Nintendo unveiled their new HD console with motion-sensing tablet like controller at E3 2011. With all the technological gimmicks and comparisons aside, let’s analyze how the World has taken this.
After the reveal of Wii U, Nintendo’s stock fell by 5% to ¥16,970 – taking it down to levels last seen before the original Wii back in 2006.
Investors are unsure how this console will compete with consoles Like Xbox 360 and Playstation 3, tablet-based products like iPad, and device based gaming which is already suffering from fast growing social networks.
The comparison may sound vague but if you consider the features of Wii U, they may be right about their concerns as Wii U offers something of an amalgam of these products.
Shuji Hosoi, an analyst at Daiwa Securities showed his concern:
People are puzzled whether this will really sell. The competition is so intense. People have already changed.
Mitsuo Shimizu, deputy general manager at Cosmo Securities in Tokyo said:
Although some experts seem to like the new device, I expected Nintendo to move more into the social networking business. It’s a warning from investors that the company should reconsider its business strategy and move more aggressively into social gaming operations.
Though, the Nintendo’s managing director seem to have different opinion regarding the new console. Which is of course because he is managing director. According to him, Wii U will finally put them on equal footing with their competitors.
Ubisoft chief executive Yves Guillemot was keen:
This new controller really revolutionizes the traditional pad. In Assassin’s Creed, you can just imagine what the multiplayer will look like and Ghost Recon Online will leverage the fantastic connectivity of the new controller.
Ken Levine, creative director for Irrational Games, said:
It’s a full console experience. if my wife is asleep I can put in headphones and play a full hardcore console gaming experience in bed on this smaller screen. That’s a really revolutionary thing for me as a gamer. It seems like Nintendo heard the voices of the hardcore gamer.
Keza MacDonald at VG247 summed up the experience with Wii U with these notes:
This is exciting technology, people. When someone starts showing some actual games, we can expect to be very impressed indeed.
HitNintendo analysis on potential next-gen winner wasn’t all full of excitement either.
I get this sinking feeling of déjà vu. I remember saying exactly the same thing about Wii. I was blown away by how cool it was. How innovative the controller was, and the more I thought about it at the time, the more I thought that we were on the verge for a new dawn of gaming.
The reality is, though, we weren’t. While the hardware was cool and interesting, the reality for most gamers is that Wii is one of the least-played consoles of recent years. It sold incredibly well – it was the machine everyone wanted to have. But the same can be said for the latest fitness machines: they are bought, they are played with for a while, and then they gather dust. And unfortunately that’s also true for most Wiis out there.
A round up of user experiences with Wii U at International Business Times found people being unhappy about Nintendo’s new console:
The majority is still unconvinced about the potential of multi-screens. ‘How is holding up another, smaller screen in front of your big TV screen any better than simply overlaying a HUD or pressing select to access the map or inventory like we’ve been doing for decades now?’ asked one gamer.
Gaming fans on twitter weren’t all impressed either as noted by Metro.
Self described ‘kickass geek’ @cffry posted: ‘Wii U sounds like an ambulance siren for a reason, while tech executive @markimbriaco wrote: ‘I feel like the Wii U is a giant prank from Nintendo. This is some crazy Japanese rickroll, right? They can’t be serious.’
Everything was bad either, most of the gaming fans were impressed by the actual features of Nintendo Wii U and were convinced that the coming launch of Nintendo’s new console shows the company was losing ground on its competitors.
Gizmodo editor @mattbuchanan posted: ‘I like the Wii U a lot. Like, my most favorite E3 thing since Kinect 2 years ago. Could be an amazing, amazing thing.’
And entrepreneur @adamcoomes added: ‘Wow, the new Nintendo Wii U is gonna be pretty game changing. A touchscreen for every player + augmented reality = win.’
Tech expert and old-school blogger Andy Baio, @waxpancake, however, wrote: ‘The Wii U is evidence that Nintendo doesn’t understand why Apple is cannibalizing their entire market. It’s not just the touchscreen.’
However this isn’t the first time Nintendo has received poor reception on the their new console, think Wii. The initial reaction was so poor that industry experts were even questioning the name of the console, forget its capabilities. But, if you consider the same console everyone was even reluctant to pronounce sold 86m units, I think Nintendo will settle for that.