The following are my unedited notes from the Nintendo Press Conference. No Pikmin were harmed in the writing of these notes.
9:00 AM Program Begins
Miyamoto takes the stage after a very cute video about Pikmin.
It has been six years since Wii's launch, and even back then they were planning the next console. They decided that the console would have its own dedicated screen, which changed the importance of the gaming console, which previously was always dependent on the TV.
The use of this screen will change
Pikmin 3 announcement follows, a game for Wii U. Camera distance is an issue in a game with such cute and tiny characters. The Wii U processing power can show the little characters in detail.
Pikmin can now build bridges with materials.
Rock Pikmin are a new Pikmin type.
You can play the game entirely on the Wii U Remote
You can control four leaders, and the Captain is not among them (the reason is a secret)
There seems to be a lot of strategy in this version, and it looks like a lot of fun.
Reggie Fils Amie takes the stage to assure us that the games are the most important thing – we’re going to see 23 Wii U titles today.
Wii U does three things:
· Changes gaming
· Changes how you interact with gaming friends
· Changes how you enjoy your TV
Netflix, Hulu, Youtube, Amazon Video will all be partners.
The Wii U will support two gamepads.
The tour of the gamepad is very slick. I hope to spend more time on this later this week and show you all the features of the new controller.
Miiverse will be the first thing you see on the TV screen when you boot up the Wii U. Miis congregate and communicate on the home screen. You can share short text messages or draw your own pictures using the stylus.
Eventually you’ll be able to join Miiverse from 3DS and mobile devices.
New Super Mario Bros U uses Miiverse to talk with other players within the game. A new realtime social window that opens up inside the game.
And now a first look at the game, which features a flying squirrel mode and what looks like four player coop called Boost Mode where up to four people use Wii Motes and another uses the Wii U Gamepad
Third party Wii U titles
Batman Arkham City Armored Edition We’ll experience the game in a new “special way.” Gameplay has been expanded with features exclusive to this console. New skins for both Batman and Catwoman will be available only in this game.
New BAT Mode – Batman’s suit builds up kinetic energy, which you can then use to activate BAT Mode.
Newly designed Batarang can be guided with Wii U gamepad.
Use the gamepad to set off explosives one at a time or all at once using touch technology.
Explore the world in HD, create any object you can think of and bring it to life (even a dog with tires instead of legs), then share your creations with friends. In addition there is a multiplayer mode and a short story mode that shows the origin of Maxwell’s notebook.
Darksiders II will come to Wii U, as well as Mass Effect 3, Tank Tank Tank, TEKKEN Tag Tournament 2, Trine 2: Director’s Cut. Ninja Gaiden3, Aliens Colonial Marines (you’re welcome Ohan)
43 million copies of WiiFit and WiiFit Plus have been sold
A first look at the game shows the integration of the Wii U gamepad and the Balance board. There is also a calorie counter upload device that tracks your progress. It’s called a FitMeter.
Sing (working title)
The performance game where everyone plays, people are able to read karaoke on the Wii U gamepad. The gameplay is a little vague about how groups participate in singing, but as much as I loved karaoke revolution, I’m hyped to learn more.
Super Mario Bros 2 for 3DS This game is completely filled with gold coins, and even has a gold brick head mode for Mario. Available Aug 19, 2012.
Paper Mario Sticker Star Stickers add a new gameplay element, you peel them off the scenery and collect them, and they become your battle commands (I guess this has some tactics elements in it) Available Holiday 2012
Luigi’s Mansion Dark Moon Ghost hunting fun in 3D available this Holiday.
Third party lineup – Castlevania Lords of Shadow Mirror of Fate, Disney Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion, Scribblenauts Unlimited, and Kingdom Hearts 3D, just to name a few.
And now back to Wii U
Lego City Undercover A cute little title about a police investigator named Chase McKane. An exclusive portable version of the game is also in the works.
Ubisoft CEO Yves Gullemot comes on board to talk about their Wii U lineup: ZombiU, and Rayman Legends.
Just Dance 4 The Wii U version of the game allows people using the gamepad to change choreography or what shows up on the TV in realtime. New feature “Strike a pose” – they are a puppetmaster for those who are dancing.
ZombiU Allows the player to use the gamepad for inventory, as a scanner, to snipe zombies, to break free from choke holds, for door hacking. That looks a little stressful honestly. It also includes a cute little zombified feature that turns people into zombies.
Assassin’s Creed 3, Rabbids Land, Your Shape 2013 and Rayman Legends are all coming to the Wii U. As are Sports Connection, and Avengers Battle for Earth.
Nintendoland This is the Wii U ambassador title for the console the way Wii Tennis was for the Wii. The game gathers attractions from Nintendo IPs into a theme park. Your visits the theme park and changes costumes for each attraction. There are 12 different attractions.
Miiverse will integrate into Nintendoland, but the details will be explained later. Multiplayer asymmetric gameplay possible since the Wii U player takes on a special role. The example they show is from Luigi’s Ghost Mansion where the Wii U player plays the ghost against the players. This looks like a very fun and very adorable game.
Will launch with Wii U this Holiday start saving your pennies kids!