On the Wii U!

The Wii U will soon be upon us and I think I need to say a few things about it since I’ve remained rather tight-lipped. It would appear silly if I didn’t at least mention it since, for all the Sega and other retro game-ish related things I’ve posted on the site, I am a Nintendo fan first and foremost. So the obvious question first: Will I be getting the Wii U? Absolutely, but not immediately upon launch (which in Europe is November 30). This is nothing new to me, I don’t usually buy consoles upon release. I bought the Wii only in the Spring/Summer of 2007.

But why wait to buy it later? A lot of things factored into this but the most important among them was games. Frankly, there are no games coming out immediately upon the release of the Wii U that I would consider absolutely worth buying. I was tempted though, New Super Mario Bros. U was of course coming and after New SMB Wii, I’m actually tempted to get it. But one Mario game is pretty poor grounds to get it, especially since there was a new Zelda out which I hadn’t played when the Wii was released. My mentality was that if there were at least two games that interested me, I would consider it. A game I had been eyeing on for a long while was Batman: Arkham City and I thought that if I hadn’t gotten it for the Xbox 360 by the time of the Wii U’s release I would get it. Here’s the thing, I got Arkham City last week – so now there’s very little motivating me to buy the Wii U.

As much as I hate to admit it, there aren’t as many games coming out for the Wii U that I’m really excited about when compared to the Wii. With Wii there was Twilight Princess, Metroid: Other M, Donkey Kong Country Returns, two Super Mario Galaxies, a new Silent Hill and to my joy a number of re-releases of GameCube games which I never got around to buying. Plus, the Wii had Virtual Console and as a massive retro-freak this made me even more excited to buy it. I didn’t even start downloading stuff for XBLA untill 2009.

But what about all those cool launch titles everyone is talking about? Okay, let’s take this one by one…

  • 007 Legends: Cool, can anyone say “GoldenEye milking much”? I consented to put that game on my Top-10 Rare games list merely because it happened to be that kind of list, but I just have no energy for FPS games unless they announce another Duke Nukem. And while I love James Bond to death, I just don’t have that much faith Eurocom or Activision to actually make this one worth my money.
  • Darksiders II: Okay, so there is no new Zelda upon release, but from what I’ve seen, Darksiders II is very Zelda-like in its design. I’m a little curious, but I don’t really see myself getting this game until once the price has dropped.
  • Tekken Tag Tournament 2: Were it not for the fact that I already got Arkham City for the 360, this game combined with that one and the new Mario would have made for a very sweet combo. However, I’ve never been even a casual fan of the Tekken series, mainly since its such a PlayStation heavy franchise, but I do like fighting games and I may be persuaded to looking into this later. However, modern fighting games have really been a disappointment for me over-all in terms of enjoyability and replay value, so I’m again waiting for the price to drop before I buy it.
  • ZombiU – I really can’t for the death of me imagine why anyone would be excited over this game? Zombies? Really? I thought the market was over-saturated with horror-themed titles in the early 2000s, but I guess people haven’t had quite their fill. Also, people need to stop using the word “survival horror” for games where it clearly doesn’t apply. It’s an FPS for crying out loud. I’ll let RE4 slide and if Capcom see so fit, even RE5 and 6 (I never played them, so what do I care) – but you have to draw the line somewhere, god damn it.

So now, for the pivotal question: WHEN will I be getting the Wii U? I really haven’t a clue. To anyone curious about it though, no, I am not waiting for Pikmin 3 to come out. I haven’t played one game in the series and it’s not a Nintendo franchise that I’m even particularly curious about. I am however, curious about the vaguely titled Game & Wario. WarioWare: Smooth Moves was one of my absolute favourite games on the Wii and I’m really looking forward to a follow-up with brand new mini-games. Hell, they should have just done it on the Wii to begin with. Injustice: Gods Among Us has also been something I’ve looked forward to ever since MK vs. DC Universe – and after Mortal Kombat 9, it’s looking even more promising.. There is also a new Zelda in the works, but given that Skyward Sword already came out last year, I’m sure I’ll have to wait for a while now.

So, basically, once either one of those confirmed titles arrives or if the WiiU starts getting some interesting downloadable content (either retro or new games) is when I’ll start to seriously consider buying the console. Also, if there’s a good pack-in offer, I might consider it. However now-a-days, I rather prefer not to buy consoles with pack-in games since there is a high risk I’ll never end up playing said pack-in game (this was especially true when I had to pick my Xbox 360 between a generic military shooter and a 2-in-1 children’s game pack).

So, what do I think of the Wii U in the over-all? Frankly, I don’t know. I haven’t played any of the games so I can’t really hold an opinion on it. I’m a lot less excited than I was for the Wii, because (in comparison to the (stereo-)typical scenario) the Wii actually fulfilled most of my expectations as a console, I got to play a lot of cool games on it and even rediscover a lot of old, fun games I had never had a chance to play before. The Wii U seems to be just a Wii with better performance and HD output, both of which get a gigantic “Meh” from me. I liked the fact that I could play even newer Wii games on my old-ass 4:3 aspect ratio TV, because I think user convenience should dominate technology, not the other way around.

People who felt silly flailing their Wiimotes around are probably happy with the new touch-screen controller. It looks alright, but not very comfortable, though I’ve yet to actually hold it in my hand. As long as the touch-screen is used wisely and actually adds rather than distracts from the gameplay (like the speaker on the Wiimote, which I tend to keep on mute) then I guess this system has some potential to offer something novel and unique.

Nintendo’s never let me down but I guess I’m not as demanding as most other gamers. In the meanwhile, I’m planning on releasing a Top-10 of my favourite Wii Games as a good-bye to the system which I’ve enjoyed for the past five years.