I seriously believe that the Wii U will have a lukewarm reception after the initial early buyer adoption if something major isn’t announced and followed through to completion. The reason being that despite the hardware being a differentiating factor, the system is purposely trying to compete with the market that the original Wii set out to ignore.
1. DS Player
The touch screen tablet should be able to perfectly replicate the touch screen of any DS, including the 3DS. The scaling options would differ based upon the system being emulated but as Nintendo has shown with the 3DS, they’re more than willing to let users decide which option they will prefer.
2. Unified Nintendo Account System
Nintendo of America promised this but have become insanely tight lipped. I don’t think it’s happening anymore.
A – You have to buy the same VC games for 3DS that you did for Wii if you already have them.
B – You can only play VC games of the Wii on the Wii U in Wiimode. That makes no damn sense if they truly plan to honor their account system promise.
C – The Club Nintendo accounts are perfectly aligned for this functionality. If they can send us surveys for games we buy physically and digitally then why not tie the digital games to be redownloadable against an account instead of the system?
D – Nintendo hates online anything, even in regards to Pokemon despite it and Mario Kart being their best online anything.
E – Nintendo wants to fleece us over and over to have us buy the same games over and over instead of letting us rest on a library and building it out through their newer titles and 3rd parties.
3. Third parties being truly warm to the system.
Ubisoft doesn’t count, they’re spreading themselves everywhere (see gog.com). EA has come out and said it point blank – we ain’t getting the Mass Effect Trilogy since they don’t believe that even Mass Effect 3 will make them money on Wii U. Most confirmed support is ports (normal for a new console, but all future talk has unnaturally centered around ports).
Bayonetta sold but not all that well. It only has a sequel because Nintendo is paying for it and Nintendo is becoming as self-conscious as Sega used to be. They’re just slightly better at hiding it and not giving in to desperation. Bayonetta is to rile up the hardcore and show that they’re serious about abandoning their initial Wii audience to fight over the pool of 360/PS3 gamers instead since the industry will only develop for markets that they like.
The Wii at one point nearly outsold the PS3 and 360 combined, could handle all of the old tech of last-gen and had the highest software attach rates and most mindshare. The industry ignored it, the industry is fucking cocky and dislikes having to approach gaming from a service mindset unless it’s us serving them in doing whatever the hell they want to do.
4. Better pricepoint/respect for consumers.
$300 gets you the Wii U system and that tablet controller. $350 gets you that plus a Nintendo Character skinned version of Wii Play. Keep in mind that this is a title that has a strong focus on multiplayer, you only get one controller with the system.
“But you can use your old Wii stuff!” Great, some of the games require you to use the new Pro controller that is not included with the system and will sell separately for $50. “That’s cool, I was going to get one anyway”. Your tablet controller costs about $150 according to Japan, the only region that is selling them separately. Nintendo of America has flat out said that they won’t sell it separately for one year. They’re probably scared shitless at the reaction and brand image at a proper announcement, they have a controller that costs more than any DS and nearly as much as a Wii.
3rd parties won’t develop for 2 tablet controllers in their games if no one can even own a second controller. If it breaks, you’re paying out of the ass for Nintendo to fix it and you will effectively be unable to enjoy much of what the system offers. If I remember correctly, the battery is sealed inside of the system, meaning that you’re stuck with 1.5-3 hours of battery life in a controller.
Yes, a controller meant for gaming will ruin your Smash Bros. playing when it starts to get good. No one knows if you can charge it via usb and in-use yet. I believe that Nintendo said that it can be used while charging from the console directly. You can’t play previously purchased VC and Wiiware games on the tablet controller since they’re only playable in Wii mode on the Wii U. Wii mode is hardware based compatibility, meaning your system is actually a Wii in Wii mode with none of that expanded U functionality.
5. Handheld VC on the Console – Why is it kept separate?
The Super Gameboy Existed. The Transfer Pak with the N64 Gameboy cart existed. The Gameboy Player Existed. Nintendo didn’t have a problem with us playing handheld games on a bigger screen in the past so why now? An NES and GB emulator is so frigging simple to make. How simple? Teachers are assigning their creation in college classes now. That’s how simple it is. Why can’t the console be used as a client for the emulation while allowing for an option to feed the display from the main screen to the GamePad?