Forest wrote:

I liked the freedom the Wii remote and nunchuck gave your hands, they weren't cramped up the whole time.

same here



Ren said:

It's an HD DS with good motion controls. That's good enough for me.
We all made fun of ps3 for taking current technology and just pushing it really far. Nintendo just waited and did it again using ALL the consoles great tech and for cheaper; whats not to love? So we've seen it all on the the systems that are out now; now it'll all be on one awesome system. I'm psyched.



Capt_N said:

I'm gonna be saving money for a Wii U, but I wills till wait, & see what the competition comes out w/. Also, I too, would love to believe the 3rd parties will make great, & perhaps even revolutionary use of the controller, but somehow I really doubt it.



SyFyTy said:

I feel like this WiiU wil be selling the same type of games that were already available on the DSi, for the wIIu home use,in other words, we will be buying a new console to play on a platform (DSi)_ that Nintendo has already demonstrated they themselves have lost interest in or run out of valid ideas for. If the last part be wrong, then where is the last years worth of games before the Wii? They are spending far too much time on making platforms and not enough time making reasons to use them,,,, supporting them. They WILL lose customers, I'm already packing MY backs as wii speak, others have vowed to folow this year. I think they will.



magos2k7 said:

Let's come at this from another angle. The Wii was a success not just because of price, it was because it was a different experience. The Wii was NOT an Xbox or a Playstation; it wasn't even really similar. To keep the ball rolling, what could they really do? Make even MORE sensitive motion controls? Make an even BETTER "Kinect"? (Which, by the way, has failed to really impress me, I'm still waiting for a decent game for it!) No, they had to "zig" while the herds "zagged". We all realize it, yet we are still making the same mistake that many of us made with the Wii and the DS. We are making guesses about what kinds of games MIGHT be played on it, and as to how a tablet controller device could be implemented into a fantastic gaming experience. EA's on board. Nintendo's in-house game development is no slouch, either. And you know by now many other developers are working secretly on that "killer app" that's going to be the best of the bunch. There's going to be competition, and we know damned well that developers are going to blow our minds with games for a machine this powerful and this different. All companies show off tech demos early on. Ever decide on a machine because of a tech demo you saw? No, usually either brand loyalty, or because of actual games. Why would a company implement a strategy for only one console? (Unless the strategy failed, which it did not!) The gaming revolution is something that will be ongoing, not a whole new revolution each time! The WiiU is an evolution OF the revolution, Once the games roll out, we're going to see some serious business.



CanisWolfred said:

You make some good points, but at the end of the day, I just don't care if it's innovative or not. It could be one big DS for all I care so long as it has some good exclusive games. And there's a reason exclisive is in bold. I'm not buying anything that I can get on the 360 unless there are some extra content, like additional modes or levels or whatever.



ogothepogo said:

I keep hearing the term "stop-gap system", and I agree completely. This is nintendo's answer to all of the "hardcore gamers" whining about graphics. The HD graphics weren't enough to establish a new console in the market now, with the ps3 and xbox already dishing them out, so they went with some "new" tech that is familiar to the company, and probably easy to produce. I am not down talking the wii-u at all, I am very excited, but this is obviously not evolution. The only revolutionary part of the system is the fact that you can play without the need of a T.V. (something EXTREMELY welcome, now I can throw out that little 15" crt tv that I keep around for when the wife wants to watch Oprah!) Other than that it is essentially just a big DS, as stated. I think that this is going to pay off big time for nintendo. The fact that it is backward-compatible with the Wii's software and peripherals is sure to entice allot of Wii owners to buy. Think about it, if you own a Wii, you are guaranteed to have some games and extra controllers on hand when you buy the Wii-U, even if you can't afford to buy anything but the new system. The only downside for me is the lack of GC support, but I'll just keep the Wii for that. Think about what the big N will release in 2017, when the ps4 and xbox 720 are already three or more years old, that's when evolution will show itself. That's why I think that Nintendo can afford to produce a "stop-gap" console, because they know that they will be ahead of the pack for the next generation.



JustanotherGamer said:

The Wii U is not an Evolution or Revolution in terms of a console. More of a "refinement" Nintendo is trying to appeal to everyone. That will be the Wii U's downfall. This sixth home console will do alright, Make some money for the Big N. It will start off well and then fizzle out. The N64, Gamecube and Wii. The Wii U will falter with 3rd party support and on-line support.



CowsLikeToMoo said:

I Think Its A Great Idea, I Have Been Waiting For A New Wii, And A Tablet? Outstanding! Think About It, A Moble Wii System... Oh wait...I already have that....its a 3DS! The Wii U is a rip off.



e_e13 said:

Its nice to see someone else from south africa on here

Anyway, I wasn't too impressed by the wii u either. Sure, I'm still going to buy it when some decent games come out and it drops in price, but seriously nintendo... a tablet?

Nintendo copied apple in the design for the ds lite and wii, and now they are copying ideas off apple too. I can't think of anything the wii u controller can do that an ipad can't. Despite this, I'm sure the controller will have some clever uses in games, and I'm happy nintendo didn't shun off in terms of graphical and power like they did with the wii. I'm just not really prepared to pay alot of money for something i'm still not sure about.

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