Ten things that surprised us about the Wii U hardware

Arstechnica- We already knew a lot about the Wii U based on previous hands-on time with the system and announcements from Nintendo. But now that we have the actual hardware in Opposable Thumbs HQ (read: my Pittsburgh apartment), we've noticed a few things that were a bit surprising. Here’s a quick, picture-filled look at some of those surprises.

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Neonridr1806d ago

Nintendo always has mystery connectors. I know the one on the bottom of the gamepad will be to hook it up to future accessories. One of them will no doubt be the zapper style gun with the gamepad hooked into it which can then be used as a scope for aiming along the lines of Silent Scope style games. Sniper Elite V2 is still listed as a March release according to Gamespot. Imagine that accessory for a game like that? Perfect match.

guitarded771806d ago

One thing from the article that has me puzzled is "The controllers only have digital shoulder buttons". I wonder if it's just the shoulder buttons. The screen on the gamepad can make up for it, but it's just odd... especially for something like a driving game where you need to have pressure sensitive triggers for gas. maybe the ZR and ZL buttons are. I'll find out for myself in just 8 more days. Thinking about driving a couple towns over where they have one on display just so I can check it out.

Kur01805d ago

He said the 4 shoulder buttons so he means the triggers too.

guitarded771805d ago

Well that sucks. I guess I may just end up using the pro-controller for racing games. I really want to check out Project CARS on Wii U when it comes out... and of course Mario Kart. Still trying to decide if I want to but Sonic All Stars Racing.

herbs1805d ago

Honestly it was strait up stupid and short sighted of Nintendo not to add analog shoulder triggers :[

linkratos1805d ago

Bad news, the Pro controllers don't have analog either :(

ShinMaster1805d ago (Edited 1805d ago )

When it comes to online and controllers.
You GOTTA get the basics down first before you add the gimmicks.

I just hope I don't have to attach one controller into another controller like on the Wii to use the classic Controller Pro.

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XB1_PS41805d ago

I had 2 huge ports on the bottom of my gamecube, that to this day, I have no clue what they were for. lol

No FanS Land1805d ago

actually there was 3 ports under the gamecube, the one that removed during cycle was the broadband ethernet port I think, even though there's still the detachable plastic part.
(only three games supported online gaming)

One was indeed for the gameboy player, and the other one well, don't know!

Gamer19821805d ago

The controller is the most annoying part. Its gonna be like I pressed A like on the 360 version... Oh wait... I press B!! LOL. No doubt that was to make it more unique..

No FanS Land1805d ago

ever thought of the SNES controller design?

the A,X,B,Y layout for nintendo has always been the same since the SNES, including, the DS, 3DS, wii classic controller, and now the wii U pro and gamepad.

if anything it should be MS to blame.

MaxXAttaxX1805d ago

You mean the Xbox was the one that tried being unique even though it copied the SNES/Super Famicom multicolored Y, X, B, A buttons.

pixelsword1805d ago (Edited 1805d ago )

You mean Microsoft ISN'T God???


multipayer1805d ago

I've always thought they flipped it around because most western games focused on using the inside buttons and eastern games used the outer edge. Maybe they just stole it from Sega though...

Deku-Johnny1805d ago

How long have you been gaming?

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shutUpAndTakeMyMoney1806d ago

I was surprised it was more poweerful than ps3 and 360. 512mb more ram available for games and a better gpu. Still not a beast though.

Transporter471805d ago

It should be more powerful then ps3 or 360, if they made it less powerful then that's just sad they are 2005 and 2006 hardware, technology should always move forward not back backwards

vallencer1805d ago

If I've read correctly in other articles it has about 730 more in the ram department. I believe the Xbox and ps3 use about, at least in the beginning, 256 because the other half went to the os.

Shadowstar1805d ago

Neither PS3 nor 360 were ever as bad as to only give access to 256...

Gamer19821805d ago

Slightly more powerful but still wont run 1080p games. The shoulder buttons will make any Forza and GT clones that arise (if ever) play like crap. Digital buttons don't work for driving games unless your in a Kart.

Deku-Johnny1805d ago

The only game announced to not run 1080 is NSMBU. Mass Effect 3 I believe is set to run in 1080.

Droid Control1806d ago

The PSU is massive! 360 massive. I prefer the Sony way, inbuilt.

kneon1805d ago

While I like the built in PSU as it's much more convenient it does make it harder to keep the console cool. It's easier and cheaper just to have it separate.

Gamer19821805d ago

I disagree a PSU should be inside they only put it outside to slim down the console. It has nothing to do with cooling that was a lame excuse the only console in history to actually suffer from overheating to a degree it had to be changed at the manufacturing level is the 360. That had a separate PSU. If its well built you don't need a separate PSU.

I build PC's and saying a separate PSU for cooling reasons is just ludicrous

kneon1805d ago (Edited 1805d ago )

I've also been building PCs since the 80286 was the big CPU, but a console is not a PC. A console is a much more constrained environment making cooling trickier. My latest PC runs two 200mm and two 140mm fans, plus the fans on the CPU cooler and the fans on the GPU. You just can't fit that sort of thing in a console.

Of course that doesn't mean you can't use an internal PSU in a console as it's obviously been done successfully. But to do that you have to put extra effort into engineering a better cooling system. That takes time and money so not everyone chooses to go down that path.

Plus, as you mentioned, there is the marketing advantage of showing off your tiny console, conveniently ignoring the enormous brick hanging off the back.

So as I said I prefer the internal PSU but I understand why not all manufacturers will choose to go that way.

topgeareasy1806d ago (Edited 1806d ago )

things that surprised me
for a console to come out in 2012 not to have:
Ethernet port
built in HDD (not counting flash storage)

Cryptcuzz1806d ago

Wait what? It doesn't have an Ethernet port?

So internet connectivity and playing online would be through WiFi only?

If that is the case, that is a big let down for me.

topgeareasy1806d ago


wii u online will be more laggy due to this set back

WiiUalpha1806d ago

@crypt u can sure a lan adapter.

@G'zGEAR not counting flash? Why discount a superior method oh and I have to lol at you for trying to turn Wii u superior save into something bad because they done force u to buy their brand of an outdated method. Im sure u r all for the vita method but most us aren't idiots so we wont have an issue using what we already have

topgeareasy1805d ago (Edited 1805d ago )


32GB flash lol

with a PS3 you can use any sata 2.5 including solid state memory

so it's not superior

also before you say external HDD

USB 2.0 bandwidth is too slow

nice try tho

kneon1805d ago

Well that's just stupid, how could they leave out an ethernet port? That's certainly not catering to the hardcore.

PopRocks3591805d ago

You mean pushing for wireless connectivity out of the box? Like they've been doing since the DS came out?

MasterCratosKong661805d ago

not sure why the lack of ethernet port is a big deal. Idk if my enviroment or other factors has something to contribute this but with xbox live on my 360 I always experience less lag through wireless than through direct ethernet connection.

esemce1805d ago

There will be a usb to ethernet adapter just like the one the Wii had (i have one) maybe it will still work will WiiU, for online gaming ethernet beats wifi.

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ChickeyCantor1805d ago (Edited 1805d ago )

" USB 2.0: Released in April 2000. Added higher maximum signaling rate of 480 Mbit/s (effective throughput up to 35 MB/s) "

I don't see how 35MB/s for games is too slow.
Wii U disc read speed = 22.5MB/s
PS3 disc read speed = 9MB/s

USB 2.0 exceeds both of them. Nice try indeed.

Ck1x1805d ago

At least someone likes to do fact checking! Kudos

LostDjinn1805d ago (Edited 1805d ago )

@ Sidar : The PS3s' Sata bus allows for 1.5Gb/s (187.5MB/s) speeds while the 360 has a custom bus that allows for 500Mb/s (62.5MB/s) each way (upstream and downstream for a total of 125 MB/s) from their HDDs respectively.

The fact you try and cherry pick facts while omitting others shows just how desperate you are. USB 2.0 is very slow when compared to the HDDs of any other HD system (PC included).

Now the WiiU SHOULD hold its' own against current HD consoles, so please cut the $#!%.

It amazes me how people don't see the disservice done to the medium (as a whole) when they strap on the fan-goggles and start talking out their butts!

Edit: I should also add that with USB 2.0 you can send or receive data but not both at the same time. It's one or the other. (Yet another shortcoming you conveniently omitted.)

No FanS Land1805d ago

usb 3.0 has only been mainstream for 1, 2 years?

who is seriously going to buy a 3.0 hard drive for a wii u?

just use an hdd with 2 ports, one for power and one for data,

heck it's even possible to play games from hdd with an hacked Xbox 1, which I'm pretty sure back in 2001 must have had slower transfer rates than usb 2.0.

nypifisel1805d ago

Why did that surprise you? If anything it should go something like this: "It's 2012, so of course an Ethernet port isn't needed". How is moving forward a sign of being behind? I fully understand why not to have cable support. Who doesn't have a wireless router now a days anyway.

Also, someone mentioned that the Online will be laggy..What? NO it wont! I use wireless on all my computers, and I play games and download things in top speeds.

Ck1x1805d ago

I hear ya and its only a matter of time before we start seeing boxes sending video feed wireless as well! We are moving towards a cable free untethered society...

3-4-51806d ago

Quality of hardware. Every Nintendo Console I've ever owned has remained in GREAT condition. I do take care of them, but even so, there hasn't been hardware issues.

Their reliability is amazing in comparison to the competition.

Oh_Yeah1806d ago

Indeed.. My NES still worked last time I checked. 28 years..It's 7 years older than me.

deletingthis346753341805d ago

Nintendium is the best material to make a console with.

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