Nintendo jumps the gun on E3 and decides to do a Nintendo Direct presentation right now! I'll be updating the blog as news trickles out. Let's see what comes of it shall we?
3:04: Wii U controller is now dubbed the Wii U Game Pad and does not include the circle pads. Iwata explains why they changed back from circle pads to analog sticks. The sticks will also be clickable. NFC reader for cards and other devices to communicate. The controller will be able to control your TV as well like a remote without the Wii U powered on.
3:10: Nintendo will also offer a Wii U Pro Controller. Looks very similar to XBox 360 controller. Explained as a hardcore controller. All black... ooh so hardcore.
3:13: Now showing a cheesy gamer playing on a black Wii U and game pad. Showing a guy posting to a social network while playing a game, pauses and types a question. Looks like you will have your Mii on a social network format that you can access on the pad at any time. Looks a lot like Twitter.
3:15: The cheesy gamer has a live video chat with someone from the Network that he got an answer from.... not sure if that guy is on his friends list or a random person. Looks like Nintendo is going to build their own social service. Mii characters all over the screen, it's the Wii U menu when you turn on the system. "Mii Wara Wara". Your Miis, your friends, and Miis in your country are grouped in categories by what game they are playing. Even games you may not have on your system. The network interface is called "Miiverse". Can be accessed at anytime even when playing on the TV or Game Pad. Think about having Swapnote and Pictochat in your hands.
3:22: The "Miiverse" network can be used by game developers and integrated into games.
3:25: "Miiverse" will be able to be accessed on Nintendo 3DS, PC, or any Web Device in the future. All linked by the Nintendo Network. Will be the platform to connect all future Nintendo products.
3:26: You can use the Wii U Game Pad to browse the internet and select what content you want to show on the TV separate to what is one the Wii U Game Pad. It's not clear how that will work but seems like an interesting idea. How practical is this?
My Thoughts: It was a short and brief but seems to be very telling of Nintendo's plans. With the Nintendo Network and Miiverse, it does look like Nintendo is finally on board with the social media space. It looks like it is going to be easier than ever to communicate with the Nintendo Community at any time you wish. It's not clear yet how easy it will be to register your friends or strangers into the system. Also it is not clear if the Nintendo Network will be integrated with other social media platforms such as Twitter or Facebook. The most interesting thing to me is how developers will take this new network and use it in their games. That for me lies the real power of the Nintendo Network. Let's just hope they don't use it to start placing targeted DLC advertising into our games.
What do you think? Did you like what you saw in the presentation? http://www.nintendo.co.jp/nintendo_direct_pre_e3_2012/en/index.html