I had the console now for over a week; I spend over 60 hours to get into its features and games. With this knowledge I have decided to write a review. The WiiU U is Nintendo’s next generation console; I will start the review by dividing it into different sections and explain every one of them, share with you what I experienced and then share my opinion.
The Operative system
A new console means a new operative system, how does this one run? I can already tell you that I am amazed with what this next generation console possibly can do. Since the last patch, it is faster than before. The OS can multithread, meaning you can download games in the background, while you can enjoy your game. Or while playing you can click on the home button and for example access the internet, Miiverse or other applications without shutting down your game. When you are done you simply go back to your game again and continue playing where you left off. This is a feature I have long missed in consoles and thank god they finally added it. Nintendo has replaced the difficult to use friends code system with their new Nintendo Network ID, meaning you can add your friends by username instead of a long and difficult to remember code. This Network ID is your game account both for offline and online usage. The online system has been overhauled, and this time for the better!
Miiverse is one of my favourite features of the console. Every game has its own communities in Miiverse. Let’s say I play Darksiders 2 and press the home button on the controller and go to the Miiverse. Miiverse straight away takes me to the community page of the game I am playing (Darksiders 2 Miiverse community). Now in Miiverse I can share my thoughts about the game. I can ask questions, or share my experience in the form of text input or a drawing. I can draw thanks to the gamepad. If I am stuck in a game, I can simply ask for help and the living community will gladly help out. If it’s a certain achievement or a certain problem I am having, I can take the last screen (the moment you press the home button in the game) as a screenshot and leave that with my post. If I am helping someone but show a spoiler, I can notify it that my post will become a spoiler, so when you browse the community you won’t see straight away all kind of spoilers. Also I can like or cheer a post of others by pressing the “yeah” button. I can keep an overview of what my friends are posting, or follow people similar to how that works in Twitter or Facebook. Your avatar in Miiverse is your Mii that you configured for usage on your Network ID. Miiverse lets you connect to the world. No other console has done this to this extend. It’s fantastic.
The Miiverse and online functionality widens the gaming experience.
The online shop has been overhauled. You control it with the gamepad. This time it’s fantastic. The menu is very clean and well designed. It is easy to access the games you want to download or look into. Your credit details are to the left. The front page has the latest offers and the newest additions. There is an app store as well for special applications. Some demos are available for download to try a game or application out before buying it. This whole new interface makes the eShop a fantastic tool. Users can rate games and apps with stars and there are polls available where you can vote for certain aspects of a game. These community opinions help you decide in whether it is worth buying a game or application or not.
The WiiU has an own online browser. This fantastic tool allows you to browse the internet, any website you desire. The web browser can play videos thanks to HTML5, so if you hate the Youtube app interface, you can just use the browser instead. You can connect to your media server (pc) thanks to the web browser to stream mp4 video format. This last feature has recently been discovered but is not officially been written about.
Thanks to the unique controller, it is possible to take gaming into new heights. I would like to say that the graphic quality on the games, are better so far than on other consoles. The sound is superior and the visuals are crystal clear. When you have a Full HD TV, it’s important to put your TV into game-mode, to get a lag free experience.
So far I bought:
New Super Mario Brothers U
Darksiders 2 and
Tekken Tag Tournament 2.
I can safely say that the games look excellent on the WiiU.
I have downloaded:
Mighty Switch Force Hyper Drive Edition and
Nano Assault Neo.
The controller is the heart of the WiiU. The controller itself is very comfortable to hold in your hands, despite the size. The screen has single touch and responds quick to your moves. The graphical display is excellent on the controller.
With the controller, the way to interact with games and applications has changed. In a game I can for example have the ability to quickly access my inventory or change my weapons without pausing the game, it is directly possible on the game controller, while the game is still running on the TV. In applications such as YouTube or Netflix I can directly see the description and other information of the movie I am watching or browsing. The controller itself has a built in webcam which you can use on the chat application for the WiiU, WiiU Chat. Here you can video chat with your friends on your friends list. The only downside with the controller is the low battery life, but luckily you can charge it up while playing a game with the supplied cable. The controller has a button to control your TV, the WiiU has most, if not all TV’s programmed in to be able to control your TV. Make sure you set this up when you install the WiiU or change it in the setup.
The start menu is controlled by the controller and displayed on it aswell, but can also be displayed on the TV as it was on the Wii. After the system update that we received on day one, the menu is also a clean user experience.
Most games can be played on the controller itself, while another in the room is watching their favourite TV program on the TV.
The WiiU is a next generation console of Nintendo with a strong launch line up and third party support. This console is a warm welcome one in anyone’s home. WiiU offers fantastic online experiences combined with varied gameplay. I would recommend this console to anyone, not only because Nintendo games, but because of the amazing features it offers. Nintendo WiiU is indeed a central media center and has something to offer for everyone.
That sums it up for now.
The Game Mistress