Is the Wii U really outclassed?

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This has been brought up on a lot of threads. People say that it isn't really next gen because it is significantly outclassed. As a fan of Mythbusters, I can't just sit by and let this ignorance continue.

Console specs have three main components: CPU, GPU, and RAM. I'm going to look at all three on the Wii U and compare them to the competition.

Central Processing Unit
This is exactly what it sounds like. Each console of this generation has multicore CPUs, which are better at multitasking.
Wii U: Tri-core @ 1.24 GHz
PS4: 2 Quad-cores @ 1.6 GHz
Xbox One: Octa-core (speed undisclosed)
The PS4, which is the most powerful of these consoles, isn't even 30% faster than the Wii U. The Wii U is certainly less powerful, but not outclassed.

Graphics Processing Unit
As you might be able to guess, this is in charge of graphics. Shaders are the programs that "teach" the console how to display images. Speed is, of course, how fast those images can change.
Wii U: 320 shaders @ 550 MHz
PS4: 1152 shaders @ 800 MHz
Xbox One: 768 shaders @ 800 MHz
The Xbox One has 2.4 times the number of shaders as the Wii U and the PS4 has 3.6 times; both are nearly 45.5% faster. However, the PS4 specs come with provisions. While it can run 4K resolution, the games will be at half that resolution. The number of shaders the games use might actually be a lot smaller, but I'm not sure at this point. Certainly outdone, but outclassed? Not really.

Random-Access Memory
This is where data is temporally copied for gamer interaction. For example, when you play a level, the data of the level is in the RAM while you're interacting with it.
Wii U: 2 GB @ 1600 MHz
PS4: 8 GB @ 5500 MHz
Xbox One: 8 GB @ 2133 MHz
This is certainly where the Wii U is significantly outclassed. Xbox One has little more than 33% more RAM speed than the Wii U, and the PS4 has more than 3 times the speed. And both have 4 times the actual RAM.

In terms of speed, the consoles are comparable in all categories. The Wii U is not significantly behind them in terms of graphics. The only place the Wii U is severely outclassed is in the RAM. If you want to know what being outclassed looks like, here's the seventh generation specs.
CPU
Xbox 360: 3.2 GHz
PS3: 3.2 GHz
Wii: 729 MHz
GPU
Xbox 360: 500 MHz
PS3: 550 MHz
Wii: 243 MHz
RAM
Xbox 360: 512 MB @ 700 MHz
PS3: 256 MB @ 3.2 GHz
Wii: 91 MB (undisclosed speed)
That's what it looks like when a console is outclassed. Both competitors are at least twice as powerful in every category. In contrast, here's the sixth generation:
CPU
Dreamcast: 200 MHz
PS4: 294 MHz
Gamecube: 485 MHz
Xbox: 733 MHz
GPU
Dreamcast: 100 MHz
PS2: 147 MHz
Gamecube: 162 MHz
Xbox: 233 MHz
RAM
Dreamcast: 26 GB
PS2: 38 MB
Gamecube: 27 MB
Xbox: 64 MB

The Wii U is "outclassed" as much as the PS2 was, and you remember the PS2 right? I also find these "outclassed" claims to be funny because the five best selling consoles ever were all outdone in terms of power.

Forlong:
This has been brought up on a lot of threads. People say that it isn't really next gen because it is significantly outclassed. As a fan of Mythbusters, I can't just sit by and let this ignorance continue.

Console specs have three main components: CPU, GPU, and RAM. I'm going to look at all three on the Wii U and compare them to the competition.

Central Processing Unit
This is exactly what it sounds like. Each console of this generation has multicore CPUs, which are better at multitasking.
Wii U: Tri-core @ 1.24 GHz
PS4: 2 Quad-cores @ 1.6 GHz
Xbox One: Octa-core (speed undisclosed)
The PS4, which is the most powerful of these consoles, isn't even 30% faster than the Wii U. The Wii U is certainly less powerful, but not outclassed.

Graphics Processing Unit
As you might be able to guess, this is in charge of graphics. Shaders are the programs that "teach" the console how to display images. Speed is, of course, how fast those images can change.
Wii U: 320 shaders @ 550 MHz
PS4: 1152 shaders @ 800 MHz
Xbox One: 768 shaders @ 800 MHz
The Xbox One has 2.4 times the number of shaders as the Wii U and the PS4 has 3.6 times; both are nearly 45.5% faster. However, the PS4 specs come with provisions. While it can run 4K resolution, the games will be at half that resolution. The number of shaders the games use might actually be a lot smaller, but I'm not sure at this point. Certainly outdone, but outclassed? Not really.

Random-Access Memory
This is where data is temporally copied for gamer interaction. For example, when you play a level, the data of the level is in the RAM while you're interacting with it.
Wii U: 2 GB @ 1600 MHz
PS4: 8 GB @ 5500 MHz
Xbox One: 8 GB @ 2133 MHz
This is certainly where the Wii U is significantly outclassed. Xbox One has little more than 33% more RAM speed than the Wii U, and the PS4 has more than 3 times the speed. And both have 4 times the actual RAM.

In terms of speed, the consoles are comparable in all categories. The Wii U is not significantly behind them in terms of graphics. The only place the Wii U is severely outclassed is in the RAM. If you want to know what being outclassed looks like, here's the seventh generation specs.
CPU
Xbox 360: 3.2 GHz
PS3: 3.2 GHz
Wii: 729 MHz
GPU
Xbox 360: 500 MHz
PS3: 550 MHz
Wii: 243 MHz
RAM
Xbox 360: 512 MB @ 700 MHz
PS3: 256 MB @ 3.2 GHz
Wii: 91 MB (undisclosed speed)
That's what it looks like when a console is outclassed. Both competitors are at least twice as powerful in every category. In contrast, here's the sixth generation:
CPU
Dreamcast: 200 MHz
PS4: 294 MHz
Gamecube: 485 MHz
Xbox: 733 MHz
GPU
Dreamcast: 100 MHz
PS2: 147 MHz
Gamecube: 162 MHz
Xbox: 233 MHz
RAM
Dreamcast: 26 GB
PS2: 38 MB
Gamecube: 27 MB
Xbox: 64 MB

The Wii U is "outclassed" as much as the PS2 was, and you remember the PS2 right? I also find these "outclassed" claims to be funny because the five best selling consoles ever were all outdone in terms of power.

This is "The Escapist". A good 80% of the posters here are hardcore haters of Nintendo, so there is a LOT of bias around here. Trying to prove something about Nintendo never works.

While I understand that the technical specs help games run well, at the end of the game it's the games themselves that should determine whether a system succeeds or fails. As for the Wii U itself, I see it as having a slow start, but that doesn't mean it's doomed to fail. Several of the games that people have been waiting for (Pikmin 3, Super Mario 3D World, the new Smash) are going to coming out within the next year. Once they release, Nintendo should be fine.

Derped and typed up the wrong thing. Ignore this.

I'm no Nintendo hater but I still feel the WiiU wont reach its full potential with a Nintendo game, like it or not they are drawn to simple mechanics and story's that kids will be able to pick up easily but a real console tester would need something a bit more detailed to make the processor chug

Forlong:
/snip

To be brutally honest if there's any bias on this site it's from the OP. I don't have the time to go through every single specification but let's do a quick comparison with the PS and it's real performance statistics rather than the ones the OP claimed with no sources:

Custom Jaguar APU chip which breaks down into;
CPU = 8 core x84 (est. 1.6ghz)
GPU = 18 compute units, resulting in 1.84 Tflops of processing power)
RAM = 8gb GDDR5 @ 5500Mhz (leaving a total system memory speed of 176gb/second)
HDD = 500gb
(1)(2)(3)

Wii U on the other hand has a IBM manufactured MMC;

CPU = Tri-core PowerPC @ 1.2ghz
GPU = AMD Radeon "Latte", 352 Gflops
RAM = 2gb DDR3 @ 1600Mhz (12.8b/second system speed)
HDD = 8gb or 32gb
(1)(2)(3)

As you can see the Wii U is hopelessly outclassed by the PS4, with things like the RAM speed being 1375% quicker on the PS4 with it's GPU coming in at 552% of the Wii U's to boot. We won't mention things like the hard drive being only 1.6% the size of the PS4's either.

:P

Of course the WiiU is outclassed.
They are the least expensive console in the market. If they want to stay that way, they HAVE to use slightly weaker hardware.
However at the rate this is going it will begin to matter less and less. I guarantee by next generation, the only people who will give a shit about hardware specs affecting game capabilities are the most hardcore of PC users. Everyone else probably couldn't see the difference if they tried.

Iwata said however that he was never really interested in having a beefy console anyway. He really doesn't give a crap and is content with Sony and Microsoft have a dick fight over it.
Once again, it's all about performance and quality that determines a good console.
People aren't saying they don't want a WiiU because of hardware specs, they are not buying it because the lineup of games is dry for most of the year.

Similarly people aren't buying the Vita- so much more powerful than the 3DS because of it's lack of games, and high costs for memory cards.

Man, look at all those numbers that aren't as high as my PC...

WiiU isn't about out-hardwaring (wat) the competition, Nintendo always do their own thing.

Also, Wonderful 101 and Bayonetta 2 is a WiiU exclusives. Game over, console war over, Nintendo wins.

TBH, I don't really care what comes in a console- its the console experience that I like. If I want a hardware circlejerk I'll hop into a PC forum and ask if I paid to much for my AMD processor. I like Nintendo and I'll probably get a Wii-U in a few years when it has a library.

Your analysis is flawed by virtue of you having no idea of what the specs you're referencing actually mean.

Forlong:
The PS4, which is the most powerful of these consoles, isn't even 30% faster than the Wii U. The Wii U is certainly less powerful, but not outclassed.

That's not how CPU specs work. The PS4's processor has a 30% higher clock speed. It also has eight cores to the Wii U's 3.

The Xbox One has 2.4 times the number of shaders as the Wii U and the PS4 has 3.6 times; both are nearly 45.5% faster. However, the PS4 specs come with provisions. While it can run 4K resolution, the games will be at half that resolution. The number of shaders the games use might actually be a lot smaller, but I'm not sure at this point. Certainly outdone, but outclassed? Not really.

I'm not sure why you think shaders will go unused just because a game isn't using the PS4's maximum resolution. It'll just mean that each shader can take longer per pixel, therefore increasing the complexity of the programs it can run.

Daystar Clarion:
Man, look at all those numbers that aren't as high as my PC...

WiiU isn't about out-hardwaring (wat) the competition, Nintendo always do their own thing.

Also, Wonderful 101 and Bayonetta 2 is a WiiU exclusives. Game over, console war over, Nintendo wins.

Mostly true, except the very last part as I'm still waiting on decent games for my Wii U. The selection right now is pretty abysmal overall.

Capitano Segnaposto:
This is "The Escapist". A good 80% of the posters here are hardcore haters of Nintendo, so there is a LOT of bias around here. Trying to prove something about Nintendo never works.

Don't forget PC elitist who are all about power.

Also anyone who thinks it's not next gen is pants on head retarded since gen is dictated by date, not specs. To me it's not about the power but what you can do with it, and Nintendo in the past showed they are really good and working with what they have.

So it seems the next gen consoles wont be the huge evolutionary leap we've all become accustomed to seeing.
Maybe nintendo was on to something after all..

Well if new consoles stop looking much better than old consoles....people will start to wonder if they are worth investing in.

Its like comparing an Iphone 5 to an iphone 4..maybe...

Daystar Clarion:
Man, look at all those numbers that aren't as high as my PC...

WiiU isn't about out-hardwaring (wat) the competition, Nintendo always do their own thing.

Also, Wonderful 101 and Bayonetta 2 is a WiiU exclusives. Game over, console war over, Nintendo wins.

2 games wins the console war?

Nintendo may always do their own thing but it's only the last 2 consoles that we were weak.

Man, The Escapist sure wants to sell Dish Network.

The WiiU has certainly made up ground in the hardware department compared to the Wii, but it is still way behind what the PS4 and Xbox One are capable of. That will certainly create some third party issues later on when developers start really pushing the limits of the latter two consoles, but hopefully Nintendo and other developers can keep a steady stream of WiiU games coming to make up for that. Part of the Wii's downfall was a lack of real support from anyone, even Nintendo, after Brawl released.

GoaThief:

Daystar Clarion:
Man, look at all those numbers that aren't as high as my PC...

WiiU isn't about out-hardwaring (wat) the competition, Nintendo always do their own thing.

Also, Wonderful 101 and Bayonetta 2 is a WiiU exclusives. Game over, console war over, Nintendo wins.

Mostly true, except the very last part as I'm still waiting on decent games for my Wii U. The selection right now is pretty abysmal overall.

Well, it doesn't have much now, but when you take into consideration what is coming then it starts looking much better. Both of those lists combined give us: ZombiU, Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate Edition, New Super Mario Bros. U and Luigi's counterpart to it, Bayonetta 2, Wonderful 101, Pikmin 3, Super Mario 3D World, Sonic Lost World, Super Smash Bros. WiiU, Monolith Soft's next game, The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker HD and an untitled Zelda game, Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, and Mario Kart 8. Granted, most people probably won't get into all of those, but it's still a much stronger list than what they've had up until just recently. Nintendo is also bound to release many older titles on the Virtual Console (Earthbound being among them if I remember correctly). Not to mention, the WiiU is backwards compatible, so you can still play your Wii games on it as you wait for even more games to be announced and released.

I don't really care about specs, so no I don't think the WiiU is outclassed in that sense.
However, it also doesn't have a game catalog that appeals to me (Though the other consoles have yet to really seal the deal with me either).

It's certainly outclassed the Xbone, if we're talking about "classy" corporate behavior and future sales potential. :p

It's not about the hardware with Wii U. It's about the fact that it came out at the wrong time and most of the games on it are ports from consoles that gamers already have. Most people can't justify buying a Wii U. And Nintendo can't lower it's price too much because they'd be selling it at a big loss and with a big risk of never seeing any profit from the thing.

WeepingAngels:
Nintendo may always do their own thing but it's only the last 2 consoles that we were weak.

I may not be the biggest Nintendo hardware fan but the Wii was a freaking juggernaut last console cycle.
While that may be because they tapped into a market that wasn't the core gamers they still had the best profit margine of the lot.

OT: Nintendo may be outclassed in hardware terms but Nintendo does what it does best, being Nintendo, with the most accessible consoles, tastiest first party titles and the highest fun to stress ratio of all.
Sony and the other one might as well be playing baseball while Nintendo's going bowling.

I'd say it'll be the weakest console. It won't be as big as the gap between the Wii and the other two systems, though. More like the difference between the PS2 and Gamecube, except the Nintendo console is the weaker one this time. However, power isn't what determines sales.

What I'm more curious about is how much of that extra power the other two system have will be used for GAMES. The XBox 1 will be running 3 OSes at once, and the PS4 will have something recording gameplay footage at any given time along with all their social networking things.

GoaThief:

As you can see the Wii U is hopelessly outclassed by the PS4, with things like the RAM speed being 1375% quicker on the PS4 with it's GPU coming in at 552% of the Wii U's to boot. We won't mention things like the hard drive being only 1.6% the size of the PS4's either.

The RAM isn't a problem since the Wii U isn't going to multitask. The GPU is yet to become a problem, as soon-to-come games like Assassin's Creed 4 won't push past current-gen limits.
The hard drive is the biggest problem, even for the deluxe Wii U. 8 GB isn't enough to hold 2 current/next-gen games, while 32 GB isn't enough to hold a library-worth of them. So much for that "digital promotion."

Forlong:
This has been brought up on a lot of threads. People say that it isn't really next gen because it is significantly outclassed. As a fan of Mythbusters, I can't just sit by and let this ignorance continue.

Console specs have three main components: CPU, GPU, and RAM. I'm going to look at all three on the Wii U and compare them to the competition.

Central Processing Unit
This is exactly what it sounds like. Each console of this generation has multicore CPUs, which are better at multitasking.
Wii U: Tri-core @ 1.24 GHz
PS4: 2 Quad-cores @ 1.6 GHz
Xbox One: Octa-core (speed undisclosed)
The PS4, which is the most powerful of these consoles, isn't even 30% faster than the Wii U. The Wii U is certainly less powerful, but not outclassed.

I'm sorry but what?

At what point are the GHz all that matters?

So a 2.4GHz i7 running in a modern ultrabook isn't that much more powerful than my old wolfdale Pentium e5700 running at 3.0GHz? Sadly, it is, because it has twice as many cores and a far more efficient and intelligent architecture.

That's a major thing here: The Xbone and PS4 are both running on modern AMD APU designs and trust me when I say that it handily outclasses the tri-core Power PC thing in the Wii U in terms or raw processing capability, not to even start bringing in the potential for the application of those 5 extra threads...

Honestly, the Wii U is pretty outclassed. The gulf isn't as big as the gulf was between the Wii and it's competitors, but you're gonna see a lot more fancy stuff on the PS4 and Xbox one this generation than the Wii U.

Does that mean it's not part of the new generation? Of course it fucking doesn't. Generation isn't determined by power.

And also, not a single one of these machines is next-gen if you want to consider raw power.

Consider briefly that I could be running a 4770K and a Titan. That's current gen. A new generation is not marked by reaching a certain power threshold.

Also, I do like my Wii U, it's a very fun machine, but the PS4 is gonna be my main console and I'll likely use it more.

Edited for clarity.

Xman490:

GoaThief:

As you can see the Wii U is hopelessly outclassed by the PS4, with things like the RAM speed being 1375% quicker on the PS4 with it's GPU coming in at 552% of the Wii U's to boot. We won't mention things like the hard drive being only 1.6% the size of the PS4's either.

The RAM isn't a problem since the Wii U isn't going to multitask. The GPU is yet to become a problem, as soon-to-come games like Assassin's Creed 4 won't push past current-gen limits.
The hard drive is the biggest problem, even for the deluxe Wii U. 8 GB isn't enough to hold 2 current/next-gen games, while 32 GB isn't enough to hold a library-worth of them. So much for that "digital promotion."

There are at least 2 PS3 games that will not fit on a Wii U :P Uncharted 3 is around 35 GB and Killzone 3 in total occupies around 43GB.

Shinsei-J:

WeepingAngels:
Nintendo may always do their own thing but it's only the last 2 consoles that we were weak.

I may not be the biggest Nintendo hardware fan but the Wii was a freaking juggernaut last console cycle.
While that may be because they tapped into a market that wasn't the core gamers they still had the best profit margine of the lot.

OT: Nintendo may be outclassed in hardware terms but Nintendo does what it does best, being Nintendo, with the most accessible consoles, tastiest first party titles and the highest fun to stress ratio of all.
Sony and the other one might as well be playing baseball while Nintendo's going bowling.

I think you misunderstand what I mean by weak, I meant weak on the hardware side. Being too weak on the hardware effectively means that they can't get ports from the other consoles in the same generation. This happened with the Wii but the motion controls and Wii Sports overcame that, it won't happen with the Wii U.

Xman490:

GoaThief:

As you can see the Wii U is hopelessly outclassed by the PS4, with things like the RAM speed being 1375% quicker on the PS4 with it's GPU coming in at 552% of the Wii U's to boot. We won't mention things like the hard drive being only 1.6% the size of the PS4's either.

The RAM 't a problem since the Wii U isn't going to multitask. The GPU is yet to become a problem, as soon-to-come games like Assassin's Creed 4 won't push past current-gen limits.
The hard drive is the biggest problem, even for the deluxe Wii U. 8 GB isn't enough to hold 2 current/next-gen games, while 32 GB isn't enough to hold a library-worth of them. So much for that "digital promotion."

RAM isn't just about multitasking, it's for things like textures too. For example 1gb of the Wii U's RAM is reserved for the system leaving only 1gb for games. If rumour is correct the Xbone has 3gb reserved leaving 5 for the games, the PS4 has even more free. This will make a massive difference in load times at the very least, but there's no way the Wii U could feature HD textures like the other two do. Games will eventually require much more RAM than they currently do as a new precedent has been set, it's going to make a huge difference long term and probably change the way developers tackle programming engines and the like.

If the Wii U had half the third party support that the PS2 did, maybe it wouldn't be so outclassed. As it is, the Wii U is an underpowered system, and it's two big draws are asymmetrical gameplay and motion controls. Unfortunately for Nintendo, it doesn't seem that they will have the best system for either. The Xbone's Kinect 2, in terms of what it can technically do, could provide far more accurate motion control, and will likely have a lock on the party game market because of that. And the PS4, with its ability (and mandatory requirement) to stream games to the Vita, has the potential for asymmetrical gameplay that can do everything the Wii U can do, but while also looking better.

When you take into account the horrible Wii U menu slowness and the really subpar e-store and online, I really just don't see the point of buying it at all.

I buy Nintendo because I love their games, not for their specs, because when it comes down to it I just wanna have fun. SNES was the first console I ever got back when I was too little to understand something that wasn't playing on the playground or a board-game and the gameboy color+ pokemon launched me into gaming in the first place. Their systems that sold the best, like the SNES, usually tended to launch with a small lineup so the WiiU isn't new in that regard. As long as they have the games people will follow.

SkarKrow:

Xman490:

GoaThief:

As you can see the Wii U is hopelessly outclassed by the PS4, with things like the RAM speed being 1375% quicker on the PS4 with it's GPU coming in at 552% of the Wii U's to boot. We won't mention things like the hard drive being only 1.6% the size of the PS4's either.

The RAM isn't a problem since the Wii U isn't going to multitask. The GPU is yet to become a problem, as soon-to-come games like Assassin's Creed 4 won't push past current-gen limits.
The hard drive is the biggest problem, even for the deluxe Wii U. 8 GB isn't enough to hold 2 current/next-gen games, while 32 GB isn't enough to hold a library-worth of them. So much for that "digital promotion."

There are at least 2 PS3 games that will not fit on a Wii U :P Uncharted 3 is around 35 GB and Killzone 3 in total occupies around 43GB.

Add Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 ReMix to that one as well since it is dual layered when it comes to the Bluray disc, I think it totals like 35-40GB (please note I have the game).
The other problem is that those games wouldn't even fit on a single Wii U disc. The Wii U's disc is a modified version of the Wii disc and can hold a maximum of 25GB, and as of this point they can't be dual layered. This is bad in the case since both Sony and MS are using dual layered Bluray discs to store their games.

OT: The Wii U is outclassed when compared to the new generation, PS4 and Xbox One. However, specs don't make the console the "best console ever." Hell the GameCube actually had far better specs when compared to the PS2, but the PS2 still became the best selling console of all time, still is too with the DS in second. The thing that can make a game system great is third party support as that's what boosted the PS2 to such heights, well that and backwards compatibility. The Wii U has the backwards compatibility part down, but it needs 3rd party support in order to truly take off.

Not to mention that their eShop, while good, is no where near to how well it could be doing with organization and how their policies are. Their practices for digital downloads are really not good at all when compared to their competition due to the fact that the digital downloads are locked to the hardware itself. This is the case when trying to download VC titles on your 3DS even if you have it already on your Wii/Wii U, you'll need to buy it again. Hopefully Nintendo will fix that and allow you to transfer accounts too, but they are still new to this so I'll give them some slack.

Outclassed via hardware? Oh no doubt.
Outclassed via fanbase? Oh dear God no.
Outclassed via profit, where it ultimately matters to them? Not a chance.

To me it's pretty simple. Nintendo has a marketing strategy to their core customers. The ones who buy every new Mario or Zelda game and then immediately proclaim it's a top 10 all time game. Everyone here knows exactly the type of Nintendo fanboy I mean. And Nintendo sells hard to them. And it works. And since their devices are less tech heavy they make a higher profit because they can be made and sold cheaper. If Nintendo's audience ever starts to lose interest(unlikely) then they could be in the shit. Until then? Business as usual, nothing to see here and the Nintendo fans can blast us all for not liking Zelda as much as some other game on a different console.

Neronium:

SkarKrow:

Xman490:

The RAM isn't a problem since the Wii U isn't going to multitask. The GPU is yet to become a problem, as soon-to-come games like Assassin's Creed 4 won't push past current-gen limits.
The hard drive is the biggest problem, even for the deluxe Wii U. 8 GB isn't enough to hold 2 current/next-gen games, while 32 GB isn't enough to hold a library-worth of them. So much for that "digital promotion."

There are at least 2 PS3 games that will not fit on a Wii U :P Uncharted 3 is around 35 GB and Killzone 3 in total occupies around 43GB.

Add Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 ReMix to that one as well since it is dual layered when it comes to the Bluray disc, I think it totals like 35-40GB (please note I have the game).
The other problem is that those games wouldn't even fit on a single Wii U disc. The Wii U's disc is a modified version of the Wii disc and can hold a maximum of 25GB, and as of this point they can't be dual layered. This is bad in the case since both Sony and MS are using dual layered Bluray discs to store their games.

OT: The Wii U is outclassed when compared to the new generation, PS4 and Xbox One. However, specs don't make the console the "best console ever." Hell the GameCube actually had far better specs when compared to the PS2, but the PS2 still became the best selling console of all time, still is too with the DS in second. The thing that can make a game system great is third party support as that's what boosted the PS2 to such heights, well that and backwards compatibility. The Wii U has the backwards compatibility part down, but it needs 3rd party support in order to truly take off.

Not to mention that their eShop, while good, is no where near to how well it could be doing with organization and how their policies are. Their practices for digital downloads are really not good at all when compared to their competition due to the fact that the digital downloads are locked to the hardware itself. This is the case when trying to download VC titles on your 3DS even if you have it already on your Wii/Wii U, you'll need to buy it again. Hopefully Nintendo will fix that and allow you to transfer accounts too, but they are still new to this so I'll give them some slack.

Hell The Last of Us is prbably bigger than that too.

I think the Wii U will do okay but I think it may already be (sadly) damned to be owned only for it's first party content.

WeepingAngels:

Shinsei-J:
I may not be the biggest Nintendo hardware fan but the Wii was a freaking juggernaut last console cycle.
While that may be because they tapped into a market that wasn't the core gamers they still had the best profit margine of the lot.

I think you misunderstand what I mean by weak, I meant weak on the hardware side. Being too weak on the hardware effectively means that they can't get ports from the other consoles in the same generation. This happened with the Wii but the motion controls and Wii Sports overcame that, it won't happen with the Wii U.

Oh ok, well yeah you're right on all accounts, Wii sports fever was a lightning that won't strike twice and without the same third party support as the PS4 and Xbone I don't know how well it'll compete with them. Here's my big BUT though, I see some incredibly interesting stuff going on with 3DS and WiiU cross play, same thing with the Vita X PS4 but at a lower price with better first party support.

Even during gimmicks like motion control Nintendo's first priority has been getting fun games to the consumer,
that's why I think they can keep up.

PS. Sorry about the small rant I just wanted to also discuss the said implications of being weak and how it might effect Nintendo.

Capitano Segnaposto:

This is "The Escapist". A good 80% of the posters here are hardcore haters of Nintendo, so there is a LOT of bias around here. Trying to prove something about Nintendo never works.

lolwut?

You know, I see more people accusing people of hating Nintendo than I actually do see of people hating Nintendo.

Unless of course you count anything but praise as hate.

It is possible for people to be indifferent. And I'd wager that's where most of the Escapist sits with Nintendo.

OT: Yea, the hardware is outclassed. Just like it was last generation. The only real question is will Nintendo pull a rabbit our of it's ass like last time? I personally don't think it will.

The WiiU is completely outclassed in terms of hardware performance vs other consoles.
That isn't hyperbole or rationalization, it's numerical fact. Stop underplaying the difference in specs; it only makes you look like a mindless fanboy.

Of course, you don't need the absolute best in hardware to make the best games.

The real question is: Will the WiiU ever get such games?
That's where I have serious doubts and not without precedent *glares angrily at Wii*.
Nobody with talent outside of Nintendo really wants to develop for the system right now. It's dead in the water.

Forlong:
Central Processing Unit
This is exactly what it sounds like. Each console of this generation has multicore CPUs, which are better at multitasking.
Wii U: Tri-core @ 1.24 GHz
PS4: 2 Quad-cores @ 1.6 GHz
Xbox One: Octa-core (speed undisclosed)
The PS4, which is the most powerful of these consoles, isn't even 30% faster than the Wii U. The Wii U is certainly less powerful, but not outclassed.

Might as well tackle these one at a time. First things first, you can't just compare processors based on the speed of the cores. CPU architecture matters as well, and things like the number of cores, cache sizes, and even what sort of programs they will running and how optimized they are for multiple cores matters tremendously. But even if we were to ignore all of that and compare straight up core for core, the PS4 and Xbone each have five more cores to draw on. That is significantly more and would make a huge difference. Even ignoring optimizing for the hardware, that's just a lot more power to brute force your way through problems. And that's to say nothing of the PS4 and Xbone using more recent, and very likely significantly faster, architecture. What you're doing, would be akin to comparing a Pentium 4 to a late model Core 2 Duo or i3 and arguing that because the processor speeds are similar the power difference is negligible. Nothing could be farther from the truth.

Graphics Processing Unit
As you might be able to guess, this is in charge of graphics. Shaders are the programs that "teach" the console how to display images. Speed is, of course, how fast those images can change.
Wii U: 320 shaders @ 550 MHz
PS4: 1152 shaders @ 800 MHz
Xbox One: 768 shaders @ 800 MHz
The Xbox One has 2.4 times the number of shaders as the Wii U and the PS4 has 3.6 times; both are nearly 45.5% faster. However, the PS4 specs come with provisions. While it can run 4K resolution, the games will be at half that resolution. The number of shaders the games use might actually be a lot smaller, but I'm not sure at this point. Certainly outdone, but outclassed? Not really.

Even if we were just comparing straight up again (seriously, architecture matters a lot) I'm not sure how you can look at the measures you've chosen, notice that the Xbone and PS4 simply output more than double what the Wii U can and with an almost 50% speed increase and say they don't outclass it. Those kinds of jumps are positively huge. But moreover, the AMD chips that the Wii U's GPU is supposedly based on (and there's some cause to question this to be fair) is five years old already. And again, since architecture matters, it's worth noting I've seen some estimates putting the raw computing power of the Wii U GPU at probably shy of 400 GFLOPS at most. The PS4 is stated to be capable of 1.84 TFLOPS. If that's the case, we're talking about the PS4 possibly having more than four times the power. If that's not outclassing something I don't know what is.

Random-Access Memory
This is where data is temporally copied for gamer interaction. For example, when you play a level, the data of the level is in the RAM while you're interacting with it.
Wii U: 2 GB @ 1600 MHz
PS4: 8 GB @ 5500 MHz
Xbox One: 8 GB @ 2133 MHz
This is certainly where the Wii U is significantly outclassed. Xbox One has little more than 33% more RAM speed than the Wii U, and the PS4 has more than 3 times the speed. And both have 4 times the actual RAM.

This is missing a bit of the picture though because again, comparing a few key performance measures doesn't tell the whole picture. The PS4's GDDR5 RAM for example has a maximum bandwidth of 176 GB/s. The Wii U's maximum is 12.8 GB/s. That's huge. Moreover, the WiiU reserves 1GB (so half of its total RAM) just for the operating system. The XBone, similarly, uses 3GB's for the OS leaving only five for games. It's memory bandwidth is also only 68.3 GB/s. All of this adds up to more significant differences than even you first assumed.

In terms of speed, the consoles are comparable in all categories.

I feel comfortable saying that this isn't true at all. Certainly not for the Wii U. It is tremendously outclassed by the PS4 and Xbone. Easily as much as the Wii was to the PS3 and 360 if we don't fudge the numbers to tell the story we think is true.

GoaThief:

RAM isn't just about multitasking, it's for things like textures too. For example 1gb of the Wii U's RAM is reserved for the system leaving only 1gb for games. If rumour is correct the Xbone has 3gb reserved leaving 5 for the games, the PS4 has even more free. This will make a massive difference in load times at the very least, but there's no way the Wii U could feature HD textures like the other two do. Games will eventually require much more RAM than they currently do as a new precedent has been set, it's going to make a huge difference long term and probably change the way developers tackle programming engines and the like.

I'm curious to learn how much of that "reserved for the system" is actually true. Even 1 gb of memory is a lot to be eating up. Not even a full version of Windows actually uses 1 gb of memory for the OS itself. I'm wondering if the memory being reserved for the system is being used to handle game-related tasks that are just being done by the OS instead of being directly done by the game.

SkarKrow:

Forlong:
This has been brought up on a lot of threads. People say that it isn't really next gen because it is significantly outclassed. As a fan of Mythbusters, I can't just sit by and let this ignorance continue.

Console specs have three main components: CPU, GPU, and RAM. I'm going to look at all three on the Wii U and compare them to the competition.

Central Processing Unit
This is exactly what it sounds like. Each console of this generation has multicore CPUs, which are better at multitasking.
Wii U: Tri-core @ 1.24 GHz
PS4: 2 Quad-cores @ 1.6 GHz
Xbox One: Octa-core (speed undisclosed)
The PS4, which is the most powerful of these consoles, isn't even 30% faster than the Wii U. The Wii U is certainly less powerful, but not outclassed.

I'm sorry but what?

At what point are the GHz all that matters?

So a 2.4GHz i7 running in a modern ultrabook isn't that much more powerful than my old wolfdale Pentium e5700 running at 3.0GHz? Sadly, it is, because it has twice as many cores and a far more efficient and intelligent architecture.

That's a major thing here: The Xbone and PS4 are both running on modern AMD APU designs and trust me when I say that it handily outclasses the tri-core Power PC thing in the Wii U in terms or raw processing capability, not to even start bringing in the potential for the application of those 5 extra threads...

Honestly, the Wii U is pretty outclassed. The gulf isn't as big as the gulf was between the Wii and it's competitors, but you're gonna see a lot more fancy stuff on the PS4 and Xbox one this generation than the Wii U.

Does that mean it's not part of the new generation? Of course it fucking doesn't. Generation isn't determined by power.

And also, not a single one of these machines is next-gen if you want to consider raw power.

Consider briefly that I could be running a 4770K and a Titan. That's current gen. A new generation is not marked by reaching a certain power threshold.

Also, I do like my Wii U, it's a very fun machine, but the PS4 is gonna be my main console and I'll likely use it more.

Edited for clarity.

I'm hoping that with the PS4 and Xbone, we might see a future where all memory is unified, and we simply buy GPUs that we plug into our motherboards. With unified memory graphics are faster overall because you don't need to load assets into the RAM and then load them AGAIN from there to the VRAM, you simply pass on a memory adress to the GPU and it uses that.

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