Question of the Week: Wii MotionPlus -- Too much too soon? Or too little too late?

by: Randy -
More On: What we're playing
                                                 Wii MotionPlus

While this question is being posted today, it our staff had submitted all their answers by Monday -- before anything could be confirmed/denied/revealed/obscured by E3.  So without further adieu (as John Yan might say):

Is the Wii MotionPlus going to reinvigorate Wii sales or is it too little too late?

Sean Colleli:  For WiiMotionPlus to succeed both Nintendo and third parties will have to support it like crazy. Nintendo can't pull the same thing they did with WiiSpeak, bundling it with one game and forgetting it exists after that. It has to be integral to a new Zelda or Mario, with a few games made just to showcase WMP, something besides Wii Sports Resort. There has to be a first party hardcore game that exemplifies it, the kind of risk Ubisoft is taking by making Red Steel 2 a WMP exclusive. Maybe Retro Studios is working on something good--they're always on top of the hardware and they actually proposed the idea for the Nunchuk. I'd go so far as to say that WMP is a stopgap, and that Nintendo has a "DSi Wii" planned for a year or two down the road that incorporates WMP into the remote, with some other features like HD output and bigger storage for the console.  In any case, third parties are showing some promising support, like EA's Sports series. Now if only Lucasarts would announce a new Dark Forces Jedi game...  (Currently Playing:  E3 coverage, Metroid Fusion and Mario World on the GBA in my spare time)

Dave Gamble
:  Whether or not the Wii Motion will increase sales of the console itself, I cannot say. Too much depends on what they do with it. I can say, though, that it was instrumental in the selling of at least one copy of Tiger Woods 2010. I normally wouldn't replace an EA Sports title with the following year's variant, but the promise of superior control in the short game was enough to convince me to pre-order the Motion Plus / Tiger Woods 2010 bundle even though I just recently got the 2009 version. With the bundle price working out to $10 for the Wii Motion unit, it was an easy decision. (Currently Playing:  Why, Tiger Woods 2009 of course!)

Randy Kalista:  [I had to reassure at least one of our staffers that I sometimes make stuff up.  The others were too scared to talk about it. -Randy]  I'm talking out of school here.  I've only held a Wii once, and it was my friend's Wii, so we don't tell our wives about our previous Wii-curious natures.  But I recall that time (I only did it once in college, during an "experimental phase," and I was drunk, okay?) as our sweaty palms fondled around for a sense of control over our units, hopping up and down with it, swinging it for leverage, aiming for perfect shots.  But the dang pointer was just all over the place.  It was impossible to hit the wide open greens from the tee.  I couldn't keep a bowling ball out of the gutter to save my life.  And as for that stupid 'jumping over potholes' game -- is this the kind of thing that got people excited about the Wii? -- I eventually stopped hopping around and just flicked the controller up and down.  I was growing tired and unamused.  So.  Is MotionPlus going to sell hardware?  Not to me.  Is it going to make jaded Wii owners spend twenty bucks on a peripheral they already in fact own?  Absolutely.  MotionPlus will be a measure of Nintendo's most loyal fans.  Anyone else that hasn't purchased a Wii by now won't be moved by this selling point.  (Currently Playing:  Red Faction: Guerrilla, EVE Online)

Nathan Murray:  Will it make Super Smash Bros. Brawl any better? Wait that's what the wavebird is for. I don't really care then but that wasn't really the question. Hmm... Ah the cosmic forces are speaking to me now they are saying "yes, now shut up so we can go back to playing Sims 3. Dance, little sims, dance! Mwah ha ha!"  (Now Playing:  UFC 2009: Undisputed (Xbox 360), Rock Band 2, Call of Duty 4, and now back to Final Fantasy Tactics (PSP))

Jake Wolfe:  I agree with Dave Gamble. The Wii Motion may or may not do well, depending completely on what games are made compatible with it. If they start making more and more MotionPlus-compatible games, I think it will help them a lot. A new product whose sole purpose is to enhance the performance of a product currently in heavy use, if it seems worth the money to the consumers, will always do well. But whether or not people will think something so small, something that can be used for so little, depends entirely on the future- will there be more games made to support it or just a few? Time will tell.  I'm also going to have to base the MotionPlus' popularity on that of past Wii controllers and accessories, which I believe have been quite successful, unless I'm mistaken  (Currently Playing:  not playing much of anything, but I'm trying to get back into playing America's Army (PC) as I've not played it in quite some time, and it hasn't been finding servers. I'll have to redownload the game though. I'll definitely be playing a it a lot more when AA3 (PC) comes out later this month...)
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