Wii Are the Future

Wii Are the Future

Twenty or so hours into Nintendo's latest entry in the storied Zelda franchise, Twilight princess, I'm having two seemingly contradictory thoughts simultaneously. Let's set aside for a moment whether that means I'm a genius or insane (no, your votes don't count); I'm more concerned with what it says about the Wii.

The thoughts: A) I love this game, B) I hate this console. Allow me to explain.

I played the Wii at E3, loved it, and have since said a great many things about what it can (and might) do for the game industry and the acceptance of games. Let's be honest, it's a well-implemented, revolutionary idea. And it's fun. Ten minutes with the thing and I couldn't put it down. There's a reason why the line to play it at E3 was around the booth, through the hall, out the doors and into the lobby: It's loads of fun. They had over a dozen demo machines running non-stop at E3 and the wait was still over three hours to get hands-on time with one. Mainly because everybody wanted to play with it, but also because once they got their hands on it, they couldn't let go. It was just that much fun.

But it's also a success in another way. It really is a game machine for people who wouldn't ordinarily own a game machine, just like Nintendo said it would be. If we're looking for a game system that's fun to play, that will get folks who normally wouldn't play games to play games, then the Wii is it. Hands down, it's going to do that. Just get them to pick up a Wiimote and play some Wii Sports, and you'll have them.

If you don't believe me, then take the word of the industry's most well known (and curmudgeonly) curmudgeon, John C. Dvorak.

"My experience with this toy tells me that a fundamental change has taken place in game play-and it's all down to the controller," says Dvorak. "People were all pumped up about it before it came out, and now I can see why. It changes all the rules and will dominate the future of gaming. You watch."

My fear for my own sanity is directly proportional to the number of times I agree with John C. Dvorak. This makes twice now. I am therefore moderately alarmed. John was skeptical of the Wii (and not much of a fan of games anyway) until he played the bowling game. He is now a true believer. And yes, it was just that simple. But he clearly didn't play Zelda: Twilight Princess, and probably shouldn't have - because it's not for him. Also, it's not for the Wii; or shouldn't be, anyway.

For one thing, the Wiimote doesn't have enough buttons for a modern action game like Twilight Princess and what buttons do exist aren't in the right places. Switching between weapons is cumbersome, and - in the midst of a heated battle - deadly, and the Wiimote's scarcity of real estate means that oft-needed functions (like inventory selection screens) are relegated to tiny, hard-to-use buttons, making the style of play to which many of us have become accustomed a thing of the past. And really, that's what bothers me here. The game is clearly an advancement in terms of game design and development, but clearly - necessarily - a backward step because of the control scheme. It wasn't designed for the Wii, and therefore feels like a misfit, in spite of it's shiny bits.

Twilight Princess is a fantastic game, and everything you'd expect from a next-gen Zelda. It's a clear evolution for the Zelda series, improving upon past Zelda's in almost every way. It's also a pretty clear evolution in game design. The challenges are difficult, but satisfying and the puzzles appropriately complex, but rewarding. The story is first-rate, and every single one of the myriad little touches scream quality, craftsmanship and care. Zelda games are typically a labor of love, and Twilight Princess is no exception. It's just a frustrating experience on this newfangled Wii machine. For me anyway. Maybe, as they say, it's not Zelda, it's me.

I feel like one of those PC gamer die-hards complaining about the lack of precision versus the keyboard+mouse combo, and I'm not unaware of the irony. I'm a relatively recent console machine convert, and now play very few games on a PC. But I am apparently still stuck enough in my old ways that a divergence from even the console's relatively loose control scheme has me in a tizzy. Perhaps I should get over myself, but I don't think I'm alone here. Unfortunately, I know I'm seeing this differently than the "other 90%," who will accept the Wii as if manna from heaven. They have no reliance on an overly-complicated control scheme to unlearn, and they, perhaps, are the better for it.

Nintendo is clearly aiming for the mainstream with their Wii console, and in a lot of ways, that's the smart move. I don't think the world is ready for a game console to become a mainstream entertainment appliance, but their current positioning the market shows that people are at least willing to try it. For videogaming, however, the move is a bit revolutionary, as Mr. Dvroak suggests. But revolutions involve change, and change is something a great many "hardcore' gamers fear. Change is disruptive, and aiming for the mainstream means "dumbing down" what is in many ways an exclusionary experience.

In this respect, Twilight Princess is a perfect test-case. It simultaneously incorporates the past and future of Zelda games, and as far as I'm concerned, the mix could have bred a better child. Then again, as a card-carrying member of The 10%, what I have to say may not be the point, and I'd enjoy being wrong on this score as much as being right. We'll see what the future holds, but for now I plan to enjoy as much of the ride as I can and hope that the train doesn't leave me too far behind on it's way to mainstream success.

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The problem isn't the console, it is the game.

I ranted at some length about the control scheme in a response to a review posted on the forums a month or so ago:
http://www.escapistmagazine.com/forums/read/8.37292

I'm not going to re-state everything here, but the control scheme poorly designed. I didn't have much trouble reaching buttons once I was used to it, but the way the buttons worked boggled my mind.

Also, when I think about the other control issues, motion sensing and pointing, I remember my first experiences with the N64. The analog stick was, for me, a very difficult device to get used to. Perhaps with time the controls will seem more capable when the users (you an I) become more capable of using them.

I have to agree, however, that the buttons aren't placed in the most perfect places. I think nintnedo tried to add versitility (putting the remote sideways to play some games) instead of focusing on optimizing the controller for one setup. Hopefully 3rd party controllers will remedy this situation. Perhaps, just as Microsoft did early on with the Xbox, Nintendo will realize the issues and confront them with their own remodel. I doubt that very much, though...

My opinion: they launched TP for the Wii to make up for the fact that they didn't have any other mascot to give Nintendo fans, which is tradtionally a Fanboy-filled audience. I love Nitnedo and I feel foolish for being partially duped by this move.

I haven't played Twilight Princess, nor have I played the Wii, but I've been a long time fan of the Zelda series. However, my excitement for the combination of the Wii and the next Zelda installment is with equal skepticism, as well.

I've had a feeling that Twilight Princess was designed with the GameCube in mind and probably plays better on it as well. The Wii is simplicity refined... and I don't think you can just port over any game and expect it to play great with the new controller.

Thanks for confirming my suspicions with this article.

I wonder though... does Twilight Princess work with that optional classic controller? I'd consider getting a Wii with TP if it worked with that gamepad.

PS - I still remember putting in "ZELDA" as my name, the first time I played my gold copy on the NES, and wondering why my game was vastly different and more difficult than my friend's version. ;-)

No, it doesn't work on the Wii with either the Gamecube or Classic controllers. If you want to use the traditional control setup you must go for the Gamecube version of the game.

You can, if so you choose, get the GC version and a Wii and play the GC version on your Wii with a GC controller...

If widescreen is not a big issue for you, I would suggest getting the GC version regardless of whether you own a wii or not. Its definately the sort of game that was designed for the traditional style of controller.

I love LOZ:TP but the controls are far from ideal. I'm praying that I don't need to make the same statement about LOZ: phantom hourglass and mario galaxy when they finally come out.

From my perspective, the Wii isn't really like a console so much as it's like a gimmicky peripheral. Something like Eyetoy.

Does the concept have the stamina to really work as a standalone system ? I remain to be convinced.

The bowling game in Wii sports is a fantastic exercise in the psychology of the thing. Non-gamers tend to initially love it until you point out to them that if they bowl at some point miles off the screen they will still hit the pins. Then they lose interest.

Twilight Princess is at the opposite end of the spectrum. It's a game they're using to sell the Wii that doesn't really belong there.

I still have hope for the Wii in terms of mainstream games. I think the concept is very sound, but not for all types of games. I'm hoping to see a revival of the classic adventure game or even a rebirth of Myst and 7th Guest type games... you know, for gamers who suck at games. ;-)

I just hope if they decide to make those types of games, that I don't have to wade through the Mario and Link varieties.

A revival of point and click adventure titles actually sounds tailor made for the Wii. Maybe the Williamses can even be coaxed back out of hiding for that. Here's hoping.

I played the demo of zelda tp for about 15 minutes and though I didn't spend hours with it I came to the same conclusion, it was not meant for the wii.

I had difficulties getting the bow crosshair to register on screen and for the life of me I could not find the item screen, sure it was just a demo but it left little to be desired.

Im not really hip on nintendos strategy to go after old people or the "mainstream" (whoever the hell they are), I mean thats fine and all but im a hardcore gamer and I have felt neglected by nintendo for quite some time. I mostly play alone and i am just not going to be swayed by swinging a remote in sporty or lame party games.

I do not have a high opinion of motion control. I see it as more of a hindrance to game play and have thought so ever since I just had to have the powerglove, certainly the wii is more advanced but what exactly are they going to do to attract me as a more hard core oriented gamer? I just don't see them offering much that I would be interested in.

I feel like the train left me behind as far as nintendo is concerned along time ago.

In my view, all the issues that are being touched on here are just localized instances of the more general problems inherent to the route that Nintendo has opted to go with this interface. It's an interface designed with the clear aim of globalizing the video game experience by making the manual operation of the games themselves more intuitive, this much has been stated and re-stated since the earliest days of the system's development. Now, a few months post-launch, it's also clear that the system has to a pretty decent extent succeeded in doing this. I've read countless blogs tended by people into their 40's who detail how no system their children have owned up until now, no matter how many hours have been logged on it, has earned a coveted spot in the gadget rack hooked up to the big TV. This system has done one better than attracting the attention of older gamers, it's hooked the gamers' parents too. This is largely due to the fact that someone who's been playing games since they were tall enough to reach the game voucher pouches in the Toys R' Us can approach Wii Golf right alongside someone who, in their mid twenties, skipped over the first article detailing Pong in the New York Times, and the two can get the hang of it, and most importantly begin having fun doing it at almost exactly the same pace.

But intuition is certainly not without its price. Your Wii Sportses, your Wario Wares, your XX/XY's, these games only work when the gameplay hovers reasonably close to a narrow band of simplicity. If you want to have a game that the utter noob can get the general hang of in ten minutes, then there can't really be, at the deepest level, more than ten minutes of gameplay to pick up. And in all of these games, what the fun factor really relies on is the novelty that when I tilt the controller like this, when I jostle it like that, when I point it here, when I jab it there, something is happening on screen that mimics that motion. In this format the control scheme itself becomes the game's centerpiece. And if that's truly the wellspring of fun in these games, then what Nintendo has really tapped into here is just the thrill that always comes along with any new way of manipulating virtual worlds. Think back to the first time you used a USB steering wheel, or a joystick, or a mouse. Once the novelty of these interfaces fades, only two things really matter: How well do they control what they're being implemented to control, and what else is there to make these games great beyond their presence?

I realize this is getting longer and more preachy the farther into it I get, so I'm just going to bulletpoint some things that I hope will invite some further discussion:

-Buttons are by now the most antiquated components of game controls, and this is probably because they can accomplish so much. I haven't played that much Twilight Princess, but for example I can anticipate that after the novelty of readying my bow with a true-to-life motion wears away, I'll probably just be left with a tired arm and a nostalgia for the time when all I needed to do was hit B.

-Aiming the gun in Red Steel by pointing is kind of neat for a while, and steering in Need For Speed Carbon by tilting the wiimote is neat for a while less, but each of these modes of control, as novel as they may be, is probably about as precise as an analog joystick, and neither is more precise or even more intuitive than a steering wheel or a mouse. Also, here again these games don't offer much beyond the novelty of their controls.

-The wider audience that Nintendo is hoping to attract here will avoid these kinds of games for the same reasons the they avoid them on other systems; they rely on video game conventions that this audience is either unwilling or unable to embrace. The intuitive games are devoid of these conventions, and that endows them with the potential for instant fun, but a lot of these conventions are what make games rich. The kind of fun you have with Wii Sports isn't a kind of fun with much potential to develop over time. What you experience in the first 5 minutes is what there is to experience.

-Beyond the novelty of the control scheme, which is still too new to tire just yet, the Wii is just kind of underpowered. This is a point I've only recently taken to heart when I realized on watching the new gameplay demo for Assassin's Creed that processing power can be hitched to more plows than just independent physics engines for each of a volleyball player's two breasts.

This'll be my first post on this board. Show me what you got, website community!

jnikos:
-The wider audience that Nintendo is hoping to attract here will avoid these kinds of games for the same reasons the they avoid them on other systems; they rely on video game conventions that this audience is either unwilling or unable to embrace. The intuitive games are devoid of these conventions, and that endows them with the potential for instant fun, but a lot of these conventions are what make games rich. The kind of fun you have with Wii Sports isn't a kind of fun with much potential to develop over time. What you experience in the first 5 minutes is what there is to experience.

-Beyond the novelty of the control scheme, which is still too new to tire just yet, the Wii is just kind of underpowered. This is a point I've only recently taken to heart when I realized on watching the new gameplay demo for Assassin's Creed that processing power can be hitched to more plows than just independent physics engines for each of a volleyball player's two breasts.

This'll be my first post on this board. Show me what you got, website community!

woooo nice post man, I liked some of your points. I agree with your sentiment that going after this wider audiance isn't going to get non gamers suddenly playing 80 hour adventure/rpg games or super precise platformers and racing games. Using a novelty control scheme may at first grab the attention of those that may not have given a second look I think in the long run isn't really going to expand your audiance and like you said these non gamer gamers are not likely to suddenly become hard core gamers playing the staples of the game industry.

While simplicity may be good for younger and older gamers this control scheme seems to neglect those seeking more depth, with limited buttons and seemly imprecise movements forcing developers to implement gimmicky/jerky camera movements/aiming, while stacking multiple functions to too few buttons to add depth really hinders applying this interface device to more typical games that real gamers want. I also do not see much difference in hitting a key on my keyboard as opposed to a button on my controller versus flicking my wrist which I think in the long run would give me carpal tunnel which I've sought to avoid with controllers, keyboards and mouse devices.

I to think that the wi is underpowered in terms of actual processing power while nintendo seems to focus on graphics are not every thing shtick, they seemed to have overlooked what the industry is doing with advanced processing power beyond just glitzy graphics.

nintendo talked up a lot about innovation but in reality all they have done is offer an alternative way of interfacing with games and one in which seems to present more obstacles to traditional gaming then offering new ways to play.

This may just be a coincidence, but hours after Fletcher posted about the Williamses, I got a few emails from the sierragamers.com website's mailing list with well wishes to Ken and Roberta and a gentle urging for them to come back into gaming. I've never had a single email from that mailing list in over year until yesterday. ;-)

I got involved with a bit of a game development experiment at the site a while back. Fans of the Sierra adventure games got together and decided to see if they could make a game through an online collaboration. However, it kind of fell through as many of us realized that it just can't be a part-time endeavor (not as a group effort, strictly online). However, I was impressed that Ken agreed to cover development costs of software purchases and such if we constructed a sound plan. So... it's not like Ken isn't interested in computers and gaming any more... just that I don't think he's interested in the hands-on aspect.

Anyway, just thought I'd share that with you guys.

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I agree with pretty much everything you've said, jnikos. However...

jnikos:
Beyond the novelty of the control scheme, which is still too new to tire just yet, the Wii is just kind of underpowered. This is a point I've only recently taken to heart when I realized on watching the new gameplay demo for Assassin's Creed that processing power can be hitched to more plows than just independent physics engines for each of a volleyball player's two breasts.

...I don't see under-powered processors as a hindrance. Game designers are always "limited" to the power of system specs. Would Metal Gear Solid for the PS1 be a bad game if it were released on the market today as is?

I guess I'm not much of a technologist though. Maybe the need for processing power is all relative. I don't have an HDTV, my computer is 7 years old, I play old DOS games, and I'm married... ;-)

Going through some of the thoughts on this thread I've come to the conclusion that the main problem with the wii so far is that there is no room in any of the games to really become an expert. And this, I believe, is due to the lack of versatility in the controller no less.

You can argue for getting the perfect game in bowling etc, but the truth is that there is a lot of random swinging and hoping involved in most wii games that does not (and for the time being will not) translate into, say, stringing together a perfect 30 hit combo in soul caliber.

The wii has reset the scoreboard for everyone, and for the time being everyone (gamers and non-gamers alike) is having fun starting from scratch and learning to play all over again. But when the hardcore gamers reach the point where they can progress no further, these games just become old hat and boring, and this is happening far too soon on the wii.

It will never be a problem for party games. Warioware, mario party, etc have never required much skill or accuracy to be fun and so they will always be fun on wii. But games like twilight princess simply need a more versatile controller to reach their full potential.

Negativity aside. Sam and Max could be awesome on the wii in a way that it never could be on the 360 or PS3 and if smash brothers brawl really ends up using gamecube controllers I will say a short prayer of thanks to the developers at nintendo. The game is not over yet.

I noticed a number of people that have commented have little to no experience with the Wii. You have concerns, thats fine, but you can't possibly make the proper assessment of the console with 15 minutes of playtime.

The bow in TP doesn't require "true to life" motion to execute a shot. It uses the pointer to aim. Once I got used to that it was amazing. I am playing ocarina now, and I've tried wind waker again. The aim control in both of those games simply doesn't compare to the accuracy of the Wiimote pointing.

The console has been out for 5 months, give some time for quality titles to reach shelves. It has few good games at this point. There was a recent article about the "skill stick revolution" a few weeks back. How long did it take to add this feature? Almost an entire generation of the standard two analog stick set up. Give it time, the Wii will have quality titles in due time.

wii is going to have quality titles in due time, what do you base that assessment on the gamecubes library?

more over if 15 minutes isn't enough time, then perhaps nintendo should have had a different demo in there kiosk, I perceive the wii to be a gimmick and there stupid kiosk is not going to sway me into buying one of there lame consoles.

one does not need to buy a wii to know that nintendo is making simpler games for a simpler audiance, there powerglove redux does little to convince anyone that they will do anything different this round. nintendo is incapable of delivering a steady stream of quality games, and thus far have yet to deliver a single game worth buying a wii for.

15 minutes is more then enough to makes judgments on wii zelda, it plays better on the gamecube. I will not buy a wii to convince you that my opinion is more valid, and i certainly don't need more then 15 minutes to judge nintendo by its past. a little pr and everyones convince of nintendos second coming, well im not. i play what time not personally owning a wii affords me and until they actually make something beyond another rehash of there dead ip's and simple minded party games i will remain unconvinced.

Goofonian:
Going through some of the thoughts on this thread I've come to the conclusion that the main problem with the wii so far is that there is no room in any of the games to really become an expert. And this, I believe, is due to the lack of versatility in the controller no less.

That's an excellent observation. I think developers are going to be hard-pressed to make a game that doesn't utilize the remote. I mean, as soon as you devote all control to the classic controller, you're defeating the entire purpose of the Wii... which is a truly innovative control concept that's accessible to everyone. Conventional games just don't make sense to be used with an unconventional, simplified remote.

I'm a huge fan of the innovation behind the Wii, but I'm not convinced that game developers really understand the elegance and limitations of the new controller. I'm holding my breath a little for Metroid Prime 3: Corruption.

Conventional Game Developers + Unconventional Controller = Interesting Times

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LordCancer:
a little pr and everyones convince of nintendos second coming, well im not. i play what time not personally owning a wii affords me and until they actually make something beyond another rehash of there dead ip's and simple minded party games i will remain unconvinced.

As much as I love Nintendo, they don't speak to me. Practically everything has a childish twist to it. I don't think I'm going to get that puzzle/exploration game set in a haunted house where you move with the nunchuk and aim your flashlight with the remote and fast twitch reflexes have nothing to do with the enjoyment of the game. I'll probably get a lanky plumber in a green suit trying to capture ghosts with a gimmicky ghost-trapping bubble gun. Gotta milk those IPs for all they're worth, I suppose.

However, Nintendo has never really connected with a mature audience so maybe my wishful thinking is simply a pipedream. If Microsoft had released this new controller and packaged it with the 360 as an "optional device", I'd have more faith and interest in the possibility of games that would appeal to me... as insanely backwards as that sounds.

I'll probably be singing a different tune when my son grows up enough to hold a remote though... when he and I can catch ghosts together. I'll be Luigi and he can be Toad. ;-)

It isn't fair to write off a completely new controller without first getting used to it. There are all sorts of suppositions about how shallow controls are. If the controls are simple now it it quite possibly because of a lack of understanding that developers have of the technology at the present. There have been many instances where developers have come out and said that the controller is capable of much more and it will take time for them to unlock all of the potential available.

The PS3 processor technology is vastly different from the norm as well. There is strong possibility that eight processor cores will allow for some really interesting changes in the way games are put together. Right now, however, many teams are still working on how they should be approaching the console.

The point is, you can't judge a new technology with the first wave of titles, which are always a bit lackluster.

Also, there certainly is a lack of really great games on the GameCube. There are some really fine games there too, but they are few. That doesn't mean, however, that this console will suffer from the same problem. 3rd party companies have expressed an interest in seeing what they can pull off with Nintendo's new hardware. You have to remember, Nintendo isn't the only game-maker in town. Other companies don't have to adhere to Nintendo's ideals.

Moreover, Nintendo, as a game developer, has made high quality titles for years. The Metroid Prime series is fantastic, Wind Waker is great (even if the visual style is a bit lame), Paper Mario is good fun, not to mention all of the other groundbreaking achievements over the years. Nintendo has a tendency to release good games. Their games are largely what made the GameCube worth a look.

TP is weak; I've said it over and over. It's just not that good of a game when it comes to the Wii controls. I think that problem is in the use of the controller, not the controller innately.

As for party games: they have always been a huge part of my gaming life. Some of my best memories are from getting together and playing Mariokart or GoldenEye multiplayer. There is nothing wrong with allowing for gamers to socialize face to face every now and then. But I do agree that there are too many "tech demo" games out there. Perhaps UBI should have kept rayman a platformer. It is a funny game, but it was part of the 50 percent (probably an exaggeration, but not by much) party game based launch line-up.

I've logged quite a few hours with the Wiimote and the controller feels better and better with each hour. No, 15 minutes it not nearly enough time to assess the system as a whole. Try the system out a little more. Don't buy it, find a friend that has one and check out his/hers. If you still don't like it then that’s fine. I don't expect everyone will. I still maintain, however, that the controller takes getting used to, and it will be a great change for a lot of people that are tired of the same thing over and over and over again. I'm just saying it is too soon to count the Wii out.

As for the new fellow on the site: you might want to check out some of the other posts before judging the board as a whole. This thread is becoming a decidedly partisan discussion.

Sorry, forgot to add: Nintendo licensed the power glove, but they didn't have anything to do with its creation or manufacturing. That wasn't Nintendo's folly it was Mattel's. Also, that was almost 20 years ago; I can't imagine the technology is anywhere near the same level.

As I've been following this thread I feel more and more like a Nintendo fanboy, that or I'm fairly certain we haven't been playing the same games or console.

For me playing twilight princess is like a dream come true, the controls finally feel comfortable to me, I went through )and continue to have) much bigger issues trying to aim in Halo or Goldeneye. I've never enjoyed racing games on consoles, and I find Excite Truck to be a shot of much needed adrenaline here.

If by "simple" games you mean a return to more arcade-like games which feel fun for everyone playing and watching with easier to recognize goals and flashy but easy to identify visuals, then we disagree only on whether or not that is a good thing. I do agree there is an over-abundance of party games, I think the reason being that's the easiest way to get the feel for a new control system for the developers.

If it's not working for you though, hey I'm not gonna argue with you, It's probably just not for you. The PS3 just isn't for me. Neither is the 360, the only appeal it's ever held Is always removed the moment I remember how much I HATE traditional controllers. I have hated them since long before the Wii was announced, and the only thing I liked about them was the joystick that the N64 had, otherwise the keyboard and mouse combo (or a true joystick) has always felt superior to me.

A Nintendo fanboy is someone like the guy sitting in front of me at Miyamoto's GDC keynote; rising to his feet, cheering wildly and shouting "Yeah!" as if he were at a ball game and his home team was winning.

Enjoying the Wii console? No one can fault you for that. I enjoy it, too, and Zelda, but I don't feel like it was a match made in heaven. But, as I acknowledged already, this could be a factor of my old-school control prejudice. I'm sure I'll get over it.

I have herd a bit of this expressed interest in the wii, do you actually think that 3rd parties are going to deliver there best content when traditionally irregardless of the installed base only nintendo games sell well on nintendo platforms? It is very difficult for 3rd parties to sell games on nintendo consoles it appears to me that because of that nintendo rarely ever gets exclusives or first rate 3rd party games more or less bad ports and games that would likely be lost among the library of the competition.

My gamecube sent most of its life unplugged, I purchased for skies of arcadia and then gave a few other games a try such as eternal darkness, wind waker, metroid there just wasn't much there to play that interested me even wind waker bored me which I think was a result of all that damned sailing.

Writing nintendo off is more to do with there reputation then simply because of a new controller. I do not think the wii-mote is a good idea, certainly with time that may change but I have yet to hear or see anything coming too the wii that might change my mind. I would like to see them do something different I suppose but from my view point its just more zelda, mario and metroid. I guess I'm just sick of playing those games and want more then that, I do not feel that nintendo will deliver games I want to play though.

Blaxton:
Sorry, forgot to add: Nintendo licensed the power glove, but they didn't have anything to do with its creation or manufacturing. That wasn't Nintendo's folly it was Mattel's. Also, that was almost 20 years ago; I can't imagine the technology is anywhere near the same level.

the power glove really did suck...lol did you look that up or do you carry the power glove memory etched/burned into your psyche?

Blaxton:
The bow in TP doesn't require "true to life" motion to execute a shot. It uses the pointer to aim.

I remember reading at some point that firing a shot involves physically pulling the nunchuck back from the wiimote. Did that not turn out to be the case?

Also, to your point about a future catalog of games full of worthy titles, my thinking is that either these games will rely on the uniqueness of the Wii control scheme, in which case I just can't seem them ever rising above the level of gimicky, or they will not rely on said scheme, in which case they probably would have been better off coming out on one of the other consoles, or at the very least that they don't gain anything from being on the Wii

However an important upside to mention when thinking about all of this is that I've heard it said that the Wii is markedly cheaper to develop for than either of the other two. Depending on how true this turns out to be, it could definitely open up some exciting channels for more indie developers getting their products onto a platform other than the PC.

Yeah, originally they showed people doing the draw back motion in TP, but its not in the game. I suppose you could still do it if you want, but it wouldn't do anything.

Also, I had to look up the info on the power glove, haha.

Wind Waker was unfortunate because it just... looked so stupid. I tried to play it once and couldn't get through it for the same reason that you couldn't, LordCancer. I found out too late in the game that you can teleport places if you shoot this wind-god type thing with the bow. I played the game a second time years later, and I was able to complete it. Knowing about the teleporting made a big difference for me.

Metroid Prime was amazing, though. Except for a couple of control gripes, I thought it was amazing. It was, for me, the best game on the Cube.

And, yes, Jinikos, its been said that its a lot cheaper to develop for the Wii, you are right about that. That’s another reason why I'm hopeful that 3rd parties will do well with it.

I guess I just have a strong hope and belief that Nintendo is actually serious this time. They are actually trying to change a number of things that have made them perform poorly as a company as of late. But, they really are still that "other console". PS3 and Xbox 360 will have a lot of shared titles, but Nintendo is out of luck with that. Who knows, they are doing well now, but what’s coming up the next couple of years will really determine everything. I will maintain hope for them, though.

In wind waker the graphics themselves didn't annoy me to much once they made link look normal I was up in arms when they first unveiled it. I think I had the teleporting wind god thing, last thing I remember was trying to collect all the photos, (Spoiler warning)I got up to the point where the boat transforms into the king and princess zelda is unveiled. I never advanced the story beyond that.(end spoiler)

I played metroid awhile a go and got into it a bit, I actually explored the first planet this time but I was kind of side tracked again. I don't know why certain games do not capture me when others I can sink close to hundred hours in for instance skies of arcadia was my favorite gamecube game and my completion time is a bit over 80 hours and morrowind with so many hours invested its unmentionable.

Developing for the wii is certainly less expensive then the alternatives, what do you think about the comments made by the spore developer during gdc, you know the wii is a piece of shit rant? Between the profanities he seems to express disappointment with the under powered cpu and the ability to implement advanced ai. How do you think this will impact what developers are fundamentally capable of doing with the wii beyond just the simple interface device the wii mote, does the under powered cpu prevent the devs from creating smarter games or will the games themselves be as simple as the wii-mote?

jnikos:
Depending on how true this turns out to be, it could definitely open up some exciting channels for more indie developers getting their products onto a platform other than the PC.

The biggest problem with this is that nintendo doesn't give indie developers dev kits. Or so I've heard. I imagine this probably has to do with quality control and all that BS that nintendo likes to have too much control over.
What I'm hoping will happen is that someone like valve will go to bat for the indies and convince nintendo to bring in, say, a steam shopping channel where you can go and buy and download indie games for cheap, and then valve can assist with filtering through the games to prevent it from becoming a dumping ground like the PC.

LordCancer:
Developing for the wii is certainly less expensive then the alternatives, what do you think about the comments made by the spore developer during gdc, you know the wii is a piece of shit rant? Between the profanities he seems to express disappointment with the under powered cpu and the ability to implement advanced ai. How do you think this will impact what developers are fundamentally capable of doing with the wii beyond just the simple interface device the wii mote, does the under powered cpu prevent the devs from creating smarter games or will the games themselves be as simple as the wii-mote?

You know I actually think this guy had a point, its a shame he was forced to publicly apologise for it. Some of the new AI routines going around look like they would be amazingly processor intensive, and the processor in the wii is just not enough to keep up.
I mean, the graphics I'm not really fussed about. God of War 2 and Resident evil 4 look amazing on the old hardware, and wii is much more powerful than either of those. But what nintendo didnt seem to realise was that a new control scheme is not the only way forward for the industry at this point. Some of the new physics and AI coming along with the next generation of games is just as, if not more innovative than actually swinging the controller to hit a tennis ball. My opinion is that nintendo's decision was more based on it making good business sense for the company than it being the best way forward for the industry. After all, we are all in agreement that they weren't going to be able to compete with sony and microsoft if they continued the way they were going.

Fortunately, there is nothing stopping most of us from (wait for it) buying more than one console and experiencing ALL of the goodness that is gonna come out of the different directions that video games are heading in. Variety is, of course, the spice of life.

I think the guy was right, but he didn't really say things properly. He made claims that Nintendo did not take games seriously. There are many advances that games need to make before the average person will consider them art. I think an important step will be getting the average person to play games. I'm pretty dissappointed at the specs myself, but I think Nintendo is taking one of the many important paths that need to be explored before video games can gain respect from a wider audience. I take the Wii for what it is, not for what it isn't.

I like your closing point, Goofonian. I think that there would be less arguing over the downsides of each if everyone owned two, or perhaps all three, of the available consoles. I was reading, perhaps here at the escapist or perhaps another site, of a theory that suggested that video game fanboys are often created by an inability to own and play more than one console. It is an interesting point, to suggest that we try to put down the "grass is greener" feeling by suggesting that the systems we don't own aren't up to snuff with the one that we do. Personally, I only own a Wii right now. Depending on Mass Effect, BioShock, and a couple other key titles, I might end up buying a 360 at a later date. The PS3 is just out my price range. I can't justify spending that much on a console. When push comes to shove, I don't like to think of one as being better than the other, just different.

I think that may have been the gamers with jobs radio show, a couple of shows ago they did a thing on fanboyism, at least thats where I herd it recently.

I was at a time a nintendo fanboy with the n64, and I couldn't help but love my saturn and dreamcast. As a gamer though felt the sting of your console dieing once too many. I am far more critical in my view points now especially with the cost of this hobby of ours.

I personally feel that $400 is too much for a console so at this point with the wii having nothing I'm interested in I'm stuck waiting for a price war between sony and microsoft so I can get in on the next gen action. luckily I have farcry instincts evolutions to hold me over for awhile longer still.

I am really ready for the show to get on the road though, I want the big guns to start firing and games that show off all platforms and hardware revisions and manufacturing cost reduced so I can get in on the action.

Feels like slow motion and the anticipation is nearing my zenith, I need new game soon.

Fletcher:
Wii Are the Future

It wasn't designed for the Wii, and therefore feels like a misfit, in spite of it's shiny bits.

Permalink

That's the problem. It wasn't designed for the Wii. It was built for the Gamecube and basically a port to the Wii. Zelda: TP isn't the perfect example of how action games will handle the Wii control scheme. It's merely the first attempt at it's mechanics, and one that may not have had enough time to weed out the glitche before it was released.

Up until I believe 6 months to a year before the Wii was released, Nintendo was saying the game was going to be out for the Gamecube only. That means within that timeframe something changed, and within that timeframe they have to reconfigure the controls to make it work for the Wii. There just wasn't enough time.

Nintendo launched the console with a library whose intention it was to appeal to people for whom games, themselves, are a novelty. While that's a good way to go about expanding your market share, it means people who already know how to play are only going to find the controls novel - and the games themselves shallow and uninteresting. We've done it before, and the difference is that now we're doing it with controls that take ten minutes to get the hang of instead of... well, does anyone even know how hard it is to figure out how to use a Dual Shock from scratch? So of course we're not going to be pretty underwhelmed by the launch. Especially when the one title most designed to appeal to us was sort of welded onto the control scheme in the last four months of development.

The problem, for us, is a combination of factors. It's true to some extent that many developers haven't figured out a way to make a really deep game that plays well with the remote, but that doesn't mean that they've forgotten how to make deep games, period. Nintendo wanted the launch to focus on the party-games, because they are crazy enough to risk alienating the early adopters. And you certainly can't forget the launch-window doldrums that happen on every console. It's an exciting time to be a person just starting on a Wii, but a person who already knows how to use a joystick, less so.

The control scheme has not matured, yet. Games with mature design (which is what we want) will have to wait until the developers get familiar with the controllers as well. Fortunately, nobody's more familiar with them at this point than Nintendo's own first-parties, who, with the rate of their releases and development, look like they're trying to lead by example.

Next month we'll be seeing another Nintendo-(first-party-)made game that is mature in design, Super Paper Mario. This, at least, looks like they've done a much better job of adapting it to the remote than they did with Zelda. And not much longer after that, the first deep game designed from the ground up for Wii control, Metroid Prime 3. In the mean time, I'm not sure it's fair to judge a console by its launch lineup.

Since this seems to be the place to complain about Zelda, I'll toss in my two cents. Nintendo's said they don't want to leave the capital-G Gamers behind with the Wii, and, to that end, they've demonstrated (with Smash Bros. Brawl) that they're willing to make games that completely toss aside the remote, understanding that not all games work with any interface. So why, then, wasn't there at least an option to use a Gamecube controller with Zelda, if we preferred? Aiming with the remote was great, but a flick of the wrist to swing the sword does get old after a while, and it'd be nice to be able to change things up whenever I want. I felt that I had completely insufficient information on which to base the decision of which version to get.

Interesing question at the end, Bongo Bill. I wonder how that would have impacted Wii sales. Would people have compared the two and deemed them too similar to bother upgrading the console? I wonder. I would have liked the option, intent on a Wii anyway.

I think it would have been better if they used the pointer more and the motion sensing for different things. I thought that I would be able to control the fairy and use it for Z targeting, but you can't. I found myself using the A jump attack a lot more than swinging the remote.

I think that we are going to have to wait a while before we see it being used "properly". Good post, Bongo.

 

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