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Molyneux lays a logic bomb on Nintendo's forehead


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In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 6:50:39 PM PST
But you do. You've expressed multiple Xbot fantasies about me as well as accused me of things that only happened inside of your head. If it only happens in your head then it's a fantasy.

In any case...what changed your mind?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 6:52:18 PM PST
You've always been a N fanboy. A huge one. You only take the Xbot path just to annoy the 'mites.

Posted on Nov 8, 2012 6:58:23 PM PST
In fact here's more talking up the positives of the Wii-U and it's gamepad. Plus from IGN no less!

"There's nothing quite like your first night with a new console. Learning its nuances, acquainting yourself with the feel and weight of the new controller, setting up your profile and browsing through all the menus and apps like a greedy kid in a candy store, claiming each inch and every revelation as your own. It's a feeling that comes but once every few years, and one I honestly didn't think I'd experience with Wii U.

Yet as I cozied up with the shiny, black Deluxe Wii U that arrived in our office yesterday, I was surprised to find these feelings flooding through me. Despite the fact that I've been covering the Wii U since its announcement at E3 2011 - and have intermittently played several of the launch games at various points during their development cycle - I was still taken aback by having the system so fully in my possession for the very first time. There was no chain tethering the GamePad to the television, no crowd of impatient gamers lined up behind me, and best of all, no Wii U spokes-blonde telling me how to hold a controller like this is my first rodeo. Last night the Wii U was all mine, and for all the preview events, hands-on opportunities and early access I've been granted thanks to my mildly insane occupation, I wasn't expecting what I found.

It turns out Wii U isn't simply the over-glorified Wii accessory some cynical part of my subconscious had pre-emptively chalked it up to be. It's the future - of Nintendo, and quite possibly of my beloved hobby as well. And while I've only had a taste, I was pleasantly surprised by our time together. Below you'll find some of my initial thoughts - though keep in mind my hands are still tied in regards to certain aspects of the system and its launch software (so you'll just have to stay tuned to IGN in the coming weeks if you want to know everything... and trust me, you do).

The Lure of Tablet Gaming

Its name invokes a blast from Nintendo's past, yet the Wii U GamePad is anything but a relic. While good in theory, in practice using the tablet controller to so directly interact with the television screen is something of a revolution. With a tap of my finger I was selecting attractions to play in Nintendo Land, interacting with the crowd of Miis that invaded the Land plaza and scrolling my way around the various menus with ease. It feels so different from using a traditional controller or even a Wii remote to interact with the television, directly connecting you to what you're touching rather than necessarily keeping you at a distance. It's not like Kinect either, where there's a sort of gray area between what you do in real life and what happens onscreen. Using the GamePad was so immediate, and so damn convenient, it made me momentarily forget my take-no-prisoners stance on the necessity of buttons (just momentarily).

Since Wii U's day one update is not yet available, even to the press, a host of features still remain somewhat shrouded in mystery. I'm still largely in the dark in regards to Miiverse and online connectivity, and the latter prevented me from checking out Nintendo TVii, one of the features I'm most looking forward to. Still, simply exploring this new method of game and television control was just enough to exemplify the new system's potential. After a night of dedicated gaming, I found myself impressed by the GamePad's ease of use, as well as by the simple yet sharp graphics presented by New Super Mario Bros. U and Nintendo Land.

Say Goodbye to Universal Remotes

Another thing of note from my Wii U play time was how shockingly easy setting up the GamePad for television control is... and how very badly it made me wish I could play my Blu-ray collection on this thing. While I can't yet detail the process, suffice to say that both times I paired the system with a television (at work and then again at home), it was quick and incredibly simple. As many of us know, setting up a universal remote is usually a nightmare of inputting long codes until you finally stumble upon the one that works. With Wii U, all you have to do is select your box's manufacturer (which is likely emblazoned just under the screen) and the system will automatically do the rest. Both times I've gone through this process, the Wii U synced perfectly with my television on the first try, and within a matter of seconds. After just a few moments and a few taps, I was able to adjust the volume and channels and change the input right from my GamePad, as well as power on and off both the system and my television. I very much enjoyed using the tablet controller in this way, more so than I thought I would. Who thought upping the volume on your TV could be so exciting?

It's a small detail, to be sure, but the fact that Wii U now offers the most seamless and convenient way to control a television is still to its credit. Just be aware of the fact that the GamePad seems to have some "people issues." Specifically, I found it had trouble connecting with the system when buried behind my folded legs as I sat on the couch, or when hidden behind Brian Altano a few desks away. It's a controller, in other words, and not a new portable to go slinging around the house. Nintendo President Satoru Iwata gave us some insight into the GamePad's range last month, and his conclusion that it depends on your apartment/house layout seems quite true. But given a reasonably clear path, the lag-free, dual screen connectivity it provides is an absolute joy - though you might want to put any lingering plans of playing Mario out on the patio to bed.

Two Screens Are Better Than One

Speaking of dual screens, herein lies Wii U's greatest draw - and it should come as no surprise. After all, the concept of dual screen gaming was first introduced and perfected by Nintendo with its DS and 3DS lines of portable systems, and the concept is alive and well with Wii U. But despite the similarities, playing with the GamePad feels very different than cuddling up with a 3DS.

We've already seen the GamePad's touchscreen used for fairly standard DS/3DS fare like interactive maps and inventory, and hopefully third party developers will figure out the wide range of other cool and creative uses for the additional screen as well. But maps aside, for the most part the dual screen implementation offered by Wii U is quite distinct. The way the system blends the scope of console gaming with the convenience of dual screens makes for something entirely new. It allows for the personal experience of interacting with something in the palm of your hand without compromising the ability to enjoy a console experience on the big screen. As an ardent supporter of portable gaming, blending these two worlds is a tantalizing prospect, and from what I've seen it's one Nintendo certainly delivers on.

Welcome to a whole new world of gameplay possibilities.

Take Nintendo Land, for example. Moving the GamePad to examine your Land plaza is at first jolting, but once you get the hang of it it's actually really cool. In the plaza, and during some of the games, what you see on the GamePad is essentially what other people in the room see on the big screen, whether you're twisting the controller horizontally to examine some new plaza decoration or spinning it around like mad to make everyone's head swim. The result is a uniquely contrasting experience that brings everyone in the room together while at the same time creating a necessary separation between what the GamePad user is experiencing and what everyone else is. It's something that's never really been done before, and the possibilities in regards to gaming and user interface are promising. The two separate vantage points offered by the television and the GamePad also opens the door for all manner of multiplayer experiments, which seems to be the driving idea behind this Deluxe pack-in.

The level of creativity and polish conveyed by Wii U's various features and software offerings do well to show off Nintendo's years of experience in developing for dual screens, though games like Nintendo Land and New Super Mario Bros. U present more than their fair share of fresh ideas - and I'm only just getting started on both of them. While the concept of dual screen gaming isn't new, it's never been done quite like this.

http://www.ign.com/articles/2012/11/07/i-spent-the-night-with-wii-u"

She spends the night with the Wii-U and is already wishing she could use the Gamepad to control her other consoles, to watch Blurays, and so much more. She talks about how easy it was to setup the Wii-U at the IGN office as a universal remote and then again back at home. I think it says a great deal about a system when someone wants to use something like the Gamepad for a console it wasn't meant to be used with.

Here's a quick video demoing how Netflix runs on the Wii-U and the controller. Looks pretty damn impressive if you ask me, especially with how quickly you can go from the TV to the screen and back.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kMsAVYd3lP4&feature=g-hist

But of course Molyneux made the Fable series so clearly he's a leader when it comes to innovating. Let's just gloss over all the broken promises that were never realized from that series and the fact that the man walked away from his own studio to go make iOS "games".

Posted on Nov 8, 2012 6:59:36 PM PST
I've been called an Xbot and accused of playing 360 exclusives when I don't even have one. Just because I made a joke about Sony.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 7:00:41 PM PST
You're no Xbot. You have a huge "N" tatooed on your forehead.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 7:04:12 PM PST
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Posted on Nov 8, 2012 7:06:57 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 8, 2012 7:10:17 PM PST
Zen Kaizoku says:
IGN: As we look at the upcoming launches of three new consoles, what role do you see them playing in this evolving gaming ecosystem?

Peter Molyneux: Consoles have a very tough time ahead of them. The main issue is that existing console manufacturers are so embedded into the standard retail model in that they spend two years developing a game and then they push it out to retail stores and they're done. They get a huge amount of money and then they move on to the next sequel that takes another two years. That world is gone forever.

Retail is still an important part of the console business, but a lot of consumers are starting to move to things like the iPad and to digital distribution. People don't want to go down to a store and buy something that they can buy online just like they don't want to go down to the store and buy music anymore. The console manufacturers have these two big problems. Their existing business model of development and investing in multiple million dollar development projects and then launching and having this marketing shock and awe campaign. Plus the fact that the technology that's out there in every consumer's hands through tablets and phones is now more accessible than ever, and their consoles are stuck in the basement or they're stuck in the living room. That's hugely challenging for them.

When you look at the number of units that Apple and Android and Motorola are able to make, the power of tablets and phones are going to exceed the power of consoles very soon now. That's a problem for console manufacturers because if they're lucky, over five years they're going to sell 40 or 50 million devices. And if they're very, very lucky they'll eventually -- over a lifetime of consoles -- maybe sell 100 million. That is a drop in the ocean when you compare it to the number of smartphones that are in the market today, and then a tiny drop in the ocean when you compare the number of smartphones that are predicted in the market in the next few years. Just the scaling cost of producing hardware or the penetration of it means that they've got a real pricing issue.

On the plus side, they have a very loyal following. We gamers love our games. We love setting up our gaming locations. We love going into them and inviting our friends. So they have some loyal fans, but they used to be on the cutting edge of innovation. And they just feel like they've fallen back a step now and the people at Apple and Android have taken the crown of innovation from them.

This man's gone insane:

" People don't want to go down to a store and buy something that they can buy online just like they don't want to go down to the store and buy music anymore."

Um, online shopping? Uh, hello?

"Just the scaling cost of producing hardware or the penetration of it means that they've got a real pricing issue."

Kinda like $700 tablets and $500 phones? Oh yeah, consoles are totally expensive compared to the pittance that these other things cost.

"And they just feel like they've fallen back a step now and the people at Apple and Android have taken the crown of innovation from them."

"Crown of Innovation" sort of like the one you no longer possess? Ok then.

This man is as relevant as Michael Pachter, in everything he does and says. He's gone nutters, totally and completely bonkers - Totally irrelevant to the gaming industry at large. And he knows it.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 7:08:53 PM PST
If he's irrelevant, what does that make an anonymous poster on Amazon?

You guys are entitled to your opinions, and the Wii U has some serious potential, but Ninty has burned a lot of people in the last few years, it's tough not to take a 'wait and see' approach.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 7:09:20 PM PST
Do you feel threatened?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 7:10:18 PM PST
Well, everyone picks on poor Flores. He's the Charlie Brown of the VGF, just yesterday I pulled a football out from in front of him when he was going to kick it, totally fell on his back, hilarious!

Anyway, Molyneux has points I guess, similar points that have been brought up here about a dozen times, and that we can have no closure on until we actually get to play it.

And finally,

"*Broadly Land0wned*"

For real? Are you 10?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 7:11:25 PM PST
Is your real name Lucy?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 7:11:45 PM PST
No, but that's a great name.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 7:11:52 PM PST
You're looking at this on the surface instead of reading into the details that are in what I posted. I'm not talking about them gushing over the device but rather the points they make about what the device can do and how it changes the way you play or think about gaming. For example being able to easily setup the Gamepad as a universal remote or how the range is much bigger than Nintendo said for the Gamepad meaning you've got a portable console for around the house.

Molyneux asks questions like "Which screen am I supposed to be looking at?" and those things are taken care of with good game design, something the above article points out. Also she mentions how playing the system in your home is way different than standing in a crowded convention center with the controller tethered to a base station and a line of a 1,000 people behind you wanting to play while the Nintendo rep tries to fill you in on the all details over all the noise.

The same thing happened with the 3DS. When I played it at the store I was impressed but not nearly as much as when I got it home, held it in my hands, and I wasn't standing in a store trying to get used to a new setup during a brief five minute demo.

But hey you want a real developer's opinion on the Wii-U and it's Gamepad? Well then let's talk to a real developer who still actively develops on all consoles and the PC! Mr. Pitchford if you would be so kind:

"The Wii U version features a number of platform-specific features using the unique GamePad controller. The Wii U version was not on display at NYCC 2012, but Gearbox Software President Randy Pitchford told us why his team is excited for the console.

"This is the best controller Nintendo's ever made for making an FPS," Pitchford told Joystiq. "This is the best controller Nintendo has ever given us for playing hardcore games."

Explaining that the WiiPad is "perfect for Aliens," Pitchford reiterated previous statements about the tablet screen's functionality in the game, detailing how it will be used as the motion tracker featured in Aliens, as well as an in-game map screen.

Furthermore, Pitchford explained that the Wii U is exciting for its off-screen play capability, removing the reliance on a secondary device that may be in high demand during family hours.

Although they're wholly different technologies, Pitchford said that similar principles and uses could apply to a linked combination of a PlayStation Vita or PlayStation 3 or with a second screen device like Microsoft's SmartGlass.

"With the Wii U they (Nintendo) committed themselves to this promise. So the link is direct, fast and immediate. Things like SmartGlass and Vita, they appreciate the value of the promise so they're making the promise. But they're not in with such commitment," Pitchford explained.

In the case of the Vita, the handheld system could be used as a controller for PS3 games. SmartGlass functions more as a second screen. There are different performance and usage limitations with both.

"Conceivably there's things you can do on all three without negative impact but because of Nintendo's commitment to it there are something's that could work there that just wouldn't work as well with SmartGlass or with the crossplay between PS3 and Vita," the Gearbox boss added."

http://www.joystiq.com/2012/10/30/aliens-colonial-marines-xenomorphic-perspective-and-wii-u-pote/

Considering Gearbox is doing a hell of a lot more than Molyneux has done in... Well quite some time I'm going to side with him on this one when comes to the potential of the Wii-U. Not only that but they are actually developing a game for the Wii-U instead of putting out iOS "experiments" which involve tapping to break cubes...

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 7:16:17 PM PST
Zen Kaizoku says:
And I've been burned by this man's broken promises one too many times. I'm a gamer, if anything, I've got the single most important position in this industry "the guy who buys the products they sell". Without you, me and anyone who spends money on their hobby these sorts of people would be without jobs. Jobs > hobbies, catch my drift?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 7:18:38 PM PST
Zen Kaizoku says:
No, simply annoyed that this man still has a voice. Flores you seem to be getting a little twisted, you seem to forget that his remarks are about Sony too. *Awaits sudden reversal of opinion*

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 7:19:43 PM PST
Really? Which ones are those?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 7:24:25 PM PST
It's not about ''siding'' with someone, it's about listening to someone's valid opinion with an open mind. He didn't attack this beloved Nintendo piece of plastic, he voiced his opinion based on what he's seen so far, and it wasn't a very far-fetched one.

I think the Wii U has great potential, and the Aliens game is a big one to keep an eye on, but I still want to see it first, and how it innovates, before I'm sold. I want to be sold, I'm a ninty fan, even though I'm still a bit underwhelmed, and blown away (at the same time! ha), by the 3DS.

Gaming has a vicious culture of attacking opinions, and ideas, but I don't think it's merited here.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 7:25:35 PM PST
Zen Kaizoku says:
" Consoles have a very tough time ahead of them. The main issue is that existing console manufacturers are so embedded into the standard retail model in that they spend two years developing a game and then they push it out to retail stores and they're done. They get a huge amount of money and then they move on to the next sequel that takes another two years. That world is gone forever.

Retail is still an important part of the console business, but a lot of consumers are starting to move to things like the iPad and to digital distribution. People don't want to go down to a store and buy something that they can buy online just like they don't want to go down to the store and buy music anymore. The console manufacturers have these two big problems. Their existing business model of development and investing in multiple million dollar development projects and then launching and having this marketing shock and awe campaign. Plus the fact that the technology that's out there in every consumer's hands through tablets and phones is now more accessible than ever, and their consoles are stuck in the basement or they're stuck in the living room. That's hugely challenging for them."

Notice he doesn't specify WHICH consoles he's speaking of. He's basically writing off console gaming, and yes, that includes your beloved Sony.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 7:27:26 PM PST
He still makes a valid point.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 7:34:30 PM PST
I don't think his complaints are valid though because he seems hung up on the whole "I have no idea where to look or why I should be looking here" instead of looking at the game design and how each specific game is making use of the controller. Even then why does a game have to make innovative use of the controller to be good? It seems like he's also missing many of the ideas and points behind the Wii-U and the Gamepad (hence my posting the above articles).

"What's going to incentivize me to move my eyes from the wall to my lap?"

Well with something like Colonial Marines the controller is your motion tracker so you're going to want to keep an eye on it so you know where enemies are coming from. In New Super Mario Bros. U you could be using the controller in place of the TV. ZombiU has you managing your inventory in real time so the controller displays what is in your backpack while on the TV you need to be aware of any zombies creeping up. You get my point; he's asking a broad question that individual games themselves will answer and again not every title is going to make use of the second screen like others. Heck in Assassin's Creed III sometimes the controller screen will give you a different view point for a cut scene or something like that.

I just don't really see any valid points in his thoughts and I think many of the "issues" about being lost between the two screens will be cleared up when you're playing in your own home with your setup instead of a hot crowded convention center where you only get a little bit of time with the device.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 7:35:53 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 8, 2012 7:50:05 PM PST
Zen Kaizoku says:
That can be argued - define "Valid". He talks of spending huge amounts of money you may not recover in console gaming, but the fix to that is creating little time wasters on phones and tablets?

Aside from the obvious like Angry Birds, what strictly IOS or tablet game was hugely successful? Compared to the likes of Mario, God of War, Halo, (Like it or not) COD?

I'll save you some time - None.

What these so called industry professionals don't get, is that these IOS and tablet games are a cancer to the gaming industry as a whole. It's a dead end road, I don't see much of a future for gaming if the supposed next big thing is gaming on your phone.

If anything's going to cause another crash of the industry, it's this nonsense becoming as big as they say it will. Moleneux went from creating some of the greatest games in the industry, founding an entire genre by himself - to making a little time-wasting cube game? Sad.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 8:09:01 PM PST
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Posted on Nov 8, 2012 8:22:20 PM PST
"I struggle to see anything amazing coming out of Nintendo."

Pot, meet kettle.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 8:24:48 PM PST
Did you just race card him?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 8, 2012 8:30:41 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 8, 2012 8:32:20 PM PST
Zen Kaizoku says:
The reason I said it's a cancer, is the revenue that would go to portable gaming is beginning to get eaten away by the Mobile market. So much so that industry analysts predict doom and gloom for the handheld market.

Very, very few Mobile games are worth giving a second look, and are time wasters as I said before. Public transportation? Mobile game. Airport terminal? Mobile game. Doctor's office/DMV? Mobile game. Anytime I want a deeply engrossing video game experience away from home a portable is the way I go.

As for Zynga and Facebook gaming? Waiting for someone to reply to that last message? I'll go play some Mafia Wars or something. But to sit there for hours growing crops and all sorts of nonsense? No. If you've got the time to grow perfect crops in Farmville, you should buy a gaming console. It's a much better use of your time.
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Discussion in:  Video Games forum
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Initial post:  Nov 8, 2012
Latest post:  Feb 13, 2014

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