Last week I did something that I never thought I would even consider. I traded in my Playstation 3 for a WiiU. I’ve never been a fan of Nintendo, not at all. I’ve never even owned a Nintendo console and have only played some of their games on a few occassions. When the WiiU was first released, I did consider buying it, I wanted something new; however, in the end I decided not to make the purchase and was glad I didn’t after hearing the negative press throughout this year.
I guess many of you are wondering, why now? Well, I was going to buy Beyond: Two Souls for the Playstation, just to tie me over until next-gen. Beyond was going to be my last game that I would play on the current generation of hardware, that was until I read a review of Wind Waker HD. I’ve never played The Legend Of Zelda: Wind Waker or any of the previous games in the franchise, but for some odd reason I felt a strange need to play the HD re-release. So off I went with my Playstation 3 and a multitude of games to my local GAME store, where I finally purchased my Premium Wind Waker WiiU console.
When I had finally brought my console home and started to unbox it, I was pleasantly surprised at how much I liked the gamepad. On first sight, it looks like an awkwardly big peripheral but I was shocked by how comfortable it felt in my hands. However, when I started the console I was plagued with a few long downloads (it seems the WiiU suffers from slow download speeds) but eventually that all came to pass and I was tasked with setting up my Mii. The introduction of Mii’s is something I didn’t like when I first played my brother’s Wii, and it appears that my view on them hasn’t changed at all. The Mii customisation on the WiiU is pretty lackluster, there didn’t seem to be many customisation options and everytime I tried to use the option to have a photo taken of myself, the WiiU decided I had a huge nose (maybe I do!).
Once I had finally finished the initial setup of the WiiU, I thought I’d delve into the Miiverse. The Miiverse is basically a social network and a message board combined. It allows users to communicate by drawing or typing messages and posting them in game communities and socialize with other Miis. I had a ton of fun trying to draw on the gamepad with my stylus and I was happy to see that people have the option to basically ‘Yeah’ (think of a Facebook ‘Like’) your drawings and posts. The Miiverse also let’s players share secrets and tips about games and while playing Wind Waker, you have the option to send messages to random players by mail within the game (it’s pretty cool).
I’m currently playing only two WiiU games at the moment, Wind Waker and Rayman Legends. I must say that I absolutely love these games. I am so surprised at how much I enjoy Wind Waker and I am definitely going to buy any upcoming Legend Of Zelda games. Rayman Legends on the WiiU is perfect, I honestly believe it is the best version of the game currently out there. The gamepad works fantastic, especially on the touch only missions that are compulsory throughout the game. I’m primarily a PC gamer and going from a desktop to the Playstation 3 makes the console show it’s age considerably. Games on the WiiU such as the upcoming Ubisoft title Watch_Dogs and recently released Splinter Cell: Blacklist look superior to the current-gen versions, in my opinion, so just think what Nintendo could do with some of their own IP’s.
The WiiU however, does have it’s downsides. I found that loading different applications seemed to be very slow and the fact that the gamepad hasn’t the ability to go into any kind of ‘sleep mode,’ which would be extremely beneficial when watching services such as Netflix. The WiiU also has a Virtual Console, which lets players play classic Nintendo and Super Nintendo titles. To my dismay though, there didn’t seem to be much of a collection and many of the games seemed extremely over priced. However, these downsides aren’t enough to change my views on the WiiU. I honestly really love the console. If you are like me and realise that come next-gen your Playstation 3 will be nothing more than a dust collector, I honestly recommend purchasing the WiiU. I’m extremely excited for the upcoming titles that Nintendo has to offer (Super Mario 3D World, anyone?) and it will provide a nice diversity of games for me to enjoy along side my next-gen systems.