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Remember when the Wii was known as the "Revolution"? It was literally the "Revolution" in gaming, with its odd remote control-looking controller, and its state-of-the-art motion controls. You could move your hand, and the cursor would move on the screen! Then, at E3 2006, it was announced that the actual name of the "Revolution" was the Wii, and gamers were scratching their heads everywhere at the seemingly stupid name. But after playing it for five minutes, all that doubt was turned into excitement, and wii were all like, "Wii would like to play!"
That pre-Wii excitement was restarted today when it was revealed that Nintendo would be announcing their next console, the successor to the Wii, at E3 this summer or possibly earlier. Needless to say, it makes me, and probably everybody else here, even more excited for E3 than before.
But what can we expect from the Big N? How do you follow up a console that, for the longest time, was known as the "Revolution"? What's the new console going to look like? What's the appeal? What kind of games are wii going to be able to play on it? Is it even going to be another, more powerful Wii? Will it suffer the same fate as the Wii, with poor third party support, dozens of shovelware titles, and terribly long Friend Codes?? Wii can't take it anymore!!
Fortunately, GI has said that the next console will be in HD. Hooray! Does this mean an HD Wii Ni? I certainly hope so!
Whether or not the graphics will be on par with either the 360 or PS3 is still to be determined, although I'd expect Nintendo to at least have it rival, if not surpass the 360. I don't see Nintendo surpassing the PS3 in terms of graphics, but hopefully it can give Sony and the Move a new rival in terms of motion gaming. And this time, Nintendo, let's deliver on what we promise people right from the get go. No more of this Wii MotionPlus, "Oh, now it mimics your actions 1:1! You just have to pay extra for it, even though that's what wii told you it would do in 2006..."
Gamers can also hope Nintendo has learned from its mistakes in terms of online gaming, which has become a significant factor in selling consoles. If Nintendo could do away with the dreaded Friend Codes, focus on acquiring better third-party titles, and use the new technology to make an online experience that Microsoft and Sony can't match, then I figure Nintendo has a chance at beating both.
How can Nintendo match, or even beat, the Kinect and Move? If Nintendo can, in a way, emulate the Sony formula, specifically the success of Killzone 3's Move support, it would make it a serious contender in the market. To appeal to the hardcore gamers, implementing motion controls that work well with third-party multiplayer games, and, dare I say it, establish online multiplayer for some of their first-party titles.
The Metroid and Star Fox franchises have already proven that multiplayer works, Metroid in first-person and Star Fox in third, and if Nintendo could, either in house or through a third-party developer, formulate an online matchmaking system like Killzone 3 using motion controls and a rich online experience, Nintendo could have a gem of a console on their hands.
In my mind, the best way the next Wii could succeed would be to match what they did with the Super Nintendo way back when. When the NES was falling behind Sega and the Blast-Processing 16-bit Genesis, Nintendo hit a home run with the Super NES, which was true to what gave them their success (the NES), while still moving ahead technologically and giving gamers what they wanted.
Staying true to the Wii, I assume the next Wii will be backwards-compatible, with Miis and (hopefully) the Virtual Console again, albeit (again, hopefully) some GameCube titles in the mix…*crosses fingers*
What direction will Nintendo go with their new console? Will the follow in the footsteps of the Wii, creating a new Revolution in gaming? Or will they try to recapture their losses, and appeal once again to hardcore gamers?
Wii can only wait until E3…and hope…
You can re-read all about the Wii Ni in GI's article here.