The Wii (pronounced "Weeeeeeeee!!!!") is Nintendo's highly anticipated new game console. Previously know as 'Project Revolution', the successor to the Nintendo GameCube came out 2 weeks ago and I finally got a chance to give it a try.
For only $250, the Wii comes with a game, a controller comprised of a Wiimote and a nunchunk, and a sensor bar.
The PS3 and the Xbox 360 are both much more expensive and still require you to buy a game (add an extra $60) to enjoy the system. Nintendo's console is therefore a really good bargain compared to the competition.
More than its price, what sets aside the Wii from its competitors is its controller: the Wiimote coupled with the nunchuk.
Unlike traditional video game controllers crammed with buttons, triggers and joysticks, the Wii controller relies mostly on motion sensing: in a tennis game for instance, instead of pressing a button to hit the ball, all you need to do is swing the wiimote as if you were actually playing tennis.
Wii Sports, the game bundled with the console, is a set of mini-games: baseball, tennis, golf, boxing, and bowling. All the games are great showcases of the power of the controller. Boxing in particular makes great use of both the wiimote and the nunchk: by holding the former in your right hand and the latter in your left, you control both hands of your boxer on the screen. Move your hands as if you were punching someone and your little character on the screen will mimic your gestures. It's extremely simple, and yet amazingly fun. And that's one of the great strengths of Nintendo.
The Wii's computing power is very weak compared to the Playstation 3 or the Xbox 360. As a result, the games you will see on the Nintendo console may look graphically less appealing than on the competition's systems. But Nintendo's amazing creativity with this new motion sensing technology could overcome this weakness and provide a greater appeal to a new generation of gamers.
Thanks to this revolution, Nintendo is opening the gaming world to a much wider public. Interacting with the wiimote is much more natural than with traditional controllers: your little sister or father may now very well beat you at a game of bowling even if they have never played a video game before. This is unheard of, and will dramatically change the demography of the video game market.
Nintendo already sold 476,000 units of its Wii. This is more than twice the number of PS3s sold.
Getting a Wii is a very difficult task in Los Angeles (and everywhere in the world). Most stores run out of units on the day they receive new shipments. Your best bet to get one is to call your local BestBuy to know when they will receive their next shipment of Wiis and get there early in the morning before the store opens.
The same goes with the controllers and games. I tried getting an extra wiimote and nunchunk yesterday at EB Games on Lincoln and Pico but only the wiimote was available. BestBuy and Circuit City are apparently sold out too.
To find out where you might be able to get a Wii in your area, the website http://www.ps3seeker.com/wii is helpful. It shows a map with all the Wii retailers in the area and the number of units in stock, next shipment date, etc.
Nintendo is ramping up the production for Christmas but it's very likely that you will have to wait until next year before you can haphazardly decide to go shopping and walk away with a Wii.
Copyright © 2010 Ariel
Wii! The future of gaming?
Copyright © 2010 Ariel
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