Nintendo’s Wii U In Serious Trouble Versus PlayStation 4 and Xbox One

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News Posted: Sat, May 25 2013 11:43 PM
As Nokia and Microsoft know all too well, stellar hardware is nothing without stellar software. And in the case of the Wii U, even the hardware is lacking. The last time a batch of new game consoles were launching, pundits doubted the Wii's staying power. It was weak, it was odd, and it used a new control paradigm that was unproven. But lo and behold, the console held a sold-out status for nearly two years, and went on to sell millions and thrill casual gamers the world over. But a lot has changed since the middle of last decade.

Game consoles are no longer "just" game consoles. They're entertainment boxes, do-it-all machines designed to take over the living room. Now that the PS4 and Xbox One have been revealed, one thing has become crystal clear: the Wii U is the weakest of the three, and by a large margin. While the Wii U got a jump on the other two, it did so by shipping with less powerful innards. And with developers focused on the bleeding-edge hardware offered in Sony and Microsoft's next-gen consoles, Nintendo is getting left out in the cold by a major player: EA.


That's the first blow in what could lead to more. While Nintendo is working hard to push updates to the Wii U, one has to wonder if it'll help. The confusing control scheme (player one uses a massive gamepad, but others use last-gen Wii Remotes), the weak hardware, the half-baked user interface, the slow movement between menus, etc. -- all of that adds up to a sub-par experience that developers may chose to ignore. As we've seen with less popular mobile operating systems, a lack of developer support can kill an entire platform.

One has to wonder: is Nintendo on the road to becoming the next Sega? Producing only software for the ecosystems that survive the fallout?

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The WiiU was released at such a bad time, I don't think they're going to recover...

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semitope replied on Sun, May 26 2013 2:17 AM

Would be fine as just a game console, if it was a good game console. If it had the best games, best graphics,

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Nintendo's a forgone conclusion. They may capture the casual gamer market and do well with the DS/3DS handhelds, but losing the support of EA (not much of a loss if you consider how they've done such a great job of screwing the pooch on the PC market) will definitely hurt them in the long term. Maybe they should actually pay attention to market trends instead of just ignoring everything and just pushing out underpowered hardware in a shoddy attempt to deliver what they think people want out of a game console.

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WTF? They're just realizing this now?? The writing was on the wall with the original Wii. Granted EA coming out and saying they're not going to do any development for the Wii U because it's underpowered is probably not the best news for the console (of course, the only thing EA seems to be good at lately is just flat out f**king the pooch), but that was already a given. They've just finally added 1080p support with the Wii U, and with the PS4 and Xbox One setup out of the box to support the emerging 4k technology, it's about time Nintendo just takes and tears a page out of Sega's playbook and just focus on software.

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The hardware IS the REASON there is no Software for it to begin with...thing was doomed when it was revealed that it was about as powerful as an xbox 360....

Nintendo's problem here was..

1, it can play Mario, Zelda, Metroid, pikmin, Donkey Kong, etc...it's all we need.

And 2, Historically..Nintendo isn't fond of third parties making games on their console.. not since the N64 at least...

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They can stick to their pokemon and DS crap the klids eat up and drive parents insane over... Nintendo DS - every 6-12 months.. new version of it with one minor/major improvement.. ds,dsi,dsi lite, dsiXL,3ds,3dsXL...etc

(And there are two of each of those in this house somewhere ...2 older kids.. See? they don't need their own home console.)

They could make games for Xbox... and if they want their weird controller gadgets? Xbox One has usb 3.0.. (You know sony will have no part of Nintendo developing for their console...1990's fallout between the two, hence we have Playstation now... >_< )

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alright I feel I need to clear some things up here, first of all a slow start is something that happens a lot in the game industry, ps4 had a slow start, 3DS, PSP, ETC. as for the lack of games currently, sony went though the same thing with the psp and ps3 before, I hear a lot of people saying ''Nintendo is doomed'' that is 100% wrong Nintendo has enough money in thee bank to cover a loss or two, lets also look bad at the 3DS slow start I remember people saying ''nintendo is doomed'' ''nintendo is dead'' ''Nintendo is the next sega'' well look now the 3DS is selling like hot cakes, simply when it comes down to it nintendo will most likely win this gen like they did last gen, simply because every thing the xbox one does the xbox 360 does and everything the ps4 does the ps3 could do if they wanted it to, and a lot of people know this, sony lost 8% stocks when ps4 was announced and nintendo gained 8%, and then when the xbox one was announced microsoft xbox stocks dropped 10% and sonys went up 10% and also nintendo's wii u sales went up, when it comes down to it nobody wants a xbox that took 359 steps back and nobody wants a Ps3 (oops I meant ps4 could not tell the difference), and really people stop hating on the fathers of modern gaming if not for them we would not have xbox or ps

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They probably wouldn't know what to do with all that processing and graphical horsepower. I truly wouldn't be surprised to hear that the new Kinnect device has more power under the hood than the Wii U. Maybe they can start developing something like a 3dsXXL or something...

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The big problem these days is that Nintendo was continuing to expect that casual gamers would like the different style in motion controls that the Wii U brings to the table. The problem here really is that the casual gaming market has about a 5 second attention span. :) The Wii released, everyone oohed and aaaahed over the motion controls, played the thing, got bored, and moved on.

You would've thought that Nintendo would have paid attention to the lackluster sales of the MS Kinect and PS Move motion controllers and viewed this as a learning experience. Should've went back to the basics with some better hardware and a decent amount of exclusives at launch.

It certainly isn't a Nintendo killer, by any means, but it certainly is a similar scenario to PS2/Xbox/Gamecube generation where Nintendo ended up pulling a distant third place. :(

Well, as long as I can get a decent batch of Zelda/Metroid/F-Zero titles on the console, I'll be content with the machine. :)

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If having the most powerful hardware was all people cared about, then there would be no consoles at all.

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GarrySmith replied on Sun, May 26 2013 11:11 AM

There was never supposed to be a comparison between the Wii and the Playstation and Xbox in the first place. They made that abundantly clear when the first Wii came out. To compare them is ridiculous. Nintendo has always been about casual gaming and a more inclusive gaming demographic compared to Microsoft and Sony. And Nintendo made casual gaming consoles even before either ever got into the gaming business. Most of the games ever created for the systems reflect this.

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Not backwards compatible with 360 games? plus you cant lend a game to a buddy to play for a while? the Xbox One will fail, but it is Microsoft what do you expect. im waiting to see what the PS4 will be about before i worry about the status of the Wii U

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sevags replied on Sun, May 26 2013 4:16 PM

That's exactly where we at heading Ninentdo will be a game developing company only, and the world will be better for it!!!!!

Let's face facts; the Nintendo 64 was the last truly impressive console they made. Shortly after that the Playstation was released and by that time everyone already switched to the new better console. Then came the GameCube which only upgraded the controllers from the 64 and came a year after the Playstation 2 leaving only children and some Zelda fans still buying nintendos offering and now had the first Xbox to compete against.... No answer from Nintendo... Then the PS3 and 360 are released and what's nintendos answer? A GameCube with a new controller!!!!!!!!!!!!! Otherwise known as the Wii and thank GOD for Nintendo people liked the new controller but did the graphics get any better? No. Did any new amazing have to own games come from it? not really not unless you are a child. And now?... The same exact thing but with a screen on the controller (remind anyone else of a Sega Saturn controller for the new age?) but this time perhaps without as many titles with EA jumping ship with other developers to follow suit or perhaps just port fewer games or take longer to do so.

Nintendo should switch to a software only company. For the love of gaming could you imagine what Mario kart could be like on an Xbox One?!?

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sevags replied on Sun, May 26 2013 4:25 PM

JesseMonroe:

The PS3 had a slow start for 3 simple reasons, it was ridiculously over priced for a console at the time, it had very low availability at and after launch, and not only did it already have competition with the 360 on the market at a cheaper price, and finally because the Wii was released only 2 days later so many saved their money for the wii and many simply waited for prices to come down and more games to be release.

The wii U having such a slow start is for different reasons definitely more negative.

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