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The Wii U Speculation Thread VI: The Undiscovered Country

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I tend to think the best course of action, is to buy the Wii U, then stop visiting forums and just play games. That way we can just enjoy them without worrying that our console happens to not be as photorealistic as another. It just does my head in to be honest. Before Wii U was announced I hardly visited forums, bit since following its development it's actually hard to fight the doom and gloom that pervades the scene. Especially wrt Nintendo and their graphics.

I rather not put my fingers in my ears and go "lalalalalalalala" to criticism. Now if it's just random troll bullshit, it's easily ignored(unless you're like AceBandage and you just have to prove how totally wrong they are, and you saw what happen to him). But I like talking about things I like with people with different perspectives. On average, I find that more interesting then "OMG agree with me that this thing was great! I know, right!? Awesome!"
 

BGBW

Maturity, bitches.
They have been so used to dedicating resources to two consoles and PC, it's like what antonz, I believe, said. Now they have another platform to consider. Additionally they need to know that incorporating the extra console is worth it.

Poor PC gamers are going to get the shaft. :(
 
There will be a gap between Wii U and the others. Why even consider anything else?

The other consoles will not just be a modest jump from the previous generation. Now, the jump might not be as big as the last generation's, but there will still be noticeable boosts in some places graphically.

I feel the gap will be something akin to Dreamcast versus Xbox, maybe even a little further apart. I don't see this being noticeably like the Wii vs. PS3 and XB360, especially since the graphics of PS3 and XB360 games still look darn good (seeing as that's where the Wii U will start at).

The biggest concern here for third part support will be "Can it get ports from PS4/XB720?" or perhaps more specifically "Does it work with UE4?"

If the answer to either of those questions are no, then expect a massive drop-off of major third party games two years into the console's life.
 
Just got done re-watching Nintendo's 2006 E3 Conference and there's one thing I really really hope they stop doing when marketing the Wii U. Those stupid overacted trailers/commercials with people diving behind couches and jumping around the room. Make them straight and to the point with gameplay and if you need to show how a feature works on the UPad just cut to a CG one floating and demonstrate it there or explain it with text.

This post is a few pages old, but I must say that I only agree when it comes to actual TV commercials of certain games. For casual "Wii" brand titles, it is fine to see people goofing off. On the other hand, I can't help but to recall the Red Steel 2 commercial and shudder. Here's a game targeting the core demographic, and they show this 20 something year old dude looking like a complete buffoon as he acts out all the samurai poses and whatnot. Ok, show the gameplay, get across the fact that it has the most precise sword controls ever seen in a game, but do not make your audience think they have to look like assholes as they play it.
 

StevieP

Banned
So, uh... what did AceBandage, jump_button, and GreatMightyPoo get banned for?? =\
1 weekend goes by and I miss 50 pages. What the heck happened around here? lol

The GamePlayWhore summary on page 1 hasn't really been updated in awhile. Anybody care to summarize 50 pages? (LOL)
 

EatChildren

Currently polling second in Australia's federal election (first in the Gold Coast), this feral may one day be your Bogan King.
Guys who know specs (and I guess those who don't can join in), going by your gut feeling based on what you know, will we see most multi-platform games be Wii U/PS4/720 or PS4/720?

Will depend on how those games are made, the kind of games they are, and whether the incentive is there to port (Wii U market penetration, sales, budget, time, manpower, etc).

What does tech matter as long as they support the same level of shaders? I honestly don't care about geometry level, I know that's important and all, but if the 3DS taught us anything, it's that if you slap enough shaders on it, you won't notice unless you look hard enough.

People who know the specs, not asking for the specs, just asking if you think the WiiU could pull this off.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-uae3ufFaGM

This is the DX9 version of the Cryengine 3.4. It is a noticeable step up from the current gen, but it's not at the levels of the DX11 detailed version.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n7hIyF8cbk0

The ground in the DX9 video looks parallax mapped to hell and back. Not sure if the Wii U could do that much parallax mapping at 720p with nice performance.

Wii U game graphics will depend on budget, asset quality, and engine optimisation. Comparing a shooter, look at how incredible Killzone 2 and 3 look. With the right technical wizardry, budget and ground-up design, devs will be able to accomplish similarly beautiful things on the Wii U.

Much like bgassassin, I mostly know performance info versus specs. I know some devkit bits and pieces, but mostly performance.
 

wsippel

Banned
But I fully expect the gap to be noticeably bigger than, say, the PS2 to the Xbox/GCN. It will be big enough to be easily noticeable, and depending on game complexity and engines may prove problematic for high end next generation ports.
I agree with blu, you're severly overestimating the consumer. People run around claiming that Vita games look almost like PS3 games, when the PS3 is roughly ten times as powerful.
 
There will be a gap between Wii U and the others. Why even consider anything else?

The other consoles will not just be a modest jump from the previous generation. Now, the jump might not be as big as the last generation's, but there will still be noticeable boosts in some places graphically.

I feel the gap will be something akin to Dreamcast versus Xbox, maybe even a little further apart. I don't see this being noticeably like the Wii vs. PS3 and XB360, especially since the graphics of PS3 and XB360 games still look darn good (seeing as that's where the Wii U will start at).

The biggest concern here for third part support will be "Can it get ports from PS4/XB720?" or perhaps more specifically "Does it work with UE4?"

If the answer to either of those questions are no, then expect a massive drop-off of major third party games two years into the console's life.

We don´t know, UE 3 is still very popular and will be for the next years. If WiiU is a success i don´t see a big problem. UE3 runs on iphones ;) At the moment UE4 should be PC exclusive, they will downgrade ist later as much as they can.
 
Just playing with sales hypotheticals again, two extremely different situations. In all cases I'm assuming Wii U launch late 2012 and X360/PS3 successors late 2013.


Case 1: People are sick of Wii, don't care about the controller screen, very impressed by the tech leap in Sony/MS systems. Wii U sells half as well as Wii, the others sell twice as well as their predecessors.

With the early lead Wii U is still the top system until the middle of 2015, but falls quite behind pretty fast. By the end of 2016 it makes up less than a quarter of the combined userbase, and by the end of 2017 about 22%.

Case 2: Wii's advantages carry on, and by being less behind technologically and more port-friendly steals a little of the market from the competitors. Wii U sells 20% better than Wii, X360/PS3 successors sell 15% worse.

In this case Wii U is very dominant throughout, and it is not until mid-2017 that the other two combine to half the Wii U number.

Ahh hell, let's try a third case. Everybody plays iPad instead of consoles so there's contraction, but Nintendo is harmed most due to casual loss. -50% for Wii U, -20% for the others.

Wii U stays ahead, though by early 2017 it no longer has over 50% of the market. Total hardware numbers more like the PS1/N64 generation, except this time with two N64s and a weaker PS1.
 

EatChildren

Currently polling second in Australia's federal election (first in the Gold Coast), this feral may one day be your Bogan King.
I agree with blu, you're severly overestimating the consumer. People run around claiming that Vita games look almost like PS3 games, when the PS3 is roughly ten times as powerful.

I'll happily eat a delicious serving of crow if I'm wrong.
 

Plinko

Wildcard berths that can't beat teams without a winning record should have homefield advantage
Is anyone holding out hope that Nintendo surprises us later in the year with an October release?

This wouldn't surprise me at all, but I still would now predict mid-November.
 
There will be a gap between Wii U and the others. Why even consider anything else?

The other consoles will not just be a modest jump from the previous generation. Now, the jump might not be as big as the last generation's, but there will still be noticeable boosts in some places graphically.

I feel the gap will be something akin to Dreamcast versus Xbox, maybe even a little further apart. I don't see this being noticeably like the Wii vs. PS3 and XB360, especially since the graphics of PS3 and XB360 games still look darn good (seeing as that's where the Wii U will start at).

The biggest concern here for third part support will be "Can it get ports from PS4/XB720?" or perhaps more specifically "Does it work with UE4?"

If the answer to either of those questions are no, then expect a massive drop-off of major third party games two years into the console's life.

You know before i started reading gaming forums i prob couldn't have told you the differences between a Dreamcast, PS2, Gamecube or Xbox game :p.

Sometimes i wish i was a casual and didn't care lol.

I think the perfect solution for me and a lot of other people who care how games look / run is to buy a Wii U for exclusives and a gaming PC for multi platforms but then you miss the Sony and MS exclusives... and people say golf is an expensive hobby !.
 

EatChildren

Currently polling second in Australia's federal election (first in the Gold Coast), this feral may one day be your Bogan King.
If I had to put my money down it would be on November, but I wouldn't object to an earlier release. I just hope the AU date doesn't trail too far behind the US.
 

Plinko

Wildcard berths that can't beat teams without a winning record should have homefield advantage
I agree with blu, you're severly overestimating the consumer. People run around claiming that Vita games look almost like PS3 games, when the PS3 is roughly ten times as powerful.

This right here. I've done research in this area recently with certain focus groups. You'd be shocked to see how many people (even in the targeted 15-30 age group) don't notice the difference between SD/HD let alone the people who don't even care. It's staggeringly high.
 

Penguin

Member
Is anyone holding out hope that Nintendo surprises us later in the year with an October release?

I want a non-pre black Friday launch just so its not madness trying to get the system during Thanksgiving week..

Although unlike the Wii, will be near NWS for launch....
 

tkscz

Member
Will depend on how those games are made, the kind of games they are, and whether the incentive is there to port (Wii U market penetration, sales, budget, time, manpower, etc).



The ground in the DX9 video looks parallax mapped to hell and back. Not sure if the Wii U could do that much parallax mapping at 720p with nice performance.

Wii U game graphics will depend on budget, asset quality, and engine optimisation. Comparing a shooter, look at how incredible Killzone 2 and 3 look. With the right technical wizardry, budget and ground-up design, devs will be able to accomplish similarly beautiful things on the Wii U.

Much like bgassassin, I mostly know performance info versus specs. I know some devkit bits and pieces, but mostly performance.

If thats the case then I'll go with yes. An engine could easily use parallax mapping if the players vision is near enough to it, and when the play is far away, it becomes a flat texture again. But performance wise, what API do you think the WiiU could handle? I'm still a firm believer in OpenGL 3.3
 

schuelma

Wastes hours checking old Famitsu software data, but that's why we love him.
Sales for games like Assassin's Creed, etc., will be crucial in determining whether Wii U gets major 3rd party support once PS4/720 ramps up. If Nintendo can create a positive ecosystem for 3rd party efforts in the next year, I think support will be substantial.
 

HylianTom

Banned
If forced to guess, I see a definite dropoff in third-party support shortly after the others' successors launch.. but if we see a semi-steady stream of stuff like Assassin's Creed and Darksiders for those first two years (a pretty reasonable guess, I think. as long as core launch titles sell relatively well), I'd consider that an upgrade from what the Wii received.
 

schuelma

Wastes hours checking old Famitsu software data, but that's why we love him.
If forced to guess, I see a definite dropoff in third-party support shortly after the others' successors launch.. but if we see a semi-steady stream of stuff like Assassin's Creed and Darksiders for those first two years (a pretty reasonable guess, I think. as long as core launch titles sell relatively well), I'd consider that an upgrade from what the Wii received.

If 3rd party support dies off after 2 years, Nintendo is basically going to have the same scenario that doomed the Wii.
 

IdeaMan

My source is my ass!
A pity that Ace isn't here anymore, i would have wanted him to edit something in the OP of the DRC picture leak thread :(

But it has no discernible features. If this thing goes on to sell 75 million units, I will bet people who don't own one still wouldn't recognize it if they were shown a picture. The original Wii, on the other hand, has distinct features you can describe in words; angular with way the stand props it up, modern in the way the pieces fit together to give that border resembling a technical blue print, geometric in the way it cuts out corners of the case.

The Wii U looks entirely utilitarian except for the front face-plate. It's just a sheath of plastic protecting the electrical parts inside.

Basically, Nintendo needed a box to put the useful & required hardware from the dev kits to run the demos at E3 2011, so they quickly (i presume) designed one, matching the shape of the board + its components, protecting & hiding them, and allowing them to present a fully-fledged (albeit still in development) new system.

For the final design, i've heard conflicting informations about that.

I don't have any reason to believe the Wii U isn't capable of better looking games than the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. How much better looking depends on game complexity, type, and use of the Wii U pad. IdeaMan, I think it was, noted this. If you're rendering two complex 3D scenes from a game, one on the TV and one on the pad, you're chewing up a lot of resources. Low pad complexity = more resources to make your games look better (unless Nintendo has a lock on this, which would be stupid so I doubt it).

Ground up full detail Wii U games should look wonderful.

Yup it was me, it was in a specific context though, but in every case involved, i've always heard that the resources draw of the padlet, used for an ambitious content, is important, so one should really take into consideration this parameter when gauging the Wii U capabilities. Still, for "ports" (so it will be better for fist-party games), in older dev kits, sdk, yadda yadda, they were able to have a prettier content on the TV for the Nintendo version than on PS360. It was a slight to moderate increase though (IQ stuff, framerate, maybe the resolution, from sub720p to real 720p, etc.), but before additional visual polishing that could further widen the gap, with some Wii U more modern hardware features finally implemented/used.

I think this community as a whole has been reasonable in its expectations toward Wii U performances. Not a souped up current gen HD, not a Xbox360 1.2, not a full generational leap over the ps360 either.

NintenGAF IS WISE ! :D
 
I think you highly overestimate Joe's ability to tell graphics advancements. You might need to read more 'console-quality graphics!!!' impressions from ipad2 reviewers/gamers.

I agree.

Since EC is talking mainly about buzz, I don't dispute that the other two consoles' superior graphics capabilities will probably be enough of a differentiator for MS and Sony within enthusiast gaming communities like this one. As far as the mass market is concerned, though, I think MS and Sony (and DICE, and Crytek, and Epic) may well be surprised by just how hard it is to use visuals as a differentiator. Services, controllers, and exclusive software will probably prove more effective.
 

HylianTom

Banned
I think this community as a whole has been reasonable in its expectations toward Wii U performances. Not a souped up current gen HD, not a Xbox360 1.2, not a full generational leap over the ps360 either.

NintenGAF IS WISE ! :D

I tend to think so as well. You'd be hard-pressed to find someone here at GAF who's silly enough to believe that the Wii U could go toe-to-toe with either of the other two.
 

wsippel

Banned
If thats the case then I'll go with yes. An engine could easily use parallax mapping if the players vision is near enough to it, and when the play is far away, it becomes a flat texture again. But performance wise, what API do you think the WiiU could handle? I'm still a firm believer in OpenGL 3.3
There's no relationship between performance and OpenGL version. Not that it matters, because Nintendo doesn't even use standard APIs to begin with.
 

tkscz

Member
There's no relationship between performance and OpenGL version. Not that it matters, because Nintendo doesn't even use standard APIs to begin with.

AH HA. I knew I was right. On the GT boards someone kept telling me Nintendo used OpenGL when I said they used their own custom API.
 
While specs are always fun to discuss, it's important to note that Wii U has all the hardware for next gen OS functions. I believe this has the potential to impress consumers even more than fancy graphics. The tablet controller really could revolutionize the typical console experience. Here's what I'd like to see:

-Video chat (OS level, put a game in standby to take a call)
-Voice Commands
-Facial recognition (hopefully better than kinect, should be as the camera will be close)
-Suspend game (hopefully this will save your current state even if you put the system in standby or turn it off)
-OS level screen grab/video (share your achievements w/ your friends in a new way, draw on screen shots to highlight your "play")
-Watch a friend's play session online via the DRC (like that 1up article last year)
-Multitasking (keep an FAQ open to reference)

Add to this that Wii U has potential to be a great Netflix box, with an optimal interface for browsing through the selection (and no longer hampered by SD output). Then, there are other expected aps/channels, such as the renovated and converged eShop, Hulu, MLB, etc.

I suppose my point is this: On my Xbox 360, I sometimes just log in to see what's up without deciding what I want to do/play. I only sometimes do this on Wii and almost never on PS3. If Nintendo can make Wii U something that you want to power on ever day, I think they'll be in good shape, even w/ the more powerful competition.
 

Anth0ny

Member
One week!

unfortunately, Sony and Microsoft's conferences are looking worse and worse by the day. Game delays and no shows galore. Hopefully they have a few surprises.

is konami having an early "Press conference" this year?
 
I think this community as a whole has been reasonable in its expectations toward Wii U performances. Not a souped up current gen HD, not a Xbox360 1.2, not a full generational leap over the ps360 either.

NintenGAF IS WISE ! :D

I'm one of the few though who really believe its going to be able to run UE4 at some capacity, I believe it has to if Nintendo wants to get their 3rd party support back.
 

Aostia

El Capitan Todd
Man, latest leaks about graphical leap between Wii U and Orbis-Durango are quiet depressing.
If the Wii U will be another Wii in terms of technological gap with competitors, we'll have again long and exhausting void periods with no game released....
Lucky me that I'm always oriented to buy at least two home console in a gen...
 
They're just showing the E3 demos to journalists/retailers/analysts who can't make it to LA. It's not a distinct event or anything, as far as I know.

I still think Japan has its own types of games, that may end up being shown
its not like things like LOVE PLUS and Boobie Ninja Fighters are huge at E3 you know
 
Man, latest leaks about graphical leap between Wii U and Orbis-Durango are quiet depressing.
If the Wii U will be another Wii in terms of technological gap with competitors, we'll have again long and exhausting void periods with no game released....
Lucky me that I'm always oriented to buy at least two home console in a gen...

what are the latest leaks ?
 

HylianTom

Banned
-Watch a friend's play session online via the DRC (like that 1up article last year)
This has to be one of my top wishes as far as online features are concerned. There are many times when I'm tired out of my mind at the end of a work day and I know I'm going to suck at whatever gaming I attempt, so I'd much rather watch someone else play.

This is where Let's Play videos come into the picture. If this feature was added to the system.. oh my, I'd be quite a happy camper.
 

IdeaMan

My source is my ass!
While specs are always fun to discuss, it's important to note that Wii U has all the hardware for next gen OS functions. I believe this has the potential to impress consumers even more than fancy graphics. The tablet controller really could revolutionize the typical console experience. Here's what I'd like to see:

-Video chat (OS level, put a game in standby to take a call)
-Voice Commands
-Facial recognition (hopefully better than kinect, should be as the camera will be close)
-Suspend game (hopefully this will save your current state even if you put the system in standby or turn it off)
-OS level screen grab/video (share your achievements w/ your friends in a new way, draw on screen shots to highlight your "play")
-Watch a friend's play session online via the DRC (like that 1up article last year)
-Multitasking (keep an FAQ open to reference)

Add to this that Wii U has potential to be a great Netflix box, with an optimal interface for browsing through the selection (and no longer hampered by SD output). Then, there are other expected aps/channels, such as the renovated and converged eShop, Hulu, MLB, etc.

I suppose my point is this: On my Xbox 360, I sometimes just log in to see what's up without deciding what I want to do/play. I only sometimes do this on Wii and almost never on PS3. If Nintendo can make Wii U something that you want to power on ever day, I think they'll be in good shape, even w/ the more powerful competition.

the bold ones are already available to developers, or planned to be available in the documentation they can access.

Some of the rest are maybe activated also (those linked to the camera, they weren't accessible a few months ago but it could have changed with newer sdk revisions) or expected as they advertised these at E3 2011, and as disclosed here, they left huge room for the OS/system functions.
 

Oddduck

Member
Man, latest leaks about graphical leap between Wii U and Orbis-Durango are quiet depressing.
If the Wii U will be another Wii in terms of technological gap with competitors, we'll have again long and exhausting void periods with no game released....
Lucky me that I'm always oriented to buy at least two home console in a gen...

I think most hardcore gamers will usually buy more than 1 console.

I see myself buying Wii U for Nintendo's exclusives and a PS4 for Sony's exclusives. So I'm honestly not worried about Wii U's lack of power killing of third party support. I just worry for people who will only buy a Wii U because they'll miss out on a lot of third party games.

Wii U should be getting a lot of PS3/360 third party games for the next 2-3 years though. I don't see 360/PS3 dieing out that fast, even after next gen systems launch.
 
I agree.

Since EC is talking mainly about buzz, I don't dispute that the other two consoles' superior graphics capabilities will probably be enough of a differentiator for MS and Sony within enthusiast gaming communities like this one. As far as the mass market is concerned, though, I think MS and Sony (and DICE, and Crytek, and Epic) may well be surprised by just how hard it is to use visuals as a differentiator. Services, controllers, and exclusive software will probably prove more effective.

A big part convincing them will be in the marketing. Eventually people will start to believe what you're saying if you keep beating them over the head with it. We've seen that happen several times in this industry.
 
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