E3 2011: Battle Mii Wii U Preview
Nintendo shows off a multiplayer shooter with a new twist provided by the tablet controller.
One of the several Wii U demonstrations at E3 2011 is a game called Battle Mii--a third-person shooter with a slight twist that makes interesting use of the new system's tablet-based controls, as well as the standard Wii Remote and Nunchuk setup. The player using the tablet is in control of a ship (in this case, a cartoonish version of Samus' ship from Metroid), and players can fly around the environment in this ship by using the circle analog pads on the left and right sides of the controller to strafe or gain and lose altitude respectively.
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The screen on the tablet is what changes the camera perspective of where the ship is looking. For example, if the player holding the tablet moves the tablet up to the TV screen as if looking through a window, then the camera will take a behind-the-ship view. By moving the tablet down and holding it in a natural position (as you would any normal controller), the camera perspective takes a top-down view, letting the player flying the ship get a more tactical view. Moving the position of the controller in between these points presents any number of different perspectives, and players can ultimately settle on what's most comfortable for them for any situation.
The reason camera perspective is so important is that the player in the ship is battling players on the ground (which are the players using the Wii Remote and Nunchuk). Both the ship and the players on foot have access to rapid-fire laser beams and an area damage weapon, such as a grenade or a missile, which can be fired using the triggers on the remote or tablet. When either the ship or the on-foot players have been hit a certain number of times, the game ends. It's a fun, simple game that really shows off how the tablet controller can be used for experiences that are a little different from what people are typically used to when playing these types of games. Additionally, it's hard not to recall how Nintendo has tried similar experiences previously with the connectivity it introduced with the GBA and GameCube.
At any rate, Battle Mii is presumably just a small taste of what we might see on the Wii U when it's released in 2012. Check back at e3.gamespot.com for more on the Wii U and other games shown at E3 2011.