Tech News on G4
Wii U dominates Nintendo's Holiday Showcase
Oct 25, 2012
By John Powell - G4 Canada
At Nintendo’s annual holiday showcase, the word on everyone’s lips and minds was the Wii U. Nintendo’s successor to the popular Wii due in stores on November 18th ruled the floor and conversation at the media event held at the Fifth Grill in downtown Toronto.
When comparing the Wii to the Wii U, the first obvious difference is the graphics. Wii owners who have had to tolerate lower quality when compared to other next generation consoles will be pleased to see the Wii U supports 1080p graphics. The difference is like night and day. As evident in games like Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 and ZombiU on the floor, Nintendo owners will really appreciate the substantial upgrade.
For those who might have thought all the Wii U GamePad does is offer a second screen, they couldn’t be more wrong. As many of the titles on display proved, the GamePad many times not only enhances the gaming experience but plays a vital role. For example, in ZombiU, players are able to hold the GamePad up to scan areas or to aim a sniper rifle. With the GamePad acting as your inventory backpack, the screen will sometimes fill with static too making it inaccessible until you destroy the radar satellites interfering with the reception. Clever that.
The system’s backward compatible with the Wii peripherals was also clear. In multiplayer games like Nintendo Land, players used the familiar Wii Remote Plus, Nunchuk while others were participating with the GamePad.
Below are detailed highlights of the Wii U games we tested out.
ZombiU: Developer - Ubisoft Montpellier. Publisher – Ubisoft.
A throwback to the traditional survival horror genre, ZombiU seems to be quite creepy and challenging. As multiple survivors and identities, players emerge from a doomsday bunker to explore London and survive a zombie apocalypse foretold by a Welsh astronomer.
The really cool thing about ZombiU is the game is continuous due to the multiple identities. If a player is killed by a zombie that character is dead. The player then takes on the role of a new survivor. The deceased character is now a zombie the player can defeat to retrieve the items and weapons they held previously.
As we wandered through a maze of sewers, we beat down zombies with cricket bats and sniper rifles. Another fiendish aspect we discovered was that our flashlight had to recharge time and time again. Stumbling around in the dark while zombies shuffle closer and closer was very spooky.
Nintendo Land: Developer - Nintendo EAD. Publisher – Nintendo.
Much like Wii Sports, Nintendo Land offers a multitude of multiplayer experiences to show off everything the Wii U is capable of. A theme park providing the starting point, players can challenge each other to all sorts of games. We tested out both the Metroid Blast and Mario Chase in the competitive selections.
In Metro Blast, the player holding the Gamepad flew and operated Samus’s gunship attacking the other players who ran around in battle armour firing back. In Mario Chase, one player in a Mario costume (using the Gamepad) ran for his life while the other players in Toad costumes (and using Wii remotes) attempted to run him down and tackle him.
The pick up and play games were fun and we cannot wait to see more of what Nintendo Land has to offer.
Call of Duty: Black Ops 2: Developer - Treyarch. Publisher – Activision.
The graphical upgrade built into the Wii U was never more evident than with this title. Although only a multiplayer map was on display, the Yemen seaside city map was crisp, clean and very detailed. Every chip in every brick seemed visible and the waves crashing onto the shore was a nice touch. While others concentrated on the screen before them, the player with the Gamepad used that as their screen.
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G4 Canada (formerly TechTV Canada) launched in September 2001. G4 is the one and only television station that is plugged into every dimension of games, gear, gadgets and gigabytes. Owned Rogers Media Inc., the channel airs more than 24 original series. G4 is available on digital cable and satellite. For more information, see www.g4tv.ca.