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11-19-2012, 06:23 PM
dun worry he's cool
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: South of the Border
Country: United States
Posts: 11,897
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The Wii U was designed for Japan and around a specific situation that really only applies to Japan. Whether developers stick to that or not will determine whether or not is succeeds in North America and Europe.

It has a decent shot because it managed to slot in as a late 7th generation console. Despite the attempts to hype it and classify it as such, it is not an 8th generation console (Orbis and Durango are). Orbis is not going to be out until 2014 at the very earliest while Durango seems to be slated for late 2013 at the moment. If Nintendo can get enough of an installed base during that lull (which is when they'll get true cross-platform titles) the console should be successful.

Back to the Japan issue though, the console was designed around the idea that games could be played on the TV, then taken back on the gamepad without the need for the TV. This is a result of the unique situation of housing in Japan. In North America, we seem to take for granted the idea that a house will have more than one television. I can play a PS3 game and my wife can watch her movie or TV show on a different TV. That's often not the case in Japan because of how small their housing tends to be (which is what happens when you have nearly 130 million people in a nation about the size of Minnesota and Wisconsin combined). Will developers focus on the use of the gamepad as a portable screen, thereby making games that are not meaningfully different from those on Sony and Microsoft's systems, or will they embrace the tablet aspects of the controller (like Zombie U's keypad opening) that would force users to have TV access at all times, but provide a unique gaming experience? If the former occurs, I don't see the Wii U catching on significantly outside of Japan. If it's the latter, Nintendo might be able to eek out success despite a shrinking niche (Microsoft's tablet support and Sony's simultaneous use screens).

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