bill-swift - June 5, 2012
According to Nintendo the idea of gamers being "alone together" is the problem and the games, features and spirit behind Wii U is going to be the solution.A red-hot 30 minute online video directly from Nintendo's Kyoto headquarters (the 7th floor, to be exact) introduced the Miiverse feature as a key part of the Wii U experience and as a means to eliminate families, friends and gamers missing each other even when they're playing together.
Essentially, you'll be able to quickly and easily access a social network of other Wii U gamers, directly from your Wii U Gamepad. The video uses a hyper gamer dude to tell the story of how we'll no longer need to have a separate web-based, Google-powered solution or smart-assed buddies talking down to us on the phone when we're stuck in a tough video game. Now we'll be able to directly input what we're doing while still in a Nintendo Mii environment and get responses and other connections from other Miis.The Mii concept on Wii was a crucial first step to get us used to friends "visiting" our consoles. With Wiiverse it seems the concept has expanded to include friends of friends and Miis you don't know but who have the same games as you. The friends of friends and affinity connections are the key to any social network and now we're getting the same thing on Wii U. It will just look far cuter and with playable avatars than anything we've seen on LinkedIn or Pinterest.
The final version of the Wii U Gamepad was revealed to be the main breakfast-tray sized input device with a touch screen dominating the middle of its form. It has an NFC reader, a camera, remote control capabilities for your TV (I predict this will be one of the most popular features) and all of the buttons you could want for game controls. The 6-inch screen still makes this thing seem like a beefed up hand-held console like the PS Vita. If home console functionality has been fully and beautifully integrated with this pad, Nintendo will have done it again.
This is only the beginning of Nintendo news. Keep it here throughout the week of E3 where we'll be uncovering more Wii U news because that thing is probably going to steal the show.