The big news out of E3 for Nintendo really seemed to be the two new peripherals that they announced at the show. I say this mostly because there weren’t really a lot of new games shown. We knew about Animal Crossing which sadly looks like WW just on the Wii, we knew about Shaun White (and who cares really) and we knew about most of the other Wii titles. The DS version of GTA is a fairly huge deal and should do wonders for giving DS a much needed bump in sales, but really there wasn’t much else. There was no Kid Icarus, Punch-Out, Zelda, DS Redesign, original IP, Pikmin, not even any new info on Disaster (which more and more looks like vaporware).
For this particular article I will mostly be talking about the WiiMotion Plus, largely because I find WiiSpeak fairly uninteresting. Yeah it’s basically a microphone, though I must admit the ability to make it a single mic for the room is kind of cool, and if games like Guitar Hero & Rock Band use it I think it could really be cool (use guitar while singing without having to worry about a mic in hand!).
The WiiMotion Plus is essentially an accessory that allows for one-to-one motion detection on the Wii. This prospect is both exciting and saddening all at the same time. You see, when the Wii was first announced, this was about what people thought the Wii was going to be capable of already. The motion detection is actually really good for a console, but certainly not as good as it could have been, and looking at the videos this add-on seems to be making the Wii what it likely SHOULD have been in the first place.
So while I’m happy it looks like we are finally getting it, I am sad that it looks like I’m going have to pay to get it. My hope on this particular add-on is that it is sold at dirt-cheap prices. It is being bundled with WiiSports Resort so I think $20 with the game and $15 stand-alone might be ok.
Overall though, I do hope that Nintendo decides to release a new controller that has this feature already built in. I’d go even further in saying that this becomes standard in any new controller bought in the future. Truth be told, when Nintendo initially announced the Wii I made the guess that we’d see Controller/Wii redesigns akin to what we have seen in the game boy, GBA, and DS to elongate the life and lets face it make extra money. So it makes sense for Nintendo to do it here. I only have 3 controllers so far so I could easily buy a built in one for my forth controller and turn that into my main controller and maybe have the attachment for a second controller and be fine with that.
Whether this particular attachment will even catch on or not remains to be seen. Right now, the only games that have been announced using it are the packed-in Wii Sports Resort, as well as the new Star Wars game (which is really the game people have all hoped for on the Wii anyway so this may actually be enough). So it is possible that it doesn’t even catch as the Resort game essentially looks like another weak Play compilation of worthless games that people don’t particularly like to play on a regular basis.