WII DS-X2's Pre-E3 Wii Roundtable Round-up

In preparation for everything that's bound to be announced at E3 regarding the Wii, we got the staff together to discuss their hopes for the console.

With the hours left until Nintendo's pre-E3 keynote address able to be counted in double digits now, we here at DS-X2 thought it was time we shared our hopes for what is about to come for the new console, and for Nintendo in general.

It's been a huge year for Nintendo. The DS and DS Lite have become more than just a games system in Japan - they've become a phenomenon. We saw sell-outs over Christmas, and well into the New Year. Since being released in Japan a year and a half ago, the DS has seen worldwide sales of over 10 million units.

Then there was the Revolution. Remember the first time you saw the console? That sleek box, with the mystery yet to be revealed? Remember, months later, the first time you saw the controller? It felt like something had changed, and if the slow sales of the GameCube and the lack of public awareness of the Nintendo brand were apparent to you, it felt like Nintendo were back. For once, a manufacturer was standing up and trying to change the face of gaming. In addressing the faults of the industry - ever increasing development costs, the creative drain of "sequelitis" and a stagnating user base - rather than trying to fit in, Nintendo are looking to the future; certainly further than the higher polygon counts, resolutions and the associated costs that go along with it of the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3.

Don't get me wrong - there's some fine games on the Xbox 360, and Live Arcade has done more for the independent scene than any other console in history, and I've no doubt that the PS3 will have some fine games. But they're not pushing forward. They're inching forward.

As it stands now, we still don't know if Nintendo's gamble will pay off.

Of course, now the console is the Wii, and one can't help feeling that, now that the shock has worn off, the name fits. Certainly, I for one have grown to love the logo. It might take me a bit longer to get used to saying it out loud, but given months, not just weeks, I think every jibe at the name will seem like unimportant and immature. To some degree, they already do. I don't doubt that Nintendo will make this name make sense at E3.

I don't remember the last time I was this excited about an E3. Admittedly, this is the first time that I've been on this side of the fence - not actually at the event, sure, but at least having the chance to write about it and share my enthusiasm for it. But I think it's more than that. I haven't been this excited about a console release since I heard they were releasing something to succeed the NES. I think that the Wii controller is going to seem like the most natural, simple, and wonderful method of game control yet - like that first time using a D-pad after years of joysticks.

The development cycle of the Wii excites me too - the fact that the dev kit, during the first stages of development, was simply a "souped up GameCube" is not the bad thing that Microsoft and Sony fanboys would have you believe. Have you seen Resident Evil 4? The GameCube is, by no means, a lesser console, and if what we're going to see for the first generation of Wii games is, effectively, souped-up final generation GameCube looking games, then I don't have a problem with that. I really think that we'll be seeing companies using an element of creativity on this console that we've not seen them use, because Nintendo are forcing them too. It's not about graphics, and it's not about whether a game was developed on a "last generation" dev kit. The most popular games on the DS are the ones that use the technology to its fullest, and we'll be seeing the same thing happening on the Wii.

The Virtual Console is undoubtedly set to become one of the Wii's biggest selling points. Sony and Microsoft cannot compete with Nintendo in terms of history, and Nintendo has 20 years of great games available, not to mention the contributions of Sega and TurboGrafx. As for the hints and suggestions that the Virtual Console will feature the contributions of indie developers, well, that might be the most exciting part of all for me. It's one thing to see what a company like EA or Capcom can do with the controller, but it's another thing entirely to put that technology in the hands of a company like GarageGames. Innovation comes from the independent sectors - it's the principal behind Xbox 360's Live Arcade, and it would be great to see Nintendo embracing the same ideas. Given their current philosophy of "disruption", I'd be surprised if they didn't.

I'm not much one for predictions, and I'll leave the others to talk about the specific games that they're looking forward to, but I can't help but feel that Nintendo is going to present us with something this E3 that will make the wait for the Wii unbearable. Make no mistake, you will want to own a Wii after this week. Enjoy your E3 everyone, and I hope that, no matter what your expectations, it reveals what you want.


To be honest, I started a little sceptic when the Nintendo Wii (then: Revolution) was announced. "Who on Earth could possibly want to stand in his living room acting to hit a baseball he can only see on his television?" The only answer I could think of was clearly "no-one would".

Later on, I started thinking about other possibilities with the wii-wand. 3D shooter? Check. Donkey Konga Drums? Sounds like it could work. Perhaps I'd even start playing my first Harry Potter game if EA allowed me to use the controller as Harry's wand.

As time passes and E3 is nearing, I'm getting more and more interested in the new console. Of course, I would not want developers to see the free movement feature as an obligation in their games, a trend often seen in current DS game-design. The feature should be seen as just that, a feature. If the game fits it, use the feature. If not, don't. After all, we're not throwing in swords and spaceships in the new Super Mario games either, now are we?

Although my expectations for the Nintendo Wii are growing almost every day, I also cannot escape the bad feeling about E3. The hype created around the console may have overhauled reality, causing only disappointments when secrets are starting to be revealed. A whole bunch of launch games sounds nice, until we hear that 90% of the titles are titles that should have been released on the GameCube or low-budget titles only selling because they're amongst the first titles around.

I hope to be proven wrong. I do believe the Wii might actually open up new paths in game design, which elitist developers may wish to explore. Yet I also believe that it will take time and that the path to utopia may take more than the first E3 event the console may witness.


It will be a very interesting E3 that for sure. Though I not 100% sure what to expect. First of all I'll talk about the features.

Now, I'm not 100% sure what force feedback is. Is it just rumble or not I'm not sure? But anyway, the motion sensor for the Wii-mote sounds quite likely, but I'm sure Nintendo have said they'll be even more features than that so there so many possibilities. I think we can rule out a 3D projector or a time travelling device though.

Onto games. Right, there so much Nintendo could show at E3, and if Mario 128 makes an appearance, then that E3 in the bag for them. And there really isn't a better time to show it. Other than that, I guessing they'll show Wii-mote functionality for Zelda: Twilight Princess. I'm sure a lot of 'minor' 3rd party titles will make an appearance (Spongebob, Avatar). But the real gems (Red Steel, Tony Hawks) are most likely to make an appearance at Nintendo's own conference, showing off new ways on how to play your favourite 3rd party games.

Of course, a whole slew of 1st party titles are bound to show up, Metroid Prime 3 is most likely to show in video form, since I think Nintendo will want to keep the Wii's main FPS game on show Red Steel, for obvious reasons. I'm really hanging out for a Wario Ware Wii game to rear its crazy face and show the possibilities for that, although personally I don't see it happening as Nintendo will want to show separate games that focus on the different functions of the Wii-mote itself, rather than a game that has all the functions together. Just like the DS did at launch with Yoshi T&G as a 'tester' for the touch screen functionality. A Wii version of Donkey Kong might make an appearance too. The same developer who worked on the awesome platform game Donkey Kong: Jungle Beat (which is one of my favourite GameCube titles may I add) is working on the Wii version, though what type of game it will be is a complete mystery to me. So we have Mario, Metroid and Donkey Kong. What next? Of course - Zelda. Personally, I really doubt a Wii version of Zelda will turn up, because it would really steal the spotlight off of Twilight Princess, and I sure after all these delays people don't want that.

So now we've gone through the more largely known franchises, how about the smaller ones? There have been so many rumours flying about (so to speak) about a Wii version of Kid Icarus and Pilotwings. However, there has been no real truth behind the appearance of these titles so I inclined to believe such a thing will not be shown, except the original games that will appear on the Virtual Console.

Which leads me onto the next topic, the Virtual Console. So what do we have? NES, SNES, N64, PC Engine 32 (that right is it?) and Mega Drive/Genesis. I can imagine Nintendo sweetening the deal with 3rd parties, bringing over games from Game Gear/Master System and possibly Atari consoles. What would be the cream of the crop would be allowing people to download Sega Saturn titles to the Wii. Of course I see a few problems with this. Firstly, and most significant, is the Hard Drive space required for titles like these. Since the Wii has only 512mb internal memory (which barely fits 1 Saturn game), it would be very hard to have more than 1 game on the internal memory. Of course the problem is then overcome by buying external hard drives, since the Wii has 2 USB ports, but of course would be demanding on a casual gamer to go out and fork over £80 for a 250gb hard drive (although personally, I would do it). Secondly is the size of the game, games with many discs would take a hell of a long time to download (especially the folk with 56k). The third problem I see with this is the support (or lack of) that Sega gained for the Saturn. Okay people, in all honesty - the Saturn was not successful. It had a serious lack of support from many major developers (namely EA) compared to the PlayStation at the time. I'm not denying that the Saturn had its fair share of great games. Burning Rangers? NiGHTS? Hell, NiGHTS is one of my most favourite games ever to grace a console, but I just can't see it happening due to those reasons. Anyway, back onto the VC. I expect Nintendo to show how the VS console will work, and I am hoping they will reveal the prices of the downloads this time around. I cannot imagine Nintendo giving away a full list of the downloadable games for the Wii just yet, but at a later stage closer to the release (November).

Well that pretty much wraps up my expectations for Nintendo at E3 this year (in relation to the Wii). Be sure to stay tuned to Wii-X2 in the wiik of E3 for all the latest updates. See ya folks.


E3 2006 - Nintendo fans will be happy. But why?

Firstly, the Nintendo DS. Most games are still not announced (because of the Wii-Connection), but of course it looks as if shiny times arrive. Let's only mention Metroid Dread, Wario Thief, Brain Training 2, The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass and the fully localized music game Elite Agent Force (Japan: Osu! Tatakae! Ouendan).

While some features still have to be announced for Europe and North America (Opera DS), others are still unknown. Here's the question whether you will be able to download NES and SNES classics to DS via Wii. This probably needs more RAM, but there's already a RAM upgrade in work for Opera DS, which you put into the Game Boy Advance slot. DS Lite users won't have to care about it, obviously. Also expect to see a new release schedule and exact release details for the European DS Lite launch.

Secondly, there's another handheld: the Game Boy Advance. Half dead, half alive, Nintendo still has some games in the pipeline. Most interesting, next to Mother 3, will be the games of the bit Generations, or Digiluxe Series, as it will be called in Northern America. I would call them "successor of the NES Classics", what isn't really true. The (low-budget) games of the Digiluxe series, each sold separately, are small, but new ideas. Its games were developed by smaller development team (for example Q-Games, which will present also a Nintendo DS game at E3) and were finished last year. You remember? Well, the former name was Digitylish Series, but some of its games disappeared and new ones came. [more information here.]

Don't expect to hear anything about a release of Wario Ware Twisted or Drill Dozer, both use a rumble pack which wasn't approved because of EU laws.

Last but not least, the Nintendo Wii...or just Wii. It's all about games, Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles (DS version will appear too), The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, Red Steel and Excitebike. Not to mention possible showings of a cooking game, the former GameCube games "Stage Debut" (work in progress - title), Nintendo Pennant Chase Baseball (secretly cancelled last year) or Kirby (tentative title).

We will gain more knowledge about the Virtual Console, the controller will be fully revealed and then, you may already know, Nintendo will reveal the last big secret (and other smaller ones). What could it be? Will you say "WOW" or "doom3D"?

"When you turn on Revolution and see the graphics, you will say WOW." Saturo Iwata, E3 2005

Posted on 07-05-2006 by littlemaths


There are no comments yet on this article.
You could be the first one!

Post a new comment

To place a comment, you need to be logged in.
Register or log in.
Follow us on Twitter Follow us on Facebook Follow us on YouTube Follow us through RSS