E3 2011: Why the Wii U is definitely the perfect games console, and why it's also definitely an utter disaster

If you don't want any of the expanded features (and trust me, when this stuff gets properly explored across the full spectrum of games, film, TV, music, communication and apps, it's going to be off the chart), you'll still have the core gaming experience you want.

Technically, this thing looks like a beast. And let's face it, with Microsoft giving all of its first-party efforts over to Kinect games for toddlers as of its own E3 press conference this year, there's suddenly a massive vacuum waitingto be filled by a company with a hardcore console and strong first and third-party exclusive line-up. And I'm more than happy for Nintendo to be that company.

Its first-party stuff is better than anyone else's, it's got the third-parties back on-side now, and despite Nintendo's reputation for being crap in that field, it has always had the clout to score good exclusives. Eternal Darkness, anyone? And there was that other game for the Gamecube. President... Weevil... 4, was it?

All of which is true, but utterly pointless if this thing suddenly finds itself not being a hardcore machine any more.


I'm saying that it could be the new Dreamcast.


As in, it might well be a pimp-daddy polygon-processing motherf*cker from the future right now, but if it gets superceded by new Microsoft and Sony consoles in two years it'll suddenly stop being exciting as a pure gaming machine. And if that happens, then the "console for everyone" suddenly isn't. It will have half of its purpose ripped out overnight, and will only exist for that weird shit I don't want. The Wii U is launching in 2012. Could be January, could be December. You don't know yet. It could already be too late for it to have a long run as a current-gen machine.

This generation is going to last a looooong time. Devs can still barely afford to make games for it, and there's a near-unanimous outcry from third-parties proclaiming that they do not want another console generation any time soon. Nintendo saw that coming, saw that the casual market was done (as a single-minded pursuit, anyway), saw that current-gen hardware was getting cheaper to build, saw its competitors racing to catch up with what it was already walking away from, and has now jumped back to the hardcore space with plenty of time to clean up.

Did you see the Microsoft conference? Halo 4, starting a new goddamn Halo trilogy, at the end of 2012. These consoles aren't going anywhere for years.

We don't know that Halo 4 isn't going to be the first part of a trilogy that will continue on the next generation.

Come on, even if that does happen, is Microsoft really going to launch its next machine without Halo 5 ready at launch? It'll be roughly near the launch window, at least. It doesn't want a miserably game-barren launch like last time.And with a current-gen Halo 4 still 18 months off being finished, a Halo 5 on untested next-gen hardware is at least 4 - 5 years away. And if the Wii U has enough power to carry it past the next-gen launch window (and that Zelda demo implies it might have some serious grunt under the hood), then Nintendo has plenty of time.

Yeah, but you don't know for a fact that any of those eventualities are actually how it's all going to pan out.

Yeah, but you don't know for a fact that they're not.

Yeah, but you just don't know.

Yeah, but you don't either.

Yeah, but you don't either.

Yeah, but you don't either.

Yeah, but... Look, just stop trolling me!

You stop trolling me!

And so is the scene inside my head today. And there we must leave it, for I feel that this is about to get messy and at least one of me is going to get his account banned by my brain's admin. Have we learned anything? Maybe. But I'm now interested to know where you stand on the Wii U. Which of me do you agree with? As ever, leave your comments below. And if you see things getting flamey on any other site or board, just link to the above article. It'll save everyone a lot of time and blood pressure.

June 08, 2011