Wii HD: It's already there and you just don't know it

Man, remember when Ubisoft tried pimping these visuals in its Wii ads?
The eternally circulating rumor regarding the Wii is that sooner or later, Nintendo is going to cave in to supposed market demands and manufacture a mid-cycle upgraded Wii capable of outputting in HD resolutions. Regardless of the arguments made against it, the rhetoric is continually spewed, perhaps in the hopes that someone influential at Nintendo will make things happen if they see the Internet wants such a thing. They make the assumption that since the Wii is deliberately marketed as an underpowered machine so as to make it more accessible to both developers and consumers, there's no way it is capable of going more visually "harcore" and entering the realms of 720p and beyond. The problem that I see with this particular rumor is that its roots most likely lie in and continue to be perpetually revived by people who don't have a technical understanding of the Wii itself. I don't claim to have credentials involving actual work on the Wii, but I will say that I've spent extensive time in underground development and hacking communities, giving me lessons which can in turn be applied to dissecting Nintendo's white television box. I like to think I have at least a working theoretical understanding of how some of its undersides work, so let's go down the seemingly insane rabbit hole and prove that the Wii is already capable of outputting HD. There just hasn't been a clever or bold enough developer willing to make it happen yet.

The first thing to note before actually going inside the Wii itself and examining its specifications is that the equipment already exists for it to output HD resolutions. Naturally, I'm referring to the component cables. These do exist for the system and although they're only officially used for progressive scanning and surround sound, there's nothing which prevents them from otherwise being ordinary HD cables. So out of the box, there already isn't a need to create homemade cables to hack together the capability for the Wii to output HD resolutions. The necessary cables can already be bought; they merely aren't being used to their fullest potential as of now.

This is a good start, but let's go even further.
Some gold-plated prongs attached to wires don't make a full argument, though, so now let's take a gander at what's actually powering the Wii underneath. The actual specifications for the system have never been publicly released in their entirety by Nintendo, ATI, or any other company involved in the system's creation. Nevertheless, enough has either been leaked or hacked to give a decent enough understanding of the console's inner workings. With that said, let's get a pretty interesting revelation out of the way: the Wii's specifications closely resemble that of the original Xbox's, both in terms of the CPU and the GPU. There are some differences, such as the Wii having a slightly lower CPU clock speed by just a handful of megahertz,  but other aspects of it do enough to compensate and make Microsoft's console a really good analog for it. This is all really important to note when it comes to saying the Wii is already capable of HD for reasons outlined below.

Much like the Wii, although the first Xbox iteration wasn't overly marketed as an HD-capable machine, it too was perfectly capable of it in theory. The main difference between the two was that it was a fact actually acknowledged by Microsoft and developers weren't prohibited from making their games output that high if they pleased. You might recall that using the odd check box system on the back of games, some games would mark that they had things such as Xbox Live connectivity, LAN capabilities, etc. Some also marked the box for 720p output capability. The games which did indicate this, such as Soul Calibur II, may not have looked that much prettier because of it, but what needs to be kept in mind is that 720p, 1080p, etc. are solely indicative of resolutions, meaning it's purely the number of pixels the system has to work with that's upped, not polygons. So naturally, you wouldn't be suddenly getting games on the Wii which superficially resemble games like Crysis, but you could in theory find ones which could at least output the same resolutions that the GPU abuser can as well.

Itagaki and his crew in their prime sure knew how to make that Xbox abide by every one of their technical whims.
But what does this actually mean in practice? Put simply, the Wii is probably capable of a lot more than it's given credit for today. Again, the same was more or less the case with Microsoft's first system, but it also actually has some games to prove it, so let's keep using that system for comparison. Lost Levels is a community of gamers mostly devoted to covering cancelled games and, whenever possible, uploading dumps of prototypes that the staff have acquired so regular users can poke and prod them with emulators, debuggers, and the like. However, despite the majority being predominantly programming laymen, there is a small population who is also very familiar with the development side of games. This is especially noticeable in this thread, which discusses which games really pushed the hardware of their systems. Some suggestions are debunked, such as Donkey Kong on the SNES, but the main post to look at is one by ProgrammingAce, a user who is intimately familiar with Sony and Microsoft consoles, including this generation's batch. He devotes part of his post to discussing games which pushed the Xbox hardware to go really far. Most surprising of all is when he discusses games such as Ninja Gaiden Black and Pariah, pointing out that they could haved already "passed certification" for 360 games in the state in which they were released. Passing certification, in short, means that the games would at least meet Microsoft's internal standards for letting developers develop and publish games on the 360. These standards are mostly related to technological usage, as well as overall stability, and those are what matter the most anyway, especially when considering that 360 games are supposed to natively output in 720p. (We'll save Halo 3 and other such controversies for another day.) It was already well-known that games like Ninja Gaiden Black pushed the Xbox hardware to do what the developers wanted pretty significantly, but to know it does it to the extent that an unimproved 360 port could, in theory, be okay with Microsoft is indicative of just how much the original system, and, by extension, the Wii, is really capable of doing. 

Now I recognize that the biggest argument to be made at this point against Wii HD already "existing" is probably that making games for the Wii is a different proposition and isn't like working on the original Xbox. This is naturally true; despite the similarities of the specifications, the quirks of the actual hardware mean that developing for the Wii is going to be different than the Xbox. To defuse this point, though, I'd like to state that the real point to take out of all this is that the Wii can still be manipulated to output in HD resolutions. It's just that the methods for doing so have to be different. This is true even in today's multiplatform releases. A game like Mirror's Edge may look and play the same on the 360 and PS3, but the differences in hardware mean that the developer has to use different tricks to achieve the same effect across different consoles. What matters is that the end result is overall the same and that's why the Wii has been repeatedly compared to the Xbox throughout this post. The raw specifications are similar and getting the Wii to also output HD natively is a matter of working around its technological behaviors. Getting to point B from point A may entail different journies for the two systems, but point B is still going to be point B for both consoles. Different means simply have to be used to achieve the same end.

Sometimes, just because you can doesn't mean you always should.
If that's the case, then why is it that the Wii hasn't shown such capabilities off by now? While it could very possibly be due to Nintendo preventing developers from working in HD simply because of demographic issues (ie: most Wii owners working solely with SD televisions), the bigger culprit is probably more along the lines of developer fears. Despite the fact that the Wii is indeed able to output games in HD resolutions, the worries are still understandable. It all boils down to how much more data the Wii has to process on the fly if it's made to go HD. When you increase the number of pixels that have to be dealt with in the transition from rendering the polygons to making a workable, two-dimensional image for televisions, it's to be expected that the sheer size of the data is going to increase. The problem is that if it's not dealt with properly, the resolution increase can make the system suffer significantly. After all, Gran Turismo 4 proved that even the PS2, a system less powerful than the Wii, is technically capable of outputting 1080i; a stable frame rate just gets thrown out the window at that point. If the developer goes even further and makes higher resolution textures for HD modes instead of relying merely on upscaling, the problem becomes all the more major. Indeed, the main issue is making sure that if the Wii is ever made to go HD as it currently is that the added data load is dealt with well so the system doesn't nearly come screeching to a halt. But even that can be overcome so long as the right techniques are employed and made stable. After all, the Xbox was the original console host for games such as Chronicles of Riddick and Doom 3, games which many people predicted could never plausibly work on the available non-PC hardware at the time. But they still did because of some clever work on the part of the developers. The Wii isn't inherently handicapped in a way that prevents the same thing from happening, either; it's only a matter of finding people bold enough to push it that far.

Even the SNES could do intensive physics calculations if you harassed it enough.
The notion that the Wii needs an actual hardware revision in order to output HD resolutions is one I find to be ignorant. Researching the specifications and making real-world comparisons to similar systems such as the Xbox show that it's a much more plausible notion than it's commonly perceived. The hardware may not be as conducive to doing such things as one would hope, but it already has more than it needs to do so out of the box. The main hurdles are therefore related to the demographics playing the system and developer motivation. Regarding the former, while component cables exist for the system officially, they are neither bundled with the system nor widely known. Clearly the intention on Nintendo's part is to remain SD for at least one more generation while waiting for HD setups to penetrate more households. But again, it's the latter one which is more damning in the end. The Wii was not deliberately designed to consistently output higher resolutions, so while it's still possible, many developers are probably hesitant to have it go that far. HD is still one of the uncharted waters for the system; if it's not treaded correctly, things could go awry very easily. It's an understandable, albeit disappointing predicament. With that said, if Nintendo does come out with a version of the Wii that is more openly capable of handling HD, it will be to ease developer frustrations which exist now, not because the current hardware is inherently unable to do it at all. Wii HD is here today and a precedence exists with other now-underpowered systems such as the Xbox. It just requires a bit more magic to make it happen than for the other systems today.
36 Comments
37 Comments
Posted by Pepsiman
Man, remember when Ubisoft tried pimping these visuals in its Wii ads?
The eternally circulating rumor regarding the Wii is that sooner or later, Nintendo is going to cave in to supposed market demands and manufacture a mid-cycle upgraded Wii capable of outputting in HD resolutions. Regardless of the arguments made against it, the rhetoric is continually spewed, perhaps in the hopes that someone influential at Nintendo will make things happen if they see the Internet wants such a thing. They make the assumption that since the Wii is deliberately marketed as an underpowered machine so as to make it more accessible to both developers and consumers, there's no way it is capable of going more visually "harcore" and entering the realms of 720p and beyond. The problem that I see with this particular rumor is that its roots most likely lie in and continue to be perpetually revived by people who don't have a technical understanding of the Wii itself. I don't claim to have credentials involving actual work on the Wii, but I will say that I've spent extensive time in underground development and hacking communities, giving me lessons which can in turn be applied to dissecting Nintendo's white television box. I like to think I have at least a working theoretical understanding of how some of its undersides work, so let's go down the seemingly insane rabbit hole and prove that the Wii is already capable of outputting HD. There just hasn't been a clever or bold enough developer willing to make it happen yet.

The first thing to note before actually going inside the Wii itself and examining its specifications is that the equipment already exists for it to output HD resolutions. Naturally, I'm referring to the component cables. These do exist for the system and although they're only officially used for progressive scanning and surround sound, there's nothing which prevents them from otherwise being ordinary HD cables. So out of the box, there already isn't a need to create homemade cables to hack together the capability for the Wii to output HD resolutions. The necessary cables can already be bought; they merely aren't being used to their fullest potential as of now.

This is a good start, but let's go even further.
Some gold-plated prongs attached to wires don't make a full argument, though, so now let's take a gander at what's actually powering the Wii underneath. The actual specifications for the system have never been publicly released in their entirety by Nintendo, ATI, or any other company involved in the system's creation. Nevertheless, enough has either been leaked or hacked to give a decent enough understanding of the console's inner workings. With that said, let's get a pretty interesting revelation out of the way: the Wii's specifications closely resemble that of the original Xbox's, both in terms of the CPU and the GPU. There are some differences, such as the Wii having a slightly lower CPU clock speed by just a handful of megahertz,  but other aspects of it do enough to compensate and make Microsoft's console a really good analog for it. This is all really important to note when it comes to saying the Wii is already capable of HD for reasons outlined below.

Much like the Wii, although the first Xbox iteration wasn't overly marketed as an HD-capable machine, it too was perfectly capable of it in theory. The main difference between the two was that it was a fact actually acknowledged by Microsoft and developers weren't prohibited from making their games output that high if they pleased. You might recall that using the odd check box system on the back of games, some games would mark that they had things such as Xbox Live connectivity, LAN capabilities, etc. Some also marked the box for 720p output capability. The games which did indicate this, such as Soul Calibur II, may not have looked that much prettier because of it, but what needs to be kept in mind is that 720p, 1080p, etc. are solely indicative of resolutions, meaning it's purely the number of pixels the system has to work with that's upped, not polygons. So naturally, you wouldn't be suddenly getting games on the Wii which superficially resemble games like Crysis, but you could in theory find ones which could at least output the same resolutions that the GPU abuser can as well.

Itagaki and his crew in their prime sure knew how to make that Xbox abide by every one of their technical whims.
But what does this actually mean in practice? Put simply, the Wii is probably capable of a lot more than it's given credit for today. Again, the same was more or less the case with Microsoft's first system, but it also actually has some games to prove it, so let's keep using that system for comparison. Lost Levels is a community of gamers mostly devoted to covering cancelled games and, whenever possible, uploading dumps of prototypes that the staff have acquired so regular users can poke and prod them with emulators, debuggers, and the like. However, despite the majority being predominantly programming laymen, there is a small population who is also very familiar with the development side of games. This is especially noticeable in this thread, which discusses which games really pushed the hardware of their systems. Some suggestions are debunked, such as Donkey Kong on the SNES, but the main post to look at is one by ProgrammingAce, a user who is intimately familiar with Sony and Microsoft consoles, including this generation's batch. He devotes part of his post to discussing games which pushed the Xbox hardware to go really far. Most surprising of all is when he discusses games such as Ninja Gaiden Black and Pariah, pointing out that they could haved already "passed certification" for 360 games in the state in which they were released. Passing certification, in short, means that the games would at least meet Microsoft's internal standards for letting developers develop and publish games on the 360. These standards are mostly related to technological usage, as well as overall stability, and those are what matter the most anyway, especially when considering that 360 games are supposed to natively output in 720p. (We'll save Halo 3 and other such controversies for another day.) It was already well-known that games like Ninja Gaiden Black pushed the Xbox hardware to do what the developers wanted pretty significantly, but to know it does it to the extent that an unimproved 360 port could, in theory, be okay with Microsoft is indicative of just how much the original system, and, by extension, the Wii, is really capable of doing. 

Now I recognize that the biggest argument to be made at this point against Wii HD already "existing" is probably that making games for the Wii is a different proposition and isn't like working on the original Xbox. This is naturally true; despite the similarities of the specifications, the quirks of the actual hardware mean that developing for the Wii is going to be different than the Xbox. To defuse this point, though, I'd like to state that the real point to take out of all this is that the Wii can still be manipulated to output in HD resolutions. It's just that the methods for doing so have to be different. This is true even in today's multiplatform releases. A game like Mirror's Edge may look and play the same on the 360 and PS3, but the differences in hardware mean that the developer has to use different tricks to achieve the same effect across different consoles. What matters is that the end result is overall the same and that's why the Wii has been repeatedly compared to the Xbox throughout this post. The raw specifications are similar and getting the Wii to also output HD natively is a matter of working around its technological behaviors. Getting to point B from point A may entail different journies for the two systems, but point B is still going to be point B for both consoles. Different means simply have to be used to achieve the same end.

Sometimes, just because you can doesn't mean you always should.
If that's the case, then why is it that the Wii hasn't shown such capabilities off by now? While it could very possibly be due to Nintendo preventing developers from working in HD simply because of demographic issues (ie: most Wii owners working solely with SD televisions), the bigger culprit is probably more along the lines of developer fears. Despite the fact that the Wii is indeed able to output games in HD resolutions, the worries are still understandable. It all boils down to how much more data the Wii has to process on the fly if it's made to go HD. When you increase the number of pixels that have to be dealt with in the transition from rendering the polygons to making a workable, two-dimensional image for televisions, it's to be expected that the sheer size of the data is going to increase. The problem is that if it's not dealt with properly, the resolution increase can make the system suffer significantly. After all, Gran Turismo 4 proved that even the PS2, a system less powerful than the Wii, is technically capable of outputting 1080i; a stable frame rate just gets thrown out the window at that point. If the developer goes even further and makes higher resolution textures for HD modes instead of relying merely on upscaling, the problem becomes all the more major. Indeed, the main issue is making sure that if the Wii is ever made to go HD as it currently is that the added data load is dealt with well so the system doesn't nearly come screeching to a halt. But even that can be overcome so long as the right techniques are employed and made stable. After all, the Xbox was the original console host for games such as Chronicles of Riddick and Doom 3, games which many people predicted could never plausibly work on the available non-PC hardware at the time. But they still did because of some clever work on the part of the developers. The Wii isn't inherently handicapped in a way that prevents the same thing from happening, either; it's only a matter of finding people bold enough to push it that far.

Even the SNES could do intensive physics calculations if you harassed it enough.
The notion that the Wii needs an actual hardware revision in order to output HD resolutions is one I find to be ignorant. Researching the specifications and making real-world comparisons to similar systems such as the Xbox show that it's a much more plausible notion than it's commonly perceived. The hardware may not be as conducive to doing such things as one would hope, but it already has more than it needs to do so out of the box. The main hurdles are therefore related to the demographics playing the system and developer motivation. Regarding the former, while component cables exist for the system officially, they are neither bundled with the system nor widely known. Clearly the intention on Nintendo's part is to remain SD for at least one more generation while waiting for HD setups to penetrate more households. But again, it's the latter one which is more damning in the end. The Wii was not deliberately designed to consistently output higher resolutions, so while it's still possible, many developers are probably hesitant to have it go that far. HD is still one of the uncharted waters for the system; if it's not treaded correctly, things could go awry very easily. It's an understandable, albeit disappointing predicament. With that said, if Nintendo does come out with a version of the Wii that is more openly capable of handling HD, it will be to ease developer frustrations which exist now, not because the current hardware is inherently unable to do it at all. Wii HD is here today and a precedence exists with other now-underpowered systems such as the Xbox. It just requires a bit more magic to make it happen than for the other systems today.
Edited by jNerd

Wii isn't going HD anytime soon bro..... sorry.

Posted by HydraHam

Wii isn't  going HD

Posted by Pepsiman

It helps to read the post. I say that it certainly can in theory. There's nothing in there which says it will happen; just that it can. Slight difference, I think.

Posted by FlamingHobo

I heard there will actually be a Wii HD upgrade next year, but his is only rumour mind.

Edited by jNerd
Pepsiman said:
It helps to read the post. I say that it certainly can in theory. There's nothing in there which says ... [more]
Yer right, I just re-read your posts & I want to ask: Are you saying because the Xbox could output 720p that the Wii could because it has comparable hardware?
Posted by Video_Game_King

Wow, pretty good read. I imagine HD means more than just a 16:9 aspect ratio, since if it was just that, I could cite the Saturn as being able to produce HD graphics.

Edited by Vitefish

I don't think that the Wii will EVER support an HD game, but after reading the post, I can clearly see that he's saying that it CAN happen, not that it ever WILL. So I can see where this guy is coming from. But overall, a nice piece of work, obviously well researched.

Edited by jNerd
jNerd said:
Pepsiman said: It helps to read the post. I say that it certainly can in theory. There's nothing in there ... [more]
Well, I ask because. If you're trying to compare them you need to keep in mind that the Wii's hardware is also being used to process all the data from the motion controls and how they interact with the game. That processing loss would dip hardware too low to support HD video output with lag-free game control & clipping issues.
Posted by Pepsiman
jNerd said:
jNerd said: Pepsiman said: It helps to read the post. I say that it certainly can in theory. There's nothing ... [more]
This is a valid point that I thought about addressing in the blog, too, and while I don't know the specifics of how the Wii processes its motion data, I'd say this could be mitigated by either disabling motion functionality and making the remotes just function as regular controllers (a function which I'm certain exists) or just using other controller inputs such as GameCube controllers. That way you free up the processing power that otherwise would be devoted to checking up on the remote's position coordinates, tilt, etc. But you're right, it has the potential to be an issue if motion controls are used and they eat up processing power. Again, I'm speaking more or less on theoretical terms if we just look at specific components like the CPU and GPU.
Edited by LiquidPrince

The Wii will never, EVER be able to output HD resolutions and have it run a decent framerate. Current generation consoles PS3 and 360 have enough problems and they have far stronger CPU's and GPU's not to mention way more ram.

 CPUGraphicsMemory
Nintendo Wii
(2006)
IBM Broadway
729MHz
256KB L2
2.9 GFLOPS
1.9 GB/s Bus
ATI Hollywood
243MHz
975M Texels/Sec
3MB Buffer (27.3 GB/s)
7.9 GB/s Memory
24MB (3.9 GB/s)
64MB (4 GB/s)
512MB Flash
8.5GB Optical Discs
PS3
(2006)
Cell
3.2GHz
1 Main Core
512KB L2
7 Auxiliary SIMD Units
1.75MB Local Memory
217.6 GFLOPS
25.6 GB/s Memory
NVIDIA RSX
500MHz
24 Pixel Pipelines
8 Vertex Pipelines
250M Polygons/Sec
12G Texels/Sec
8G Samples/Sec
20.8 GB/s Memory
256MB (25.6 GB/s)
256MB (20.8 GB/s)
20-80GB HDD
2x Blu-ray (72Mbps)
Xbox 360
(2005)
IBM Xenon
3.2GHz
Three Cores
1MB Shared L2
115.2 GFLOPS
21.6 GB/s Interface
ATI Xenos
500MHz
48 Unified Pipelines
500M Polygons/Sec
8G Texels/Sec
16G Samples/Sec
10MB Buffer (256 GB/s)
22.4 GB/s Memory
512MB (22.4 GB/s)
20-120GB HDD
12x DVD (133Mbps

Posted by SmugDarkLoser

The problem is that making an image crappier in order to make the res go up isn't solving anything. It's similar to why 360/ps3 games don't do 1080p often

Posted by Wolverine
@Pepsiman: Okay so maybe it is capable and can be done on Nintendo's current console but it isn't user friendly. Personally I wont buy a Wii unless it has an HDMI port on it and still I'm not sure if I would buy one.
Edited by Diamond

Here's the thing many people don't seem to understand about resolution : While there are technical limiting factors like DAC (digital analog conversion) and RAM, resolution is more dependent on WHAT YOU'RE RENDERING than anything else.

Now, there's obviously also software limitations, maybe hardware (I don't know enough about how Wii handles signals, but we do know that you can't select 720p output right now).

However, current Wii games will NEVER run in HD on a Wii.  PC emulation requires a lot more power, so even if Nintendo introduced new hardware, it still probably wouldn't be capable of running current Wii games in HD.

The only hope for future Wii games in HD will be in games with less intense graphics, and Nintendo supporting higher resolutions with some kind of firmware update.  That's completely possible, but not likely.

The Wii IS technically limited.  Wii fans tend to thing there is some mysterious hidden power.  No, there is not.  The Wii is in many ways even more technically limited than the Xbox 1.

Posted by StarFoxA

Interesting read. I don't know enough about console insides to be able to make a counter argument (or even much of an agreement), but at least I could understand what you posted.

Edited by Pepsiman
Diamond said:
Here's the thing many people don't seem to understand about resolution : While there are technical limiting factors like DAC ... [more]
I don't realistically expect it to happen either and I'm not attempting to fuel any Wii fanboy fires by saying the Wii is capable of more than it really is. I also agree completely that the only realistic way it would ever happen is if the games in question were among the less visually intense; it's the reason why I cited Soul Calibur II as being an Xbox game able to go into 720p because that's what I suspect was the case. What I'm simply trying to debunk is that it can't happen on the Wii period. There seems to be a general presumption that under any circumstance, the Wii simply is not able to go HD. Looking at the comment sections of many Wii-related articles on places like Kotaku is indicative enough of that. What the exact results would be, I don't know. I don't have professional development experience. I'm just here to ponder some things I've come up with over the course of researching this stuff over the years and trigger a debate, both of which have been accomplished in spades. People like yourself are, however, free to debunk my points, too; I welcome the enlightenment.
Posted by jNerd
Diamond said:
Here's the thing many people don't seem to understand about resolution : While there are technical limiting factors like DAC ... [more]
Exactly what I'm sayin.... THANK YOU.
Posted by Diamond
Pepsiman said:
Diamond said: Here's the thing many people don't seem to understand about resolution : While there are technical limiting factors ... [more]
I think you are making a good point because the concept of a 'Wii HD' is pretty absurd.  Some people take it to mean a Wii 2, while others imagine current Wii games running in HD, which is silly.  SC2 did run in 720p on Xbox 1, would it be possible on Wii?  It'd at least be close, maybe a bit better.  Gamecube wasn't capable of running it higher than 480p, and Wii has similar processors at higher clock rates.
Posted by Linkyshinks

The Wii is not built for HD output, it would not allow for HD graphics of the quality we see today to be displayed for prolonged periods, because it was never designed to. It's a lowly powered device in all areas of it's composition. It's already tested to the very limit with some current software.

The Wii HD does already exist, but only as a new console. A early build of the technology has already been shown to select developers, along with demo's of software. This was revealed last year.

The Wii HD will not just be about providing HD graphics.

Posted by jakob187
@Linkyshinks: Thank you for re-surfacing that GamePro article.  I seriously don't see why people think the Wii HD is a myth.
Posted by Diamond
Linkyshinks said:
The Wii is not built for HD output, it would not allow for HD graphics of the quality we see ... [more]
Rumors posted by a single person does not make it a fact (note GamePro wasn't even making the rumor).

I'm sure all the game companies are always planning their next move, and Nintendo was certainly not sure that Wii would be a success.  They might have even thought the sales would suddenly slump, so they were probably planning a recovery if necessary.  That's nothing unusual.

However, it would be business model suicide for Nintendo to release a Wii 2 / Wii HD now.  Additionally there are technical impossibilities / impracticalities unless you're talking about a completely separte new system.  That's why Wii HD is a myth.
Edited by Linkyshinks

jakob187 said:
@Linkyshinks: Thank you for re-surfacing that GamePro article. I seriously don't see why people think the Wii HD is a ... [more]

It's definitely not a myth, but at the same time it's not within Nintendo's current business plan to release it anytime soon. It was only shown to Nintendo's best licensed developers so they can plan projects for the future, with a clear idea of the specifications they will have to work with. That's exactly what they failed to do with the Wii. Developers got a huge shock when they saw the specs for the current Wii, many had assumed that after the GC Nintendo would aim to raise the specifications significantly, leap frogging the competition. Some of the best developers had projects already down for Nintendo, but those games immediately got shifted onto other platforms. (I still wonder what those games were)

 I think people should keep in mind something here, Nintendo has had consoles out in the past that have been thee most powerful in their generation, and Nintendo could well do so again in future.

Nintendo have done an amazing job after the dark (purple) days of Gamecube era,  Nintendo's business plan has been a masterstroke, that cannot be disputed. The fallout however is that it was never going to sit well with some fans... They have also expanded the audience with Wii, fulfilling one of  it's prime console aims. (console aims of the current machine were clear to see for anyone that was interested on Wii.com 3 months prior to launch)

The only question now is, what do they do with their newly expanded audience, and their new loyal fans?.  I am looking forward to E3 to find out.

Posted by Linkyshinks
Diamond said:
Linkyshinks said: The Wii is not built for HD output, it would not allow for HD graphics of the quality ... [more]


Who said it did?, I just grabbed that GamePro link because it came up first in my search. I could have easily pointed out what Matt Casamathingy has heard from his sources.




Edited by Diamond
Linkyshinks said:
Diamond said: Linkyshinks said: The Wii is not built for HD output, it would not allow for HD graphics of ... [more]
I'm not accusing you of saying that, but you said "The Wii HD does already exist".  I doubt a Wii HD exists in any way, and if it did exist it was a safeguard against Wii sales dropping.

Normally I don't even consider a single rumor source of any kind.  It just doesn't hold any water.
Edited by Linkyshinks

As you say yourself :), the next console is always in the works.

As I say above, Nintendo have been more prudent this time around, choosing to show first party developers and a choice few others some of the foundation technology the next console will use.

"A early build of the technology has already been shown to select developers", along with demo's of software.


Posted by Meowayne

I don't need the Wii to go HD and I can't imagine why anyone would, but I know from discussion about the overscan issues that, appearantly, only a small adjustment to the consoles GPU is necessary to make it output 720p, and sadly, I think that it is indeed coming.

Edited by Linkyshinks

Metroid Prime in HD (Dolphin E)


  



  

Edited by Al3xand3r

Are you actually seeing a positive difference from the Wii in those videos? Especially the first is like, standard gametrailers (or whatever site) videos mashed together to show the comparison between the GC and Wii version. It's also a false comparison as the videos may well be of inherently different quality, being from different places. It's not running in an emulator. I think that proves it's all psychological than practical differences... They also run @ only 30 fps on YouTube, no? That's instantly twice as bad as on the Wii.

I don't think any upgrade is coming. Maybe waaaaaay down the line like the DSi, as a "stealth Wii 2" release, like I believe the DSi is a "stealth DS2" thanks to its upgraded specs. But probably not at all. If they're gonna upgrade its power to be able to output the current games on 720p, what would stop the game devs from making the games run @ 480p yet with better actual visuals, frame rate, more stuff happening, and subsequently badly gimping the standard Wii version? It just wouldn't end well, unless it's like the DSi where eventually they plan to have exclusive titles that fully take advantage of its capabilities and leave the DS behind.

It gets on my nerves people discuss like it's gonna be unveiled next year or something. It only deters people from buying the Wii if they think a new console is coming. You'd be surprised how many less, uh, core users take such rumours as fact, especially if their supposed to be knowledgable of games friends say so. The Wii is doing great, it's not getting replaced or upgraded any time soon...

Posted by keyhunter

The funny thing about the Wii's inability to display in high def is that back in 2002 the XBOX was.

Posted by Linkyshinks
Al3xand3r said:
Are you actually seeing a positive difference from the Wii in those videos? Especially the first is like, standard gametrailers ... [more]

I honestly could not care less..I only posted them to see what others reactions to seeing them are.
 



Edited by vidiot

Sadly, I get the general opinion that if the Wii could do HD, some developer would have already attempted or tried it at this point. Right now my only knowledge to something practical has been emulation via Dolphin.

I wouldn't be surprised if some middle ground solution regarding an HD-Wii was made. The concept of additions to console hardware has a rightful stigma attached to it. I think when most people think of something akin to a console "upgrade", immediate thoughts of the Genesis on life support appear. To predict what Nintendo may do in the future, it's good to counsel the past.

Nintendo hasn't fared well in this category either. The N64 had two expansions, a disk drive that never took off, and a bizarre expansion pack that was moderately successful.

As for releasing multiple iterations of hardware, under the same brand name, within a sort period of time after each other is another story. GameBoy anyone? I think we will eventually get a completely different console with the name "Wii" branded on the side of it. Nintendo clearly isn't playing by traditional console rules anymore, so why is a traditional life-cycle for their console still being upheld? The Wii is still one of the fastest selling pieces of hardware out there, and even if a HD version is released, an entire demographic I'm not part of (As Nintendo has stated.), would still pick up the old version.

So what I guess I'm trying to say is that the next Wii will be played with a brick. An actual brick. Don't ask me how or why, it's a way "next-er" generation games will be played.

Posted by Meowayne
This thread talks a bit about Wii resolutions and whether it would be possible with the current hardware to support 720p.
Posted by imazombienazi

dudes..if wii had hd, both the ps3 and 360 will be SCREWED..

Posted by Claude

I play in SD, so in some ways... I don't care.

Posted by Vigorousjammer

hey, that was a nice read, pepsiman. and yeah, it definitely COULD happen...
but nope, it never will...

Edited by vince_kupo
Posted by demontium
@jNerd: im guessing you didnt read the blog.
 
@Styl3s:  im guessing you didnt read the blog.  
 
ANYWAYS, does it really matter.
 
Sure the graphics can be better but the gameplay would be the same....