At 9:00 AM this morning, Nintendo revealed all about its upcoming next-gen console, Wii, as well as some enticing developments on the DS. There were a multitude of surprises: the nunchuck adaptor has the same motion-sensing abilities as the remote, the remote has a speaker in it, and interestingly enough, you don't need to turn the console off. Satoru Iwata, with the help of Reggie Fils-Aime, Shigeru Miyamoto and the winner of the AOL contest, demonstrated the remote's functionality by playing a 2-on2 tennis game. The Wii didn't steal the whole show, as the DS had a few new games announced, notably Star Fox. There wasn't much said about the virtual console or Nintendo Wifi connection, but I expect some more details to be revealed in the next few days. Personally, I can't wait to try out the hardware on the show floor. Stay tuned to Gaming Nexus for daily coverage.
Nintendo Introduces the Next Leap in Video Games
Bold, Disruptive Approach Attracts New Players, Expands the Industry
LOS ANGELES, May 9 /PRNewswire/ -- Anyone can tell you how video games
look. Nintendo wants you to experience how they can feel.
Today Nintendo unveils the next leap in gaming by demonstrating its
upcoming Wii(TM) home console, which lets users manipulate action on their
television screens through the precise, life-like motion of the Wii Remote.
Continuing Nintendo's long tradition of developing highly innovative
products that redefine the standards for the industry, Wii (pronounced "we")
will allow players to "feel" games in a way never known before: the
adrenaline of a tennis match, the thrill of making an airplane bank or the
rush of gripping the wheel of a speeding truck. The control scheme is simple
enough that everyone, no matter what their prior gaming experience, can use
it with ease and will want to try it.
"Not only is Wii compelling to current game players, but it also will
entice new players with new experiences," explains Nintendo President Satoru
Iwata. "To expand the total number of game players, we must make our
experience both friendlier and more compelling. With Wii, it is."
Iwata made his comments during Nintendo's annual media briefing in Los
Angeles prior to the start of the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) global
video game trade show. Thanks to Nintendo's leadership in innovation, Wii
will challenge conventional thinking and will be a disruptive element in the
video game industry.
Players manipulate their games through the motion of the remote
control-like Wii Remote, which also includes a built-in speaker. In a
four-player tennis game shown during Nintendo's media briefing, the Wii
Remote became a virtual tennis racket, from the vibration of the hit to the
sound of the ball. The Wii Remote's sensors are delicate enough to enable
players to hit straight, add slice or put top spin on the ball.
Depending on the game, the Wii Remote could be a weapon, a baseball bat
or an airplane. The applications are limited only by imagination. The
Nunchuk controller attachment also includes a motion sensor, a development
that suggests additional creative possibilities for this dual control system:
Games could involve the use of a sword in one hand and a shield in the other.
Or a clamp and a scalpel. Or a pair of boxing gloves.
A new, immersive playing experience represents the most important factor
to keep the industry healthy and growing. For more than a year, Nintendo has
demonstrated living examples of how this strategy continues to work to the
benefit of players, Nintendo and the marketplace. New interfaces can change
the gaming landscape almost overnight, as evidenced by the success of the
hand-held Nintendo DS(TM) system. To date, more than 16 million units have
sold through to gamers of all types. Between now and the end of 2006, more
than 100 new, envelope-pushing games will launch for the system to continue
the tremendous momentum it enjoys worldwide.
Wii will be available in the fourth quarter of 2006 and priced affordably
for the mass market. It will feature a very quick startup, silent operation
and low power consumption. These elements make the "sleepless" WiiConnect24
experience possible. Users never need to turn it off. The combination of
the new interface, including the Wii Remote, the Virtual Console and
WiiConnect24 (which takes advantage of the console's low power consumption)
represents a true leap forward in gaming.
Games in development for the Wii console include a third chapter in the
Metroid(R) Prime series, a new Mario(TM) game and The Legend of Zelda(R):
Twilight Princess. Additionally, dozens of developers worldwide are working
to bring new experiences to the Wii console. Nintendo will expand the gaming
circle to as many types of people as possible, including lapsed gamers and
people who have never played before.
Along with Wii Sports, which includes the tennis game, the highly
anticipated The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess will launch at the same
time as Wii and thrill gamers with its captivating storyline, stunning game
play and gorgeous look. The game makes use of the unique Wii Remote
functions for elements like fishing and special sword attacks. The game also
will be playable on Nintendo GameCube(TM), but without the widescreen format
or special controller functions.
The worldwide innovator in the creation of interactive entertainment,
Nintendo Co., Ltd., of Kyoto, Japan, manufactures and markets hardware and
software for its Nintendo DS(TM), Game Boy(R) Advance and Nintendo
GameCube(TM) systems, and upcoming Wii(TM) console. Since 1983, Nintendo has
sold more than 2 billion video games and more than 360 million hardware units
globally, and has created industry icons like Mario(TM), Donkey Kong(R),
Metroid(R), Zelda(TM) and Pokemon(R). A wholly owned subsidiary, Nintendo of
America Inc., based in Redmond, Wash., serves as headquarters for Nintendo's
operations in the Western Hemisphere. For more information about Nintendo,
visit the company's Web site at www.nintendo.com.