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Nintendo Launches Wii U Console And Controller

David Gilbert by

Nintendo Reveals Wii U Console

Nintendo has a history of gaming innovation with the original DS, the Wii and most recently the 3DS and its newest addition, the Wii U is no different.

Wii U Console

Nintendo decided to concentrate on the more revolutionarty controller during their E3 keynote but we have managed to garner some details about the new Wii U console. First up is the fact that it will be able to pump out HD graphics and 1080p video over HDMI, which is something Nintendo really couldn’t have omitted. The Wii U will also be compatible with component, S-video and composite cables. There will be internal flash memory but we don’t know yet how much will be included though users will be able upgrade via SD cards or an external HDD via one of the four USB 2.0 ports. Wondering how your new HD games will be served up? Apparently “proprietary high-density optical discs" is the answer but one thing we do know is that the Wii U will be compatible with Wii games. It will also work with all current Wii controllers and accessories.

Wii U Controller

Without doubt the most revolutionary aspect of the new Wii U is the new controller, which features a 6.2in touchscreen and offers games developers a plethora of new ways to play games. The screen will work as a replacement for you TV should someone interrupt your gaming to watch the latest episode of Come Dine with Me, you simply continue playing on the touchscreen. While the screen will obviously be able to function as a secondary display, that doesn’t describe the extent of the ways it could be used.

For example it will be able to view elements of the game off-screen; it will work as a shield to deflect arrows; it will work in conjunction with a Wii Motion controller to show you your lie on a gold course and in ways not yet even seen - you can even use it on its own to play games. Aside from gaming, the controller will be able to browse the web, view video, share video with a TV screen simply by flicking the content from controller towards the TV and, using the front-facing camera, speaker and microphone, users will be able to make video calls. In addition to the 6.2in screen, the new controller also features an accelerometer and a gyroscope, a rumble feature, an inward-facing camera, a microphone and speakers as well as two analogue Circle Pads, Control Pad, A/B/X/Y buttons, L/R buttons and ZL/ZR buttons.

Wii U Games

While the only official launch title mentioned as being in development so far was Lego City Stories there was also a lot more top tier titles previewed to get us pretty excitement. These included: Batman: Arkham City, an Assassin's Creed game, Dirt, Ghost Recon Online, Tekken, Metro Last Light, Aliens Colonial Marines, Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor's Edge, and Darksiders II. While some of the graphics shown at the press conference looked as if they could be running on a PS3 or Xbox 360, for a next generation console, Nintendo will be hoping to outdo both these consoles.


It’s hard to say whether the concept of the Wii U excites us or not. Nintendo is keeping a lot of the details under its hat at the moment and is pushing the innovative nature of the Wii U controller over the power of the new console. With a name that will surely infuriate many and confound many more, the jury is still out on the Wii U, which is only natural considering it won’t be available for another 12 months. We’re sure we’ll have plenty of time to assess the good and bad points in the coming months but for now let us know what you think of Nintendo’s latest console.

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June 8, 2011, 12:26 pm

Nintendo just supercharged the DS :)

Lord Comben III

June 8, 2011, 12:30 pm

To be fair Sony could quickly shoe horn a lot of this in when the PSP Vita comes out, linking it with the PS3.

Also is the image on the controller going to be sent from the console or does it produce it itself. If so, how powerful is it?


June 8, 2011, 12:54 pm

I must be getting old ... but all the use cases but 1 just screamed "gimmick"

i like the idea of some of the game information being displayed on the controller ( as in the zelda part of the video ) but even then, the whole point of that info being on screen is so you can see the action whilst you make choices.

Maybe I'm still smarting after being forced to buy a Wii for Mrs Castalan, along with Wii fit, balance board etc ... very expensive for something that turned out to be my old N64 in a nicer casing ....


June 8, 2011, 1:41 pm

Seems pretty underwhelming I gotta say, like the rest of you I brought a Wii, used it a handful of times then promptly moved on due to the rather mediocre selection of games. Also they seem to have stolen the controller with built in gaming device idea from the Dreamcast, remember that bad boy?


June 8, 2011, 6:12 pm

Ditto the underwhelmed sentiment - i can't put my finger on it but it's kind of hard at the moment to see this as revolutionary rather than merely evolutionary.

Maybe we've become very used to consoles coming through and leaving us in a daze for a few years at a time. EOTD after the Wii, this just seems like an XBOX360 lookalike upgrade to the Wii...

Tim Sutton

June 11, 2011, 2:53 pm

The controller is just a controller, everything it shows on its screen is sent wirelessly from the console.

And while I suppose Sony could in theory jerry rig a cutdown version of this for the PS3 there's absolutely no incentive for them to do so. Non-ones going to invest in making games that only people with a Vita and a PS3 can play.

Tim Sutton

June 11, 2011, 2:58 pm

The thing that makes me slightly hopeful (apart from the fact that finally Nintendo have gone back to making a console that can at least pretend to play modern games) is the Colonial Marines concept.

If the controller screen was used as the motion tracker device from Aliens, or showed the grainy helmet can footage from your squadmates then its a whole new area of immersion and gameplay choice, and I can see that actually being pretty exciting.

Well Spoken Waffle

June 11, 2011, 10:37 pm

the console handles the content on the secondary screen - the screen can't apparently be used without the console.

nintendo also say only 1 wiiupad will work with each console.

i like the idea of it, but having one wiiupad kills the idea of multiplayer - one person getting the pad while others get saddled with wiimotes?

but then if mor than 1 wiiupad could work, imagine how expensive they'd be?

but forget all that - nintendo: please give us wiimotes and nunchucks that don't need wires. having the classic controller plug into the wiimote was and will always be a stupid idea. make the controller wireless (and maybe a little motion controlled) and i'll be happy. having the wire between the nunchuck and the wiimote was sketchy back in 2006. it'll be unacceptable in 2012. it's only good for strangling the nearest player to me in frustration.

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