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Report – Wii U “not up to the same level” as PS3, Xbox 360

Tuesday, 3rd April 2012 03:58 GMT By Brenna Hillier

Anonymous developers have heaped scorn on Nintendo’s new hardware offering, saying it doesn’t live up to current-gen platforms.

GamesIndustry surveyed a number of unnamed development staff reportedly developing Wii U titles, none of whom seemed particularly enthusiastic about the new hardware.

“It’s not up to the same level as the PS3 or the 360,” one said. “The graphics are just not as powerful,”

“It doesn’t produce graphics as well as the PS3 or the 360,” a second source confirmed.

“There aren’t as many shaders, it’s not as capable. Overall the Wii U just can’t quite keep up.”

The second source did note that “some things are better, mostly as a result of it being a more modern design”, but another was unimpressed with the console’s primary selling point: the tablet controller.

“The whole thing about the tablet controller is that you only get one of them, and you can only use one and it’s not completely independent,” they said.

“The base console has to be on, and you have to be in range. Other controllers are just Wiimotes, or other Wii controllers. They may change the form factor or looks a bit, but it’s the same controller.”

VG247 learned recently that both Sony and Microsoft have new consoles expected to launch by the end of 2013.

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38 Comments

  1. ejams

    Well we all knew it wouldn’t keep up, but being BELOW the current gen for a NEXT-GEN console? Hm, there’s a new one (I think, anyways). Although horsepower has never been Nintendo’s selling point, but they have a very valid point about only getting one tablet controller, and it’s still limited at that. Only time will tell.

    #1 2 years ago
  2. Telepathic.Geometry

    /shakes head sadly (if true)

    #2 2 years ago
  3. Ireland Michael

    Who cares? As Xenoblade proves, you don’t jack in the way of processing power to make a truly great game.

    #3 2 years ago
  4. Sini

    looool, so it went from 50% better than 360, to on par, to subpar…

    #4 2 years ago
  5. Lord Gremlin

    @3 As sales prove – don’t release your hardcore game on Wii unless you wanna flop.
    As for me, I’m not sure who Nintendo is trying to attract.

    #5 2 years ago
  6. Erthazus

    Everytime you post Wii U news with a kitchen sink pic i wonder if there is any designer in Nintendo HQ.

    Anyway, good luck Nintendo with that. Good luck. Their stupid kitchen sink does not even support multitouch in 2012.

    If the power is below the 360, this console must cost 149$ at best, but they will sell it for 299$ at minimum. It’s Nintendo. I won’t buy it for that price and it does not matter what games system will have. I’m not a retard that buys an overpriced garbage.

    Apple maybe selling their products for a fuckton of money, but they are basically great products that are supported with the latest tech and up to date so you are not feeling that you bought a product that is a piece of trash.

    #6 2 years ago
  7. Gekidami

    Well if you recall, devs were already reporting some serious issues with the console some time ago, mainly that the wireless simply didnt work because Nintendo were being cheap with the hardware. It really wouldnt surprise if they had extended their cheapness to the rest of the system.

    All in all its starting to sound like the Wii-U will just be another Wii; It might sell on gimmick and super cheap price alone, but it’ll have no substance. It isnt going to be the few months of current gen ports that’ll for fill Nintendo’s promise to appeal to core gamers, and third parties sure as hell arent going to stick to the system once the next PS & Xbox are out, they already sound like they’re fed up and generally not interested because it doesnt do anything new.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. Dannybuoy

    I can see the sales posters now: “MORE POWERFUL THAN PS3 & XBOX360*”

    *lie

    #8 2 years ago
  9. back_up

    why wiiu needs to be powerful ?
    when it will have
    Rehash of 10 mario games, 10 zelda games,1000 kiddie games

    #9 2 years ago
  10. Telepathic.Geometry

    It needs to have at least what 360 and PS3 have now, seriously, to be two generations behind is unforgiveable, the technology is nice and old and cheap FFS. /stern face

    #10 2 years ago
  11. Gheritt White

    @1 “Although horsepower has never been Nintendo’s selling point”

    Um… the SNES, N64 and even the GameCube say hi.

    #11 2 years ago
  12. Dragon246

    Nothing left to say now is there.

    #12 2 years ago
  13. Cozzy

    Even if it won’t be as powerful, at least there will be a HD Zelda! :)

    #13 2 years ago
  14. Ireland Michael

    @5 You think Nintendo honestly care that much? I mean, they’ve made some small steps in courting third party companies in recent years, but for the most part they’ve been sailing along perfectly happy, winning the console and handheld wars with seriously under-powered hardware, without barely lifting a finger.

    Even the 3DS, with its slow start, is only marginally more powerful than a PSP. Doesn’t seem to stop it from selling like hot-cakes. Its all about brand identity.

    The average consumer doesn’t give the slightest damn about hardware specs, as has been universally proven through numerous generations – PS1 vs Dreamcast, PS2 vs Xbox *and* GameCube, Wii vs 360 and PS3, 3DS vs PSP, etc.

    #14 2 years ago
  15. Telepathic.Geometry

    @14: I agree with most of what you said just there, but I think that Nintendo knows now that going forward, they need to court the hardcore a little better, because they’re legacy AAA franchises like Zelda and Metroid are gradually losing their “I MUST HAVE THIS GAME”ness, and meanwhile their competitors are building up genuinely strong franchises that are becoming increasingly must-have.

    #15 2 years ago
  16. ManuOtaku

    I will wait for E3 for especific information regarding the specs and other things regarding this console, in the meantime is all rumors, keeping in mind that developers till this day doesnt have the final and ultimate Wii U SKU, one that they are still improving, it could be better or it could be worse, at this moment we need to wait for proper information.

    And one last thing, from previous picks i thought the tablet controller will be bigger, but seeing this pick i can see it wouldnt be that big, it seems more comfortable.

    #16 2 years ago
  17. Petulant Radish

    @11 inanimate objects cannot say hi.

    #17 2 years ago
  18. Telepathic.Geometry

    @17: That statement is patently false.

    #18 2 years ago
  19. deathgaze

    Nintendo’s hardware is going to hamstring them again this console generation. Major franchises on other platforms will either not make the jump to the console or they will not survive the jump intact. Thus, the platform will again be populated mostly by shovelware and first party titles. Online functionality will be nearly non-existent and the functionality included will be extremely limited. This means the console will be targeted towards households with younger children that don’t necessarily need/want their console connected to the Internet. In other words, the exact same people that bought it last time minus the ones who grew out of the types of games that came out for the Wii.

    @15: I agree. Eventually, people are gonna get tired of playing Zelda, Metroid, Mario and Smash Brothers rehashes. Same as people are (FINALLY) starting to get tired of Call of Duty. Could the next great franchise emerge on a Nintendo platform? Maybe. But it probably won’t be the type of game that your COD/Halo junkies want to play.

    On the other hand, this could be a good thing for the silent majority that doesn’t play a lot of games. Could Wii U have the secret sauce that will draw the Facebook and non-gamers out? I doubt it — most of the types of games that non-gamers and causal gamers want to play involve some kind of social or multiplayer aspect.

    Same as the Wii, Wii U will be kept afloat by a combination of gimmickry and low cost of entry. Will it be as successful? Only time will tell, however I can venture an educated guess that lightning will not strike Nintendo a second time.

    Then again, people have been doomsaying on Nintendo for years and they’re still kicking. My heart tells me that they’ll be around for many more.

    #19 2 years ago
  20. OlderGamer

    Kudos to Michael and Manu for having a clue. But as for most gamers on a site like this all they are going to do is smell blood. They foolishly think that hardware power is important. Or that graphics some how define fun in a game.

    Price of hardware(both manufactering cost and retail) are far more important to the health of Nintendo then pure hardware power.

    I would also invite anyone to examine a Wii game graphics for a second with me.

    Take a look:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wv-mq5t4oAo&feature=related

    Gotta put up with some comentary, but it isn’t too bad. I want you to note the crisp, colorful graphics. How would a PS360 improve the looks, let alone the gameplay of this game? I have played Kirby Dreamland, and it is a blast to play, esp multiplayer.

    I think the first thing you have to understand is that Nintendo is not trying to make a PS360. They are not trying to do what MS and Sony do. They do not have a shooter centric portfoilo. Where as Sony have Uncharted, KillZone, Mag and MS have Gears and Halo; Nintendo has long loved franchises like Mario, Zelda, Metriod, Kirby, Mario Kart, Smash bros, etc.

    Nintendo is going to stay true to their roots, true to who/what they are. They do what they do, and they do it very well.

    As you can see with something like Kirby in the video, their games don’t currently lack for graphical punch. And tbh, like most game video, the Kirby video doesn’t do the game justice. The game is an explosion of color splashing across your tv screen. Its very nice, big bright chars, creative stages, co-op interaction/fun/ well paced action on the screen. Kirby is truely an under apreciated game.

    But everyones game tastes are different and that is cool. But games like Kirby are why I am glad I own a Wii, and why I can not wait to get my hands on a WiiU.

    Take what Nintendo already does, add in a tablet controler(more on this in a sec), glossy it up in HD, add in an improved online system…yea sign me up. I would rather sit down with the wife for some co-op Mario and Donkey Kong action then log more hours into Battlefield or CoD, but thats me.

    Ok why is the tablet neat?

    Picture your playing Mario Party(I know not cool enough for some, but stay with me), its a pacman style maze chasing game. Three players use reg controlers, they whistle around the tv looking for the fourth player. but theycan’t find him/her. Why? Because the fourth player only shows up on the tablet. The other players have no idea where he/she is or what they are doing/about to do next. Something like that will be fun in multiplayer same room play(you do remember the day when not everyone had to own their own copy of the game or their own system, with their own isp in order to enjoy multiplayer right?)

    Even if the tablet just allows me to keep track of my inventory in an RPG by managing a second screen thats good. Or look at my playbook while playing a sports games, thats good. And before you dismiss the notion, ask your self why Sony is planing to use their Vita the same way as Nintendo is planing to use the tablet controler?

    I think it can provide some neat twists to playing a game. And that, twists that is, can have a lot more to keeping a game fresh then graphics. I have played online MP shooters to death these past two gens. Sharper graphics won’t change the fundamental gameplay, won’t improve my time spent with them. It will still be the same old worn out CoD/Halo/Bf experience. I am tired of that. I have found that I greatly enjoy going back in time and playing some games that I used to love, before MS sold us on the idea that everything needed to be online to be good.

    Prolly my fav all time system was the SNES. The games were just fun for me to play. Nintendo offers new and improved gaming that reminds me greatly of those SNES games. Thats why I enjoy their stuff, good honest gaming. Fun.

    Anyways I have rambled on enough already, the point I am trying to make is that graphics aren’t everything. Not even the most imprtant thing. And if you keep away from a system based only on your perception of graphics, your likly missing out

    #20 2 years ago
  21. OrbitMonkey

    when is this due out? Christmas 2012? Guess we’ll find out then eh?

    #21 2 years ago
  22. ManuOtaku

    Another thing i like to mention, if being the less powerfull console worked for nintendo with the wii, ds, and their most powerfull consoles for their time N64 and gamecube didnt work comercially speaking, well gamecube came second behind the xbox, but it was really a close call, then why they will change their strategy with the Wii U?, and keep in mind that this also worked to sony with the ps1 and ps2, and when they went the route with the most powerful machine well they struggling to get to second place, so from a business stand point, why nintendo should try any different?, when their games are great and sell a lot of copys.

    For the Wii U i just want it to be on par with the power of the 360 and the ps3, and if i dare to say it to be twice as powerfull, in order to keep an strong third party support once the PS4 and 720 hit the market, so the difference will not be as hughe as this gen, in order to keep the third party support that is all that i want for the wii U, that and a great use of the tablet of course, like the ideas mentioned by OG.

    On last thing xenoblade is the best RPG this gen IMHO, and the ironic thing is, that for some gamers the wii is last gen.

    #22 2 years ago
  23. fengato

    ^ Agree with what you’ve said, OG. Though I think Nintendo runs the risk of excluding themselves from easy 360/PS3 ports if the specs are under parity. Third party devs are going to be wary of investing significant time and effort into bringing their games up to par for the U. This will encourage 3rd party mediocrity – something Nintendo can’t afford this gen.

    Considering the current cost of 360/PS3 levels of tech, it does appear to be a short-sighted move not to bring the U into line with the old dogs.

    #23 2 years ago
  24. deathgaze

    I like your reply, OG, but it misses one crucial component of the equation: development and marketing costs.

    Let’s say we come out with “Call of Duty: Combat Evolved” across all three platforms. PS4 and Xbox 720 are easy to develop for and mostly the same. The Wii U version, however, will have to be custom tailored. Graphics will have to be cut down, poly-counts reduced etc. On top of that, Wii U specific features will have to be added to round out the package. At the end of the day, it just cost you MORE to develop on the Wii U, not less.

    Now let’s look at indie developer Team Beat. Team Beat has an indie Wii U rhythm game called “BeatCraft” that is totally awesome and takes good advantage of the platform’s graphical capabilities within Team Beat’s budget. However, due to the tablet and motion controls it uses, can’t be ported to any other platform. In addition, Team Beat had tons of cool social features that it wanted to include, but, due to Nintendo’s limited online architecture, it could not include to make the game even better. Unfortunately, Team Beat has no way to differentiate “BeatCraft” among the untold hordes of shovelware it’s currently competing with on the Wii U (or, alternately, the e-shop). So, Team Beat now has to spend more money on marketing so that they can actually make money on the project. However, even if they do make money and gather a following, it will be very limited, since they can’t port “BeatCraft” over to another platform without heavy modifications. Now, Team Beat has to spend even more money developing the game from scratch for other platforms.

    No matter how you slice the pie, Wii U developers lose unless they make games at a bare minimum of expense. If the game fails, they haven’t lost that much money. On the off chance it turns into a hit, there’s not that much that can be done to get the game out to more players. They’re stuck. This is what Wii U developers have been complaining about since 2009 and it will continue with Wii U.

    #24 2 years ago
  25. OlderGamer

    I think that Nintendos next system will be on par if not slighty ahead of where the xb/ps system are now. I think that end of cycle games look afr better then begining cycle ones. Meaning that while Uncharted hits some very nice benchmarks graphicly right now, launch ps3 games like Untold Legands: Dark Kingdom, for example, was just plan ugly to look at. And I played a lot of Battlefield: Modern Combat at launch for xb360, when infact that game was just a quick port of the same game form Xbox one.

    So if WiiU is an par with current gen systems it maybe unrealistic to expect the WiiU prelaunch graphical out put to rivel new games on PS3 right now. Devs need to take time with any platform to get the most out of it. Esp 3rd party devs, where there is more focus on getting a product out fast then there is on getting the most power a system can squeeze out.

    My guess, would be that first party games from Nintendo(which is always the draw anyways), will be stunning to look at it.

    #25 2 years ago
  26. Gekidami

    @20
    Seems like you dont have a clue. High end graphics arent just about games looking better but the system having solid third party support, third parties, -just like this gen- are going to make their games with the PS & Xbox in mind and Wii-U will get panned because the games simply wont run on the thing.

    Whilst its cool that you and Mikey boy up there care so much about Nintendos financial gain (i guess you must hold shares in the company or something), Nintendo’s problem isnt their ability to rake in cash (any gimmick with a low price point will do that) but their ability to remain relevant to gamers. In that regard the Wii is a total failure; any game that isnt a big (fuck, no, ‘big’ is an understatement; Massive) first party IP sells terribly. Why is this? Well its because the Wii is pretty much the ‘Mario/Zelda Box’, people keep their Wii’s in the box till one of those games come out, or they actually sell their Wii’s then buy them again. With ports being impossible because of its lower spec, and third party publishers simply not willing to throw money away on big games no one will buy, the only games they release are low budget shovelware.

    Nintendo made a big deal at E3 about bringing their game back to the core and their solution to this are ports of current gen games, but everyone who wants to play them would have already done so, and within a years time new third party games wont run on Wii-U any more, so you get Darksiders 2 and Assassins Creed 3 on Wii-U, cool… Wanna bet Darksiders 3 & AC4 wont be on that system? And now we’re hearing that these ports will actually look worst because them system is less powerful than current gen consoles? Jeesh.

    #26 2 years ago
  27. OlderGamer

    Gek, hate much? Besides your so far in denial land your lost and may never find your way out.

    Yes and no DG. I see what your saying.

    But Nintendo is really about Nintendo games. It always has been. I think too much pandering to 3rd party publishers can be a double edged sword. The up side to a Nintendo system is that the pubs have a pipeline into millions of homes. Also they don’t have to compete against the same type of market share that they would on a PS360 platform.

    While many pubs will complain about dificulty competing against Nintendos own game franchises, i would like to point out that many publishers are already deeply entrenched in the PS360 market place. How do you compete against NFS or Forza or GT or Modnation or any number of racers. Great games like Splitsecond become casualties. The games market is very crowded, and there is very little room for anyone that isn’t already in someone elses pocket.

    Thats true on any platform. But that is a 3rd party problem. Want to compete against the established kings? Make a better game.

    I think when companies look at Nintendo platforms, they think fast easy ports. That is what they want. But you can’t deal away your top talent on MS/Sony, putting the bulk of your effort there and still expect to find success on Nintendos platforms. I think that more then anything hurt 3rd parties last gen.

    There is some really outstanding software on Wii, like the mentioned Xenoblade rpg. But mostly what got put out by the bigger pubs were slopy PS2 ports. And they sold like you would expect a slopy PS2 port to sell.

    One issue i do have for nintendo is the seal of nintendo quality doesn’t mean what it used to. Going into Wii they greatly reduced their meassure of quality for 3rd part games. And we get flooded with garbage from pubs like Zoo and Seed. Clearly going after the parent and grandparent crowd that buy games for their kids and can’t tell a good one from a bad one. Nintendo should tighten that up this gen.

    If they can, and maybe they can’t. The reason they can’t would be maybe it is better to have a flood of bad games then a trickle of good ones. If 3rd parties won’t put effort and investment into bringing their key franchises to your platform,(and you can’t force them to do that) there is a void. Instead of the web/mags going on and on about the few games coming out … it may be better to fill the shelfs with what you can. Not as if that strategy has hindered system sales or the sales of Nintendos own franchises.

    All in all I don’t feel bad for 3rd party pubs. It really does come down to making better games. If Nintendo can have several franchises that sell 20million plus copies on a single platform, and 3rd parties can’t… the problem is not Nintendo or the platform.

    As far as smaller more indie minded dev studios, imo, they shouldn’t be making Console games anyways. They should be focused on PC with services like Steam. Working with MS can be a nitemare, and even Sony and Nintendo are going to be tuff…and all three are going to be expensive.

    So in the end DG, I think that cost is just part of making games. And if a company wants to make money from any platform they will need to invest time and money. And really they should stop looking at Nintendo as port-city. Nintendos marketshare is large, maybe they should consider porting to the other platforms lol ;)

    #27 2 years ago
  28. ManuOtaku

    #26 “In that regard the Wii is a total failure; any game that isnt a big (fuck, no, ‘big’ is an understatement; Massive) first party IP sells terribly. Why is this? Well its because the Wii is pretty much”

    Sorry but they are a lot of third party games that sold on the same level, and instances more on the wii comparing with the the other consoles, like the lego games,some of the pro evolution soccer games, and the music/dance games, also the no more heroes game that came on the PS3 as well, etc, theres a lot of games that were third party that sold good on wii and beat the other iterations, therefore i ask it is the fault of the console? or rather the games, or the developers fault?.

    “Wanna bet Darksiders 3 & AC4 wont be on that system? And now we’re hearing that these ports will actually look worst because them system is less powerful than current gen consoles? Jeesh”.

    This is only based on rumors, just like the driveless Xbox 720 before it, therefore we need the proper information to think the possible outcome for the nex gen IMHO.

    #28 2 years ago
  29. Dragon246

    Nintendo as always stays in its own ecosystem and tries to force it on everyone else. ps and xbox will ALWAYS remain the best platform for multiplatform games and in terms of exclusives too, Sony is ahead. I dont see many new gamers picking mario or zelda as their first games (Mario was the first video game I played).

    #29 2 years ago
  30. ManuOtaku

    #29 “ps and xbox will ALWAYS remain the best platform for multiplatform games and in terms of exclusives too, Sony is ahead”

    If that was the case why is the reason the number one sold console is the wii, and the most sold console games of this generation are on the wii?

    #30 2 years ago
  31. deathgaze

    The point of my post was to illustrate how much more expensive it is to develop for Wii U. Cost is the beginning and the end, in this and any other industry. Before development even begins, the folks who count beans have to have their say. And if they say, for example, that you have a great idea that will sell well on Wii U, then they will go ahead and make that game. However, if you have a great idea that will sell well on everything but cost a significant amount more to port to Wii U, then the game won’t get made for Wii U. Sound familiar?

    Which is more likely to get made? The game that makes a huge amount money on multiple platforms or the game that makes a good amount of money on one?

    #31 2 years ago
  32. OlderGamer

    Fair enough DG.

    #32 2 years ago
  33. Gekidami

    @27
    lol What am i hating exactly and how am i in denial? Denial of what? Its quite ironic that you dare say someone else is in denial after that love letter to Nintendo you wrote up there and for that matter constantly rewrite whenever you can, we get it, you love Nintendo, ok. You refuse to hear any criticism on the company but i guess everyone else is in denial, yep only two other people ‘have a clue’, because of course you agree with them. lol sorry but when it comes to Nintendo, you really are quite pathetic in your fanboyish defence of them.

    #33 2 years ago
  34. OlderGamer

    Gek, i even leveled some critisim myself against Nintendo up there.

    Just because someone enjoys something you don’t doesn’t make them a fanboy. I enjoy Nintendo games. I also own and enjoy a wide range of other systems, from PC to Psp to PS3 and XB360. And a whole libary of retrio systems. I am a pretty well versed gamer. A fanboy would be someone that only plays and promotes one platform.

    I don’t do that.

    I also don’t promote as much as defend. Nintendo takes a lot of heat. I just thought it was time for someone who actualy plays and enjoys their games to stand up and make a point to say why, I feel, they don’t deserve all of that heat.

    Thats not a fanboy Gek, thats a passionate gamer.

    Thats what I mean by you being in denial. Your only seing one part of it.

    #34 2 years ago
  35. Ireland Michael

    @26 I don’t give a flying fuck about Nintendo’s financial gain. I just want to play decent game. And the Wii was not lacking in those.

    Its not my problem if most people only consider gaming valid when its violent and gory, or they’re not patient enough to wait more than a week between releases before selling their console.

    #35 2 years ago
  36. IVY

    Wii, when you make a console..DONT EVER COMPARE IT TO GOOD CONSOLES…

    #36 2 years ago
  37. Joe Musashi

    Nintendo seem determined to be do things different. Many insist it as innovation. But after playing a lot of DS and a lot of Wii games I see it as being different for the sake of being different.

    To this day there is only one DS game that really made me feel it was a stand-out fit for dual screen and touch control (Osu! Tatakae! Ouendan). Everything else has been pretty uninspired, compromised or contrived to do things differently for the sake of it. Decent games and good presentation always work well – but that’s not specific to a piece of hardware. A lot of people refuse to make that distinction when they champion something like Prof. Layton or Mario.

    The Wii has followed this path too. They struck gold. But the incredible nose-dive once the bubble burst shows that the ‘novelty’ approach is not a long-term win. And Nintendo’s approach in the last few years has very much distanced themselves from the type of gamer that put them where they were in the first place (diehard Nintendo devotees excluded, of course).

    3D as a USP has been stillborn. This has been proven pretty much overnight.

    The Wii-U has yet to show it’s got the innovation the Wii had – tablet devices are already very common. With more powerful and versatile ones in many homes than one that’ll locked into Nintendo’s proprietary box.

    So this machine needs a number of safety nets and scope for the future. Launching with aged hardware (if true) limits potential in every direction.

    The True Believers will do what True Believers do – which is to dismiss any discussion that doesn’t suit their belief as the rantings of some hater. If you weren’t down with motion controls 6 years ago you ‘simply didn’t understand Nintendo’s magic, maaaaan’. Yet 6 years and those doubts were justified.

    For some, another Mario and Zelda is enough to keep their faith. But that’s not what this latest rumour covers. And for those with broader expectations of a system, their concerns are justified. History has shown why.

    JM

    #37 2 years ago
  38. Petulant Radish

    @18 no it is not, some electronic goods can be programmed to say hi by coders etc, but then it is not the words of the inanimate object and instead the words of the programmer. Inanimate objects cannot say hi.

    #38 2 years ago

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