Nintendo: Wii U GPU "more pronounced" than CPU, but CPU not weak

Developers have praised Wii U's memory in the past, but some have wondered if the console's architecture focuses too much on GPU. Shigeru Miyamoto, Satoru Iwata, and Genyo Takeda all responded to this topic at the Q&A session of Nintendo's investors meeting.

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ThaBlackBaron1663d ago ShowReplies(1)
Bumpmapping1663d ago

@ThaBlackBaron-If you think Wii U is that powerful your on crack seriously of course it has the edge over PS3/360 but that's like comparing Wii vs PS2/Xbox/Gamecube/Dreamcast.

Wii U is nothing more than a beefed up PS3 also that monolith trailer looked awesome great graphics for sure nothing jaw dropping about it in terms of graphics.

PopRocks3591663d ago

Yeah, nothing at all neat about high end and detailed 3D graphics in a large scale open world game. /s

LOL_WUT1663d ago

PopRocks to the rescue!!!!

Of course Nintendo wouldn't say that their hardware is weak especially when talking to investors that'll be suicide.

Lets just let the games speak for themselves so far nothing on the Wii U screams next-gen.

wishingW3L1663d ago (Edited 1663d ago )

the X trailer was large scale but not exactly "high-end"... Especially when at the very beginning of it there are a couple of texture pop-ins and visible draw-distance issues. And not to mention that the frame-rate looked low, like the image was about to break apart.

BullyMangler1663d ago

so the gamecube gots an exclusive game called Resident Evil 1 Remake, and theres yet to be a more Astonishing looking game than that .. the wii has about 2 times more power than the cube . so what does the cpu power of the wiiU matter if the 360 nor ps3 doesnt even have a game that looks mightier than Resy 1 remake for the Cube??

mua haa . Nintendo gots all fan-boys and girls by the what? . thats right, by the nippLes .

Yodagamer1663d ago

Actually Lol_wut they have done that before both on the wii and the ds, and those where their most financially successful platforms

Outside_ofthe_Box1663d ago

lol, is bulltmangLer the Ninty version of Killzoner99?

Awesome_Gamer1663d ago

It looks good but not half as good as Watch Dogs or GTA V, for example.

PopRocks3591663d ago (Edited 1663d ago )


Funny thing about Monolith's history. Once upon a time, they provided a teaser trailer for the first Xenoblade that looked "good, but not great" for a Wii game. Eons later, the trailer for the full experience came out and it was stylistically change and graphically superior to how it looked previously.

The footage we saw in the X trailer, as good as it was, seemed pretty rough. Who is to say it won't see a similar visual upgrade when it is closer to release?

EDIT: By the way, the game is still open world complete with massively sized gargantuan beasts, running off of Wii U hardware and as far as performance goes, it was running fairly smoothly. I find that very impressive.


That's your opinion, which is fine. But I think you missed the point of the argument. It's a fairly nice looking and detailed style; and it's unfinished footage to boot. Now throw in that this is an open world experience with huge maps and monsters. Now let's fast-forward to when this game is more finished and refined; you don't expect this to look even better?

I'm not necessarily saying that the final product will blow people's socks off, so much as I am saying anything is possible.

wishingW3L1663d ago (Edited 1663d ago )

but PopRocks359 you're the one claiming high-end when there's nothing high-end about it. Is just some kinda nice art-style with the mountains and some pretty colored sky-boxes. =/

LightofDarkness1663d ago


The game's backdrops are pre-rendered, just like the original, except with some advancements like reflections and particle FX (for candles etc). If you run the game in an emulator, you'll see that all the backgrounds remain in 480p while the character models and other assets are much sharper (this actually makes the game look pretty terrible in 1080p, sadly, as the "environment" is upscaled and muddy looking).

AsimLeonheart1663d ago

We will believe the "large scale open world" games on Wii U when we see them running on it. Right now there isnt a single game on Wii U that can prove that it is significantly more powerful console than PS360. Moreover, the hardware specs arent very "next gen" either. Just looks at the specs of PS4/Orbis and Durango. Now those are REAL next-gen consoles which will able to run games like Watchdogs and Star Wars 1313.

Gamer19821663d ago

We hardly know anything about the X game right now so I dont think we can rightly use that as part of an argument. Even so also we dont know if the final games gonna look anything like that (anybody remember ff13?). As for WiiU IF it was just the console without the new pad it would be a current gen console a gen 3 console but its got the new pad which is new and some could even say nex gen. So its more like a 3.5 gen console.

The thing you have to remember here is Nintendo audience is NOT the 360/PS3 audience. I'm not saying they wont buy one but they will buy it as a second console. Nintendo has there own fanbase and as much as they would like there consoles to compare to the upcoming playstation G4 and Xbox G4 it was never gonna happen. Nintendo like being behind as it keeps costs down and in this case they had to thanks to that pad.

+ Show (8) more repliesLast reply 1663d ago
ABizzel11663d ago

The Wii-U CPU in it's bare bones is 3 Wii CPU's combined (making it Tri-Core) with nearly 2x the Clock Speed, with a contemporary boost to cache memory. The 360 is also a Tri-Core CPU, but the Wii-U is better than the PS360 at streaming things down it's 3 cores at much faster speeds.

HOWEVER, the PS360 has dual / multi-threading capabilities that the Wii-U CPU doesn't have allowing them to outperform the Wii-U CPU in most regards when all three are used to their maximum.

That is why developers say the Wii-U CPU is underpowered. It's like a highway with a speed limit of 80mph with only 3 lanes (Wii-U), vs. a highway with a speed limit of 60 mph with 6 lanes (360), and a highway with a speed limit of 70mph with 7 lanes (PS3).

Yes the Wii-U highway is technically faster, but when it comes to moving traffic it's easily outperformed, because you can move a larger amount of traffic on the PS360 than you can the Wii-U which is somewhat of a bottleneck for the GPU.

Starting 2014 Wii-U games will start to look better than PS360 games in nearly every regard. PS360 games will run 720p @ 30fps while the Wii-U version runs 1080p @ 30fps, simply because it has a better GPU, and more memory to work, but as everyone has said the Wii-U is not "technically" that far above the PS360 to warrant a "next gen" label.

The Wii-U is basically an overall 50% boost in total performance to the PS360 (1.1 / 1.5 depending on what you prefer). But IMO there's nothing wrong with that. WHat's wrong is that they went with these underpowered parts when they could have easily gone with AMD's A-8 APU Llano, and still been able to sell the Wii-U at the same price and have a console that truly out performed the PS360 as well as being technologically advanced enough to receive ports of PS4 and Xbox 1080 since it would be a low-end PC. On top of that it would have made development so much simpler. But Nintendo just doesn't get it when it comes to tech, and they must be buying those Power PC 750 CPU's for dirt cheap since they were made in 2000 and used in the Gamecube, Wii, and now Wii-U.

MasterCornholio1663d ago

"WHat's wrong is that they went with these underpowered parts when they could have easily gone with AMD's A-8 APU Llano, and still been able to sell the Wii-U at the same price and have a console that truly out performed the PS360 as well as being technologically advanced enough to receive ports of PS4 and Xbox 1080 since it would be a low-end PC. On top of that it would have made development so much simpler. But Nintendo just doesn't get it when it comes to tech, and they must be buying those Power PC 750 CPU's for dirt cheap since they were made in 2000 and used in the Gamecube, Wii, and now Wii-U."

Wow i never knew that.

chronoforce1663d ago

the CPU can execute Instructions out-of-order if i'm not mistaken,that might help to avoid the system from being bottle necked

Theyellowflash301663d ago


But didnt the PS3 and Xbox 360 overpowered CPUs cause the Red Ring of Death and Yellow light of Death? Don't you think Nintendo was going for a powerful system thats doesn't overheat as well?

TruthbeTold1663d ago

Definitely out of order instruction is important. Like Takeda said, the cache size and quality upgrade is hugely important as well, since they work hand in hand. Less error, more streamlined function, and more commands that after their execution have to wait for manifestation are set aside without 'blocking the highway'. So while the above highway analogy is a decent one, it doesn't tell the whole story. The best way I can add to that by using the same analogy is to say that if the 'number of lanes' is correct, then PS360 Highways have far fewer on/off ramps, less optimized point a to point b distance, and more traffic jams than the Wii U.

ABizzel11663d ago


That's the biggest problem I have with Nintendo right now. I love Nintendo to death, and many of their IP's. The SNES was my first console, and I even went back and bought the original NES just to play many of those games, but Nintendo is giving a "C" effort at best and hoping to make money off of an "ignorant fanbase" (ignorant is defined as lacking knowledge in general or a specific area of interest).


That's true, but it still doesn't prevent the CPU from being bottle-necked. It's a workaround that let's the Wii-U get around some of it's faults, but when it comes to pure data crunching it's going to noticeably struggle. Battlefield's environmental destruction, Advanced Enemy AI, God of War like Scale, Loading (the problem with the Wii-U's menu) are all things that are going to be difficult on the Wii-U, and the only way around it is if the GPU can cover some of the task which it should, but then that pulls power away from the GPU, and still won't help with loading speeds, AI, and more.


No the CPU's didn't cause those problems. The 360 was because of "faulty builds" and poor cooling, and the PS3 was because of of the same reasons. It has nothing to do with a more powerful CPU, as long as the proper measures are then deaths will be minimized, but some errors are just bound to happen, then things are made in a warehouse where millions are being made by a workers and a machine. Somewhere someone or something is not going to apply enough coolant, or not screw something in enough, and those few consoles will be affected.

People purposefully overclock their CPU's which causes sever overheating, but they take the proper cooling components to keep it running well at those high heats for years.

The A8 Llano would have done nothing, but giving the Wii-U the push it needed to stand above PS360, and more importantly it could have came out in 2011 with a 2 year head-start vs. 2012 with a 1 year head-start and a weaker console.

Ulf1663d ago

I find these limited-understanding CPU and GPU commentaries utterly fascinating.

younghavok1663d ago

so umm... theyre already selling the console at a loss, and your saying they shouldve added more expensive parts and keep at it the same price?

ABizzel11663d ago


There's no way Nintendo is selling the Wii-U at a loss. The only way it's selling for a loss is if they included employee pay, R&D, shipping cost, manufacturing cost, and as much other stuff they can stuff into the budget. The actual console has been broken down and everything used to build the Wii-U only cost $180 including the controller.

Nintendo is spilling BS, which is another reason why I'm fed up with their business model (not their games).

The AMD A8 APU is are $90 that covers the CPU and GPU, and 2GB of DDR3 RAM is $10 - $15 on average. That's $105 for the main components of the a more powerful Wii-U. Add in the tablet controller. $155, add in the other components the Wii-U would cost $255 AT MOST, and that's from a consumer standpoint.

So show me exactly how Nintendo is losing money on each console sold. They're not.

Just like they claimed they were losing money on each 3DS being sold at a $250 price. That was BS as well. The 3DS was broken down to barely be over $100 for all it's components.

Gamecubes were selling for $99 dollars and was selling even near the end of it's lifecycle. The Wii used the same components in the Gamecube, but was selling for $250 for years.

Nintendo doesn't sell anything for a loss. They're loss is most likely coming from game development since they're finally in the HD era and have to pay for larger teams to develop these games, but the problem again is Nintendo didn't want to hire teams with 50+ people working on the project. They'd rather keep the same small teams and make them work harder, which is why there have been no huge exclusives since the Wii-U launch, and Nintendo is just getting around to getting more developers on board.

Nintendo's business is completely backwards. They do just enough s#!t to get by, and throw it to NIntendo fans like it's gold, and it's wrong as far as console go.

AdvanceWarsSgt1661d ago

^^^^^Nintendo never claimed they were losing money on the 3DS when it was priced at $250. You just made that crap up.

ABizzel11661d ago


I meant $170 for the 3DS. I must have been anticipating getting to the Wii's price next. At $250 they were selling the 3DS at an insane overcharge, on par with apple (2x as much as the systems actual cost).

+ Show (7) more repliesLast reply 1661d ago
user39158001663d ago

Takeda: Wii U is a machine that has a lot of performance compared to its power consumption. Its just a design where the memory is more stressed.

So, Wiiu lack memory?

Miyamoto: For High End graphics there is a hurdle
so, weak GPU?

Iwata: Every gaming hardware has its specialties.
So, you already know this console to be weaker?

Well. is not going to matter to me, I dont care for graphics much nor how fast a console is, its what kind of game will give me the most joy and big N will most likely continue to be my first choice for first party games, followed by sonys library and online gaming with xbox. I win...

lilbroRx1663d ago

You just distorted each one of those comments that you took out of context to mean near the opposite of what they were stating.

The comment about "High End" graphics was related to development difficulty of using the high end graphics that the Wii U is capable, not
a weak gpu. He was saying that the GPU is so strong that they needed to higher specialists to make use of it.

The comment about memory was that they had comparatively "more of it" and that it was the focal point of the design, not that they have less.

The comment about "gaming specialties" means that the console was designed to to emphasize specific types game designs and devlopment styles moreso than others.

You should become a journalist. Your seem adept at twisting words to mean different things than what is said.

WrAiTh Sp3cTr31663d ago (Edited 1663d ago )

Yeah, the only hurdle, which you've misunderstood and misinterpreted, is that Nintendo devs aren't use to developing graphical intensive software so they've had to teach their staff how by bringing in 3rd party support. It's right there in the article...

Ck1x1663d ago (Edited 1663d ago )

Just wow! I have no clue how you were able to twist such plain statements as these... That is just scary really
Now do you consider the sky to be blue or is it some other color the rest of us aren't seeing? I have to say that the gaming community extremist are no better than religious nut jobs. That are willing to lie, cheat, steal, kill or blow things up for the sake of their beliefs. I'm not even directing this comment at one specific group, because I think they're on all sides of the fence here. But its comments like the one above that show peoples blind intent, rage and disdain for a specific company that is just sickening. Whether it be against Sony, Microsoft or Nintendo it doesn't matter. When people would rather believe a lie before the truth, then there is no hope for reason at all in a conversation.

zillanoir1663d ago

Now think about this it looks good now but you obviously know much more polishing processing issues will occur between now and its release which is probably 1st quarter of nxt year or 4th of this yr.
Folks forget these multiplats have been ported in 6months with no optimization hardly. Score that between its counterparts which took up to 3 years.

OhMyGandhi1663d ago

Since the wii IS a gamecube with motion controls, it's more like comparing the wii to an n64. :)

zeddy1663d ago

honestly this conversation is irrelevant. the ps4 and 720 will blow the wiiu out the water.

1upgamer991662d ago (Edited 1662d ago )

So The Last of Us looks great, the Wii U is more capable than that, and the 360 could not pull it off at all. How good do you need your games to look. Also it was stated about developers not having time to really even work with Wii U till awhile back, and to get to know the hardware. Who cares what a system that will not be out for 8 months can do. I care about what I will be playing, and how I will be playing in the next 8 months. Also Nintendo stated in this article they have basically graphics specialist involved to help developers make games look great. So I guess it all goes back to the fact Graphics are all that matter, and who has a bigger one than the other guys. All I know is PS2 kicked the Cube/Xboxes ass and it had allot less power than either of them.

JP13691663d ago (Edited 1663d ago )


In regard to the new game by Monolith, there's a thread over at NeoGAF that points out the low poly environment, canned shadows, PS2-era effects and sprite based foliage. It does look great, but your post uses hyperbole and sarcasm to showcase your own ignorance on the subject. Relative to the current generation of consoles, the Wii U is as Bumpmapping described it. Mind you, the Xeno game mentioned above, the Wind Waker remake and full-on Wii U Zelda game have me considering a purchase of said console. Graphics aren't everything and the Wii U doesn't seem as though it was made to be much more than a better version of current consoles.