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back to article Nintendo Wii U launch and pricing disclosed

Nintendo today officially revealed Wii U release dates, foreign pricing structures and launch titles. Two variations of the console will be available, with a basic edition set to cost around the £200 mark and a more premium edition roughly £50 more. Nintendo's RRP for the UK is a hazy affair, so the ball is in retailers' court …

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Pointless

I really think Ninty is making a mistake with this one. I thought the Wii was a little silly, but bought one of the first DS despite the naysayers. But this thing, well, I think it's 3 steps past useless. It looks like Ninty is trying to get back into the handheld market by selling it as a console...

If the screen was smaller, it would be ok as a secondary monitor (inventory, hidden choices in multiplayer, etc) but this looks just wrong and clumsy.

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Re: Pointless

Yeah and people said both the wii and ds were going to fail and they're some of the best sellers ever with only maybe the ps2 doing better. Even the supposed failure of the 3ds was selling faster than the ds at launch and the 3ds had like no games for months and now it sells even better.

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Silver badge

Re: Pointless

The Gamecube2 (Don't dignify its horrible true name!) Did indeed sell like sliced bread when it came out. How is it doing now? Does anyone have one that is not gathering dust in a spare room or cupboard now?

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Thumb Up

Re: Pointless

Yeah, mine still gets used, currently playing "Pandora's Tower" and "Rhythm Paradise" (which is very good though not as awesome as the gba original) having completed "The last story" (which was ok) and "Xenoblade" (which was great, put in 100+ hours on that, excellent use of the hardware too). And of course it's a much more reliable iPlayer than the ps3 (though neither is bulletproof, at least the wii has the good grace to crash properly rather than still running the audio with a big box over a black screen saying "No connection" like the ps3 reliably does after 5 minutes of any watching anything).

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FAIL

Wii U

When we bought the Wii, we got it as it had a focus on family, collaborative play. The 2nd (and 3rd) controllers were cheap and we've enjoyed that and it often gets played with.

The Wii-U has additional gamepads likely to top the £100 mark. Whilst looking like slightly larger DS's, that for me is a blocker for purchase and makes me consider just enjoying a PS3 or XBOX360 (which are in shops for similar prices to Wii-U now and are fully packaged out).

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Wii U

The controller is more than slightly bigger than a DS, it's freakishly huge. I knew it was big but didn't realize just how big until I held one.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Wii U

I though the idea of the big Wii U controller in multiplayer situations was that one player would use it in, say, a dungeon master role (setting traps and such using the built in screen). Meanwhile, the other 2 or 3 players navigate the dungeon using standard Wii nunchucks on the big screen TV.

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Joke

Re: Wii U

"I knew it was big but didn't realize just how big until I held one"

I...I...No, too easy.

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Facepalm

Re: Wii U

Nintendo announced yesterday that there are no plans, at all, to offer the pad to be bought seperately at the moment.

Partly because of manufacturing capacity, and partly because there are no games on the horizon that even support such play.

http://www.theverge.com/gaming/2012/9/13/3328510/second-wii-u-gamepad-wont-be-supported-or-priced-at-launch-in-u-s

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Re: Wii U

Thanks for the link. So it looks like as mentioned above - the main player in multi-player would have the nice tablet controller whilst other players the nunchuck/wiimotes.

Makes sense - although user experience will be better for the main player (can see the children arguing already over who is the gamepad player..)

Wonder if the main purpose of the Wii-U is to focus on single player games where the whole experience is using the gamepad along with the console.

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Re: Wii U

Nintendo are talking a lot about "asymetric gaming". The player with the tablet has a different role in the game to the players with wii motes. The hands on preview on here

http://www.reghardware.com/2012/06/08/hands_on_with_nintendo_wii_u/

has an example of this in the Animal Crossing Sweet Day game. The tablet user controls two chasing characters, one with each joystick, with the map they're using on the tablet, while the other users use wiimotes and play on the telly.

For single player the ability to keep playing a game on the tablet if someone else wants to watch the telly is quite cool, but that will presumably only be available on games that don't already dedicate the tablet for a specific in game function...

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Bronze badge

As the Emperor nearly said to Mozart

"Too many buttons." The Wii-mote was a wonderful control mechanism for non-console freaks. This is an old style console controller with a screen, no matter that you can tip it around a bit.

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Re: As the Emperor nearly said to Mozart

It also uses Wii remotes, by the way.

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Re: As the Emperor nearly said to Mozart

Look at the iPad. Non techy people find touch screens pretty easy to use, and now they have them on their phones it's a lot less daunting.

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Silver badge

hmm

My significant other is trying to get me to buy one as a secondary media center. No Blu-ray you say? Fail next. I rip on Sony mercilessly on these boards for their business practices but imho its not a media center (PS3, PC, etc) without Blu-ray.

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Re: hmm

And yes I know about streaming and or pirating movies obviously but for whatever reason based on our shopping habits we find it easier to grab a blu-ray of the good movies (as opposed to throw away rentals) off the shelf at the store we will be at anyway than to worrying about a large download.

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FAIL

Re: hmm

She has to get you to approve all purchases? You must be a real joy to live with.

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Re: hmm

Or maybe as it's shared money it's a shared decision....

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Facepalm

is that all...?

"The basic model packs an 8GB flash drive, while the premium ups that to 32GB"

Must do better Ninty. This is a home console, not a telephone.

I'm sure they'll bring out a higher spec version further down the line, but 8/32GB just isn't enough. Especially given that the console and game makers are threatening to go down the dark path of download only.

Even my PS3 has 320GB and that's pretty old hat at this stage (yes.. I know it's an HDD, not flash memory).

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Re: is that all...?

My Ps3 is 320gb too which is overkill because I don't download games. Not that it really matters since Nintendo is more open and you can buy you own additional storage from anyone unlike the 360's overpriced proprietary drives. The wii u will no doubt the same so just any old external drive.

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Re: is that all...?

"My Ps3 is 320gb too which is overkill because I don't download games."

Good for you.

Nintendo has an app store that probably rivals Apple's, and the majority of Wii owners that I know download more games than they buy at Brick & Mortar, and save them to SD cards

But only 32 Meg on the Wii U? Most current games have save files, and Nintendo won't let you move/save the save files to SD to "prevent hacking*, so the current Wii quickly reach a point where games can't run due to insufficient memory*. If the Wii U is going to go anywhere, it needs a lot more memory, Much more than a Wii by an order of magnitude at least!! I'm tired of buying SD cards!

*Smooth move Nintendo! That little trick alone did more to drive the hacking movement on Wii than anything else!** Not to mention reducing online sells from the non-hackers (like me) when the memory limit's hit.

**And as long as you have to hack it to move save files to SD, You might as well "tweak" the save file while you're at it, right?

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Re: is that all...?

My Ps3 is 320gb too which is overkill because I don't download games.

You're in the minority.

Nintendo is more open

Bwhahahaha. Ah, that's amusing. Is that why they won't let you move your own save game slots between machines half the time? Though I suppose you really don't need a big hard drive if you're committed to never, ever patching games.

And I like how you switched to the 360 to avoid admitting that the PS3 drive is user-replaceable using many standard SATA drives, and comes with instructions on how to do it, as well as a full backup system.

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Re: is that all...?

It may be overkill for you, but I if you do download games (as I'm sure most people do) or have PlayTV it's essential to have a bit more storage.

I read somewhere that the Wii U can also be used as a PVR, thus making the 32GB pretty measly - so you'll have to factor in the price of an external HDD when buying a Wii U, and also hope that they'll let you save recorded TV onto said drive.

I agree with you about the overpriced 360 drives, but I don't have one for that kind of reason.

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Re: is that all...?

"...you can buy you own additional storage from anyone unlike the 360's overpriced proprietary drives."

You do know you can move saves on the 360 onto pen drives to take with you where ever you want to go, you didn't... well you do now.

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Anonymous Coward

Wait a second, is it not the point of console gaming to get four friends round the TV and mercilessly take the piss out of one another whilst playing each other at something?

Is that really even possible when the consoles controller is going to make the thing cost potentially £550 for 4 players?

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Anonymous Coward

Nice troll...

But as we all know you can still use the old Wii controllers and that there won't be games supporting 4 of the new controllers because the unit only supports 2.

3/10 Try harder.

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FAIL

You can't use 4 and you were only meant to have the one until people cried about that. Just reuse wii controls or buy the wii u pro controller. Buying 4 tablet controllers would be retarded.

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Re: Nice troll...

Sometimes people just ask questions because they don't know something...

The question mark at the end of the sentence could be a clue. I know, odd in a place whose URL starts in "forum", but hey.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Nice troll...

Yeah, that question was a question incidentally. I've not followed the WiiU development so wasn't aware of Wii controllers being usable.

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Thumb Down

Is not the price, or the controller for me

It's the games.

We have a PC and an XBox for the block type buster titles.

We had a Wii for the more family centric titles - then they died off and the Wii usage died off with it.

If they bring more family orientated games out then I'll buy them, otherewise I'll stick with the Xbox and PC

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Re: Is not the price, or the controller for me

That "Nintendo Land" thing that was announced in last E3 and a new super Mario Bros are the most important first party games that will be available at launch... If that's an indicator, I'll hope the family centric / party games emphasis of the Wii won't be completely lost with this new console.

I don't think Nintendo needs to ditch the hosts of new customers they got in order to get back the hardcore gamers... if they can balance both aspects, the WiiU will be a hit. Sounds risky, though

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Silver badge

Christ, the fanboys are out in force on this one. Toad, do you actually work for Ninty or something?

Personally, I'm unimpressed (shocker!). The Wii was gimmicky and cheap. This is just gimmicky, and to be honest, it's probably even further out of date in terms of hardware than the Wii was at launch. Wow, it can run Call of Duty properly now? You know that's a DirectX9 game, right? As soon as the new X-box/PS come out this thing will be left bleeding mainstream titles all over again.

The gameplay demos I've seen aren't any more impressive. Someone pointed me at ZombieU yesterday, which looked interesting until about 40 seconds into the trailer. Sure, it looks far more interesting than most Wii games, but then you look closer. An inventory system that takes far longer than most because of all the touchscreen stuff and doesn't pause the game while you're screen flicking. Switching between 1st and 3rd person perspectives. Constantly holding the tablet up at eye level for all the gimmicky shit they've crammed in, like sniper mode, scanner, etc.

(I will concede that RPGs could be friggin' awesome on this thing, but given previous form we're far more likely to get a set of games that constantly interrupt gameplay to show off the console they're running on, which is missing the ICBM-sized point.)

Yeah, yeah, I know what's coming next. "But that's not the point of the Wii, pick up and play, it's for kids, blah blah blah" So we can look forward to another library consisting of 90% shovelware? Joy. Deep, deep joy. My Wii is very rarely played, and even then my library for it consists almost entirely of arcade light gun ports, and GameCube games, which ironically are the best ones. I suppose the entire console was worth it just to have the first really good HOTD game in history, but it's been one long rollercoaster of disappointment for me. I can name 10 worthwhile games for it, 20 if I really think about it, and half of them I would recommend playing on other consoles.

Oh, and here's something I never hear brought up: if we're supporting old Wii controllers, does it support the ones before Motion Plus (you know, the broken ones)? Because that would be a horrible idea. With the Motion Plus being an optional extra, the vast majority of games didn't support it and suffered for it.

We had a Wii for the more family centric titles - then they died off and the Wii usage died off with it.

The Wii died when:

a) the fad wore off

b) Nintendo announced its replacement so far in advance they practically pulled a SEGA. Derp!

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FAIL

"it's probably even further out of date in terms of hardware than the Wii was at launch"

So?

Do you have any understanding of product development? The balance is all about building a hardware platform that will perform *adequately* for the projected lifetime of the product, at the cheapest Bill Of Materials cost, again across the projected life of the production, in order to reach a given price point. It's not about shoving the most high end silicon you can source into a box and sticking a badge on it.

Only time will tell if they've built it underpowered, if the 3rd party ports start to tail off due to lack of performance, and the in house titles aren't able to plug the sales gap. People said the same thing about the Wii at launch, and I don't think anyone can seriously consider that a failed product.

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Silver badge

Re: "it's probably even further out of date in terms of hardware than the Wii was at launch"

Do you have any understanding of product development?

Do you have any understanding of the gaming market?

They're charging twice as much for this Wii as the previous one (assuming you buy the proper edition). Did you get that? Twice as much. But it is barely on the level of the current consoles in terms of performance, and doesn't have nearly as complete a feature set in terms of media playback/storage. You can buy a PS3 now, which comes with a blu-ray drive, etc out of the box, and it costs less than this thing.

Ignoring price for performance, what happens in another year when the machine is hopelessly outclassed again? One of the big problems with the Wii was that it just couldn't cope with the most popular games. It doesn't matter whether you like those mainstream titles or not (and personally, I'm not a big fan of many of them) - they form the foundation of a console's sales. If the Wii can't handle them, then it loses out in a big way. Why do you think they were trumpeting Mass Effect 3, Call of Duty, etc earlier this year? It's a huge crowd that Nintendo are currently missing, and the faddy crowd they did grab are far more fickle. By the time this thing comes out, even ME3 will be old hat.

If the Wii isn't even in the same generation in terms of hardware, then it can't get the latest cutting-edge games, end of story, and that will hurt it. Whether you like it or not, there's a huge swathe of gamers out there who go cuckoo-for-coco-puffs over the latest graphics.

Actually, while I'm thinking about it, there's another thing I missed from my earlier rant - the online service. The online portion of the Wii was abysmal, even worse than Sony's. I really hope they make massive strides in that area, because they really need to.

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Re: "it's probably even further out of date in terms of hardware than the Wii was at launch"

Greg, you sound like you just want another 360/ps3 style console. Nintendo Wii is different to those two and wii U will be different to ps4/720. That's a good thing, not a big problem. Why should Nintendo fret about trying to get the "hardcore" market back when they can make money from the family friendly market and offer an alternative? And why do you sound so angry that there's an alternative product rather than 3 very similar ones in different branded boxes?

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Re: "it's probably even further out of date in terms of hardware than the Wii was at launch"

Greg, you sound like you just want another 360/ps3 style console.

Then you've missed the point in stellar fashion, as confirmed by:

And why do you sound so angry that there's an alternative product rather than 3 very similar ones in different branded boxes?

I'm angry that their previous product barely bloody works, that they don't look after their customers post-sale, that their online service is atrocious, that the Wii U is clearly overpriced considering its technical inferiority, etc. The reasons you're giving stink of a strawman argument, because I don't appear to have said anything remotely like that.

The Wii is crap, its library of games are crap, and I don't want the replacement to do the same. Is there a way that I can say this that you will suddenly magically understand? I want the Wii U to be good, because the Wii wasn't, and they seem to be repeating themselves, which isn't a good sign.

Why should Nintendo fret about trying to get the "hardcore" market back when they can make money from the family friendly market and offer an alternative?

Again, they're the ones trumpeting Mass Effect and CoD. (Seriously, are you people even attempting to understand another viewpoint?) If they want the market back, they have to try harder.

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Re: "it's probably even further out of date in terms of hardware than the Wii was at launch"

>>their previous product barely bloody works<<

In what way doesn't it work? I've had one since launch and it works fine.

>>its library of games are crap,<<

I disagree, I have a massive pile of wii games, a lot of them wii exclusives. Xenoblade and Rhythm Paradise are two relatively recent ones not available on any other platform.

I am trying to understand your viewpoint, but shouting "it's crap" doesn't really give me much to go on...

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Anonymous Coward

They're a Japanese company who create things for Japan, if it catches on anywhere else than that's a bonus.

They'll love this in Japan.

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Anonymous Coward

Is that why they're releasing it in Japan last?

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Anonymous Coward

why am i talking to myself?

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Anonymous Coward

Because we need Help

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Boffin

What I want to know is...

...will it play my GameCube and Wii games in HD?

I mean, properly, at 1080p resolution, rather than just upscaling the SD framebuffer. It's perfectly possible to do so; the emulators have been doing it for years (and it looks freaking *awesome*). If the WiiU did this, I'd be inclined to get one purely so I can play all my existing games at higher res.

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Re: What I want to know is...

No, it does not.

In fairness, neither has any other backwardly compatible console.

Its not a simple thing to do, hooking into an existing graphics system and changing the rendering resolution is a million miles away from hardware upscaling. Involves shitloads of testing and coding, for something that stops people buying the new games on your new console.

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Re: What I want to know is...

Shame. (I also see that Game Cube games aren't supported.)

And it can't be that hard, or the emulators wouldn't already be doing it...

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Silver badge

Re: What I want to know is...

Shame. (I also see that Game Cube games aren't supported.)

Seriously? Why the hell not? The Cube and Wii are practically the same thing underneath.

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Re: What I want to know is...

probably because they want to charge you again to download them. That's how gameboy games work on 3DS...

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