We, as Nintendo fans, have heard it all before… “Nintendo have shot themselves in the foot!”…“Nintendo will be bankrupt in 5 years!”…“I want a pizza!”. Okay, so maybe the last one was my hunger talking, but ever since day 1, Nintendo have had naysayers and analysts reporting on the company’s hypothetical demise. 3DS was supposed to kill the company and now it’s got a stellar line-up and is one of the best selling systems out there! Wii U was no exception to the rule… all you have to do is browse the various online gaming websites like Animal Jam that needs to have an animal jam codes to get your premium membership, and you’ll see nothing but negative things about the Wii U’s hardware, game line-up, sales and everything else under the sun.
Not here at Nintendo Sushi though… We are here to dispel those rumours and tell you exactly why the Wii U is better than PS4 and Xbox 720 (or whatever it’s going to be called).
We’re in a recession… It’s a word that nobody knows the meaning of, but causes our food to cost a fortune, the unemployment rate to rise and gives the evening news something to harp on about for years upon end. The result of this is that very few people have a disposable income and people have to get a lot of value for their money. Retailers in the UK have now cut the price of the Wii U Basic Set to £149 and the Premium Pack to £199 – this is incredible when you consider that the PlayStation 3 is still selling for more than that! When the PS3 was initially launched in the UK, the launch price was £425 and with Nintendo losing money on every Wii U console sale, the tech in the next generation of consoles is going to cost substantially more and we’ll probably see a similar price to the PS3′s launch.
Okay, okay… I know I’m somewhat of a Nintendo apologist, but not even I can defend the lack of games available on the Wii U at the moment. The key part of that sentence though is at the moment. Nintendo have pulled out of E3 and whilst some people think that is a cyanide tablet to Nintendo’s financials, it means that their showing of games won’t be overshadowed by the PS4 vs 720 war and we will get system-selling game announcements before June! We’re in May now, so that’s pretty exciting!
It’s Not Online Dependant
Nintendo have finally embraced online with open arms. We now have MiiVerse, which is a very Nintendo approach to an online community, as well as the eShop, which is becoming a nice platform for indie developers. Whilst these things are nice, it isn’t a vital function for the console.
PlayStation 4 has the potentially incredible Gaikai service, that has promised to have every PlayStation game from every generation playable on the console via streaming capabilities. Whilst this is an overly ambitious service that if pulled off, will be incredible, it will rely on your console being connected to the internet at all times to play those games. Although not officially confirmed, there are strong rumours that Microsoft will be making it impossible to play a game if you are not connected to the internet. It is obviously their way of preventing piracy and although I am definitely against piracy, this move could be a huge shot in the foot for the 720. People with limited bandwidth and bad internet connections will not be able to play games, even single player games that shouldn’t rely on the internet in any way.
The internet service available to where I live in the UK is okay, but not fast enough to stream HD videos on YouTube, let alone full games. I can download games on my Wii U, then play them at my leisure, whether or not I’m connected to the internet. My wi-fi isn’t the most stable and regularly cuts out, so if my games console was dependant on a constant internet connection, I’d be experiencing a lot of down time. This problem isn’t just where I live either, there are a lot of places in America where high speed broadband is just not available, let alone fibre optic and beyond.4.
Obviously the biggest thing that separates the Wii U from every other console on the planet is a controller that has a huge touch-screen in the middle of it. This is not to be taken lightly. Although we have seen a lot of lazy ports that just stick an inventory or a map on the screen, whilst being useful, doesn’t take advantage of all the possibilities. This is new to game designers and although the DS was released nearly a decade ago, the possibilities of having two screens on a home console is endless.
The mini games that were showcased in Nintendo Land displayed Nintendo’s mindset of what they envisioned possible with the GamePad. This only scratched the surface though, as there’s only so much you can do with a collection of mini games, but I think we will see some really creative thinking and game mechanics shown over the next couple of years with Nintendo’s first party games.5.
It has been confirmed by Sony that PlayStation 4 will NOT be backwards compatible with PlayStation 3 games. The rumours circling Microsoft’s next home console point to a similar fate. I know as consumers we shouldn’t expect our hardware to play older formats, but as gamers we do. PlayStation are partly to blame for this with the PS2 being able to play PSone games and the first wave of PlayStation 3 consoles having PS2 support built-in. Xbox never intended the 360 to be able to play Xbox games, but when it was announced that Sony were taking that route, Microsoft panicked and tried to botch it in at the last minute but only supported a few games and it was really buggy.
Why is backwards compatibility important?
People who have supported a console’s life cycle by spending their hard earned money on game-after-game and are looking to upgrade to the company’s next console probably have to sell their existing console to fund the new purchase, have limited space in their entertainment centre or just don’t want multiple consoles connected to their TV. If a console is backwards compatible, they can just have the newest console set up and play all of their favourite games from the previous generation, without having to purchase them again via the new console’s online service. Also, games will still be coming out for the previous generation and they may want to play them. Grand Theft Auto 5 will be a huge seller on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, but it’s not coming out until September. The next generation of consoles could be coming out in October and the fact that game will not be playable kind of sucks.
Unlike the next wave of consoles, Wii U is fully compatible with Wii. Virtual Console titles you may have purchased, as well as all of your Wii games and hardware can all the played on Wii U. If you go into Wii mode, either via the icon on the Wii U menu or by holding the B button whilst booting up your system, you not only have access to all of that content, but it effectively transforms your Wii U into a fully-fledged Wii system.
There we have it then… 5 reasons why Nintendo’s first HD console will not only be equal to Sony and Microsoft’s soon-to-be released consoles, but will better them!