Submitted by vglulz 1551d ago | opinion piece

Wii U: Is ticking the HD box enough to compete?

The industry is in a strange place. Everyone is discussing the significance of mobile gaming and how it might be eating away at the portable gaming market that’s long been dominated by Nintendo and Sony. Let’s forget about that for a second and concentrate on the home consoles.

Nintendo has made it very clear that they intend to capture the ‘hardcore’ market that slipped through their fingers with the Wii. Despite the Wii being an excellent console it lacked the power to match the Xbox 360 and PS3, making it difficult for developers to port their games over to Wii without creating a whole different engine. (Wii U)

Nitrowolf2  +   1551d ago
I think the WiiU will be able to compete well against the PS3 and Xbox 360 and then some. I do think it is ready for next gen PS and Xbox, but in terms of power it may be the weakest out of the 3 (new consoles.
battyschlaps122  +   1551d ago
Without a doubt.
Twizlex  +   1551d ago
I don't think the controller is going to lead to a lot of direct competition with PS3/360. The Wii U is more like a home console for iphone lovers. It might have some neat stuff and it'll probably do alright, but I don't think it will "beat" Sony or Microsoft even if it sells 100 million units. If that were the case, then they already lost to Apple, Samsung, Google, Facebook, etc. etc.
UltimateIdiot911  +   1551d ago
Against the PS3 and 360? Why? At that point, the PS4 and Xbox720 will be announce and out soon. The price of WiiU will be a lot more costly than a PS3 and Xbox360.

Those with WiiU are casual folks mainly, so I sincerely doubt many of them will go out and get the WiiU.
ozstar  +   1550d ago
here we go
madjedi  +   1550d ago
@ozstar Sorry individual mario and metriod/zelda, games aren't sitting at 50-100 million copies sold are they. If not then it's very likely the casuals aren't likely to eat up the wiiu like they did the wii.
ozstar  +   1550d ago
@madjedi, New Super Mario Brothers Wii has sold 22 million.
Jdrm03  +   1551d ago
good thing power isn't what matters. What matter is the library of games. Sure wasn't power that sold the ps1 and ps2 lol
madjedi  +   1550d ago
Looking at the wii's third party lineup vs the ps3/360 lineup you sure you want make that foolish a statement, next time specify your argument better.

If power or graphics didn't matter, we would still playing 8 bit games can people stop pretending that graphics and power doesn't matter.

Btw the gameplay nowadays wouldn't be possible without the power to run and process it.
Valay  +   1551d ago
I wish we had more information about Wii U's online setup. Reggie basically said we'd hear something at E3, though Nintendo hasn't said much.
vglulz  +   1551d ago
Yeah, up to now they've been pretty vague about what to expect with their online stuff. I'm keeping an open mind until we get concrete details. I hope it is on-par with the PSN at least.
Nitrowolf2  +   1551d ago
Yeah i'm wondering what happened to that
ChickeyCantor  +   1551d ago
Basically Developers are Free to pick their own system.
Nintendo will provide their own, but they do NOT have to use the system.

Ubisoft already explained with GR that they are using their own user system.
battyschlaps122  +   1551d ago
The Wii U won't be able to compete graphically with the Xbox 720 and PS4.

jacen100  +   1551d ago
720 and ps4 will never be able to compete graphically with my pc either. and i dont see them being graphically superior to the wiiU infact the wiiU is gonna be the first true 1080 console dont expect anything more from the ps4/720 maby bigger hard drive and more memory but as for blow your mind away graphical leap between them and the wiiU it wont happen because basicly it isent possible. gone are the days of major graphical leaps its not gonna be like it was years ago
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RBlaze  +   1551d ago
I don't know man...

I think consoles are capable of holding their ground against PCs in their early days. Don't get me wrong, PCs catch up quick (for a higher price) but you'd be crazy (imo) to suggest that consoles are always inferior to PCs.

Consoles are more for me... For the sole reason that I like the ease of it... Knowing that what ever you get on your console (90% of the time) will run how you expect it to. But I respect what the PC can do... And hell, I'm yet to stumble across a console game as addictive as the Total War series...

EDIT: And I don't know about the Wii U... There was a time when Nintendo held their ground with powerful hardware... Then they moved into more innovative stuff... But (again, imo) they seem to have pushed it a little far with the 3ds, and I have a feeling the Wii U might not tick as many boxes as they'd hope... One thing I am certain of though is the power of the Nintendo First party games. They will remain a major strength of Nintendo for a long while yet x
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qwertyz  +   1551d ago
you are wrong, MS has been working on 720s gpu since 2009 thats where AMDs new GCN gpu architecture was derived from.


MS wanted a GPGPU for their nextbox and the traditional VLIW that amd gpus up till now have used is not efficient and not good for compute tasks so AMD had to develop a new architecture for the nextbox that'd be able to accelerate the cpu(work as a cpu co processor as well as GPU). how do I know this ? because I work at AMD although I;m not on the 720 development team neither do I know their base of operations.

nintendo themselves said that wii u will not be significantly more powerful than current hardware although if rumored specs are true it should be about 8-10x more powerful than current consoles with 1.5-2gb ram which is still NOT a generational leap. a current single gpu high end pc is between 30-35 times more powerful than consoles in real world performance now THAT is a generation leap.

there are already a number of pc games that make console games look last generation so what are you talking about ?

the next gen consoles will be more powerful than singe gpu high end pcs of today. console makes do not buy hardware like we do they contract companies to design the cpu and gpu then outsource manufacturing to the lowest bidder and pay loyalties to the chip designers on each console sold this is MUCH cheaper than buying parts ready made and combined with the cost savings associated with mass production the price goes down even MORE.

a gtx580 die costs about 180(maybe even less to manufacture) yet sells for over 500. why? because nvidia has to make PROFIT thats not how things work with consoles. I'm a pc fanboy myself but saying n=nextbox and ps4 won't be as powerful as high end pcs of today is ignorant .

using 28nm nvidia can pack 2gtx580s into the same die space as a single current gtx 580 and will cost the SAME amount to manufactor($180) and the same power consumption as current 580s. fabrication technology affects die size(which also affects manufacturing costs) and power consumption.

Aside from this MS and Sony launch their consoels at a loss which turns to profit as the hardware becomes cheaper over time(they both did this at the begining of the generation MS took a $160 hit on each console at launch wile sony took an even bigger one) they both did this so they could use fairy powerful hardware(by 2005 standards).

It also makes sense because they can use profits from software sales( and this gen) to pad their balance sheets as till their hardware becomes profitable


the first 28nm gpus are coming before the end of this year(the amd southern islands gpus) then early next year nvidias 28nm kepler will be released so you are dead wrong. 28nm is ready its 20nm that may not be ready until late 2014. besides the launch ps3 was 380w(I think the slims are about 250w) so what are you talking about ? next generation launch machines will have a power consumption of about 450w MAXIMUM which will reduce with die shrinks.

current consoles where NEVER 100watts not at launch and not even now that the chip die sizes have been shrunk significantly.

and no I don't talk about next gen hardware all the time I usually troll console articles
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DNov  +   1550d ago
Hey qwertyz, do you do this all the time? There is no way you can cost and heat effectively place even one GTX580 into a console as high and half as thin as a PC. Unless you wait until GTX580 because part of the low end section of graphics cards there is no way thats happening. Not to mention you aren't going to see 28nm being mass produced until about 2015. Current consoles use about 100 watts all together. A 580 uses 3 times that and would easily melt a console. So unless you are willing to pay hundreds of dollars more to get a 28nm GTX580 in 2014-2015, you wont get one. Also, the average gen gap is 8-10 times the power. Gen 7 was a monster, but that won't happen again seeing there is nothing higher than 1080p to aim for, so this gen all we will get is native 1080p and 60fps.
mike1up  +   1550d ago

Ummm you do realize that none of the consoles that you mentioned are realeased yet right? That means we have absolutely no specs. So how is that a Fact?
matey  +   1550d ago
WiiU is using OpenGl 5 basically DX11/DX12 u cant beat that its also 1080p Native alot better than ps3 640p plus WiiU does the highest resolution textures u can get its got at least a 4 core cpu at 3.6ghz as EA said imagine our games on this amazing system in 1080p with fluid animations running on our Frostbite tech then imagine an open online where u can share game experiences on Facebook/Twitter/Youtube ect the WiiU in a nut shell is DX11/DX12 comparable 1080p social beast.

Its officially using OpenGl its confirmed to be more capable than DX11 so i was guessing it had to be OpenGl 5.0 maybe im wrong but its going to be powerful and think SM4.1/SM5.0 aswell BEAST that Zelda Tech shown me all i need to know i didnt need Iwata to confirm it isnt possible on ps3 i knew it wasnt straight away.

To Droid Control - When PS4/720 come out what exactly do u think they will be DX12/DX14 no such thing m8 Crytek are working on Timesplitters4 now 4 PS4 on DX11 as a benchmark 4 next gen sorry kid but like EA said with WiiU its at a stage where Graphics are at there best now with 1080p/OpenGl 5/DX11/DX12 u cant improve on WiiU its got tons of on board EDRAM 4 extreme gameplay remember the PS2 had faster RAM then PS3 ie why PS3 cant play PS2 games all im saying is WiiU is as good as it will get Next-Gen we have hit a brick wall at that level its down to creativity now end of there will be no OH we dont want to make WiiU games anymore its not powerful enough bullshit as all 3 will be around DX11/DX12 mark get a grip Mr Droid
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SilleGamer  +   1551d ago
It would have been enough back in 2009 - however it needs a raft of compelling exclusives or third party titles to remain relevant.

The next generation will introduce a wealth of new features, will the Wii U be enough to compete?
hilyou  +   1551d ago
u know ho everyone was amazed by dreamcast's graphics but by the time time ps2, gamecube and xbox came out, they crushed dreamcast in terms of horsepower. i think this is going 2 be da same with wii u. also i can see alot of potential in wii u but sadly i think alot of devs wont use it! everyone had dreams of really really good wii games with the motion tech but sadly it was a gimmick! super smas bros brawl sucks on the wii mote, but its really good on a gamecube controller.
thephillup  +   1551d ago
It just feels like Nintendo has been constantly behind with the times. I don't think this new "innovation" will be able to change that. 20 years ago or whatever Mario, Zelda, and the rest of the crew was what pushed gaming to what it is today. But with more and more young kids playing more adult games like CoD and Halo, Nintendo's icon sort of show their age when they came from a less violent time.
vglulz  +   1551d ago
That's the reason I keep buying Nintendo products. It's the excellent first party games that you can't play anywhere else. They aren't like Microsoft or Sony exclusives, and i'm very thankful for that.
Droid Control  +   1551d ago
For me, the Wii U is too little too late. They are making a current gen console when Sony and Microsoft are making next gen ones.

The Wii had a handful of good games, all of which were first party, all of which would have worked just as good on the gamecube.

The poor old gen graphics hurt my eyes on my HDTV and the lack of an online service compounded my general unease with the system.

I feel that Nintendo are making all the same mistakes with the Wii U.

Why doesn't it have a hard drive as standard?
Why doesn't it have next gen graphics?

Its going to be nothing more than a port machine. It'll get all of the 360's hand-me-downs.

And then when the 720 and PS4 come out a year of two later develoeprs will abondon it like they did the Wii for more powerful and fullfilling experiences.
ChickeyCantor  +   1551d ago
"Why doesn't it have a hard drive as standard?
Why doesn't it have next gen graphics? "

Cause buying an external one is cheaper.
Have you seen the Zelda tech demo?
It looks better than the best 360/Ps3 exclusive.

The reason Wii was "abandoned" was simply because engines like UNREAL didn't run on it. That's not the problem now.

I think you are mixing it all up.
Hicken  +   1550d ago
The Zelda tech demo wasn't even shown on the Wii U, if I remember correctly. And that's like saying the in-game graphics would be that good. Obviously, they won't.

Having a hard drive as standard should be.. well, standard. It's cheaper to do like the PS3 and use a laptop hard drive. As for the graphics, I can't say I've seen ANYTHING actually running on the Wii U, so we don't know how good it'll really look just yet.
madjedi  +   1550d ago
@sidar An external hdd is cheaper, seriously it's not that damn hard to have a built in hdd day 1, something that should be a given to even behind the times nintendo.

Nintendo is being lazy and/or cheap and doesn't want to seriously support a psn store/live marketplace system. But with the way they handled transferring games you bought on one wii to another wii, maybe it's for the best.

"Have you seen the Zelda tech demo?
It looks better than the best 360/Ps3 exclusive." Two points of contention.

1. Its a tech demo, when a demo or actual game footage is shown, then it will be comparable to a real game, i own many games but no tech demos.

2. It's not using 7+ year old hardware with a lack of memory, if the games not tech demos from a 2012 console, isn't surpassing a console released in 2006 by a significant amount, then there is problems.

@droid Until we see some real spec/games, you can't really say the wiiu will be a wii2(ie slightly faster last gen era hardware).
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Sprud  +   1550d ago
The WiiU Zelda tech demo ran at 720p with no AA. It that really something to get exited about? Nothing "next gen" about it.

Screen from tech demo:
Ness-Psi  +   1551d ago
even tho the Wii U may be the weakest technology wise by the time PS4/X720 (but we still don't know what's under the hood of the Wii U their still changing it as we speak) I'm still excited to see what they bring out and will be getting one at launch.
Emilio_Estevez  +   1551d ago
For me it's wait and see for wiiU
TomInc  +   1551d ago
I honestly think it's too early.
JoePrime  +   1551d ago
Nintendo has taken a notion of being a follower after the GameCube almost killed them. They want to appear like they are innovating still, but they are just happy to sit back and follow in the path laid out by MS & Sony/etc.

Hell, I see "OnLive" as a company that's pushing the game market into a new future more than Nintendo. And we're talking about Nintendo - the gaming company - being outdone by a recent startup.

Let's not forget that the Wii U comes with one (1) cool screen controller, so that's not even the big push for the system? So current-gen graphics are really the only thing Wii U has over Wii? Granted, as others have stated, we still have to wait and see Wii U's online plan, but still...

Nintendo almost died, they got scared, they fell back into a safe place. That's were they staid all through the Wii's lifespan, and now it's just not printing money anymore. Sadly, rather than actually bring anything new and exciting - Nintendo refuses to leave the safe place and is just releasing another safe Nintendo product that will make tons of money, but not really change anything in the market.

In my humble opinion. :)
ChickeyCantor  +   1551d ago
"intendo almost died, they got scared, they fell back into a safe place. That's were they staid all through the Wii's lifespan,"

Your humble opinion must be drugged with crack.

What Nintendo did was a MAJOR risk.
The idea is to advance on all fronts, but Nintendo used hardware that couldn't compete with the other two.
You have seen/heard how it came a cross. No one believed it would do any good. They said it would fail so hard Nintendo would go out of business.

" but they are just happy to sit back and follow in the path laid out by MS & Sony/etc. "

Is that why Sony suddenly started promoting Move? Is that why Kinect suddenly became MS main interest last year?

"So current-gen graphics are really the only thing Wii U has over Wii? "
No one knows how powerful the Wii-U GPU really is.

Stop smoking crack and think for a second will ya?
JoePrime  +   1551d ago
First off, I've never smoked crack in my life.
Second off, brilliant use of selective-quoting to make me look silly - maybe you should go work for Fox. :)

Finally, you say:
"What Nintendo did was a MAJOR risk."

And that's the only one your counter-points I wish to respond to. :)

Nintendo took almost NO RISK AT ALL wit the Wii. They were MAKING PROFIT on every unit sold from the beginning. You know why? Because the system was (admittedly) under-powered and not much more than the GameCube's hardware spec. This is why I say Nintendo took the safe way, because they didn't "risk" anything. The GameCube almost brought them to the brink of destruction, so they were already there before the Wii launch anyway.

What they did was the same thing that happened to Square with Final Fantasy. They said, "Fuck it, we're done anyway - let's do this last thing and see what happens." - of course history shows that the Wii was beyond successful and saved the company in more ways than one.

But now what? Now that Nintendo is back in the game and not struggling anymore - they are just releasing another safe console to stay in the game. That's how I see it - especially since the Wii U brings NOT ONE NEW FEATURE to gaming consoles.


Screens on the controller were invented by SEGA with the DreamCast, motion is a Wii feature, and graphics have been done and will be done better eventually so it's moot.

So.... where did Nintendo risk everything exactly? Whereas when MS entered the gaming ring with the original Xbox - THAT was taking a RISK that no one expected to pay off so well.

Again - my opinion. Oh, my drug-free opinion. :)
clockworkrazor  +   1550d ago
Nintendo did not almost "die" as you put it. and most certainly not because of the Gamecube.

In fact the Gamecube still sold over 20 million units and the first Xbox sold a little over 24 million. Yet the Playstation 1 sold well over 120 million units and the PS2 over 140 million and still selling especially in places like asia and europe etc.

In case you forget kid Nintendo also has a very successful handheld market to rake in even more $$$.

So no Nintendo most certainly did not "almost die".
JoePrime  +   1549d ago
"Nintendo did not almost "die" as you put it. and most certainly not because of the Gamecube. "

Wrong. :)

Please can everyone stop calling me "kid" and "crackhead" ?

I've worked in the videogame industry for over 10 years, I've seen almost everything come to pass, I do realize all the angles you're trying to throw at me.

Nintendo did almost die during the Gamecube era - simple known fact. Regardless of the final sales number, the GameCube was initially ill-received and hurt Nintendo's reputation a LOT.

Yes - everyone looks back at it now like it's some awesome thing, and it DOES have some excellent titles. BUT please remember that everything awesome about the GameCube happened midway or towards the end of that console. The launch was weak, and it was an uphill struggle for Nintendo to get that console moving.

Oh, and Nintendo's strong handheld market? Again - not during early GameCube days. The GBA was on the way out, and the DS was on the way. The DS Phat when released into the world, was not doing well at all. The DS didn't become "the" handheld until the Lite update really brought it to the forefront of handheld gaming.

Anyone who's played a DS Phat realizes that the original DS was NOT a great handheld gaming device in comparison to today's DS Lite/etc.

So yes - if you look at Nintendo today it doesn't look like the GameCube could have possibly killed them - but I'm telling you I was there, I saw, it almost did.

It only took 1 system to end SEGA's console domination - the DreamCast killed them. The story was almost exactly the same with the GameCube - the only reason it didn't is because Nintendo saw SEGA's path and narrowly avoided following it. As well as re-releasing the DS into something far more popular.

And if you don't think Nintendo repeats it's own history all the time, just look at the 3DS - it's NOT doing well at all! So Nintendo dropped the price immediately, and will likely release a 3DS Lite in the next year or two which will be much more popular.

Assume I don't know what I'm talking about all you want - but the simple fact is I've been knee-deep in this for years, and I do know what's going on from the frontline perspective. :)
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mike1up  +   1550d ago
How can you say that Nintendo took no risk with the Wii? They gambled on a target audience that didnt even exist before the Wii. They sold your grandma and grandpa a video game console... thats not risky to you?

The risk paid of, and now you have Playstation Move and Microsoft Kinect. They followed Nintendo, not the other way around my friend.

You make your points as if Sony and Microsoft are "changing" the video game industry. Both of which simply just added more power to their consoles (which are still inferior to a top-notch PC). I guess that that is "new and exciting" for you huh?
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BrightFalls76  +   1551d ago
Nintendo has become really good at selling last gen graphics to the masses under the banner of a next-gen system because of gimmicky add-ons. Can you imagine a Mario, Zelda, Metroid, Pikmin game with the graphics PS4 and 720 will be pumping out? Just look at the "Samaratin" demo put out my Epic. That kind of quality with the gameplay of a Nintendo game would be unstoppable, you would get the masses and the hardcore. Unfortunately another generation of Nintendo titles being stuck inside a cheap console.
Jdrm03  +   1551d ago
so the ps1 and ps2 were cheap consoles? I mean they were the weakest of the bunch in their respective generations.
earbus  +   1551d ago
Yes HD was the only reason i stayed away welcome back nintendo.
Jdrm03  +   1551d ago
As long it can do 1920x1080p and higher than 30 frames without an effort, it will be fine.

The question is will it have the library of games and not shovelware? Will Nintendo regain the confidence of the core gamer? Will nintendo be able to sell another gimmick?

only time will tell
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xtheownerzx  +   1551d ago
wow this is a really good question it all comes down to software if has good software it can do well with the other 2 consoles
Stealth2k  +   1551d ago
Anything can compete and make profit
jacksheen0000  +   1551d ago
I think Nintendo is not worried about cranking out huge amount of polygon processing power from the Wii U. Instead, I think Nintendo main key ingredient to making the Wii U a success is adding a hefty unified shaders capability beyond any other gaming console to date. In addition, Packing about 2 gigs of RAM will also be another key ingredient.

OH, the fact that the Wii U has a total of 8 GB of flash memory under the Wii U hood could possibly be served as Nintnedo's secret weapon by tricking the Wii 8 GB of flash memory U in to thinking it part of the system RAM.

IT like like having a built in virtual memory.

Just my guess since you can do the same thing with modded android phone.
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clockworkrazor  +   1550d ago
It looks as though Nintendo will yet again find themselves in a very strange place come the next generation of game consoles.

The Wii U is said to be "about 2x as powerful as the PS3". Thats not bad but does that mean that the Wii U will get slightly inferior ports of next generation games? probably yea.

As others have stated Nintendo has been low key on their online aspects for the Wii U and that will certainly play into their supposed effort to reclaim some of the hardcore gamer support.
I honestly dont believe that many hardcore gamers will ever go back to Nintendo for a number of reasons including the fact that hardcore gamers have far better options in Xbox, Playstation and PC especially when it comes to online tech.

I have absolutely no interest as a core gamer in the Wii U until Nintendo announces an online game service that is at LEAST as good as PSN and a support for a more traditional game controller along with the Wii U standard controller.
mike1up  +   1550d ago
Good points as always clockworkrazor.

But becareful not to count your chickens before theyve hatched. Sony has said that the graphical leap from PS3 to PS4 will not be as significant as PS2 to PS3.

Now, of course, things can change... but what if it doesnt? The PS4 could roughly end up in the same graphical ballpark as the WiiU (i believe that you said about 2x as powerful as PS3). But who knows?

Im also concerned with how the WiiU will approach online gaming. Leaving it up to 3rd party developers sounds like it could work extremely well... or not.

Do you know if that is the online approach that PC's use? Sorry if thats a dumb question.
mamotte  +   1550d ago
I think it'll be more o less like the Wii. Does anyone here really think that the Wii "compete" with PS3/360? Come on, maybe here in N4G, where everyone is hardcore -lol-, but out there, in the real world, lots of casuals are playing and enjoying a Wii.

And so, I think the WiiU will not compete. Same as Wii, it'll compete on it's own league.
jacen100  +   1550d ago
yea ms working on the gpu since 2009 u say? its now nearly 2012 and then its not coming out till 2014 ? let me think will that make the arcetexture 5 years old will it?. just like ms and sony the wiiU internals could be changing as we speak with no solid info yet bing released
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