The Wii, man. Announced ten years ago this week, it hurts my senses.
When I think about it it was so unprecedented and has never been replicated. The hype was monstrous. It was so great to work on it at that time –playing with it six months before the public- and how much people were excited (contrast with way, way superior technology like VR where people are just like “cool”). I had to fight to get one for my little sister. Pure madness.
Three years after its 2006 launch, the Wii was selling more than the PS360 combined in December. That’s nuts.
Ten years later the Wii U is such a disaster that I haven’t had the opportunity to play it once.
What if the Wii had been created to actually cement a blue ocean of games instead of just being a money printing machine for Nintendo after a disappointing GameCube business? It would have been cool I think, let’s see what was missing.
I’m not speaking of raw power but come on big N: at least hdmi output. The entire TV market was switching to digital in/outs and Nintendo was like “nah we cheap and profitable, no digital output”. Which made the Wii a pain in the ass to plug to brand new flat TVs. That probably killed its lifespan more than anything else.
Of course more CPU/GPU power would have been welcome too. It was underpowered but that wasn’t necessarily an issue for tons of games. The Wii’s feature is/was its controller it would have been easy to keep making more powerful consoles down the road. They did just that with the 3DS. Weird.
Yesterday I was listening to a 25 year old basketball player – aka the core market- straight up saying that old school controllers are awesome because “you don’t have 16 buttons to memorize”. The wiimote, answered that and then added a piece of tech to make it better. That should have been integrated in the first place. Or at least not make it an extension but switch to Wiimote with built-in Motion+ tech ASAP and encourage developers to make stuff for it. Make it compatible with Windows even. I still think the Wiimote is one of the best controller ever. I miss it. I’ll never forget playing with the entire family, the only one time it ever happened.
It’s the kind of shit… Nintendon’t do online well amirite. They just needed to release everything we played on 8/16bit, ASAP. That’s it. That and make the process to make games for that channel much more easier for indies. With those two changes it would have exploded in popularity, probably reaching Steam levels if not going further.
If those three points had been taken care of, ready for the future, we would still be swinging da ‘mote.