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News
 Written by Brian Lelas  on June 07, 2011

WiiU News: Nintendo just announced it's new platform: Wii U, which uses a 6.2 inch touch screen controller.



Nintendo Wii U screenshots

Nintendo has finally revealed their next generation console and it is revolutionary, as expected. The system's controller includes a huge touch 6.2 inch screen display and twin analog sticks. Formerly known as Project Caf?, the Wii U is by far the biggest announcement at E3.

The handheld controller is fully capable of playing the exact same games as were displayed on a TV via the console unit. A camera fitted into the controller syncs perfectly with the image on the TV for aiming and manipulating the game in all new ways. An example of using the controller to manage inventories in the Wii version of Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword was shown, and was also used as a platform to fire shurikens from the touch screen to the TV. The controller can also browse the internet, make video calls and take photos that instantly switch to the TV screen.

The controller is not a portable handheld system and runs off a local unit with a limited range. Multiple Wii U controllers can be used together for different gaming combinations. Also seen was a rifle-shaped attachment that sits the Wii U controller on top of it for a sight in conjunction with the game on the TV.

The games confirmed and shown in video form at the Nintendo Press Conference were Battlefield 3, Darksiders 2, Batman: Arkham City, a new Assassin's Creed title, DIRT, Lego City Stories, Aliens: Colonial Marines, Ghost Recon Online, Metro Last Light, FIFA 12, Madden 12, Harry Potter, Need For Speed: The Run and Ninja Gaiden 3. These were announced as in development with teasers shown in a montage video on the stage.

An updated version of New Super Mario Bros. Wii was shown, but is only a tech demo. The only confirmed 3DS/Wii U cross-platform title was a Smash Bros sequel that will also work in conjunction with both systems. The most satisfying element of this line-up is that finally Nintendo fans will get to play the best hardcore games from the biggest franchises of modern times along with their Sony and Microsoft counterparts.

Wii U will also utilise the Wii-Mote and Wii-Fit board. All Wii games and accessories are guaranteed to work with Wii U. There is a built in rumble pack, gyroscope and two cameras, one outward and one inward facing.

The philosophy of ?Deeper and Wider Gaming? is Nintendo's new foundation for the future. They hope to ?serve every player? equally and expand its audience to ?everybody.? The new ?gaming companion? console looks set to change the dynamics of the videogames medium in many new ways.

What Nintendo have essentially done is initiate the first off-kilter generational gap since Sega released the Dreamcast between the PlayStation and PlayStation 2 generations. With Microsoft confirming that Halo 4, Halo 5 and Halo 6 would all be on the Xbox 360, this has essentially given Nintendo an ?extra? system in between Xbox generations. Comparisons have been made with the 1999 Sega Dreamcast VMU memory unit that had a screen inside the controller. It seems that for once, Nintendo are not the innovators, but looking to ideas of the past. Of course, the Wii U controller is in another league to the old VMU and will revolutionise gaming in ways we are only beginning to imagine.

All responses to the announcement were not positive however. Many fans expected a truly next generation system with ultra realistic graphics and incredible new exclusive titles. Sadly, the Wii U currently appears to fall below the graphical standards of both the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, which are both over 4 years old. In the past Nintendo have silenced critics of their console's under-powered graphics and processing power by delivering unrivaled quality in first party game support. This time, however, not one first party game was shown or playable in any form.

Wii U has no release date. There is a vague understanding that the system will ship next year, but no pricing or timing was mentioned. What is not clear and is most worrying about the system is that the controller itself appears to by extremely advanced to the point of being more impressive than the $249 Nintendo 3DS. So what price will fans have to shell out to get an additional controller for a second player?

Nintendo's Wii U announcement at E3 has raised more questions than it has answered and throws the gaming industry into a frenzy of rumor and speculation. More details on Wii U will be available at GamingTarget.com when Nintendo bring them to us.



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