Stupid News: People still confused by Wii addon known as WiiU
But that’s also the biggest problem with how they’re marketing this console to the people they want to sell it to the most: the mom and pop, family gamers who don’t really consider themselves gamers. By not going full bore on the case that it’s new and better than what you already have, I don’t get the sense that people really feel a need to go $300 deeper into a gaming space they may not feel all that attached to. Especially when the tales of neglected and forgotten Wii units have been piling up for years. And in my own gaming mecca, the Wii I bought less than 2 months ago has been active fewer hours than any other console I’ve ever owned in my entire life. Sure, It’s a novel piece of kit, but I’m still not convinced that there was any reason I needed to buy it, especially after the “waggle novelty” wore off. I expect the novelty of the gamepad to last an even shorter length of time, if it has any legs at all.
Which brings me back to Nintendo’s main WiiU perception problem. If the mom and pop, family-core gamer (doesn’t that sound a lot better than lamer-gamer?) doesn’t feel like HD is a big factor in the home, then a WiiU probably won’t feel like a necessary upgrade. If they bought the Wii for the novelty rather than the games, then exclusives like Bayonetta 2 don’t mean much either. If they already own an iPad, then what good is buying a system that has an iPad built in, though not as functional, and is also tied down to a system they may not like?
And what about the legion of hardcore gamers and Nintendo fanboys that all this WiiU marketing continuously seem to leave out? Is a teaser trailer of Bayonetta 2 all that is needed to assuage fears that the WiiU won’t be as gamer-unfriendly as the last system was? Furthermore, if Nintendo is finally trying to tap into the hardcore gamer space, it may already be too late. Hardcore gamers didn’t necessarily buy the Wii the first time around. And even though the WiiU is going to get out ahead of whatever Microsoft and Sony are planning for next year, who’s to say that it will be able to compete in that space…at all. It could end up getting lapped in both the hardware and the software, which means lower quality games on a platform that already languishes in the multiplayer space and drags in innovation and strong 3rd party support. Worst of all, even if Nintendo taps into its established back catalog of characters (pretty much a given) will either the hardcore or the family-core find that enough of a reason to dip into the piggy bank and step up to the Nintendo trough once more?
Despite what you may think, I want to see Nintendo succeed. I really do. Any time a platform doesn’t do well it has a downward effect on the entire industry. But this attempt to pass the Wii ‘innovation’ (read: novelty) baton on the WiiU as silently as possible, as if they are the same console, makes me skeptical about the whole thing. “Yes, it can do everything current consoles can do. But it also does everything you already expect from your Wii.” By treating the WiiU in this fashion, they take all the excitement out of the WiiU being a new console and, in my opinion, make the WiiU look even less exciting than it may actually be. Ultimately, the Wii proved that you can never count Nintendo out even when everyone is betting against them. We’ll have to wait a bit longer to see if Nintendo has what it takes to put us naysayers to rest one more time.
WiiU Conference in NYC (Source: Gamespot)
addon-U comes out in North America on November 18th, 2012.