Thursday, September 13, 2012

Wii U Announcement Roundup

Nintendo just wrapped up their Wii U press event where they announced the launch date for the US and UK along with prices. We also got to see what kind of software support they will have coming with the unit. Read on for details and my thoughts.

The Wii U will launch on November 18th in the US. There will be 2 bundles available at launch:(

  • The Basic bundle will include a white console, game pad, sensor bar, 8GB of storage, and an HDMI cable for $299
  • The "Deluxe" bundle will include a black console and game pad, up the storage to 32GB, include a charging stand and console stand, an HDMI cable and Nintendo Land. This bundle will launch at $349. 
Along with the Wii U, Nintendo is also launching TVii, a new service that will offer a more interactive media experience for the user. TVii will use the game pad to allow the user to interact with what they are watching in many different ways. Users can stream twitter and check out movie reviews while they watch. TVii will also interact with TiVo allowing users to manage their TiVo right from the game pad. Nintendo is also bringing their streaming services up to date. The Wii U will allow users to stream Netflix, Hulu Plus, and Amazon on demand through the console. Sporting events will also be available on the service. With the help of the game pad you will be able to see scores and stats all without missing any plays. 

The big question for Nintendo this time around was, can they get the kind of software support (third party) they need to compete with the likes of Sony and Microsoft. Nintendo brought out all of the staples you would expect from a first party stand point, namely, a new Mario game that will launch alongside the console. They also announced that Bayonetta 2 will be a Wii U exclusive published by Nintendo, which is sure to get fans of the first game excited. For third party support, Activision CEO Eric Hirshberg came out to announce they would be bringing many of their titles to the Wii U; most importantly Call of Duty Black Ops II. It will be very interesting to see exactly how Treyarch uses the game pad to add to the CoD experience. 

Nintendo is taking an interesting direction with the Wii U. On one hand it seems to be a system intended to  play catch up to Sony and Microsoft. On the other hand they are doing some new and seemingly innovative things with the game pad, that might leave Sony and Microsoft playing catch up in the end. More importantly is the price too high? With Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 ranging anywhere between $50 to $150 cheaper is there enough new stuff in the Wii U to get you to purchase a new system now? Are they going to have similar problems to the ones they had with the 3DS? 

What do you think? Let us know below and follow us on twitter (@thegamingnook) for more news concerning the Wii U. 

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