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    The Nintendo Wii U, the follow-up to the monstrously popular Nintendo Wii console, launched in North America on November 18th 2012.

    Nintendo Unveils the Wii U, Leaves the World In a State of Bewilderment

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    alex

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    Edited By alex

    Say this for Nintendo: they're rarely predictable.

    This morning's E3 2011 Nintendo press conference promised to unveil the console maker's next generation of hardware, and Nintendo did not disappoint. Instead, it mostly confused, bewildered, and at times, very much impressed.

    Games will support unique displays via the screen when you're playing on the TV, or transfer gameplay directly to the screen.
    Games will support unique displays via the screen when you're playing on the TV, or transfer gameplay directly to the screen.

    Let's start with the name, which had been the subject of much bandying by various industry pundits. Everything from just "The Nintendo" to far more ludicrous options had been tossed around, but the near-universal agreement that the Wii branding would be ditched turned out to be a falsehood. The Wii U is the new system, and Reggie used the name unveiling to make a few alliterative talking points regarding "unity" and "utopia" among players.

    The console is designed to cater to both the hardcore audience that Nintendo seemingly all but abandoned when the Wii was first introduced, and the casual-minded players who flocked to the Wii in its early days. But just what the hell is this thing, anyway?

    Nearly all of the presentation was dedicated to the new controller technology, a slick-looking, tablet-inspired device with two circle sticks, a d-pad, the usual suite of buttons, a gyroscope, a built-in camera, and what have you. However, the big draw is the built-in screen, a 6.2 inch touch-sensitive screen that can emulate at least some version of the graphics you'll see on your TV screen.

    Though the demo at the conference didn't do much to explain this, there is actually a Wii U box that hooks up to your TV, which works in proper HD. It's backward compatible with all existing Wii games, and apparently supports existing Wii hardware too.

    This is the box. Yes, there is a box.
    This is the box. Yes, there is a box.

    One of the more intriguing things about the new controller device is that it actually lets you keep playing your games if you decide to do something else with your TV. Whatever game you're playing via the TV will automatically switch to the controller screen should you decide to start watching something else on television.

    Nintendo's big thing was to demonstrate the number of different uses for the tech, which included everything from video chat, to stylus drawing, and a variety of motion/video-based controls. However, this was done largely at the expense of new game announcements. Reggie himself only touted one new game in development--a new Lego title from TT Games--but a video featuring several third-party developers and publishers including a slate of game announcements, including Darksiders II, Assassin's Creed, a new Tekken game, Metro Last Light, Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor's Edge, and more. EA's John Riccitiello even vaguely described the "possibility" of a Battlefield game appearing on the system, as Battlefield 3 footage played behind him. However, he stopped short of an actual announcement.

    Nintendo is not showing any full games at E3, but rather is sticking to "game demos," which sound more like tech demo-ish proofs of concept. Regardless, we'll definitely be getting our hands on this strange, fascinating new device during the show. Look for more in the near future.

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    alex

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    #1  Edited By alex

    Say this for Nintendo: they're rarely predictable.

    This morning's E3 2011 Nintendo press conference promised to unveil the console maker's next generation of hardware, and Nintendo did not disappoint. Instead, it mostly confused, bewildered, and at times, very much impressed.

    Games will support unique displays via the screen when you're playing on the TV, or transfer gameplay directly to the screen.
    Games will support unique displays via the screen when you're playing on the TV, or transfer gameplay directly to the screen.

    Let's start with the name, which had been the subject of much bandying by various industry pundits. Everything from just "The Nintendo" to far more ludicrous options had been tossed around, but the near-universal agreement that the Wii branding would be ditched turned out to be a falsehood. The Wii U is the new system, and Reggie used the name unveiling to make a few alliterative talking points regarding "unity" and "utopia" among players.

    The console is designed to cater to both the hardcore audience that Nintendo seemingly all but abandoned when the Wii was first introduced, and the casual-minded players who flocked to the Wii in its early days. But just what the hell is this thing, anyway?

    Nearly all of the presentation was dedicated to the new controller technology, a slick-looking, tablet-inspired device with two circle sticks, a d-pad, the usual suite of buttons, a gyroscope, a built-in camera, and what have you. However, the big draw is the built-in screen, a 6.2 inch touch-sensitive screen that can emulate at least some version of the graphics you'll see on your TV screen.

    Though the demo at the conference didn't do much to explain this, there is actually a Wii U box that hooks up to your TV, which works in proper HD. It's backward compatible with all existing Wii games, and apparently supports existing Wii hardware too.

    This is the box. Yes, there is a box.
    This is the box. Yes, there is a box.

    One of the more intriguing things about the new controller device is that it actually lets you keep playing your games if you decide to do something else with your TV. Whatever game you're playing via the TV will automatically switch to the controller screen should you decide to start watching something else on television.

    Nintendo's big thing was to demonstrate the number of different uses for the tech, which included everything from video chat, to stylus drawing, and a variety of motion/video-based controls. However, this was done largely at the expense of new game announcements. Reggie himself only touted one new game in development--a new Lego title from TT Games--but a video featuring several third-party developers and publishers including a slate of game announcements, including Darksiders II, Assassin's Creed, a new Tekken game, Metro Last Light, Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor's Edge, and more. EA's John Riccitiello even vaguely described the "possibility" of a Battlefield game appearing on the system, as Battlefield 3 footage played behind him. However, he stopped short of an actual announcement.

    Nintendo is not showing any full games at E3, but rather is sticking to "game demos," which sound more like tech demo-ish proofs of concept. Regardless, we'll definitely be getting our hands on this strange, fascinating new device during the show. Look for more in the near future.

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    lolgreg

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    #2  Edited By lolgreg

    Oh lawd, Nintendo.

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    Meltac

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    #3  Edited By Meltac

    I still don't get it. 

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    KarateLincoln

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    #4  Edited By KarateLincoln

    Smash Bros. That is all.

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    MisterMouse

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    #5  Edited By MisterMouse

    Ok good to see the actually console hardware... still I don't know. Why didn't they talk about the actual specs of the console itself?

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    ShaggE

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    #6  Edited By ShaggE

    Pirate freaking arrows.

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    TheMustacheHero

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    #7  Edited By TheMustacheHero

    This is going to be so uncomfortable to play.

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    mscupcakes

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    #8  Edited By mscupcakes

    Just don't let anybody Wii on U

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    herocide

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    #9  Edited By herocide

    GET HYPE

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    jack_daniels

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    #11  Edited By jack_daniels

    BAHAHAHAHA

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    Rotnac

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    #12  Edited By Rotnac

    oh man... Wii U? really? really?

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    Kaspar

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    #13  Edited By Kaspar

    Wiiew Wiiew is the sound police sirens make lol ^ ^

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    #14  Edited By 137

    yeah this is going to be amazing.

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    AlwaysBeClothing

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    #15  Edited By AlwaysBeClothing

    Jeff posted a picture of someone playing New Super Mario Bros Mii, he was looking at the controller screen and ignoring the big screen tv. Mission accomplished?

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    morrelloman

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    #16  Edited By morrelloman

    Word

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    Catolf

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    #17  Edited By Catolf
    @ShaggE said:
    Pirate freaking arrows.
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    deactivated-5f80be8681c07

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    Name makes VITA sound great. What a dumb dumb name Nintendo.

    Not convinced yet, controller looks like something out of a toy store called "my first tablet". Ultimately the games and price will make me decide if I get it, but I doubt this offers something compelling at launch.

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    sopranosfan

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    #19  Edited By sopranosfan

    Wii U is where I wish I would have went to college.
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    DarthB

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    #20  Edited By DarthB

    Fuck. I know I'll probably buy this thing about 6 months to a year after launch, then proceed to never use it if it's supported like the wii is. Here's hoping it has great software support!

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    MeatSim

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    #21  Edited By MeatSim

    They should have shown the actual console during the press conference.

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    Sayishere

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    #22  Edited By Sayishere

    I still have no idea what to say

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    changgo

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    #23  Edited By changgo

    Looks kinda like bleached PS Vita. Wonder if Sony could bake in similar features/support between their new handheld and the PS3?

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    #24  Edited By Troncek

    Hmm, what the...

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    #25  Edited By AuthenticM

    Such a fucking horrible name. Oh my God.

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    #26  Edited By Kyle

    Yeah, that headline pretty much says it all...

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    bobtastic715

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    #27  Edited By bobtastic715
    @pyromaster222: As Reggie said in an interview for G4 post-conference Nintendo isn't known for talking about specs and things of graphical nature they like to focus on the gameplay.
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    #28  Edited By metalsnakezero

    Reggie said that Wii U will be 1080p so thats good and this how the Wii felt like, it need to prove it can do it. 

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    dbz1995

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    #29  Edited By dbz1995

    I thought the tablet thing itself was the actual console.

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    #30  Edited By haggis

    Just when I had hopes that Nintendo would pull itself back from the brink, they offer this shit. Seriously, what the hell are they smoking over there?

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    #31  Edited By selbie

    Saw the video stream on Nintendo's site. That Pirate demo is actually a rhythm game.

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    DirtyEagles

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    #32  Edited By DirtyEagles

    I think it's great

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    #33  Edited By mrfluke

    one last time 4 good measure XD

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    #34  Edited By SlightConfuse

    great article this will help with the confusion of the conference

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    EmuLeader

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    #35  Edited By EmuLeader

    This controller screams Crystal Chonicles, and given the original was on a Nintendo system as well, i'm really hoping a new one comes out.

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    #36  Edited By MisterMouse
    @bobtastic715: Makes you wonder if there is a greater reason they aren't talking about it.
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    #37  Edited By LordCmdrStryker

    I bet the Angry Birds tablet gamer crowd will just love this. Now I have to go eat some rusty nails.

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    #38  Edited By Marz

    I'm just wondering if that controller is going to be comfortable after holding it for a few hours.

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    arch4non

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    #39  Edited By arch4non

    The Wii U looks really, really cool. From what they were saying it's up to the developers to choose how to use the hardware. There will most likely be more ergonomical versions of the controller without a screen which can be used like the classic controller on the current Wii.

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    #40  Edited By Lobster_Ear

    The console looks like a Wii-360 hybrid

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    #41  Edited By soralapio

    @DarthB said:

    Fuck. I know I'll probably buy this thing about 6 months to a year after launch, then proceed to never use it if it's supported like the wii is. Here's hoping it has great software support!

    The controller has the same buttons as the PS3 and 360. The console should be at least as powerful, if not more so. This time there's no reason not to port and as companies love money, they surely will. Add to this Nintendo's amazing first party support and it's hard to not get a bit excited about the Wii U (even if the name kind of sucks).

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    #42  Edited By virtua_ben

    @AuthenticM said:

    Such a fucking horrible name. Oh my God.

    Couldn't agree more...but i'm hopeful for the gameplay. That's all that matters.

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    Azteck

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    #43  Edited By Azteck

    Vita sounds like a fantastic name in comparison to this. Honestly this thing looks retarded.

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    beforet

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    #44  Edited By beforet

    When you think PlayStation Vita will take the gold for goofiest name of E3, Nintendo rolls out the Wii U. Bravo, gentlemen, bravo.

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    Xeiphyer

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    #45  Edited By Xeiphyer

    Not that impressed with the controller stuff, not enough to make it a real game changer.
     
    I hope Nintendo proves my wrong, but this thing looks DOA. A console that plays ps3 and 360 games is fine, but those consoles are 6 years old, and this Wiiu isn't coming until at least next year. Shortly after that we will see the next generation from Sony and Microsoft, which will render the Wiiu's graphical capability useless, and then the only thing they have going for them is this controller (unless they have more gimmicks to announce).
     
    I can't see how the casual market will be buying the wiiu either, they already have a wii and it never gets played. Most people aren't going to pick it up any time soon.
     
    I guess we will see in the coming months, but I am definitely keeping my expectations metered for now.

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    #46  Edited By MachoFantastico

    Nintendo did a really poor job of describing the system, I still don't get what it actually is.

    Overall I was underwhelmed by what I saw, the controller looked awful.

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    #47  Edited By golguin

    I was blown away by the controller and the concepts that were shown. I don't understand all this "I don't get it" stuff assuming it isn't simply trolling.

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    #48  Edited By Jiggah
    @Changgo
    They already did.  Streaming Lair on the PSP and the PS3.  The Vita would be able to do this too if Sony chooses.  If developers incorporate these features to the WiiU expect it to show up as additional features for the Vita/PS3.
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    #49  Edited By 49th

    I thought of a much better name:  
    Wii2 U 
    Their tag line would be:
    From We to You

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    #50  Edited By nightbird

    Now if I only had a reason to turn my wii on...

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