I have had a Wii U for almost a week now and I am truly enjoying it. I pre-ordered the Deluxe edition and picked it up on launch day. There is just something special about the launch of a new console. The promise of things to come, the hope that said company has learned from their mistakes and that they will finally be able to achieve the product that they had dreams of creating many moons ago. I love being part of that, I love being in the thick of the discussion and experiencing the ups and downs of a new piece of technology and just being along for the whole journey.
That technology, not the graphics, is part of what sets this system apart. There is no discernible lag while playing on the GamePad and I would say that they image displayed on the screen is about 85-90% of the quality you would have on an 1080p television. THAT is incredible. Being able to come home and turn on the system by the GamePad and check Miiverse or go on the eshop and download a game or just click on New Super Mario Bros. U and continue playing, all without turning on your TV, is truly remarkable. I have a wonderful girlfriend who I live with and it's so great to be able to let her watch all of her shows while I continue to search for all those elusive Star Coins hidden all over the world of Mushroom Kingdom. This technology has me considering buying Mass Effect 3 again just so I can play on the tablet whenever I want to while also maybe watching something on Netflix or watching the Browns attempt to win on any given Sunday. This is part of what gives me hope about this console, and I haven't really even mentioned the GamePad and it's implication on gaming.
Take ZombiU for example. All the ideas are there and of all the launch titles I feel it uses the GamePad in the most creative ways, what with controlling your inventory only on the GamePad while the game continues and you have to decide if it's safe to check your bag while zombies may be all around you. These and others can make for a great experience, but as with any launch, developers are still learning how to use this system. The graphics aren't up to par with current generation consoles and some of the gameplay mechanics seem outdated and not polished enough, due to the fact they needed to get this out on launch. Compare Resistance, which launched with the PS3 and was a good game, to the games being released now such as Uncharted 3 or even Resistance 3, and some may say it feels like an entirely different console. As time goes on and games continue to be made, developers will learn the tricks of this system and be able to use it to the fullest and this is what I think Nintendo is doing. They are holding back their trump cards because they know if they let them cook a little longer and truly learn everything there is to know about this system, these games have the potential to blow everything else out of the water. They will release these games when the time is right and I have little doubt when we are playing them, we will truly feel as though we are in the next generation.
As of now, the third-party games are there in equivalent fashion, they released a pro controller that mimics the other guys, and they are finally stepping into the online realm. There is potential here, and I think if done well this can truly be a unique system that will have some legs that will carry it through even the launch of this "bigger and better" systems and beyond.
I have no regrets about my purchase. I'm sure there will be some adjusting time and slow periods, but I can see the potential of this system and I have put my trust in Nintendo and hope they don't let me down.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm off to save the princess.
Have any of you purchased a Wii U? Or maybe tried one? I would love to know your thoughts and see if i'm in the minority or if others share my views!
Adam Bankhurst is one of the co-hosts of The Gamer's Advocate. Send him all your thoughts or questions to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also follow him @adambankhurst