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So... how do you like Wii U's odds now? [roundtable]
'Cause it sure seems like Nintendo is poised to prove all the naysayers wrong again. It feels like something's in the air. People seem more than ready to buy a new system, and the price seems to be palatable, at least to the savvy gaming consumer. Pre-orders are selling out incredibly fast, which will build hype and demand to stratospheric levels, especially if mainstream news starts reporting it and hyping up TVii. Even if NintendoLand doesn't have QUITE the viral impact of Wii Sports, it'll slowly reveal its charms, since it's a pack-in to the preferred model. Nintendo is also launching with at least one guaranteed megaton game (which looks to be of incredibly high quality, as well), so that should keep the early adopters happy. The Wii U version of BLOPS 2 might just be the best one, due to the sharper graphics and individually-screened co-op. That game will also get users going online right off the bat.

The launch window lineup doesn't necessarily have the most raw quantity, but I think it shows some breadth in both the family-friendly and not-so-family-friendly categories, and there are some guaranteed hits/future classics mixed in among the dark (Ubisoft) horses. That, along with the building hype, should serve the system well and keep it hard to find, at least until the inevitable post-launch drought. But suppose, just suppose that third-party publishers also see these clear indicators early this time. And suppose that they decide to add Wii U to their multiplatform plans. It could alleviate the usual drought. And if we further suppose that these publishers actually want the money of these savvy, spendthrift early adopters, they could even support the system directly! Or continue making multiplatform PS3/360/PC/Wii U games a bit longer, to the detriment of Microsoft's and Sony's upcoming offerings.

That still seems like a bit of a longshot, if we're talking about American publishers. Their current planned lineup could definitely be better. But for Japanese publishers, green lights and dollar signs should be all they see when they look at the Wii U. Having Monster Hunter and Dragon Quest as honored guests at the inauguration party will make for a pretty good fucking time for all.

Regardless, the short-term success of the system seems all but guaranteed to me right now. You know, this would be a REALLY opportune time to pick up some NTDOY...

Although it already went up, like, 11% in the last three days.

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Posted: 09/16/12, 04:55:40  - Edited by 
 on: 09/16/12, 05:00:34
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You have to wonder how many of these preorders are hoping to flip the systems during the holidays. Remember that PS3 had this happen and lots of people ended up stuck with the bill.

Not that I don't think the system will be a success, just saying that early preorders and even sales aren't the best indicator.
Posted: 09/16/12, 04:58:02  - Edited by 
 on: 09/16/12, 04:59:13
I actually think the Wii U is going to sell really well over the next few months. Honestly, its really hard to say how the Wii U will preform, esp. if comparing it against the Wii. I don't think its going to have that crazy power over people like the Wii observed. At the same time, tablets are really hitting their prime. People will see this and say, ohh, another tablet, this time its on a NIntendo controller.

Maybe people might go nuts over this. All I know is, I will end up camping out just like I always have and come a little past midnight, I will be the proud owner of a Wii U. Still, 63 more days to go. Its going to be hard not thinking about it.
Posted: 09/16/12, 05:02:57
Even the fact that people think they'll be valuable to flip (they will) is an indicator of success. And, even taking flippers into account, those pre-orders are going pretty fast. If MS' and Sony's next boxes are $500-$600-ish, would you imagine the same thing happening, in a post-PS3 world (with a terrible economy)?

Really, this big mystery that will be crucial to long-term success is: How flexible are publishers? Will they make the same mistake that they made with the Wii? Or will the cartel get together and make a safe, reliable bet? Not the whole pile, maybe, but a nice amount.
Posted: 09/16/12, 05:05:37
I think the odds are pretty good. People seem legitimately interested. I'm more worried about what happens when the next set of systems comes out, but that is awhile off.
Posted: 09/16/12, 05:09:02

I agree they will be valuable to flip, because Christmas is all about the kids and Nintendo still resonates there.

And that's why I think its success is pretty guaranteed. Even after the success of the Wii, Microsoft and Sony seem to care more about their position as the "mature" consoles than trying to appeal to the kids. Kinect isn't nearly enough to compete with Mario on that front.

But it'll take more than just appealing to the kids to match what Wii was able to do. So I wouldn't bet on that just based on these early sales.
Posted: 09/16/12, 05:19:17  - Edited by 
 on: 09/16/12, 05:20:21
Reaching Wii level would be almost impossible, especially in a post-(stupid-)tablet/smartphone world. For this topic, I actually meant the Wii U's odds of reversing Nintendo's current home console fortunes again and springing them back to the lead after, like, 20 increasingly baffling months of Microsoft's paying-to-access-your-paid-Netflix-subscription dominance.

Actually, if anything could help Nintendo reach Wii levels with Wii U, it's the media stuff. In many ways, it could become the streaming device to beat. It's more of a novelty to me, personally, but it could potentially be a deadly secret weapon, if Nintendo nails the execution. Very smart move. Tech blogs and analysts are already starting to post stuff like, "Nintendo beats Apple to the iTV". If those fuckers keep saying stuff like that, it could really take off!

Along with NTDOY.
Posted: 09/16/12, 05:25:19  - Edited by 
 on: 09/16/12, 05:29:59
I'm not worried about WiiU's first year, what worries me is what happens when Durango is released next year, especially if MS can undercut them in price.
Posted: 09/16/12, 05:26:39
They should sell great through the spring...and then it will be up to the momentum of those March titles and a strong showing at E3 next year in the face of the Sony & Microsoft impending launches. So I hope them holding onto EAD Tokyo, Retro, and Monolift Soft's news will pay off then (plus, some inevitable Mario Kart teasing).
Posted: 09/16/12, 05:30:09
That's true. They have a hell of a lot of first-party cards left to play.

That seems pretty unlikely. We'll see, though.
Posted: 09/16/12, 05:30:38  - Edited by 
 on: 09/16/12, 05:31:14

Something will beat the Wii, it's inevitable. People who grew up playing video games make up more and more of the population and countries continue to develop.

It's hard to predict without knowing what direction Microsoft and Sony will take. My guess is they'll ratchet things down in the tech department compared to their last consoles in order to make a reasonable price point. This would make their graphics even less comparable to PCs, making their fans attempts to lord graphics over Nintendo fans even funnier. But will they try for innovation at all? Kinect 2? Will Sony go for the old reliable of ripping of Nintendo? Without knowing that I can't really even hazard a guess at who will "win" next generation.
Posted: 09/16/12, 05:41:04
Short term it will be successful, long term is impossible to say without knowing what Sony and MS are going to do.
Posted: 09/16/12, 06:06:15
I'm not sure that it's looking much better than before. Glad to hear about the stock jump, though.
Posted: 09/16/12, 06:18:48
That's a very good point. I feel dumb for not having already considered that myself. [face_dumb]
Posted: 09/16/12, 06:36:13
I need to rob a bank. Anyone want to keep the engine running?
Posted: 09/16/12, 07:11:43
Actually this got me thinking... I was expecting some sort of new console announcement by Sony or MS announcement at this point with the belief that they'll be pulling 2013 releases. Granted the year isn't over yet but if Sony or MS doesn't show anything (not even tech demos demonstrating the system like they have previously done with their prior consoles) do you think it means that their consoles aren't releasing until 2014?

Even the ever secretive Nintendo at least announced and showed off their systems over a year prior to their releases.

Microsoft will surely keep up with the Kinect. They have that to thank for their resurgence in the market.

Sony at this point is in between a rock and a hard place. The Vita has not been performing well and their previous savior in Monster Hunter is in the hands of Nintendo at the moment, their attempt to capitalize on motion controls with the Move fell flat, apparently they will end this generation in 3rd place after dominating 2 generations in a row... they might need to pull something drastic like the Wii/DS in order to keep moving forward at this point. The question is whether Sony has it in themselves or will they believe that follow the leader will work out with them like with their tactic with Move.
Posted: 09/16/12, 07:46:15  - Edited by 
 on: 09/16/12, 07:50:17
I don't think the odds have changed much at all. It doesn't matter how good or bad the Wii U's launch is, the critical period for them is going to be next fall. Will they have a strong enough library established, and competitive enough price to make people think twice about buying the new Xbox/PS next holiday?

I think Nintendo has a very safe launch window lineup that'll have a pretty wide appeal. I think they'll do well out of the gate, but the software is going to determine how sustainable that success will be going forward.
Posted: 09/16/12, 07:49:36
Wii U is going to do fine out of the gate.

The real question is if it is going to be able to sustain whatever momentum it builds once Microsoft and Sony release their next platforms. I really have no idea.
Posted: 09/16/12, 07:49:51
So far so good. I imagine that, if Nintendo could keep the secrets they had under wraps up until just a few days ago.... who knows what else they have going on behind closed doors. Hell, keep in mind we haven't even seen what Retro is working on. It looks like Nintendo's getting serious. Their success depends on just hour serious they are, and what they will show to prove it.
Posted: 09/16/12, 08:01:48
Several things to take into consideration when it comes to Nintendo vs Sony/Microsoft.

Price & Time: Nintendo set the bar next gen for how much a game console "should" cost. If Sony/M$ goes higher than that, that "may" hurt them. Also, we may need to consider that they may launch their next console late 2013/early 2014. If they do launch it and it is 350, Nintendo could easily drop their price to 250-299. Not to mention the library of games it (Wii U) will have by then. I could see Microsoft making a 500 dollar console and doing that "payment plan" crap that their doing with the 360 right now. Maybe that'll be the route these two giants will take?

Innovations & target audience: Sony & Microsoft will have to compete with Nintendo in this category to be successful. I don't think just mimicking Nintendo will work this time around. If the 720/PS4 come out with a tablet controller and do the "What Nintendon't"- type of marketing, I feel it won't be enough this time. The general public will only see the tablet controller and see the price. They'll see Nintendo's console is cheaper and probably not give the 720/PS4 a second look. Especially if Nintendo drops the price of the Wii U when/if Sony/Microsoft announces the price to being 350/400. And then there's the problem of catering to the hardcore audience and the audience that normally wouldn't buy a console. I believe Microsoft will step their game up in this department more than Sony because they actually see the benefits of pulling a Nintendo (I hate to admit it but Kinect is a success and Move not so much). I believe Microsoft will have innovations (like apps and other non-gaming software) that'll give Nintendo's a run for their money. However, I'm not sure how their going to market the 720/Durango. That's gonna be interesting.

Life expectancy & power: 2017/2018, Nintendo will probably launch Wii U 2. If Microsoft/Sony has a 10 year life cycle with 720/PS4, mid-cycle Nintendo will be able to come out with a console more powerful then theirs. They could easily remedy this by coming out with a slightly more powerful console than the Wii U and have a life expectancy of 5 years. However, that'll still hurt them "if" they bring the consoles out late 2013/early 2014. It'll give Nintendo another year headstart which will ultimately have history repeat itself. That is unless they future proof their consoles to actually last 10 years and have it able to match the power of Wii U 2.
Posted: 09/16/12, 08:36:15
Haven't read OP or thread yet (I like responding just to the original thread topic sometimes, then I read the responses and do an edit, it gets MY opinion out there easier without influence), and my answer is I like the odds basically how I almost always (there was some early doubt here and there, but it's gone now) liked them. I think Wii U will do very very well. 360 levels or better. Maybe even close to Wii levels? Who knows?

I'll be shocked if it fails or underperforms though. Somehow that NYC conference really hyped a LOT of people. I think the price and value is fuckin' great, and though it's PR talk, Reggie says that's a large part of the reason the system is already taking off in preorder land. I agree with him.

Plus we must remember how big the Wii name was, and originally I thought people might say "Oh, that old Wii shit? Fad. I remember I played it for a week or a month and that was it". Now I think they might say "Oh, that's that old Wii shit!! That was so fun! I wanna see what the new one's about!".

Then it's got a shitload of launch games, from varying genres for varying audiences. And the console can do a lot, and it's got a new controller, and a new service called Nintendo TVii. It's almost like a DVR and a bunch of services rolled into one. Now these may be less advertised functions, but it also has voice chat, a social network (several if you include NTV), AND video chat!

The thing's loaded. It's an awesome gadget. Awesome gadgets can sell well with the right name and right advertising behind them. Nintendo's got ALL of this behind it I think.

Now to actually read the thread...
Posted: 09/16/12, 14:12:25  - Edited by 
 on: 09/16/12, 14:14:46
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