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I'm starting a thread to post news pertaining to the Wii & DS!


From G4:

Wii Vitality Sensor Based On N64 Technology?
Posted by Stephen Johnson - Monday, June 08, 2009 2:06 PM



Nintendo's weird unveiling of the Wii Vitality Sensor was certainly a head-scratcher. The device is designed to clip onto gamers' fingers and keep track of their pulse rate. Why this is a good idea is anyone's guess, of course, and the whole thing becomes even more mysterious when you realize that similar technology has been around since the days of the Nintendo 64.

The "Bio Sensor" was produced by Sega in 1998, and worked by clipping onto your ear. But other than the difference in clip point, it did pretty much what the Wii Vitality Sensor is designed to do: Took your pulse.

Sega's Bio Sensor was released with Tetris 64 and integrated into the game by changing the difficulty based on pulse rate. So, for example, if your pulse rate speeds up a lot while playing the game, the bricks would drop faster and faster. Presumably, this would force you to relax while you fit your little squares together.



As you might expect, the Bio Sensor was a Japan-only product, and did not cause a big splash there. Tetris 64 was, as far as I know, the only title that used the technology.

I realize most of the gaming community thinks Nintendo has gone a little nuts with this, but I'm fascinated with the Wii Vitality Sensor. Here's why: Before the release of the Wii, if you had told gamers that the next generation of consoles would be won handily and completely by the console with the least power, the worst graphics and the most primitive games, they would have said you were crazy. But that's what happened.

Nintendo is very, very good at creating video game systems and peripherals that make a lot of money and do a lot of things that have never been done. So I try to maintain hope that the Wii Vitality Sensor will turn out to be as awesomely innovative and useful as a Wiimote -- Nintendo has proven themselves smarter than the gaming cognoscenti before, and they just might do it again with this piece of gear.

But, on the other hand, when I try to actually come up with a single use for the Wii Vitality Sensor in a game, I draw a total blank. How about you? Is there any game that you think needs a Vitality Sensor? And if so, how would you use it?
 
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Re: Nintendo Wii & DS News

Sounds like yet another useless thing to me. If Nintendo decided to make some real game consoles again, let me know.
 
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Re: Nintendo Wii & DS News

I can only guess they'll be using this with fitness and exercise games.
 
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I think they've done enough accessories already. They should focus on making good games.
 
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From G4:

Shock! Nintendo Has 'No Plans' For Wii Price Cut
Posted by Patrick Klepek - Tuesday, June 09, 2009 11:50 AM



In news that should surprise no one, Nintendo has reiterated -- for the millionth time, it feels like -- that the company has no plans to introduce a price cut for Wii in the foreseeable future. Nintendo president Satoru Iwata deflected suggestions of a price cut for their still-popular console in an E3 interview with CNBC.

"Right now, we have no plans at all about a price cut," said Iwata, commenting on declining Wii sales in recent months. "We are going to start launching the stronger software in the later half of the year — and we are confident [we will] regain the momentum."

Declining Wii sales, however, are still leaps and bounds over what Sony and Microsoft have been able to accomplish. If anyone needs a price cut, it's them! Or is Wii's price really keeping someone at bay?
 
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From G4:

Nintendo Scraps New Hardware If It Does Not Continue Momentum
Posted by Brian Leahy - Tuesday, June 09, 2009 9:54 AM



Would you believe that Nintendo has completed new hardware, but decided to scrap the project and opt not to release a new product? Would you believe that it has done this several times? You should, because Satoru Iwata just revealed that Nintendo has done this in the past.

“In the history of Nintendo, there are several such examples," Iwata says. "But when we are launching new hardware, the most important is thing is to sustain the momentum. If introducing new hardware won’t do anything to do that, well…"

Apparently, this included at least one handheld that was completed in the past three years, but the DSi was what was released. The DSi, which has sold over 1 million units since its launch, has obviously continued the momentum of the DS platform.

What I'm curious about is if any of the new hardware represented a new platform or just modifications like the DS Lite and DSi.

Some of these scrapped projects could include the rumored HD Wii, which was thought to be queued up for a possible reveal at E3 2009. Would you have purchased an HD Wii? What if it only upscaled games and Wii titles were still made with SD graphics?
 
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From G4:

Nintendo President Satoru Iwata Expected Competitors' Motion Controls Last Year
Posted by Raymond Padilla - Wednesday, June 10, 2009 10:05 AM



While much of the mainstream press at E3 2009 were surprised by Microsoft's Project Natal and Sony's unnamed motion controller (that totally looks like a [censored] toy), it was no surprise to Nintendo. In fact, the company was wondering what took its competitors so long. In an interview with Gamasutra, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata said:

"I'd like to say to them, 'Welcome to the motion-control world!' To tell the truth, I expected them to come up with stuff like this last year. So in my mind they’re later than expected. We are happy that it is now becoming an industry standard. However, we still have no idea about when their products will be available, or how much they will cost, or what sort of software they will be used with."

I heard rumblings that Microsoft and Sony were considering motion controls two years ago. I heard a bunch of rumors that Microsoft was planning to show something at E3 2008. So like Iwata, I was surprised that it took this long.

While both control schemes are aimed at reaching a broader audience -- similar to how the Nintendo Wii snagged so many mainstream consumers -- I doubt either will make the impact of the Wii. While both are technically impressive, they're also coming late to the dance. The cost of and marketing behind these new control schemes will also be critical. Even if both devices had mainstream-friendly prices (which I doubt) and were backed by brilliant marketing (which I also doubt), I'd bet that the numbers they bring to the installed bases of the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 will be a fraction of the Wii's.


Too little? I wouldn't say that; the tech is pretty cool. Too late? Yeah, probably.

Do you ladies and gents thing Project Natal and Sony's motion controller will have a big impact? Keep in mind that I'm not talking about the enthusiast audience. Will it be enough to draw in the mainstream crowd? Or does the Wii have a stranglehold on that market?
 
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From G4:

Nintendo Plans To Bring The DS To Japanese Schools
Posted by Stephen Johnson - Wednesday, June 10, 2009 8:14 AM


Read more: http://g4tv.com/thefeed/blog/post/696397/Nintendo-Plans-To-Bring-The-DS-To-Japanese-Schools.html#ixzz0I43BePGs&C



Lucky school children in Japan are soon to have the Nintendo DS added to their curriculum. Nintendo is working with Sharp System Products to bring a modified handheld, the Nintendo DS Classroom, to junior high and high school students in Japan by February 2010.

The DS will feature "around 60 applications covering kanji, math, civics, physics, and history," and will allow students to take tests, do assignments, and hook up to the teacher's DS through wi-fi in order to receive real-time feedback on their work. This is all, presumably, part of Nintendo's master plan to integrate their products into every facet of life and eventually take over the earth with iconic characters and innovative game control systems.

I don't like the idea of the DS being used in schools. First, because the thing is pretty expensive, and unless there's some sort of subsidizing of low income people, it wouldn't work, but also because the DS is fun. Maybe it's a bad idea to mix up the fun of video game playing with the work of school. And then there's the cheating. How fast would students start using the Pictochat feature of the DS to send one another answers to tests as well as crude drawings of wangs? What do you think? Would you like school better if you could take classes on your DS?
 
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From G4:

Sony And Microsoft Using Motion-Sensing Technology Rejected By Nintendo?
Posted by Jake Gaskill - Wednesday, June 10, 2009 5:01 PM



When it comes to motion-controlled gaming, Sony and Microsoft are obviously playing catch up with Nintendo. Even though both companies unveiled new motion-sensing technologies at E3 2009 last week, neither technology is expected to be available to consumers any time soon. If that wasn’t bad enough, it seems that Sony and Microsoft will also be playing catching up using Nintendo’s sloppy seconds.

While speaking with the Financial Times, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata said that Nintendo considered but ultimately rejected the camera-based technologies that Sony and Microsoft are using for their motion-controlling devices in favor of the Wii’s accelerometer-based controls. For as harsh as this sounds, Nintendo's decision most likely had more to do with the Wii's limited graphics capabilities than any serious issue with the camera-based motion control system.

In fact, Sony president Kazuo Hirai echoed this sentiment when he cited the PS3’s processing power as the reason why its camera-based system is able to outperform Nintendo’s motion technology. Microsoft’s Project Natal is even more ambitious than Sony’s system, since it does away with a controller entirely. Of course, it’ll be a while before we have any real sense of how the two technologies will fair in the marketplace, especially since pricing is still one of the major unknowns at this point.

Could Sony and Microsoft be sitting on the [insert your favorite movie-based team of ragtag kids no one wanted who go on to win a championship] of motion-sensing technology?
 
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From G4:

Nintendo "Would Do Something Different" With Netflix If It Came To The Wii
Posted by Brian Leahy - Friday, June 12, 2009 11:17 AM

In an interview with Kotaku, Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime spoke briefly about the possibility of Netflix integration on the Wii, dropping only a clue.

"We have nothing to announce [as] a partnership from an online streaming standpoint," Fils-Aime said. "Should we go down that path we will do something different than our competitors."

I'm very curious about what "something different" would be in this situation... Isn't streaming Netflix's instant library to the console pretty much exactly the type of functionality you'd want? Could we see Mii integration like Microsoft's upcoming party watching?

Will we get Wiimote-based minigames on top of the stream? Actually, I could see some level of interactivity coming to the Wii for Netflix as a possible competitor to Blu-Ray's BD Live. Wait, does anyone even use BD Live?

How would you do Netflix on the Wii?
 
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From G4:

PSA: GameStop Selling Wii Motion Plus For $25 (Spoiler: It's Only $20)
Posted by Brian Leahy - Monday, June 15, 2009 5:13 PM



GameStop appears to be selling Wii Motion Plus for $24.99 when its MSRP is $19.99. Is this a computer error or conscious attempt to gouge Wii owners on the new peripheral?

Luckily, GameStop is correctly pricing the Tiger Woods PGA Tour 10 Wii Motion Plus bundle at $59.99, which is, of course, the only way to buy Wii Motion Plus.

If you got hit for $25 buying Motion Plus at a GameStop, I suggest you head in and get your $5 back. You'll probably end up putting it down for a game reservation that comes with an exclusive in-game power-up that doesn't even activate correctly...

A quick call to my local GameStop confirmed that this isn't an online-only error. The company is actually over-charging for the peripheral. Lame.
 
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From Yahoo:

Is this the most dangerous Wii accessory so far?
by Mike Smith



June 23 3:08 P.M.

Way back in 2006, there was a spate of media reports about new Wii owners damaging their TVs, prized furniture, elderly relatives and/or pets after losing their grip on a remote while playing Wii Sports Bowling. Nintendo, to its credit, took the problem in hand, first mailing out beefier remote wriststraps to all owners, then following that up with rubberized grips for even more security. But this bowling ball controller, from third-party firm CTA Digital, could take the cake.

Says the official web site: "This Wii peripheral is the first of its kind to be fashioned after an authentic bowling ball, turning your wii-mote into the optimum performance-enhancing accessory! To operate simply ...plug the three holes with your fingers, as you would a bowling ball. Lastly, make sure to wear the wrist strap securely around your wrist, this will prevent the ball from accidently flying out of your hand...Even though holding and bowling the ball is so like-like[sic] to the actual sport, never, ever release the ball!!"

Uh, yeah. Nothing bad could ever come of this.

What's that, CTA Digital? "CTA Digital, Inc. is not and will not be held responsible for any damages resulting from the bowling ball attachment," you say? No, we're not too surprised to hear that. We haven't actually tried out this wrecking ball of a peripheral, but we're dying to...just as soon as we find a TV that we dislike sufficiently.

NB: Since this article was published, the wording on the ball's catalog page has changed. Quotes referenced in this article may not reflect the current wording on CTA Digital's web site.
 
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From G4:

The Black Wii Amazes With Blackness

Posted Today 7:48 AM - By Stephen Johnson



The Wii will probably never be evil, but the black version of Nintendo's system is a step in the right direction. The onyx colored system is coming out in Japan on August 1st. No word yet on when/if it will come out in the States, but one thing is for sure: Glossy, black video game consoles attract chicks with tattoos and personality problems... oh, wait, they mostly just attract dust and fingerprints.
 
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From G4:

Black Wii Not Coming To U.S.

Posted 30 minutes ago - By Stephen Johnson

Remember that black Wii I told you about a few year ago? And all the commenters were like, "OMG! Want!" well, sorry folks. Unless you go to Japan, you can not haz. Nintendo told game daily that it has "no plans to have other colors of Wii in the U.S."

In a way this is bad news, but in a way, it's the best news. Sometimes difficulty = coolness; if you travel to Japan and bring back a black Wii, you will be the envy of all your gaming friends. This level of coolness would be impossible if all it took was a trip to Best Buy, right?

Another thought: If these sell really well in Japan, you might see them brought to the states in some possible future. Just because Nintendo doesn't have plans now, doesn't mean it won't have plans later, see? So keep your fingers crossed! Do you think a black Wii would enhance the image of the system among "hardcore" gamers?
 
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From G4:

Wii Firmware 4.1 Released, Changes Currently Unknown

Posted 4 hours 24 mins ago - By Patrick Klepek



Your Wii is glowing blue for a reason; Nintendo has released a firmware update for their console, though it's currently unclear what the firmware update actually does. A 4.1 update was released for Japanese Wii owners earlier this month patching up Wii Sports Resort, however, leading most to believe it's the same update for the rest of us.

I've contacted Nintendo for clarification -- if there are any revelations, I'll let you know.
 
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From G4:

Nintendo Sales Down 40%, Blames Weaker Software Lineup

Posted 4 hours 1 min ago - By Patrick Klepek



Though Nintendo has continued to outperform the rest of the industry in the midst of a worldwide economic recession, the company isn't racking up the same blockbusters numbers it used to. Nintendo's first fiscal quarter ended this past June and the company reported a lack of blockbuster software sales resulted in a 60% decrease in company profit and a 40% decrease in sales.

In the same period last year, Nintendo launched Super Smash Bros. Brawl, Mario Kart Wii and Wii Fit, each of which experienced stellar sales worldwide. Nintendo has had a tough time repeating this success in the months since, with Wii Music failing to catch on in the same fashion as its brethren and Punch-Out!! remaining a niche hardcore pleaser.

Hardware sales took a hit, as a result. Nintendo sold 2.23 million Wiis in the last quarter, compared to 5.17 million in the same period last year. DS was down, too, despite the successful launch of DSi. Nintendo pushed 5.97 million pieces of portable hardware in the last quarter (3.65 of which were DSi machines), compared to 6.94 last year.

Nintendo's software lineup for the rest of the year largely consists of the recently launched Wii Sports Resort and the upcoming New Super Mario Bros. and Wii Fit Plus. Suddenly, each of these games has taken on a new token of importance.
 
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From G4:

DS Getting Piano Peripheral

Posted 5 hours 42 mins ago - By Stephen Johnson



Namco Bandai's Easy Piano application for the Nintendo DS aims to teach you how to play the piano and have fun while you do it. It comes with a full octave keyboard peripheral, which is almost definitely a harbinger of piano peripherals to come, if the music game genre continues to move units. Easy Piano is scheduled for release in November 2009 in Europe and PAL regions.

The various game modes will "guide players’ first steps in the piano world and offer the chance for more practiced players to play all-time classics." So, yeah, basically a game/tutorial that teaches basic piano, along with a mode that allows the recording of some and some basic sequencing.

I can play a little keyboard myself, so I'm really hoping this game comes out in the United States. I want to see whether it's actually a useful way to learn piano or just a cheap gimmick. Judging from the picture above, it looks like the latter: That keyboard is tiny, perhaps too tiny to be useful at all. But, I guess for total keyboard-newbs, you could learn some basic musical concepts with this setup.

What do you think? Is it possible to learn music using music games?
 
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From G4:

DSi Gets Facebook Photo Sharing... In Japan

Posted Today 7:47 AM - By Stephen Johnson



Among the many blockbuster announcements at E3 this year was the word that an update to the Nintendo's DSi's firmware would hook Nintendo's handheld up with facebook, so that photos could be shared. That update is now live...at least in Japan.

Firmware, v1.4 allows for picture-sharing on facebook as well as faster image display on the DSi... although some web outlets report that it is also blocking flashcards that home-brew fans use to alter their DSi's. No word yet on when it will hit The States, but I hope it's soon.

Now that both Nintendo and Microsoft are working on integrating their systems with the popular social networking sites of the say, I gotta wonder what Sony's plans are in this regard -- as far as I know, nothing has been announced about connectivity between the PS3 or PSP and any existing social network.

Do you care about connecting your online social networking with your video gaming? I'm waiting for the day when everything can be collected into one, single place, so any of my Facebook, MySpace or Friendster(ha!) friends who are currently playing their PlayStation 3s or 360s are immediately available in one list on both game systems and my PC. Wouldn't that be hot?
 
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From G4:

Nintendo Discusses Two Weeks Of No Virtual Console

Posted 41 minutes ago - By Patrick Klepek



For the past two weeks, Nintendo's Virtual Console has seen no updates. Gamers are often upset over Nintendo's selections for Virtual Console, but there's a better case to be made on their part when no games show up. Fans asked Nintendo's customer service department for an answer.

"We understand your concern about the lack of service on the VC as of late," said an unnamed representative to The Gamebag, which prompted the controversy and me reaching out to Nintendo. "Due to sales numbers being far greater recently on WiiWare than on Virtual Console, we have decided to steer in the direction of WiiWare."

That's a surprisingly honest answer, perhaps even a true one. Nintendo's official statement, delivered by Nintendo of America's senior director of public relations Charlie Scibetta, is less clear about the company's position on the scheduling of games for the different services and whether there has been a substantial change in direction.

“Each week Nintendo makes available a mix of Virtual Console, WiiWare and Nintendo DSiWare games," said Scibetta. "Combined, these services currently provide gamers with hundreds of fun and interesting downloadable games to choose from. There is no preset schedule as to how many games will become available in a given week, but many more are on the way via all of these digital delivery systems.”

Nintendo's new statement does little to clarify the situation, except to say that more Virtual Console games are coming, but Nintendo isn't ready to promise there will be new ones every week.
 
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From G4:

A TellTale Games Developer Says The Wii Is Less Powerful Than An iPhone

Posted 1 hour 17 mins ago - By Stephen Johnson



The Wii gets no respect in the gaming world. Sure, Nintendo is basically printing money with the thing, but hardcore gamers have all but abandoned it, and now a developer with Telltale games (Tales of Monkey Island) has apparently compared the console unfavorably with the iPhone.

"Keep in mind that the Wii is just not a powerful console.
An iPhone is much more powerful than a Wii, even," posted Yare, who is apparently an interface developer at TellTale, on the TellTale message board.

If Yare is a employee, he/she should know. Monkey Island is out as episodic content on the Wii. In response to general complaints about Monkey Island's frame-rates and audio, Yare posted:

"The voices and textures are the way they are because we're limited to 40 megs for WiiWare titles. The PC versions of our games are usually 150+ megs, and most modern games range anywhere from one to ten gigabytes or more. Talk to Nintendo about this one.”

If the Wii is underpowered, I don't think that's an excuse for putting out lousy games. It's not impossible to make good games with an underpowered machine. I still play Nethack, and that game came out in 1987! Any system contains limitations, and truly great game-makers work within those limitations to make the best possible product.

Still, "The Wii is less powerful than an iPhone." Ouch. That burns!
 
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From G4:

Nintendo's Satoru Iwata Knows The Company's E3 2009 Press Conference Sucked

Posted 4 hours 30 mins ago - By Raymond Padilla



Nintendo knows its E3 2009 press conference sucked (okay, I'm paraphrasing). In my E3 2009 press conference report card, I ranked it behind Microsoft and Sony. According to Nintendo Everything, Nintendo president and CEO Iwata has admitted to the company's press-conference shortcomings:

"As for the media briefing at E3, of course we had many internal discussions after that. Honestly speaking, none of us at Nintendo thought that our presentation at E3 was as good as it could have been. It is apparent that we could not fully convey the charm of our products. In the past, Wii Sports and Wii Fit were naturally able to convey their appeal on stage since it was something no one had ever seen or imagined before. People seemed to capture the appeal of Wii Sports instantly and although there was some initial confusion with Wii Fit, its appeal did get through to the audience afterwards.

This year, however, with the New Super Mario Bros. Wii, four people lined up with Wii Remotes was not a scene that no one had ever seen. Those who actually had the chance to play understood how the game would change with four people playing simultaneously, but we could not address that fun sentiment at the media briefing. Now we strongly feel that we need to look into finding a better way to demonstrate the products’ appeal better at E3 in these times where more people are watching it online via web cast not only in the U.S. but all around the world, than the number of audience who actually watch it in the theatre. In that sense, we learned many lessons from this year’s E3 show."

Essentially, Iwata said, "Yes, our presser sucked. With so many people watching on television and the Internet, we need to stop sucking."

What do you think of Iwata's criticism? If he on the mark? Is he being too hard on the company? Do you think the company will hold a better presser in 2010 than 2009? Share your thoughts, kind citizens of TheFeed.
 
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From G4:

Wii Price Cut Coming This Month?

Posted 2 hours 21 mins ago - By Stephen Johnson



A scan of a Toys R Us advertisement indicates that Nintendo is cutting the price of the Wii by $50. If the scan is genuine, and not an internet hoaxer's stunt, it indicates that a Wii bundled with Wii Sports and a nunchuk/wiimote combo will cost $199 beginning the week of September 27th, the same week as Tokyo Game Show.

It doesn't' take a genius to foresee a price-cut announcement in Japan that week, specifically, look for Nintendo to announce the price-cut at the Kyoto Cross Media Experience 2009. As you might expect, Nintendo has no official comment.

When will video game companies realize that their grand announcement plans will always be thwarted by newspaper circulars from Toys R Us and Best Buy?

Anyway, what do you think: Is $200 a good price for a Wii?
 
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From G4:

Wii Price Drop May Be Announced Friday, In Effect Monday

Posted 3 hours 22 mins ago - By Stephen Johnson

According to Internet Website engadget's unnamed sources: The Wii's price will be dropped by $50, beginning this Monday. Nintendo is reportedly set to make the announcement this Friday, and begin selling the Wii for cheaper at the beginning of next week. That means this weekend is, officially, the worst time ever to buy a Wii.

If this is true, it will be interesting to see how Nintendo will "spin" the news to retailers and to the public. I imagine a lot of people will rush to the store this weekend to pick up a cheap Wii if the price-drop is announced, only to leave Best Buy in tears when it doesn't apply to them!
 
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From G4:

Nintendo Confirms Wii Price Drop To $199

Posted 1 hour 14 mins ago - By Raymond Padilla



Showing that it has a great sense of humor, Nintendo confirmed a price drop for the Nintendo Wii in the middle of Sony's Tokyo Game Show 2009 press conference. The press release went out while most game writers were paying attention to Sony's announcements in Japan. The company said:

"Beginning Sunday, Sept. 27, the world’s most popular home video game system gets even more appealing. On that day, Nintendo’s suggested retail price for its record-setting Wii drops by $50 to $199.99. The new $199.99 Wii price point delivers the full iconic Wii gaming experience, including the motion-sensing Wii Remote controller, Nunchuk controller and Wii Sports software, and furthers Nintendo’s mission to expand the gaming universe by making video games accessible to more and more consumers."

While this move was expected after a few weeks of rumors and leaks, the timing was amusing. It's nice to see major game companies engaging in frat-like tactics.
 
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From G4:

Want Wii HD? Nintendo Says It Wants To Move 'In Step With Technology'

Posted Today 10:49 AM - By Patrick Klepek



There's been much talk about when Nintendo will introduce hardware with support for high-definition resolutions. It's been commonly called the "Wii HD." Nintendo has kept the focus on interface and control with the Wii, but in a recent roundtable interview covered by Industry Gamers, designer Shigeru Miyamoto suggested Nintendo may be moving closer to a HD console.

"I don't think there's anything wrong with pretty graphics, and if I'm a consumer that has an HDTV, I'd want to be able to play my games with nice graphics too," said Miyamoto. "And I think as we've seen the penetration rates for HDTV increase, we're going to see video games and Nintendo's games move along in step with the progression of technology."

In other words: yes, Nintendo will produce an HD console. When? There's still no rush.
 
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From G4:

Nintendo Working On A New Mario Game

Posted 5 hours 42 mins ago - By Stephen Johnson



You know actor Charles Martinet as the real voice of Mario (Sorry, Captain Lou), and recently Martinet dropped an earth-shaking, OMG! bombshell on his twitter. Nintendo is working on a new Mario game! He posted:

"Mama Mia!!!! I'm going to Seattle this week to record a new Mario game! Woo Hooo!!!!! I can hardly wait!!!!1"

And later:

"Awesome new Mario Game! And it's not NSMB Wii, and it's not Galaxy 2, but it's going to be crazy fun!"

So there you have it. Nintendo is actually working on a Mario game! "Steve," you may be saying to yourself, "Isn't Nintendo always working on a Mario game? Like, wouldn't its stockholders rise up in revolt at the revelation that Nintendo was not working on a Mario game at all times?" To which I reply: "Shhhhh... sleeep."

Obviously when we know more about this game, we'll tell you.
 
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From G4:

Nintendo To Release New Larger-Screened DSi In Japan?

Posted 59 minutes ago - By Jake Gaskil

Gamers in Japan might be getting their hands on a larger version of the Nintendo DSi sometime later this year, if reports from the Japan’s Nikkei news service end up being true. The new DSi is said to sport screens that are four inches bigger than the current DSi, a design move that Nintendo hopes will expand its user base to include/accommodate older users.

Famitsu (via Kotaku) contacted Nintendo about the story, and received the following reply:

“We conducted no interviews. We believe it was an article based on conjecture.”

It’s curious that Nintendo didn’t just issue the standard, “We don’t comment on rumor/speculation,” but until official word is handed down, keep your pre-order money in your pocket.

Then again, as Andriasang points out, Nikkei’s previous “conjecture”-based reports include Xbox 360 price drops, Super Mario Galaxy 2 and Wii Fit Plus reveals, a “variety of non-game services for Xbox 360 and Wii,” and breaking the story about the original DSi last year. They’re bound to wrong one of these times…right?
 
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From G4:

Pachter Predictions: Netflix Streaming Coming To Wii Next Year

Posted 24 minutes ago - By Jake Gaskill

Yesterday’s announcement that Sony will begin offering PlayStation 3 users the chance to stream Netflix content starting next month was obviously welcomed news to owners of Sony’s big black box. Xbox 360 owners could care less, since they’ve been enjoying Netflix for almost a year. All the while Nintendo Wii owners are left asking, “Hey, Lama. Where’s our Netflix deal?” That is of course assuming Wii owners are greatly interested in Netflix streaming (and 1980s golf comedies).

If you are a Netflix subscriber, and you don’t see yourself investing in a PS3, an Xbox 360, or any other device capable of letting you watch streaming Netflix movies on your TV, then listen up. As GamesIndustry.biz reports, the Punxsutawney Phil of gaming, Michael Pachter, predicts a Netflix streaming deal “will be announced for the Wii in the next 12 months."

Considering that Sony was able to find a way around Microsoft’s exclusivity deal with Netflix (disc vs. dashboard integration), it’s not unreasonable to think that sometime in the next year, Nintendo will decide to formulate a deal of its own. Although, I’d be surprised if Nintendo jumped on the Netflix-streaming train before it has an HD-capable console. Granted, the majority of movies and shows available on Netflix aren’t in HD, but that gap will only continue to shrink, and as it does, so too will the justifiability of offering a streaming service like Netflix on a console. Does this mean that I think Nintendo will be releasing its long-rumored Wii-HD next year? Maybe…or maybe not? Cryptic predictions (cryptictions?) FTW!

How many Wii owners out there think they won’t have some kind of access to Netflix streaming by next year? And do you think the Wii is a capable enough console for it?
 
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Re: Nintendo Wii & DS News

From G4:

Nintendo Unveils New DS: The DSi LL

Posted Today 7:59 AM - By Stephen Johnson



It was a rumor earlier in the week, and but now it's official: Nintendo is releasing another model of the DSi with a bigger screen. The Nintendo DSi LL has a slightly larger than 4" screen, and it also features a wider viewing angle than previous iterations of the DS, that means family and friends can gather 'round and check out your game as you play. Other than that, it includes pretty much the same features as the standard DSi.

In Japan at least, the DSi LL will give users a fat, pen-like stylus for home as well as the "built-in" stylus. It comes bundled with DSiWare software including a dictionary and two DSiWare Brain Age games. It will also come in a lovely copper colored shells as well as white and a mature-looking burgundy.

The Nintendo DSi LL will be on sale November 21, 2009 in Japan for 20,000 yen, (around $220.) No word yet on when it's coming out in North America, but a European release is expected next year. I'll let you know when I hear of an American release, of course. Below is a picture of the device that clearly indicates how much bigger the screen is than a DSi:



If you'd like to poke around Nintendo's official site for the device, please do, but it's in Japanese.

Is Nintendo onto something here? Is bigger better when it comes to handhelds? Who, exactly, is the audience for this device? It seems to me that a larger DSi in such muted colors may be geared toward an older, non-gamer audience. That thing is the size of tablet PC! So maybe the true competition for the DSi LL is actually the iPhone as opposed to the PSP. What do you think?
 
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Re: Nintendo Wii & DS News

From G4:

Nintendo Reports Declining Profits

Posted 4 hours 17 mins ago - By Stephen Johnson



A just-released Nintendo financial statement reveals that the company's profits fell more than 50% for the last six months. Nintendo reported a profit of 69.5 billion yen ($767.8 million) for the six-months that ended September 30, compared with 144.83 billion yen for the same period last year. That's gotta hurt.

Sales were down as well, falling 34 percent in the same period. Nintendo said it sold 5.75 million consoles during the first half of its fiscal 2009, down from the 10 million units that consumers purchased for the same period last year.

The reasons for the drop in profits are many: Nintendo blames weak sales of the Wii, as well as a lower profit margin caused by the recent Wii price cut, and those ever-bedeviling fluctuations in world currency. Another possible reason: A dip in Nintendo DS sales caused, presumably, by the everyone-has-to-have iPhone, and Apple's positioning of the device as a game console as well as a telephone and GPS system. Could the announcement of a new version of the DS be an attempt to combat Apple eating into Nintendo's sales?

Nintendo sees a brighter future ahead, of course, predicting strong holiday sales based on its lineup of first-party games.

Back in September, Adam Sessler sat down with Nintendo head Reggie Fils-Aime to discuss the Wii price cut, and tried to get a little info on Nintendo's financial health. Check it out below: It's really interesting to watch Reggie answer some pretty hard-hitting questions -- he's officially confident, but he must have known what was happening at that point:


http://g4tv.com/videos/41651/Nintendos-Reggie-Fils-Aime-on-the-Wii-Price-Drop/
 
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Re: Nintendo Wii & DS News

From G4:

Nintendo Admits Losing Momentum With Wii, Blames Lacking Games

Posted 3 hours 11 mins ago - By Patrick Klepek



Wii continues to sell ahead of its competition, but even the Wii has seen a notable drop in monthly sales in the past year. Nintendo president Satoru Iwata has blamed the company's inability to roll out compelling software to maintain momentum in the past and Japanese newspaper Sankei Shimbun (as translated by Andriasang) said that remains the biggest stumbling block for Nintendo.

"We were unable to show a new game to become 'the next thing.'" said Iwata about Nintendo's latest earnings report. "In the game market, once you've lost the momentum, it takes time to recover."

Sales for Wii fell 43% compared to the past year, compelling Nintendo to reduce its Wii sales forecast for the year from 26 million to 20 million.
 
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Re: Nintendo Wii & DS News

From G4:

Nintendo Confirms New DS, Arrives In North America, Europe Early Next Year

Posted 1 hour 41 mins ago - By Patrick Klepek

Another tweak to the DS is coming to Japan next month, sporting a larger screen, stylus and pre-installed DSiWare software. It's coming here, too. Nintendo of America has confirmed this new DS, to be called Nintendo DSi LL in Japan and Nintendo DSi XL in North America and Europe, will arrive sometime in the first quarter of 2010 (sometime in January, February or March).

The company released a brief official statement to me about the announcement:

“A new iteration of the Nintendo DSi system will be introduced in Japan on November 21, 2009. To be known as Nintendo DSi LL in Japan, and as Nintendo DSi XL in North America and Europe, it will offer a screen 93% larger than the current Nintendo DS Lite with a better view angle, an additional longer touch screen stylus, and pre-installed Nintendo DSiWare software. The new version will arrive in North America and Europe in the first quarter of calendar year 2010.”

I still haven't picked up a DSi, but the lack of access to DSiWare continues to bug me. It's unclear whether the larger screens will prove useful for a youngster such as myself (as the new DS is aimed at older audiences), but perhaps this will drive down the price of the DSi a bit.
 
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Re: Nintendo Wii & DS News

From G4:

Nintendo's Reggie Fils-Aime Makes The Case For The Nintendo DSi XL

Posted 2 hours 42 mins ago - By Patrick Klepek



There's another DS coming early next year. It doesn't add any significant features that the DS or DSi doesn't have, but it does feature a much larger screen. Why would someone want to pick up a DSi XL, then? Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime made the case for the DSi XL during the BMO Capital Markets "Digital Entertainment Conference" this morning.

"Its [DSi XL] purpose isn't just to make things bigger for the player, but to attract observers, as well," said Fils-Aime. "With an improved view angle, it begins to mimic the extended appeal of Wii. As more people watch the action, more want to get involved and in the process, new players are born."

It's the social DS. Would you use one?
 
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Re: Nintendo Wii & DS News

From G4:

Nintendo Makes Good On Downloadable Demo Promise, Rolls Out WiiWare Demos

Posted 4 hours 51 mins ago - By Patrick Klepek



PlayStation Network doesn't require demos for downloadable games like Xbox Live Arcade does, but most games tend to have one, even if it arrives a week or two later. WiiWare, however, remains a complete gamble. It's often difficult to find coverage of most WiiWare games, potentially moving WiiWare games out of impulse-buying territory. I know that's happened to me before. Luckily, that might no longer be an issue, as Nintendo started rolling out WiiWare demos today.

Right now, there are only five WiiWare demos available for a handful of already released games. It's unclear whether demos are going to become part of Nintendo policy going forward, but the amount of interest gamers pay to this suite of demos will probably play a factor.

Here are the five games: Bit.Trip Beat, Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles: My Life As A Dark Lord, NyxQuest: Kindred Spirits, World of Goo and Pokemon Rumble. Nintendo made some good choices, too, as those are all fantastic examples of quality, ignored WiiWare games. Get downloading!
 
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Re: Nintendo Wii & DS News

From G4:

Metroid Prime Series Isn't Over, DS Version Teased As Real Possibility

Posted 2 hours 37 mins ago - By Patrick Klepek



Nintendo and Team Ninja's Metroid: The Other M is expected to be our next adventure with Samus Aran, but does this indicate a brand-new direction for the franchise? Retro Studios is responsible for bringing Metroid into the third dimension with the Metroid Prime series, but it seemed Metroid Prime was done after after Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, with both Retro and Samus moving on.

...or not.

"We are always planning to make new games in the Metroid Prime series," said Metroid Prime producer Kensuke Tanabe to the Official Nintendo Magazine in the UK. "Depending on the timing and the situation, we cannot deny the possibility of realising it on DS or DSi."

After Metroid Prime: Hunters, though, I'm not so sure I'd like to see it appear on DS.
 
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Re: Nintendo Wii & DS News

From G4:

Next Legend Of Zelda To Have "New Structure," But Nintendo Keeping Quiet

Posted 1 hour 21 mins ago - By Patrick Klepek



New Super Mario Bros. Wii may have stuck to a traditional formula, but there's increasing evidence from Nintendo that Link's next adventure will be something fairly new. In addition to firming up support for MotionPlus, designer Eiji Aonuma told Official Nintendo Magazine the "structure" for has changed.

"It is something we used to talk about with Mr [Shigeru] Miyamoto, and he and I agree that if we are following the same structure again and again, we might not be able to give long time Zelda fans a fresh surprise," he said. "So we have been trying something new in terms of the structure of the Wii version of the new Zelda game this time."

There are a couple of Zelda constants: exploring Hyrule Field, saving Princess Zelda, the presence of Ganon somewhere in the plot and rescuing the Tri-Force. Any bets on what Nintendo's ditching?
 
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Re: Nintendo Wii & DS News

From G4:

Nintendo Mentions DS Successor (With A Motion Sensor?), Zelda Wii This Year

Posted Today 12:21 AM - By Patrick Klepek



Nintendo appears to have made the first comment about a successor to their popular DS.

Speaking to Japanese newspaper Asahi Shimbun, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata (as first translated by Siliconera, with clarification from Wired's Chris Kohler over Twitter) mentioned a follow-up to the DS would feature higher-resolution visuals (no surprise) and a motion sensor of some sort.

Iwata did not elaborate on what he meant by a motion sensor and whether that would simply be an extension of the touch screen (i.e. adding touch capabilities to both screens) or literally having a sensor that detected physical movement beyond what the camera on the DSi is capable of. Given the DS remains wildly popular and a consistent seller, the answer to that could be far off.

There was also some brief but important news about the upcoming The Legend of Zelda sequel for Wii. Nintendo leader Shigeru Miyamoto once declared his intentions for The Legend of Zelda to arrive in 2010 but wouldn't promise that'd actually happen. In the Asashi Shimbun piece, however, Iwata mentions the follow-up to Twilight Princess would be released before 2010 is up.

Good news, right?
 
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Re: Nintendo Wii & DS News

From G4:

Nyko Introduces Wii Wand With Built-In Motion Plus Support

Posted 1 hour 41 mins ago - By Jake Gaskill



There’s no doubt that Wii Motion Plus makes the Wii gaming experience infinitely more satisfying and enjoyable than the standard Wiimote. But having to shell out an extra $20 for the attachment on top of the $40 for a remote, and its added clunkyness, are two justifiable gripes.

Enter popular peripheral manufacturer Nyko and their new Wand+, which the company will be showing off at CES 2010.

The controller incorporates Motion Plus into a standard sized Wiimote, but better yet, it’ll only cost you $40. The Wand+ will be available in March.

I guess now it's up to Nintendo to play catch up...with its own technology.
 
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Re: Nintendo Wii & DS News

From G4:

New Zelda Won't Be Released Until It's "Perfect"

Posted Today 1:24 PM - By Jake Gaskill



We know Nintendo plans to release the next Wii installment in its beloved Zelda franchise sometime in 2010. Whether the game will land stateside this year still isn’t known, but thanks to recent comments made by Nintendo’s Reggie Fils-Aimé on Nintendo Week, CVG reports, at least we now know how high Nintendo is setting the bar for the much anticipated title.

"Right now, it’s still in development but the key message that Mr. Aonuma and Mr. Miyamoto are telling us is that it really has to be perfect when it launches. That is what the fans are expecting," said Fils-Aimé.

Well, if fans weren’t expecting an absolutely perfect game before, they certainly are now.
 
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