Coming Around to the Wii U

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he does know that you can play with the gamepad while its charging right?

I'm really beginning to suspect that the biggest problem with the Wii U is this:

The Wii

The Wii sold, hands down, the most units from the previous (eh, current?) console generation, but it wasn't thanks to you or me (or for that matter, anyone who posts on a gaming forum). Regular, non-gaming people were buying the Wii. And I suspect that when the Wii U was announced, the collective population who purchased the Wii rolled their eyes. The general consuming public has a better collective memory than companies realize. They didn't buy them for Zelda, Mario, or Samus. They bought Wii Sports for the extra controller and stopped buying games, probably right after Excite Truck.

The five families I know who bought a Wii no longer use them (including me, except for Netflix sometimes). And they're certainly not going to buy a Wii U. I don't view Nintendo as a 'kids' company. It's a 'regular folks' kind of company, and regular folks have moved on to Candy Crush Saga.

Zachary Amaranth:
"It" was referring to the gimmicky controllers. I admit to some confusion, though there was plenty of context in the quote I was replying to and further down throughout the comment.

The ambiguous pronoun immediately followed discussion of the Occulus rift. Even going back an re-reading doesn't necessarily clear it up. Thanks for the clarification though.

Edumacate me all you want, but I still don't like it. I also don't care.

Have you used it?

Though I was amused by this:

1. People respond to smiling avatars by smiling in real life.

I see that happening with a 2D, plain boring dumb old regular screen games. A lot.

I don't see that. Perhaps you can provide some citation?

masticina:

Zachary Amaranth:

Examples of studies mentioned and results:
1. People respond to smiling avatars by smiling in real life.
2. Physically taking a step backward when another avatar comes uncomfortably close.
3. Pulling the limbs away from objects in the virtual world that would harm them in real life were they real.

It's even being used in the treatment of pyschological issues like phantom limb syndrome. The rift gives a sense of presence that simply isn't there with other technologies. It's really neat. The idea that this is something that could become available on pc's and consoles is exciting.

If smiling avatars make people smile how do people react upon Aphex Twin?

Just asking :) And occulus looks like a great way to experience some games. Think Proteus, Amnesia.

captcha= bated breath , yes I await a reply in such awnser.

A picture IS worth a thousand words, and every one of them is AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUURRRRRRRGH!!!

The, "Away from TV," thing actually makes sense to me. Whether they're watching a movie or playing a game, a family will usually require a big screen. Individual activities generally don't, which is why more and more people are watching movies or TV shows on their own time via laptops.

So are you accusing Nintendo of having given up all attempts at throwing off their "kiddie" reputation after the GameCube?

Out of curiosity, can you charge the Wii U controller while playing it? If so, how long is the cable used to charge it? I have a PS3 controller that seems to have an unusually short battery life, and the PS3's short charge cable forces you to sit uncomfortably close to the screen if you want to play-and-charge. I wonder if the Wii U suffers from similar problems.

irmasterlol:
My thoughts are simply that Nintendo is the only console manufacturer that remembers kids like to play games too, and if Dad comes home and wants to watch TV, then Dad gets to use the TV, because it's his fucking TV. At least now Junior doesn't have to stop playing at the drop of a hat.

It's possible I'm projecting my own childhood console experience on the issue.

This. So much this.

When I first found out about the play on the tablet feature that Nintendo had included, I thought it was a stroke of genius.

Aren't they in their unique position of influence specificly BECAUSE they make kid friendly casual games and don't try to forward the medium? If they were another XBOX/PS3 they wouldn't be in that position in the first place.

Moth_Monk:

irmasterlol:
My thoughts are simply that Nintendo is the only console manufacturer that remembers kids like to play games too, and if Dad comes home and wants to watch TV, then Dad gets to use the TV, because it's his fucking TV. At least now Junior doesn't have to stop playing at the drop of a hat.

It's possible I'm projecting my own childhood console experience on the issue.

This. So much this.

When I first found out about the play on the tablet feature that Nintendo had included, I thought it was a stroke of genius.

I can see that being a bonus, but personally I just keep thinking that it would be nice to have it reversed. Instead of a thing that is primarily a TV console that can be used on its own, have a thing that is primarily a handheld that can be used with the TV. That way the games are always easy to play on a small screen and the big TV is a plus when nobody is watching the news in the afternoon.

Yahtzee, it is just a game console, no need to drown oneself.

mike1921:
I disagree entirely, every single reason I would want a wiiU before Project X comes out is from the controller. The ability to have asymmetric multiplayer with no screen watching is an incredible one.[snip]

Fair enough, though at this point there aren't any killer apps for the WiiU controller like there was Wii sports, so it kinda feels like a gimmick still.

But I actually do like the idea of playing just on the handheld. Partially because I don't own a TV and if I ever buy a console, I'll just plug it into my PC monitor. So having another option to play while not in the vicinity of the desktop is quite nice.

Still, having this as a standard controller is just as weird as having Kinect as standard.

A screen on a controller would just piss me off unless it knew when it was being looked at. I home Sony isn't doing this too.

In fact that would be a great feature for any screen except in Hollywood where screens must be on 24/7 because people hate conserving energy and love random screens in their Hollywood movie scenes.

PS: I'm not 100% sure but it seems like the blinking screen would be visible in your peripheral vision. Seems like it would be the equivalent of big blinking light on the side of your television screen.

Not the Facebook 'it's complicated', more like the complicated feelings Javert had about Valjean by the end of Les Mis.

Well somebody thinks they're Juvenal.

FizzyIzze:
I'm really beginning to suspect that the biggest problem with the Wii U is this:

The Wii

The Wii sold, hands down, the most units from the previous (eh, current?) console generation, but it wasn't thanks to you or me (or for that matter, anyone who posts on a gaming forum). Regular, non-gaming people were buying the Wii. And I suspect that when the Wii U was announced, the collective population who purchased the Wii rolled their eyes. The general consuming public has a better collective memory than companies realize. They didn't buy them for Zelda, Mario, or Samus. They bought Wii Sports for the extra controller and stopped buying games, probably right after Excite Truck.

The five families I know who bought a Wii no longer use them (including me, except for Netflix sometimes). And they're certainly not going to buy a Wii U. I don't view Nintendo as a 'kids' company. It's a 'regular folks' kind of company, and regular folks have moved on to Candy Crush Saga.

Nah, Nintendo has a great history with parents hating them. Check out some old Super Nintendo news

Is the "switch from console to handheld" really a thing for the whole "fuck off, I wanna use the TV now" though? I thought it was a "I'm going on a trip and it'd be nice to have my games with me". Or does it not work that way?

Also, who said gaming gave up the TV first? You can watch TV on practically anything now, computers, tablets, smartphones.

I do all my gaming/watching on my PC monitor. PC's hooked up via DVI, PS3 via HDMI and when I wanna watch something, I download it and save myself 30-50% of time not watching thousands of commercials, being able to pause whenever I want and not having my hearing busted when the TV networks decide they wanna increase the volume for the commercials so I can still hear them in case I wanna go across the street >.>

The only reason I'd want gaming on a TV is if I had a big screen TV and friends were coming over for some splitscreen gaming (and playing splitscreen kinda assumes either the other members of the household join in or sod off... switching to a handheld wouldn't really solve anything there). Other than that, my 24" monitor does the job just fine :)

Negatempest:

Nah, Nintendo has a great history with parents hating them. Check out some old Super Nintendo news

Oh my God, that was incredible! With the hair and the bizarre blue screen action! Seriously, thanks for that.

I can't believe that there would have been an honest skepticism of new systems even back then, simply because nowadays we seem to fall for, year after year, the stupidest gimmicks like Beanie Babies and Zhu Zhu Pets. I checked an inflation index and back then, $200 supposedly had the same buying power as $343.02, which I find hard to believe.

"Video Mania" lol. And that hair at 00:19. That HAIR!

Fox12:
Aren't they in their unique position of influence specificly BECAUSE they make kid friendly casual games and don't try to forward the medium? If they were another XBOX/PS3 they wouldn't be in that position in the first place.

I agree with you here, but look how many people got pissed off at the 2DS- a 3DS model specifically catered to the very demographic that Sony and Microsoft pretend don't exist on a daily basis.

They have a very self sustained market carved out for themselves.
People talk about how Mario is only banking on nostalgia.

How?
Mario is about 30 years old now. The majority of people criticizing that game and not playing it anymore are in their 30's.

Which means that Mario is still popular today because the IP can still capture the hearts of young kids, just as they got the hearts of those kids all those years ago.
Eventually they will grow out of it, but that doesn't matter because unless the apocalypse is coming, there will always a fresh supply of children to catch their interest in.

However that right now is no longer the most profitable demographic.
Which is why most of the games industry caters to the teenager to adult level, and is the reason why Nintendo is ridiculed constantly for it.

Dragonbums:

Fox12:
Aren't they in their unique position of influence specificly BECAUSE they make kid friendly casual games and don't try to forward the medium? If they were another XBOX/PS3 they wouldn't be in that position in the first place.

I agree with you here, but look how many people got pissed off at the 2DS- a 3DS model specifically catered to the very demographic that Sony and Microsoft pretend don't exist on a daily basis.

They have a very self sustained market carved out for themselves.
People talk about how Mario is only banking on nostalgia.

How?
Mario is about 30 years old now. The majority of people criticizing that game and not playing it anymore are in their 30's.

Which means that Mario is still popular today because the IP can still capture the hearts of young kids, just as they got the hearts of those kids all those years ago.
Eventually they will grow out of it, but that doesn't matter because unless the apocalypse is coming, there will always a fresh supply of children to catch their interest in.

However that right now is no longer the most profitable demographic.
Which is why most of the games industry caters to the teenager to adult level, and is the reason why Nintendo is ridiculed constantly for it.

I've always respected Nintendo for that reason. People say Nintendo abandoned hardcore fans, and that they should have more mature games available, but the truth is that Nintendo didn't abandon anybody. They've always catered to children, those people just grew out of the target demographic. I do believe they should have done much more to try and bring in some kind of third party support, but as a whole their one of the few consistently ethical game companies out there, and they refuse sell their soul.

I actually really like the ability to play on the gamepad and for reasons that are completely at odds with Yahtzee's analysis...

Firstly, the thing has a limited range, so I don't think you can actually slink off to the basement alone to play with just the gamepad. When I use the gamepad, I'm still in the same room as living breathing humans. If I wanted to sit all alone, I'd have the console in my bedroom or in the study, or I'd just go and play PC. I choose to play the WiiU on the gamepad in a room full of people because I enjoy their company. I don't expect them to want to watch me play because I don't find it fun to watch others play for lengthy periods. Not every moment is full of riveting story and people make mistakes when playing - it's tedious to make a mistake yourself let alone watch others make a mistake (several times in a row). Not that I don't ever use the WiiU with the TV, I do. It's just a nice option when everyone's home. To still be part of the discussion and still be playing a game.

Secondly the reason that TV takes priority on the TV is because TV is something that a group can watch. It'd be rather strange that one person uses the big fuck off TV to play a game, while 5 people huddle around a tiny screen to watch TV. It's the exact same situation as if one person wants to watch Family Guy and the rest of the household want to watch the cricket. It's more convenient for the most people therefore it's the considerate option. It's got nothing to do with games being less worthy than Simpsons reruns.

Lastly I live in a house of six adults. It's not a case of mom and dad being in charge and therefore having the deciding vote on who gets to use the TV. It's a shared TV and we're all considerate people. The option to play on the gamepad is beneficial to my living arrangements.

Yahtzee... This is Nintendo. The how game elements reflect a character outside of movies flew over their head Nintendo. The see no problem demanding revenue from Let's Players Nintendo.

Unlike the waggle, which a fair amount of complexity required, the play off-screen feature has "OPTIONAL" floating above it at all times. When I see features like that, I only see two states of mind behind it.
1) we can do this on the cheap
2) it'll make good copy even if nobody uses it.

PROTIP: If you start thinking about what they were "trying to say" from something by Nintendo, you're already going to deep. Pull back and enjoy making the funny plumber jump. There; isn't that fun? Couldn't you just do that all day? Don't worry; Nintendo will make sure you never run out of things to jump at.

The one two punch of Pokemon and handhelds will keep Nintendo abreast for ages yet, and that's their real strength. However with Wii U it isn't that progressive. With regards to innovation, it is indeed a fine thing but innovation is not always needed to be tweaked and fiddled with. I believe that Nintendo got too entrenched in this thinking innovative improvements are always a positive thing, because it worked for their previous consoles, with regards to control.

Innovation can reach a peak. We've had analogue/digital controllers, motion control. Each of these peaked. Motion controls didn't gain enough uptake beyond Wii and was largely trying to address a problem that wasn't there. Nintendo was reading some Cosmopolitan article that said gamers are passive and fat, so Nintendo decide to base a console around activity not passivity, flying to our rescue. Fine that the casual masses bit this bullet and had fun with it, but in the long run it wasn't an improvement to gaming over a regular controller use, especially for the long periods of time gamers like to play. Controllers peaked after seeing that analogue based controllers were a good thing (thank you, Nintendo for the N64 controller) and are now widely adopted. Total Control Achievement Unlocked.

Could also be said that the proliferation of low price lcd tvs kind of makes the single family tv problem very dated. These days if there's a tussle over a tv, best solution is buy/use another one for dedicated gaming. Most households have more than one tv these days.

I

Bellvedere:
I actually really like the ability to play on the gamepad and for reasons that are completely at odds with Yahtzee's analysis...

Firstly, the thing has a limited range, so I don't think you can actually slink off to the basement alone to play with just the gamepad. When I use the gamepad, I'm still in the same room as living breathing humans. If I wanted to sit all alone, I'd have the console in my bedroom or in the study, or I'd just go and play PC. I choose to play the WiiU on the gamepad in a room full of people because I enjoy their company. I don't expect them to want to watch me play because I don't find it fun to watch others play for lengthy periods. Not every moment is full of riveting story and people make mistakes when playing - it's tedious to make a mistake yourself let alone watch others make a mistake (several times in a row). Not that I don't ever use the WiiU with the TV, I do. It's just a nice option when everyone's home. To still be part of the discussion and still be playing a game.

Secondly the reason that TV takes priority on the TV is because TV is something that a group can watch. It'd be rather strange that one person uses the big fuck off TV to play a game, while 5 people huddle around a tiny screen to watch TV. It's the exact same situation as if one person wants to watch Family Guy and the rest of the household want to watch the cricket. It's more convenient for the most people therefore it's the considerate option. It's got nothing to do with games being less worthy than Simpsons reruns.

Lastly I live in a house of six adults. It's not a case of mom and dad being in charge and therefore having the deciding vote on who gets to use the TV. It's a shared TV and we're all considerate people. The option to play on the gamepad is beneficial to my living arrangements.

Pretty much agree with ya; I mean me and my girlfriend can watch Hulu or Youtube or pull a movie off my server to the big TV, and I can play on my gamepad at the same time. I know that sounds bad, but when I watch TV I normally have a game in front of me cause watching TV doesn't require much thought for me like a game, so before WiiU it was NDS/3DS/Vita.

I just see it as a neat little feature and nothing more. I also live alone, so right now I don't really need to share my TV with anyone.

masticina:

If smiling avatars make people smile how do people react upon Aphex Twin?

image

I react both with an urge to smile back and an urge to run away in terror.

I think you missed the point of the "play on the controller thing"

its so you can keep playing while you go make a poop!

The first step to realizing why "furthering the medium" is important, is to realize that the medium is in decline, with its heyday being in the late 80s and early 90s (you're about my age Yahtzee, I know you remember).

irmasterlol:
My thoughts are simply that Nintendo is the only console manufacturer that remembers kids like to play games too, and if Dad comes home and wants to watch TV, then Dad gets to use the TV, because it's his fucking TV. At least now Junior doesn't have to stop playing at the drop of a hat.

It's possible I'm projecting my own childhood console experience on the issue.

That is a great point and easy to miss during the features of how X is better performance wise vs Y debates.

Also great feeling analogy Yahtzee - a big sweater with blinkers : )

mailh20:
he does know that you can play with the gamepad while its charging right?

But that would give him something to not complain about. Comedy before practicality.

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