It’s been four years since the release of the Nintendo Wii and a lot has been said about the revolutionary and controversial gaming console. Join us as we take a look at all the hype, the hate, and the realities of the Nintendo Wii gaming console.
Not so long ago, the Wii spurred heated debate among fans and detractors alike. Some saw the family friendly games and motion control technology of the Wii as groundbreaking. It was to be the family television of the gaming industry. A Wii for every living room with a joyful family gathered around it. Meanwhile the Sony PS3 and Xbox 360 were seen as outdated and overpriced, appealing only to hardcore gamers.
On the other hand, many saw the Wii as a step backwards, as the console could hardly compete with the XBOX 360 or the PS3 in terms of hardware. The system was dismissed outright as catering solely to casual gamers. Sony CEO Jack Tretton famously said the Wii was a “lollipop,” referring to the system’s motion controllers, and that he was “too old for lollipops.”
Four years later, and things have settled down. Gamers on either end of the console-wars spectrum have had to give some ground. Jack Tretton specifically had to eat his words, as Sony announced its own “lollipop” motion controllers for the PS3.
Hardcore gamers have recognised the appeal of Wii games like Zelda Twilight Princess, Metroid Prime, and the New Super Mario Bros. As for becoming the family gaming giant, Wii activity games like Wii Fit and Wii Music have indeed enjoyed moderate success. However, while Nintendo has been able to compete thus far, time has revealed flaws in the Wii’s design.
Recently, the Wii console has seen steady stagnation in terms of game development. Due partially to its hardware limitations, the Wii has isolated many major game studios from producing games for it. The console has also seen much of its limelight stolen by music games like Guitar Hero and Rock Band, which offer even greater interactivity than the Wii.
In fact, far from being the innovator it set out to be, the Wii has launched a multitude of low-budget and clunky games. Meanwhile, the PS3 has rocketed in popularity with decreased console prices and big game releases from big name console and PC developers like Squaresoft and Bioware.
In the end, the Wii proved to be neither the moon landing of the game industry or the crash-and-burn catastrophe that was predicted. The console introduced many great ideas and broadened the scope of gaming considerably, but it never came close to toppling the goliaths of the gaming industry.
Peter Simpson writes guides to computing gadgets and new technology. Peter loves gaming, and is knowledgeable about all things [url not allowed], from Nintendo Wii packages to the Wii console itself. If he can’t game on home he’ll do it on the move with his [url not allowed].