Nintendo’s consoles – even in this day of online connectivity – just haven’t quite gotten the online functionality quite right. The 3DS – while ostensibly better than the Wii’s awful online – certainly made improvements, but still, unlike the PS3 and Xbox 360, felt disconnected.
That could be set to change with the Wii U.
While Nintendo’s pre-E3 webcast was mostly focused on the system’s revised controller – and the new core friendly gamepad, it did also highlight some of the console’s new social features – like the “Wara Wara” Miiverse Online hub, built-in Gamefaqs-styled message boards for games, handwritten and typed messages and what looks to be a Skype-like video service.
“We want the Wii U to introduce a new degree of empathy between players. We consider the small screen as the social window…. Miiverse can connect your living room with those of others, regardless of space or time,” Said Iwata.
With Nintendo’s seemingly renewed focus on the core, i think they’ve realised that the only way to appease that market is to make sure that the Wii U’s online functionality not only matches Microsoft and Sony’s – but exceeds it.
Could Nintendo actually pull it off? We’ll see tomorrow when the company has its E3 press conference, but there’s one thing I hope that Nintendo has learned – and it’s that friend codes just do not work.
Last Updated: June 4, 2012