The eighth generation of gaming is beginning.
Welcome to the Wii U Launch Hype and Info Thread, your one stop for everything Wii U, Nintendo's successor to its wildly popular Wii console, and the first console in what will inevitably become the eighth generation of systems.
Nintendo's sixth home console launches tomorrow: yes, we are in the final stretch. Time to hype it up.
WHAT IS WII U?
The Wii U is Nintendo's sixth home console, and their first console that is fully HD enabled; like its predecessor, the Wii, the Wii U continues to favor innovation in key areas, such as interfacing with the game, rather than raw, brute power. Apart from that, Wii U also launches Nintendo's first foray into true online gaming with Nintendo Network, an online service that finally sees them on par with the competition, and, thanks to innovations like Miiverse, even exceed it in many ways.
But let's let the system do the taking.
The console itself is small, diminutive, and generally unremarkable, instead conceding the spotlight to the star of the show, the new Wii U Gamepad.
The Wii U Gamepad is the ultimate controller, the culmination of over three decades of controller innovation. Featuring all traditional controls (two clickable analog sticks, four action buttons, a D pad, start and select, L, R, ZL, and ZR buttons), in addition to a 6.2 inch resistive touch screen controllable either by your fingers or the stylus, full motion detection, including an acelerometer, a gyroscope, and enhanced Wii Motion Plus sensitivity, a microphone, a camera, NFC capabilities, and a sensor bar to receive inputs from a Wii Remote, there is nothing the Wii U Gamepad can't do.
There's more to it, though: the gamepad opens up unprecedented gameplay possibilities: in addition to doubling up as a second screen during gameplay, it opens up new windows for multilayer games, as demonstrated by the assymetrical gameplay highlighted by titles like Nintendo Land and Rayman Legends; and, in possibly its most killer feature, the Wii U Gamepad is capable of playing the full console game in your Wii U via streaming, on screen in case you can't access the TV. No more squabbling over who gets the screen, the Wii U Gamepad fixes the problem by giving you a whole another screen to play with. The entire console can be accessed and controlled right from your Gamepad, without ever having to switch the TV on. And if you do have to, the Wii U Gamepad can help with that too! It has a universal media remote built right into it to control your TV, all from one controller.
The Wii U supports upto two Wii U Gamepads at a time, but launch games will all support only one; future games will incorporate support for a second Wii U Gamepad as well.
But yes, I hear you. You don't care for Nintendo's 'innovation;' all you want is to play Call of Duty or Zelda on your Wii U with a traditional control scheme, without the newfangled controller bogging you down.
Well, fear not. Nintendo has you covered there as well:
Introducing the Wii U Pro controller. The Wii U Pro Controller is a traditional dual analog controller sans the touch screen. No gimmicks, just pure gaming, for the traditonalist. Featuring a built in rechargable battery that provides for upto a staggering 80 hours of gameplay on a single charge, this is your cue if the new controller really isn't your thing.
And yes, don't throw your Wii controllers away. The Wii U supports every type of controller, including, but not limited to, the Wii Remote, Wii Motion Plus, Wii Remote Plus, Wii Classic Controller, Wii Classic Controller Pro, and the Wii Balance Board.
WHAT IS NINTENDO NETWORK?
Nintendo Network is Nintendo's second stab at making an online service, and unlike the Nintendo Wi Fi Connection, this one is actually focused and on par with the competition, even exceeding it in several key areas. If you have used a 3DS online, then you already have an idea of what Nintendo Network is like. People who designed the original Xbox Live for Xbox 360 helped in key areas with Nintendo Network, and it shows.
Some key features for Nintendo Network are:
- Unified user accounts: No more Friend Codes, you will be identified online via your Nintendo Network account, which you make when you first setup your Wii U console. A single console can support up to twelve different Nintendo Network accounts at any given time.
- eShop: eShop is Nintendo's online storefront for digital offerings, and as anyone with a 3DS will attest to, Nintendo learned from their mistakes from WiiWare and DSiWare. eShop will be offering retail versions for digital games on the day of their release, offering exclusive digital games available only there, demoes, apps, Virtual Console games, and WiiWare games, and DLC, in addition to apps. Your purchases are no longer tied to your console like with the DSi and the Wii, and are instead associated with your Nintendo Network account; eShop also supports video streaming, screenshots, user ratings and reviews. The eShop on the Wii U will feature a streamlined downloading process to expedite the process and make sure you can jump into your game as soon as possible. Games bought on a Wii U console are playable from all accounts on that console, regardless of whether they are associated with the game or not.
- Miiverse: Miiverse is Nintendo's always on, persistent social network built right into the Wii U OS, that is as much of a system showcase as the Wii U Gamepad is. The Miiverse is a social hub, that is the first thing players see when they power the Wii U on. It allows players to chat with each other, message each other, share status updates regarding games, share game information (such as warning for a particularly tough level), and collaborate on beating games together. It also allows users to share their impressions on games via screenshot sharing and reviews on the eShop.
- Connectivity with 3DS and other devices: A future feature, your Nintendo Network account will be integrated fully with your 3DS account, meaning you finally have a fully integrated Nintendo Network unified account, and never have to worry about your digital purchases and ventures after that. Your Nintendo Network account will also be accessible from PCs, tablets, smartphones, and other internet enabled devices.
- Internet browser: Wii U offers a full fledged, HTML 5 enabled internet browser that can be accessed at any time during the game without losing your progress,
- Chatting: Allowing for a full range of messaaging, from text messages to video chatting enabled via the Wii U Gamepad, the Wii U ensures you never play alone. In game voice chat is also supported, albiet on a game by game basis; there is no official Wii U headset, however, and third party ones have to be purchased. Voice chat is supported only via the Wii U Gamepad's headphone jack, so if you are planning on playing with the Wii U Pro controller, make sure to keep the Gamepad somewhere close by.
All of these features are fully acessible to you at any time, including during gameplay, by pressing the Home button. The Wii U is fully multitaskable.
WHAT'S INSIDE THE BOX?
DID YOU KNOW?
- The Wii U uses a proprietary optical disc format based off Blu Ray discs, allowing for up to 25GB of storage on a single layer. The disc transfers data at 22.5 MB/sec, which is the faster than any current console; don't expect long loading times.
- The Wii U is a champion of RAM, with 2GB of system RAM, out of which a staggering 1GB is saved for the system OS.
- The Wii U supports hard drives of any size from its USB ports, along with SD, SDHC, and SDXC cards upto 64GB of memory, over its SD card port.
- The Wii U is fully backwards compatible with your Wii, including your Wii games, accessories, controllers, WiiWare games, and Virtual Console.
- The Wii U is not compatible with Gamecube games and controllers; expect Gamecube games to show up on the Virtual Console, however.
- The Wii U is 3D compatible. If you have a stereoscopic 3D enabled display, and a game supports it, the Wii U allows for 3D games.
- The Wii U does not have a system wide achievements system. Games are free to implement achievements if they wish to, and you can ever share these achievements via Miiverse, but there is no such system integrated at the OS level.
- The Wii U is the first home console ever to have an HDMI cable included in the box. No, seriously.
While the Wii U won't play movie discs, it does support full media integration via Amazon Video, Youtube, Netflix, and Hulu Plus. In addition, Nintendo is providing an unprecedented media service of its own, called Nintendo TVii.
Available only in United States and Canada, Nintendo TVii is a free TV aggregation service that lets you browse content from multiple services, to which you're subscribed such as Netflix and Hulu, Live TV and your DVR/Tivo. You can also comment/chat with your friends whilst watching live TV, via Miiverse and Twitter/Facebook. The Wii U hardware doesn't have Tivo/DVR capabilities built in, so that functionality will only work in this service with separate hardware."
Nintendo TVii enables you to find, watch, and engage with TV shows, movies and sports programming, all from the Wii U GamePad. This free service will be available in the United States and Canada at launch for users with a broadband wireless Internet connection.
Nintendo TVii will support all cable and dish carriers in the US and Canada. No major carriers are excluded, and the only requirement for signing up is inputting your cable company's account information to the Wii U. DVR and TiVO functionality are plugged in similarly, where users input information via web, and services resultantly pop up on the Wii U.
The Wii U is launching with a staggering 23 games at retail, which includes enhanced ports of games available on the Xbox 360 and PS3 already, multiplatform games also being made available on Wii U, and exclusive content for the system being developed by both Nintendo and third parties. The launch lineup includes:
NEW SUPER MARIO BROS. U | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
ASSASSIN'S CREED III | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
CALL OF DUTY: BLACK OPS II | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
BATMAN: ARKHAM CITY ARMORED EDITION | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
ZOMBIU | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
DARKSIDERS II | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
EPIC MICKEY: THE POWER OF TWO | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
FIFA 13 | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
ESPN SPORTS CONECTIONS | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
JUST DANCE 4 | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
MASS EFFECT 3: SPECIAL EDITION | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
GAME PARTY CHAMPIONS | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
NINJA GAIDEN 3: RAZOR'S EDGE | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
NINTENDO LAND | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
SONIC AND ALL STARS RACING TRANSFORMED | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
TEKKEN TAG TOURNAMENT 2: WII U EDITION | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
RABBIDS LAND | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
SING PARTY | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
TANK! TANK! TANK! | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
YOUR SHAPE: FITNESS EVOLVED | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
WIPEOUT: THE GAME 3 | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
SKYLANDERS GIANTS | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
WARRIORS OROCHI 3 HYPER | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
TRANSFORMERS PRIME | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
SCRIBBLENAUTS UNLIMITED | Metacritic Reviews | Gamespot Review
In addition to that, the following games will be available day one on the eShop:
- Chasing Aurora
- Trine 2: Director's Cut Edition
- Cloudberry Kingdom
- Tori Tori 2
- Nano Assault Neo
- Little Inferno
- Mighty Switch Force! Hyper Drive Edition
All text on this page was compiled by charizard1605. Images in this thread were gathered using Google's Image Search, and were sourced from various websites including, but not limited to, Nintendo.com, Wikipedia, GoNintendo, and IGN. The Wii U details image was sourced courtesy of vectorman06, the congressman1, Stewox, and jonny_boi on NeoGAF. Portions of the text on this page were taken from JollyGreenOne's Wii U Info Thread on the Wii U Boards.