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Reggie - Wii U Is "Absolutely The Beginning Of A New Generation"

Posted by Andy Green

Hints at some launch window surprises

One big debate that has surrounded Wii U ever since it was revealed is whether or not the new console is the last through the door of the old generation, or the first to break into the next one. With the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 coming towards the end of their product life cycles it seems inevitable that their successors will dwarf the Wii U, in terms of graphical power, so some ask whether Nintendo's sixth home console is really the next generation of gaming? Reggie Fils-Aime, as expected, thinks so.

In an interview with Kotaku moments before the system launched in New York City, Nintendo of America’s President said:

This is absolutely the beginning of a new generation. With the innovation we're bringing to bear, with the social community we're bringing to bear, [and] with the video entertainment we're bringing to bear, I think this is the start of a new generation. I think those who say otherwise are clearly trying to preserve sales on their current hardware. This is definitely the start of a new day.

Reggie believes that Wii U has truly kicked off the new generation of gaming, and thinks the new console is already building a healthy collection of games, with 29 titles being available in stores and five on the eShop in North America; not to mention the promise of 50 games by the time the launch window closes at the end of March. To put that into perspective, when Wii launched in 2006 North America saw 21 games available at launch, with that figure being topped up to 33 during the launch window – Wii U has seen a notable increase on that.

One of the big reasons for this boost in numbers has been down to the immense third party support that Wii U has received, with the likes of Assassin’s Creed III, Call of Duty: Black Ops II and Tekken Tag Tournament 2: Wii U Edition all being released on the system as well as other consoles. There have been some worries about how sustainable this support will be, however, especially considering Sony and Microsoft are expected to raise the bar in terms of graphical power.

There have been instances already where third party publishers have seemingly confirmed that they are not supporting Wii U iterations of games with DLC, the Wii U version of Mass Effect 3, for example, will not have the Omega DLC made available for it while its Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 counterparts will. Reggie confirmed that Nintendo “have no policy limitation on DLC or on business model for third party publishers”, reiterating the company’s stance that all DLC is welcome on a Nintendo console – the question is, will the third party publishers bring it?

It also appears that Nintendo isn’t quite done with its first party releases. As we know New Super Mario Bros. U and Nintendo Land were available on launch day, with Pikmin 3 on the way, but Reggie was eager to point out Nintendo hasn’t revealed all its launch window cards, hinting at some big announcements that are yet to be made:

I think we will continue to surprise the fans with announcements and information. I would not go so far as to say you know everything in our launch window.

Reggie also reassured people who may be concerned by the launch day absence of TVii, a service that integrates video streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Instant Video and Hulu Plus together, by saying that Nintendo wanted it to be perfect and not rushed as has been the case on other consoles in the past. TVii is set to be made available at some point in December.

What are your thoughts on this? Do you see Wii U as the beginning of a new generation, or does a focus on graphical power make it the end of the previous one? Let us know in the comments section below.

[via kotaku.com, gonintendo.com]

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User Comments (52)

MAB

#3

MAB said:

Even blind freddy can see that this is the beginning of the next gen ;)

-KwB-

#4

-KwB- said:

Wii U is not a revolution but an evolution ! Can't wait for the 30th !
Of course it's next-gen !

kyuubikid213

#5

kyuubikid213 said:

The Wii U was always a next gen system. Well...now it's current gen. Welcome to the 8th generation of gaming folks! We'll see how well the Wii U can compete against the 720 and PS4. I'm fairly certain it'll do very well.

The 8th Generation of Gaming began Sunday November 18, 2012 at 12:01am.

47drift

#6

47drift said:

I'd be lying if I said I wasn't worried about third party developer support once the next Microsoft and Sony platforms are unveiled, but at the same time graphics aren't getting that much better and that's really all that can be improved upon. I do agree that the Wii U is the first next-gen system, but I can only hope the support lasts.

Araknie

#7

Araknie said:

Next-gen is not graphics.

I do think in fact that Sony i repowering the same generation over and over.

triforcepower73

#8

triforcepower73 said:

"I think those who say otherwise are clearly trying to preserve sales on their current hardware." Absolutely, positively, most assuredly, 100 percent true!

ajcismo

#9

ajcismo said:

So tired of the "graphics" being the only thing that the PS420 lovers only care about. Graphics do not make a generation, innovation and interface do. Betcha a dollar that whatever Sony does, it will still use the same crappy controller they've been using for the last 15 years.

SpaceApe

#11

SpaceApe said:

It is just a wonderful console and so glad I traded in my 360 for a Wii U. Been playing Zombi U and Mass Effect 3!

DarkNinja9

#12

DarkNinja9 said:

yeah why didnt you mention some of the games that were found in the hack thing? oh btw gamestop was given a list of games on launch date that will be coming out and estimate dates too not sure if ppl got that o.o

Lalivero

#13

Lalivero said:

@ajcismo Power does play a part in things but, if graphics is all they care about, there's a thing called PC gaming, which will always be miles ahead.

Spoony_Tech

#14

Spoony_Tech said:

I'm thinking some download games. We haven't seen any from Nintendo yet. Maybe a Wii U version of Pushmo or some new ip! Not thinking anything retail though.

Tsuchiya

#15

Tsuchiya said:

Nintendo have opened the 8th generation perfectly (price, tech, attitude) and I have a feeling that Nintendo will absolutely dominate the 8th. They've learned from their mistakes. This is the Nintendo I remember, we're back on track now.

As for the others. Well, I'm calling it. Sony burned in '13/14. The next Xbox whatever will do just fine.

I'd bet money Sony will bolt out the 8th gen gate blinkered with a ridiculously overpowered, overpriced PS4. Out of the 3, they're the only company that'd be stupid enough to do so. They never learn. The economy will not allow consoles that are 4, 8, 16 times more powerful than the Wii U. You may want them people and MS and Sony will be itching to make them, but it just won't happen.

Nintendo has got it so, so right here. Affordability, a good reliable name and Nintendo have kicked the gaming industry in the backside and helped to get it back on track again. We can't have consoles constantly out teching each other not for another 6-7 years. It's not getting us anywhere and frankly it's gotten stale in more recent years. It's not good for the consumer. This gen didn't and next gen won't see a tech leap akin to say, the Snes to N64.

Graphical capability will level out between the consoles. Innovation will have to play much more of a vital role to help tempt future customers. Wii U has substantially more powerful tech on board and it's brand new. In other words, come 5 years, Wii U will still be there. Imo, Microsoft will do just fine but it's Sony that need to shape up or ship out.

Just my thoughts, don't hit me. :)

WaLzgiStaff

#16

WaLzgi said:

Not to mention Sony's not in a position to sell two consoles (with Vita) at a hefty loss. Plus if they release a ridiculously powered system, there is no telling how expensive it will be to develop for, so I doubt many developers will immediately flock to them.

Zombie_Barioth

#17

Zombie_Barioth said:

I agree with @Tsuchiya that the current trend just won't cut it. It worked back in the day with things like "mode 7" and "blast processing" because there was so much unbroken ground. Its not just the economy thats a problem with today's current trend of everything being released on multiple platforms having an overpowered console just creates unnecessary expenses. Honestly Sony going overboard on anti-piracy measures is just as likely if the Vita is any indication.

Nintendo caught a lot of flak for the Wii being underpowered but they had the right idea. Even the huge blockbuster releases are becoming unsustainable. Its going to come down to how fun and innovative the games are and I could see things returning to the console wars of old with people sticking to only one console if this home integration thing takes off.

Emaan

#18

Emaan said:

It's definitely the next generation, we haven't seen anything like this before, and it's not only about graphics. Reggie saying there's even more first party launch window games yet to be revealed gets me excited! Yoshi's Island U? Star Fox U? Yes please!

OracleOfTruth

#19

OracleOfTruth said:

I can't wait to immerse myself in the 8th generation. Graphics are nice, but I don't think that is what defines a generation or makes a game great. And as for those launch surprises, I'm all ears, Reggie. :)

NImH

#22

NImH said:

After having the console for a couple of days now, I can say that WiiU is so much more that an HD Wii. The social aspect is major and really fun. I can't imagine going back! Next Gen for sure!
I'd love to hear one of the secrets end up being a new METROID!

shingi_70

#23

shingi_70 said:

Next gen is about new consoles and not about power. I'm expecting next gen to play out with sony in thrid behind nintendo and microsoft.

Tsuchiya

#24

Tsuchiya said:

I'd say that graphical improvements to some extent do help to define a console generation from another but it's innovation that helps to move a generation forward.

As we know, it was the Wii that defined the 7th generation in the end*. Proof should it ever be needed, that innovation HAS to be key. Especially when the industry is stuck in a rut.

So enter Nintendo yet again and I'd say (imo) that Wii U is the first truly next gen system (8th). It will be very interesting to see what the others do when or even if they choose to do it. I'm pretty sure Microsoft won't be silly when they join Nintendo but we're looking at you Sony. O_O You shot yourself in the foot with the PS3.

Prepare your shovel...

*I'm calling it over ;)

grimbldoo

#25

grimbldoo said:

Andy Green wrote:

With the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 coming towards the end of their product life cycles it seems inevitable that their successors will dwarf the Wii U, in terms of graphical power, so some ask whether Nintendo's sixth home console is really the next generation of gaming?

I'll just leave this here.

Tsuchiya

#29

Tsuchiya said:

@Andy Green
Graphical power alone cannot move a generation forward. We're in the 8th gen now and the graphical capabilities of the home consoles will start to be indistinguishable from one another. We're at the stage were consoles will have to differentiate themselves from one another. Wii U does that and then some. We can't have another 7 year graphics war. We will have casualties.

I'll tell you what it will do though, It'll make the 720 and PS4 very, very expensive. I honestly can't see Microsoft being silly with specs and prices but it's Sony that will most probably screw it up. The Wii U will have the upper hand for years to come simply because it's affordable and people can trust in the name in a tight economy.

Ryno

#30

Ryno said:

I think its definitely the beginning of the next generation. The Wii U seems to have more "life" to it than my PS3 and I have only scratched the surface. I'm excited to see what the unannounced titles are!

As for the whole graphics thing, I think new graphics engines will be more customizable so they can be used on a wide variety of platforms.

luminalace

#31

luminalace said:

I may be a fanboy but I totally think the Wii U is the beginning of a new generation. Hey even if the Wii was on par with the original Xbox, no one seriously puts the Wii in the PS2, Xbox or Gamecube generation but instead alongside the PS3 and 360. The next generation will have 3 consoles and that will be Wii U, PS4 and Xbox 720 and will always be remembered as such. Lets just hope this coming generation really isnt the last as some say it will be!

MasterGraveheart

#32

MasterGraveheart said:

I don't think the PS4 or the NeXtBox will be much more stronger than the Wii U. Sure, their processors may be a step up, but graphically? No. They will likely have to opt for a technological innovation that neither have shown a proficiency in. I think this generation, which Nintendo /has/ started, will level the playing field and Nintendo's new friendly policies will bring about their success.

Or, Sony and Microsoft could wait until there is much stronger hardware out there, say, four or five years down the line, the PS3 /is/ said to have a 10-year life cycle, and by then, Nintendo will still be ready to spring their next console on them.

That is, if mobile devices haven't taken over by then. >.>

Malic

#33

Malic said:

@MasterGraveheart mobile devices aren't taking over home consoles man lol and a don't think Sony or Microsoft is gonna wait that long and just let Nintendo have all the glory

JavierYHL

#34

JavierYHL said:

seriously hope the wii u will have strong third party support,have the wii u and been playing for few days...the fun gets old quick...it needs those third party support to carry it unlike the wii...

Tsuchiya

#35

Tsuchiya said:

@JavierYHL

It has 3rd party support. Admittedly, this is minimal atm but it's a good strong start.
What are you playing?
Fresh air?

Klunk23

#36

Klunk23 said:

I think that as long the Wii U continues to get Third party for the years to come, then it will be able to surpass the ps4 and the next x-box system.

Tony_342

#37

Tony_342 said:

I've never understood this argument about what is or isn't "next" generation. System horsepower and new features have nothing to do with it. Saying that the Wii wasn't current generation is like saying that I'm not current generation because I'm shorter than my brothers. It makes no sense. Whatever is currently out, is current generation. Whatever is coming next, is next generation. Now that the Wii U is out, it's the start of a new generation (since it is the successor to the Wii). It's as simple as that.

HawkeyeWii

#38

HawkeyeWii said:

I'm going to go with the surprise release of a handful of HD GCN virtual console games. Can I get some HD Metroid Prime and Wind Waker here!

HawkeyeWii

#39

HawkeyeWii said:

I can't wait for the day that Nintendo runs Xbox out of the business just like they did to Sega, although I would much rather have Sega around than either Xbox or Playstation.

Kid_A

#41

Kid_A said:

The DS and Wii were built on outdated graphical technology but they remain two of Nintendo's most popular and diverse consoles, and they had incredibly long life spans in technology terms. I have no worries about the Wii U.

shingi_70

#42

shingi_70 said:

@Kid_A

The wii lasted six years and software support was killed inyear five with massive droughts.

The ds may have had a good life span but the wii didn't.

shingi_70

#43

shingi_70 said:

@HawkeyeWii

At the rate where the market is goin (something that's pure gaming is dead) microsoft is far more prepared at a commercial and ecosystem level. Given that and microsoft being a more profitable company than nintendo means the likely hood of that is slim too none.

Chunky_Droid

#45

Chunky_Droid said:

Of course it's the next gen, just like the Wii was when it came out.

Instead of having "next-gen" graphics (which are debatable, as even high-end PC games only really improve on PS3/360' graphics by around 20%), Nintendo's going for next-gen innovations, such as Miiverse and the Gamepad, experiences that can't be had on current-gen products.

I'm discounting Smartglass and Vita Crossplay because they're not ever going to be widespread enough so as to be considered part of the core design of the console like the Wii U has.

ArcanaXVI

#48

ArcanaXVI said:

Pretty graphics do not a good game make, nor should they define generations. The Wii U definitely feels like a whole new generation to me. Now, about those surprises . . .

MushroomCooCoo

#49

MushroomCooCoo said:

Just watch as Sony and Microsoft roll out their Wii U imitations like they did with Playstation Move and Xbox Konnect (although a least Kinnect was different enough)

Tsuchiya

#50

Tsuchiya said:

@MushroomCooCoo

Microsoft can pretty much keep doing what they're doing. They've already nailed the online scene and have the AAA games in their arsenal. I'd guess they'll focus more on Kinect and SmartGlass rather than the console hardware. They'll probably tweak the specs to match those of the Wii U but not by much just to keep the costs down. Graphics aren't really the seller they once were and I'd even say considering all 3 are HD capable, it's not important anymore at least not to newcomers.

As for Sony, well who knows. One thing's for sure. If the rumours of PS4 not being backwards compatible turn out to be true then that'll be a huge mistake as will possibly having games locked to your consoles and the console being online only. There won't be an incentive to buy one because multi platform games will be cheaper and more easily accessible on Wii U, 360 (hopefully nextbox) and heck, even PS3. Exclusive games presumably would be available for both PS3/4 and I'd bet that given the choice of the 2, the majority would stick to PS3. Unless of course, PS3 is instantly dropped upon the release of PS4 and you're then forced to follow your wallet.

On the subject of multi platform releases, if you're a Nintendo fan you'll have the Wii U which now being HD capable, opens up so much more opportunities than you've ever had before. If you own a 360 (maybe even a Wii U too) you won't need a PS4 really as everything, give or take the odd game is well and truly catered for between the 2 machines. They compliment each other very well.

Nintendo and Microsoft are chugging along just fine even with the odd hiccup here and there but I just have a bad feeling about Sony. Time will tell :)

Zombie_Barioth

#51

Zombie_Barioth said:

Thats a good point about HD there @Tsuchiya.

Going from PS2 ,GC, or Xbox to PS3 or Xbox 360 was exciting, even if it was just through component. However HD is so common now a days that pretty much everything is at least 720P and as a result lost it's wow factor, its about as exciting now as standard definition was back then.

FonistofCruxis

#52

FonistofCruxis said:

Of course it is, a console generation isn't defined by the graphics. Its about when its released. The Wii was Nintendo's 7th gen console so the Wii U is the company's 8th gen console. Companies don't have more than one home console per generation.

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