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Submitted by 2muchw1nn1ng 284d ago | podcast

Can Wii U be successful without the game pad?

Chris Kohler talks with Wired editor Peter Rubin over the Wii U in Wired's Game|Life podcast (Wii U)

sinncross  +   284d ago
I think the big problem for me when considering the Gamepad is that outside of a small number of titles (and even less I would want from that small group) there are barely any games that me feel I NEED to play the game with the game pad, and nintendo themselves have done a poor job of this (and their future games do not seem to suggest that they have improved much).

I think the WiiU is a great idea on paper, but a year in, I do question whether the gamepad is really needed at all. Hopefully things start to upswing for Nintendo in 2014.
UltimateMaster  +   284d ago
It needs better battery life.
wheresmymonkey  +   284d ago
Nintendo have already released a higher capacity battery for it which lasts about 8 hours.

I think they come as standard in all the new bundles too.
cesuf  +   283d ago
With a 6" screen outputting on the controller, your really not going to get a better battery life than 6-7 hours.

Now as to why the ds4 controller gets 6-7 hours life is anyone's guess.
Dunban67  +   283d ago
I m lucky to get 2.5 hours- where can I find the new Nintendo battery w 8 hours cap? Is it difficult to switch out the old battery? How much do they cost?
MEsoJD  +   284d ago
Nintendo was hoping the controller would sell the console like the Wiimote. It annoys me that they could have had a much more capable console if they focused the money spent on the game pad on power and make the losses up through software. The pro controller is a much better controller than the gamepad IMO. At this point, I think it's pretty safe to say that the game pad is a failure. Would have been better if it were an option. Instead it's forced upon you upon buying the system and it cost around $120 to replace. Finally, while off t.v. play is cool, I don't think it can solely sale any console. Really, tvs are so cheap these days, who doesn't at least have 2 - 3 in their homes to do whatever the hell you want?
MsmackyM  +   283d ago
The Wii U is no slouch when it comes to specs, but it may look that way if you don't know what you're looking at. Personally I really enjoy the Gamepad and it's true not every game requires it, but I do feel it's essential for the Wii U.

The problem with the Wii U in the eyes many gamers IMHO is it's perception of being a sub par console. Granted Nintendo was also willing to take a risk with their setup that Sony couldn't afford to with the PS4, according to Mark Cerny. It will unfortunately take years for developers to learn how to optimise their code for the Wii U, so it will be awhile for most gamers to see it's potential. The PS4 and Xbox One decided to go with a traditional PC setup to make easier for developers and gamers can see early gains.

So in saying that the Wii U definitely needed something in the moment to distinguish itself in the home console market. It was a combination of Nintendo's first party software and the potential possibilites provided by the Gamepad that secured my purchase.
lilbroRx  +   284d ago
As always, people attack the things that aren't a problem.

The gamepad funcitonality always has been the most praised feature in Wii U games. Without the gamepad, their would be no reason to buy the console at all.

The gamepad is the reason I prefer the console over either of the other next gen consoles.
McDaygo  +   283d ago
And it is nice. I just worry they will drop it before they make it GREAT! I would love it if they made it a standard controller going forward with future systems.
Chrischi1988  +   283d ago
I can totally understand what you are saying, but they still sell it like that, because of the same reason, why the Xbox One sells with Kinect. It doesnt need all games to support it, but Nintendo wanted to make sure, that Dev Studios can create games for Wii U, with complete Gamepad support, without risking, only 10% of Wii Us owners are actually able to play that game. With this they can fully implement Gamepad features without the need to find a different solution for people who do not own it. This way, the Devs can be sure, everbody with a Wii U, has a Gamepad and this way, they can create great MMOs for example. I guess that is the only reason why, Off TV Play is a nice added feature to it, but I guess thats the only feature, for normal games, but for more complex games, they can rely on everyone owns one. Take Diablo3 for example, you cannot even chat normal on the console version, only with the special keyboard, which not even half of PS3 owners own.
gazgriff2k12  +   283d ago
hope in future they can make it into an all in one device just the wii u pad without console plus 2ds games and android apps would be epic
cesuf  +   283d ago
We really don't need another android device. Plus Andriod has tons of Nintendo emulators to play those last gen games free and I don't see Nintendo ever supporting that.
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Chrischi1988  +   283d ago
How great would be a Nintendo Android Tablet, which would be the only one to also support all kinds of 3DS games?
3-4-5  +   283d ago
What Nintendo should have done:

* Wii U Game Pad is actually the next Nintendo handheld, but don't release it until 2016-2017

* Make the Pro Controller design/layout like the 360

That right there makes it more appealing and less expensive.

I want a Wii U, but I don't want anybody to use it.

I fear others may screw up my Gamepad somehow and then I'm screwed.

It's too much of a POSSIBLE issue.

It's not too late though. They just need to release a few games that FOCUS on the Pro Pad
clouds5  +   283d ago
Then we have 3 consoles and all of them have the same controller and all of them have the same games with the same gameplay. Really?
The gamepad is the only reason I bought the system and the reason why I bought AC IV on the WiiU. Because I basically never have to open that stupid map! Of course alot of people are used to bad menus/inventories from other consoles, but as a PC gamer I really love the efficiency.
You shouldn't have to cycle through endless lists with a D-Pad in soon 2014... But somehow people are ok with it as long as there are shiny textures :) I don't get it^^ But oh well...
RPG_Lover  +   284d ago
Its great right now
AKR  +   284d ago
This is the heart of the system. That's the whole point of the "U".

Taking the Gamepad from the Wii U is like taking the Wiimote from the Wii or the two screens from the DS. It's what defines the system.
mcstorm  +   284d ago
I agree and I really like the game pad too. I got the pro controller thinking I would not use the game pad and I was so wrong.
Thepcz  +   283d ago
difference is, the wiimote was an asset. the wiiu controller is a hindrance.
AKR  +   283d ago
The Wii Remote was a "hindrance" if more than anything.

Many games didn't make proper use of it; mostly sticking to either sub-par motion controls or a whole lot of waggle.

The Wii U Gamepad is a standard controller, with a few extra bells-&-whistles; the biggest of course being the touchscreen. Take that out and you have yourself a sightly more advanced Pro Controller. Even if devs don't use the screen outside of stuff like maps, inventory and Off-TV Play; it still has the feel of a traditional controller.
McDaygo  +   283d ago
It looks unwieldy but once you use it, and get used to it, it's actually pretty sweet.
RackLug  +   284d ago
Gamepad is awesome its the best control out of the 3 next gen systems in my opinion
#4 (Edited 284d ago ) | Agree(22) | Disagree(12) | Report | Reply
clouds5  +   283d ago
I totally agree. It's just sad that soo many people blindly chose better textures and slightly increased resolution over true control and gameplay innovation... Can't imagine playing open world games anymore without having the map/inventory right there in my hands :D
nzbleach  +   284d ago
I have five Wii U games and my nephews have stopped playing it because they never liked the gamepad from the start. I'm not a fan of it either and will be waiting on the next shipment for PS4.
cesuf  +   283d ago
I know this may come as rocket surgery, but you can switch over to using a WiiU pro controller. Now slap yourself 5 times rapidly for not thinking of that yourself.
#5.1 (Edited 283d ago ) | Agree(5) | Disagree(2) | Report | Reply
WeAreLegion  +   284d ago
I do enjoy playing some of the games while watching Netflix on the TV. That's about all the use I've seen from that.
Crillvirus81  +   284d ago
Hell no the game pad makes the wii u and is the best controller ever ..and off screen play is awesome so is having a map and motion controls like in windwaker hd or all the good things they did in batman armored edition ..it's just sad developers ain't using it to its ability but it's still early and the next gen just started
tigertron  +   284d ago
I just hope the next console has a conventional controller like the Gamecube.
Kevlar009  +   284d ago
The WiiU has a chance to sell better than the Gamecube, without the gamepad it will stand no chance. The Gamecube was on-par graphically with a strong first party line-up and at $100 less than the competition. But since it had poor 3rd party and no DVD player it fell beind the competition. Like the GC, WiiU has no special appeal without the gamepad and lacks a hardcore game support from 3rd parties.

The WiiU stands no chance without the Gamepad. Much like Kinect and X1, a good portion of the WiiU's cost is attributed not necessarily to power but the extra tech in the gamepad. While the WiiU would probably be sold at around $250 instead of $300, Gamecube showed that even with $100 less price and no bonus features it could not keep up

Nintendo would need to completely ramp-up the inner tech to stand a chance. At this point I'm not sure Ninty would want to do that. Because if they did and the WiiU2 didn't sell on-par with the competition there would be no going back

Let's face it, Nintendo is stuck with the WiiU for at least another 4-5 years. The WiiU has potential as-is but Nintendo needs to step up their game or else they are looking at 20-30 million sold.
a_adji  +   284d ago
The issue I feel is that they put such focus on the game pad that people mistook it for the console it self.

They came from the wrong angle but their stand alone controller feels very nice.
kryteris  +   284d ago
honestly if you mistake a console for that gamepad, your an idiot.
Nevers0ft  +   283d ago
What if you mistake "Your" for "You're"? ;)
kryteris  +   283d ago
Oh sexi!, you can put little lines between letters. This makes my eyeballZ orgasm. ;)
kryteris  +   284d ago
can nintendo stop expecting a profit from hardware sales? they gimped the gpu and ram, and now are paying the price. Their only shot is to keep the gamepad, and take a sales loss. And deliver games, which will have to be first party due to the fact that it has under powered hardware.

What is lame, like MS is their cheapness with the ram.
#11 (Edited 284d ago ) | Agree(4) | Disagree(5) | Report | Reply
weekev15  +   284d ago
This is probably a tad extreme but I think Nintendo should pay 3rd parties to port their games with extra gamepad features. Eg COD using the gamepad to call in your killstreaks with W101 type inputs. Local multiplayer where the gamepad player is a ghost and only gets a knife and then has to assassinate the othwr players etc

Assassins creed could have some parcour moves with the gamepad or a panoramic view when you get to a viewpoint where you can use the gamepad for a 360 view of your surroundings.

As it is there is no reason to get the wii u version other than off acreen play which is cool for some people but most would rather take the better visuals on ps4.
Broburger  +   284d ago
Yes. They should just add motion controls to the pro controller, make it the main controller, and sell the gamepad separately. Turning the gamepad into a standalone android tablet would be nice as well.
lilbroRx  +   284d ago
That would be terrible. That would be like the Wii without the Wii U.

The Gamepad is the thing that makes the Wii U the only true next gen console for me, as it offers something I couldn't get last gen.

The gamepad is what makes the console great.
JackieCruise69  +   284d ago
No..? Wii U definitely would be mistaken for a Wii then, the controller is what sets it apart.
I rather like what the Gamepad can do. It's really useful for certain games, even if it's just showing off maps or your item inventory. And off tv play is just great in my opinion. I guess I'm weird or something for liking non-traditional gaming controllers as well...
And plus, I don't see the problem, you can just use a pro controller or hell, Wii mote, if you don't want to use the Gamepad.
This would be like me complaining about Sony's controller. Maybe I want the regular start and select buttons back instead of the touch screen and the share button. Because I wont use the share button anyway.
wheresmymonkey  +   284d ago
Hell no should they get rid of the gamepad, for a start, its bloody brillant, secondly what makes the wiiu such a great system is that it gives you options.

you can play on the TV or on the pad. You can use the gamepad, you can use a wiimote and chuck, you can use the gamepad pro.

The only problem nintendo have is a major PR one, The WiiU is a decent machine with a brilliant pad and some fantastic excluives. Nintendo need to better communicate this.
brich233  +   284d ago
Gamepad needs better ergonomics, I tried it at Walmart and Immediately disliked it when compared too the Xbox 360, Ps4 and Xbox One controllers.
#16 (Edited 284d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(11) | Report | Reply
lilbroRx  +   284d ago
Things only Sony/Microsoft fanboys say.

No one I know who has used the gamepad has voiced acomplaint about it and those who voiced one before quickly change their opinion after they used.

Only people who already hated it before they used it(ie. HD twin fanboys) claim that its not comfortable.
#16.1 (Edited 284d ago ) | Agree(9) | Disagree(1) | Report | Reply
Nevers0ft  +   283d ago
I felt the same way before buying the console and I have to admit, for the first few hours, maybe even days it felt a bit "off". It was a little large and unwieldy compared to what I was used to. But I got used to it fairly quickly and it's simply not an issue now. I don't know if I'm holding it any differently nowadays but it feels perfectly fine, even after my somewhat epic sessions on 3D World and Injustice (which gives me "Nintendo thumb" but that's an entirely different ailment that I've suffered since the early SNES days :)
batbatz  +   284d ago
No
Brazz  +   284d ago
if Nintendo make a "no gamepad included" $199 WiiU, than yeah... it will work very well! A $199 WiiU, while Ps4 is $399, will sell like hotcakes because $200 is a realy big deal!
#18 (Edited 284d ago ) | Agree(1) | Disagree(7) | Report | Reply
lilbroRx  +   284d ago
Removing the gamepad would probably drop the cost to 249, not 199 and it would remove the primary reason to get the console.
Brazz  +   284d ago
you see...in my oppinion, of the big 3, Nintendo is the one that can live "losing on the hardware" whit no problems... do you know why?
Because people buy Nintendo machines to play Nintendo games! Their first party is amazing, the best 1º party of the big 3, and that is why Nintendo can profit heavily from their software! because they have mario, zelda, pokemon... Nintendo have the games that have the best sales in the world ( Some of their Ip can even surpass GTA in sales and make Halo sales pale)

If Nintendo want to put life in WiiU they need to take the risk, start to lose in the hardware and focus in Sofware gains (something that make sense, because, as i said before, people buy Nintendo machines to play Nintendo games...)

But this will not happen... because Nintedo don't need to take this risk...
They have 3DS, a true goldenboy! Amazing sales, less expensive to make, less expensive to produce games and less competition...

At dark times, N64 and GameCube, Handhelds saved Nintendo, so... nintendo is ok, it will stay firm for a long time.
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Broburger  +   284d ago
I agree
wonderfulmonkeyman  +   284d ago
No, it wouldn't work out well.

Without the game pad, the system loses one of the few advantages it has; pack-in off-TV play as well as additional possible features in games.

It then becomes exactly like the other two, but without any sort of touch features, and without the same kind of third party support as the other two, it would literally just fall faster.

The pad needs to stay. A price drop isn't worth losing that pad, especially since dropping the pad would convey a lack of faith in the console.
It would be as bad as dropping the console entirely, and we all know how that worked out for SEGA when THEY did it....
#19 (Edited 284d ago ) | Agree(3) | Disagree(1) | Report | Reply
truechainz  +   284d ago
I would say absolutely not. I broke my gamepad right around when mario 3d world came out and had to be without it for a week while it was getting fixed. The experience was fine because I have a pro, but it was pretty sucky to not be able to play on the gamepad. I would not want to have to play like that again. Among my friends, both in life and in miiverse, there are plenty of differing opinions about whether the wii u is worth it and how it will do. However one thing that is unanimous among us is that we all agree the wii u should not be sold without the gamepad, and we all wish we could use the gamepad on other systems as well.
brewin  +   283d ago
They are not going to ditch the gamepad. I wish these fools in the industry would stop bagging on Nintendo for doing something different. Microsoft needs to ditch Kinect WAY more than Nintendo needs to ditch the gamepad. Also, Nintendo is not really worried about the Wii U because they know what they have in the pipeline. The fact that they simply go against what the media seems to want is more than enough to give me confidence in the system. If Nintendo listened to all the chatter and whining from fanboys and media, They wouldnt be the successful ccompany they are. Their situation is not nearly as dire as people think and 2014 will be a huge year for Wii U. If the U is still a flop after 2014, then I guess Ninty will have to do the hard thing and kill the U for their next system. A console doesnt need a crazy long shelf life to be a money maker.
WPX  +   283d ago
Yeah as successful as a southpaw boxer missing his left arm. It's the system's main draw, for goodness sake! It's what makes it different from other systems It's not like the 3D in the 3DS which is only a (neat)visual effect. And the gamepad hasn't yet fully exploited in its use yet (tho there are games that use it REALLY well, like Deus EX:HR and ZombiU, for example).
getting rid of the game pad is the last thing nintendo should do. if anything they should make games that can switch between a 2 player split screen on the tv, or 2 player on 2 game pads while the tv screen is blank,

my dream for the next nintendo console would be the spiritual successor of the N64, with the ability to support possibly 4 game pads for multi player games. it would probably only be used for racing games, but if the system was powerful enough it would be great for a 2 player co op game.
Thepcz  +   283d ago
''Can Wii U be successful without the game pad?''
yes. it would slash £50-70 off the retail price for a start

the pad is practically useless as anything other than a gimmick. its just a luxury that neither nintendo nor the consumer can afford.

they need to ditch the pad ASAP.
wonderfulmonkeyman  +   283d ago
No one would buy the system if it lacked off-TV play and any touch options at all.
That's the only thing giving it a fighting chance against the competition at this stage, since it lacks better specs.
They can do a price drop without losing the pad, and losing the pad would just be plain idiotic.
Alternatively, to placate the whiners, they could start including Pro controllers in the Wii U bundles going forward.
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McDaygo  +   283d ago
I love the controller and I think it has untapped potential but, it seems like a 1.0 in the strongest sense. It could use: better touch sensors, a better screen, and most definitely a better battery for starters. Right now it's not too bad, it will look archaic in a few years though.
Loadedklip  +   283d ago
The gamepad is nice. I would be watching a movie on Netflix or Hulu, then I hear my washer is done, I take the pad with me to the laundry room and just continue watching the movie with no breaks as I fold clothes. Problem is that for the actual games ... there is no real MUST HAVE gamepad game. All the biggest titles, Pikmin 3, Mario 3D World, NEW Mario Bros, New Luigi, Wonderful 101 ... they all either barely use the pad or it works just fine without the pad. Nintendo would have been better off making it an option controller and have the Wii U come in at a cheaper price since launch.

A 199 Wii U would have sold a lot more than a 299 Wii U this holiday. With that said ... Wii U's sales are up and the system is finally doing "good" but it could still be selling better.
2muchw1nn1ng  +   283d ago
IMO The Wiipad is a failure. The sales speak for themselves.

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