Nintendo announces Wii U
posted on 06.07.11 at 01:15 PM EDT by (@salromano)

Nintendo has announced the Wii U on stage at their E3 2011 media briefing. The game utilizes a new controller that allows for a variety of different gameplay options.

“Is it U-nique, U-nifying, maybe even U-topia,” said Nintendo America president Reggie Fils-Aime.

The new controller features two analog circle pads, a d-pad, four face buttons, four back buttons, and a 6.2 inch touch screen. You can switch from the TV to the controller at any time, or use the controller as a support screen – such as an inventory system – for games that are compatible.

“As an industry, what we haven’t achieved yet is a game platform that is equally satisfying for all players,” said Nintendo president and CEO Satoru Iwata. “Yet this is exactly what we intend to create with our new home platform.”

The system is backwards compatible with all Wii games, including the Wii controller.

“A few months ago, I explained the concept of Wii U to Mr. Sakurai, who was developing Kid Icarus,” said Iwata. “We were discussing what his next game should be developed for — Nintendo 3DS or Wii U. What Mr. Sakurai suggested then was a specific idea to make Smash Brothers for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U – to make it work together on both platforms.”

More details will arrive on Smash Brothers at a later time, teased Iwata.

A promotional clip for the system, which showcased use of the new controller, displayed various different uses for the portable screen. You can put the controller on the floor and see your ball as you tee off in golf, for example, or you can use the touch screen and motion control functionality to aim and shoot ninja stars.

Nintendo did not announce any games, as all their showings were dubbed prototypes, and “not actual games,” but they did announce Traveler’s Tales’ LEGO City Stories for both Wii U and Nintendo 3DS.

Many third-parties are on board. A clip revealing the thoughts of various developers included positive comments from developers like Irrational Games’ Ken Levine, Junction Point’s Warren Spector, and other highly-regarded industry figures. Darksiders II, the next Tekken, Assassin’s Creed, Batman: Arkham City, Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Online, DiRT, Aliens: Colonial Marines, Metro: Last Light, Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor’s Edge, and more have all been confirmed to launch on the system.

EA CEO John Riccitiello made an appearance on a Nintendo stage for the first time ever. A clip of Battlefield 3 ran behind him, though he did not officially announce the game for the system.

“Imagine these EA games on a console with content, gameplay, and community,” said Riccitiello. “Nintendo’s next console is truly transformational, as well.”

“Our presentation this morning is just the beginning,” closed Fils-Aime.

Wii U will launch in 2012.

  • BizarreJelly

    I wasn’t impressed in the slightest, it just looks so pointless…

  • Red-X

    I was so shock about Ninja Gaiden 3 back there!!

    It will be great!

    But still have no clue about the gameplay with wii u though.

  • rockman29

    I wanted to see more Zelda…

    The rest seemed like all multiplatform games, but I guess we will be seeing more later on from WiiU.

    The functionality of the thing is pretty impressive though. It’s quite a long time from launch so I guess we can’t expect all questions to be answered now.

    Good presser though.

    • AdamBoy64

      Yes, that’s true. Very likely to hear heaps more about the Wii U at next year’s E3.

      Seeing as the Wii U is still some time away, I was surprised they didn’t mention many titles for the Wii at all.

  • FinalFantasy_fangirl

    WiiU has promise I found it to be impressive.

    • AdamBoy64

      Yes, it certainly does have potential.
      The name isn’t fantastic, though I think it’s better than calling it just ‘Nintendo’.

      Not much really shown or discussed in the way of the console at all.
      Still seems like it’s in early development.

      But yeah, pretty exciting stuff.

  • ekka4shiki

    I don’t like the name …

    Wii U ? We you ?

    Facepalm …

    • Rafi

      I agree……..
      But dont judge a console from it’s name, we need to see more……

      I want to see how Wii U can run game in native 1080p with smooth framerate……

  • Zero

    First half of the conference was great. Really made the 3DS look promising.

    Last half was confusing as hell, first question I had, is it just a controller based console or what?

    Ign has an actual picture of the console –
    http://wiimedia.ign.com/wii/image/article/117/1173491/CONSOLEInline_1307462236.jpg

    They didn’t make it clear if you would need a wii or what, no price, very little details. They could have done a much better job explaining it.

    With that said, I thought it was overall a strong presser from Nintendo. I’ll be interested to see how the Wii U progresses. The price for the console and controller? So many questions…

    • Red-X

      Were you confusing with the informations they provided or actually confusing with Iwata’s accent?

      Mine was both though!! Hahaha

  • big drew

    damn. i guess

  • http://www.youtube.com/tezchi TezChi

    I’ll must admit, Nintendo stole the show for me. The Wii U looks really interesting and the lineup of games were surprisingly amazing.

    • AdamBoy64

      Even though the trolls have had their say with the ‘Thumbs Down’, I have to say I agree with you.

      Will certainly look forward to hearing more on the hardware side of the Wii U though..

  • Adam Meadows

    I’ve missed all this :( I have to say, I’m stunned. I heard the rumours, but I never expected it to this extent.

  • DarthXehanort

    Meh.

  • http://gamingmilitia.com Eric

    So far I’m not impressed…

    1. So now wii can have the same games as ps3 and 360…no thanks. Nintendo should focus on getting exclusives and their first party lineup. I dont see a market for putting on the same games on yet another console.

    2. That controller is outrageous and not in a good way. Its like the Game Gear in the regard that its too big and bulky imo for a home console controller. Sure there might be some cool things it can do, but no thanks to lugging that thing around.

    3. No word on price and how much that damn controller or extra controllers are going to cost you.

    4. The name is terrible.

    As it stands, they have to do a lot of work to convince me, but I dont see it happening.

    • TheronGuard00

      I completely agree with your 1. point. I’m not going to invest in another Hi-def system ($300-400) for more than 60-70% of the catalog being on my PS3. Let’s be honest, if Nintendo’s first party support isn’t at least a bit better than it was on the Wii’s I can do without. I’d rather quench my Nintendo urges with the 3DS I plan on buying if that’s the case.

    • TheronGuard00

      IMO if the controller doesn’t have some cool portable functions it will be bad. They may as well have made the 3DS seamless with their new system; sound more exciting to me. It’s almost like ps3/vita to me…but not portable…

  • whiteferrero

    WAHAHAHAHAHAHAA! the name is so bad!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Wii U? More like P-U!

    WAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Omg i don’t usually rant out against names of anything but really wth!

  • http://kaddas.me Moe Kaddas

    So What’s the big leap did Nintendo take to make wii u?
    can someone explain for me am I missing something in their announcement?

  • http://Flickr.com/mdemolish mdemolish

    My sis love Wii U , it’s ok i like Wii