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[Let’s Talk] The end of Wii U

Posted on November 12, 2016 by (@NE_Brian) in Let's Talk, Wii U

Sooner rather than later, the Wii U will be meetings its end. The Switch will be here to replace it in just a few months. And if that wasn’t enough, Nintendo said this week that production of Wii U will be ending in Japan soon. The final shipments for the fiscal year were also already sent to North American retailers.

With Wii U on its way out, I was thinking it might be nice to hold a dedicated Let’s Talk topic to the system. Four years later, how do you feel about it? Do you believe Wii U was an overall failure, or does it have redeeming qualities? What’s your favorite game on the console? Share your thoughts with us below!

Highlights from last week’s topic: What are you playing? – November 2016

Lord Drieg

With Sun and Moon looming, it was just the perfect motivator for me to play a little Pokémon X, in which I haven’t gone past the third town. (I have played and completed Y, so… yeah) Also, Level-5’s little gem known as Fantasy Life has suddenly grabbed my interest once more. I haven’t finished it yet so maybe I’ll complete a little more before Sun and Moon release.

Jay Bern

Hyrule Warriors now that Ravio and Yuga are out. Also Fatal Frame 5. When I first played it, I didn’t really like it because I felt it was too slow-paced and it wasn’t really doing a whole lot to frighten me other than a cheap jumpscare every now and again. Now that I’m replaying it, I’m getting more immersed thanks to its superb atmosphere and letting it play to my emotions. I can see why the franchise is held in such high regard by horror fans now.

Now if only Nintendo would release Crimson Butterfly and Mask of the Lunar Eclipse in NA. :/

ShadowDragon

This month i am playing/will play:

Wii U: Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE, Devil’s Third, Super Smash Bros 4.
3DS: Kirby: Planet Robobot, Metroid Prime: Federation Force.
PS4: The King of Fighters XIV

Also Star Wars Bounty Hunter(GC) and Deadpool(PS3).

Annie

I finished FF7 again not too long ago and playing that made me want to play FF6 again (my fav FF game) so I’ve just started playing that, currently at Nikeah after suplexing a goddamn train to death with Sabin and recruiting Gau, I was also playing Resident Evil Zero recently (because Halloween) but I had to put that on hold because I’m having trouble with the leech-men

Lolo
I actually dug up my old NES top loader and I am figuring out Goonies II without looking at an online guide. I know back in the day, my dad made it to an underwater stage, but I am still trying to find that again to continue with the game ( my dad is no longer around, so I can’t ask him), so I am stuck just trying to figure out where to go next.

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  • Hermione Granger

    at retail shops the wiiu will be gone for sure but not from online warehouses. that will at least take 3-5 years… so the wiiu will still live on a long time, even if you nintendoeverything wish for a early death…

    • Abra

      :I

  • JasonBall

    Great system, wrong generation of young people. Too focused on specs and stuff. It’s had some great games, though. I don’t have too much to say.

  • Abra

    wii u could have been great but poor nintendo planning doomed the system…

    • Addy

      Wii U = Sega Saturn
      Switch = Sega Dreamcast
      Switch successor = nope, third party or death

      • For me, the Dreamcast is Sega’s best console. So… Switch will be Nintendo’s best?!

        • Addy

          The Dreamcast was a great console, ahead of its time, but Sega was hemorrhaging like a hemophiliac in terms of finances they almost went under.

          So I can just as easily say that Nintendo could sell the Switch at a loss even though they have a whole bunch of money in the bank, and eventually, they may exit the home console business, focusing on mobile and handheld markets.

          • Noan North

            it would take many Wii Us to take Nintendo down. 🙂

  • Vigilante_blade

    The Wii U’s failure was something I had easily anticipated. As much as people like to blame the massaging for the Wii U’s failure, I think that excuse does not account for most of it. In the first year of the console, sure, people could have seen it as Wii peripheral. However, as more time passed, and Nintendo began to more aggressively try and market the console, it became clear that the real reason why it failed is because most people simply did not like the concept. I know I keep repeating it, and it rubs many people the wrong way–but the Wii caused a huge divide in the Nintendo community. While it briefly captured the interest of the casual market, it has left a bitter taste for those who enjoy a more traditional experience. The Wii U was unfortunate in that it followed-up on the Wii’s legacy.

    Smart devices became big for casual users, while the gamers that remained on consoles and PC (core gamers) had for the most part moved on from Nintendo’s gimmick systems. As my friend Steven once told me when I asked why he went to buy the NES Classic Mini despite saying he was done with Nintendo, he said that it was because the games were simple fun, not tied down to strange controllers, and that it wasn’t that he “outgrew” Nintendo, but it was Nintendo not only did not grow with him, but outright regressed. I mirror his sentiment.

    While different from the Wii in many ways, it kept some of its… annoying and infuriating practices. Just like the Wii did with Wiimotes, the Wii U initially forced the Gamepad quite a bit, then let up a little, but by the end, they doubled down on it, forcing it like never before. Instead of letting people have their traditional experiences, they chose to rely on a gimmick as opposed to relying ont he quality of the games they sold. It became especially clear that this was the case when the word “gamepad” would be mentioned more often than the title of the game in its trailer. For me, that was a huge deterrent, and I surmise that I am not the only one who found that annoying. Instead of respecting the player’s choices, it chose to desperately try and legitimize a failed idea, sometimes, at the cost of making a game worse.

    It also had a terrible architecture, lacked third party support, had a slow and clunky OS, lacked enough first party games, the games for the most part lacked ambition that Nintendo was once known for, the gamepad skyrocketed the console’s price and diminished the performance of the games it was tied to. It had remote play, but did it very poorly, it tried to be unique when consummers just wanted a solid piece of hardware.

    Of course, people are going to say that it has a few amazing games like Bayonetta 2. Sure, all major consoles have at least a few of those. However, the Wii U had so many droughts that I rarely ever even played it. The droughts were ridiculous and frankly, unacceptable.

    I’m glad that the Wii era is done (hopefully). I am hoping that the Switch will actually bring Nintendo to a far better future.

    • Abra

      the sad thing is the economy will fall apart before Switch becomes a thing

      • Vigilante_blade

        That’s fine, maybe Kimishima will make Nintendo great again. *Badum Tish!*

        • RoadyMike
        • Addy

          Kimishima couldn’t save a drowning puppy in a street puddle even it was at arm’s reach. The same goes with how he’s running the company.

          • Vigilante_blade

            Let’s just give him a shot. He just came into his position. If he screws up, then sure, let’s criticize the heck out of him.

          • Addy

            We gave him a year, nothing’s improved yet. Either he makes something happen, or he gets replaced by some other 60 year old who ran a company that didn’t involve video game development.

          • Vigilante_blade

            You realize he has to make do with iwata’s decisions, right?

          • Addy

            And none were dealt with. Kimishima is nothing more than a stand-in ever since Iwata was taken away by the big “C”.

  • Abra

    when nintendo saw that the system was not selling they should have cut the gampad & blu-ray player out drop the price down from $350 –> $200 fast and throw a free game with the system. then reintroduce the gamepad with mario maker later on in the systems life…

    a Wii U system selling for $200 with great 1st party nintendo games would have sold better.

    • Addy

      What crap are you talking about? The Wii U didn’t have a blu-ray player.

      • Abra

        it did..

        • Vigilante_blade

          Nope, it did not.

          • Abra

            yes it has one just not play movies.. the game cd format is based on blu-ray. just like the wii format was based on dvd but did not play dvd movies

          • Vigilante_blade

            It’s a different type of DVD. Nintendo did not want to pay for Blurays.

          • Abra

            gmcube Star. I’m surprised that it hasn’t yet been addressed that the Wii U does not use Blu-Ray Discs in any capacity. The games are stored on a proprietary 25GB disc — which is similar to a Blu-Ray in that regard, but is not, in fact, a Blu-Ray. So why it would play Blu-Ray discs is beyond me.
            ok nevermind i found the answer anyway i would have gotten the cd player out of the system make it full digital only lowering the price of the system

        • Addy

          Proof, or be quiet and go to bed.

  • CrazyKoopaKid

    I love my Wii-U and will never regret supporting it. Even though it took awhile to build-up a library it had some great games!

  • ShadowDragoon

    Personally i enjoyed the Wii U quite a lot, in fact it have been years since i enjoyed a console so much, I don’t think it was a failure, despite the fewer games available, the ones it had were worth gold, Smash 4, Bayonetta 2, Xenoblade X, Splatoon, ect.
    I never regretted having a Wii U, on the contrary, i am very happy and very proud of owing this console, which i keep enjoying and will continue to do so even after production is over. Long live Wii U!

    • Mariewrea

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      • ShadowDragoon

        Take your garbage somewhere else you filthy scum and don’t ever dare to reply my comments again dammed imbecile .

    • Noan North

      I cant wait to play Splatoon on Switch, i didnt get a Wii U but i believe its a good system just underrated and ignored by a majority.

      • ShadowDragoon

        I agree.

  • lucaslink2

    I am a happy owner of the console, as mentioned by ShadowDragoon it might not have had that many games but those few where worth their weight in gold. I bought over 25 games for it. some of the I spend over 400 and even 500 hours. I think I made worth of my money. I regret nothing. Its life was short but sweet.

  • theFooFighter

    When I first got the system I was hyped it was all I played but 2 years and 27 games later Im starting to see it’s flaws. I’m a collector so I basically want to get every good game for every system I own, for some consoles ps2, ds, n64 ect it seems impossible I have over 40 ps3 games and I could still see myself doubling that number but I don’t think I can name 27 more Wii u retail games I want and that’s when I became disappointed with the system because I can’t see myself collecting for it in 5 years or even 2

  • SortableShelf19

    While it definitely had its flaws, and while I don’t like it as much as the GameCube, the Wii U will remain as one of my absolute favorite Nintendo consoles. It had the best games this generation in my opinion and I had way more fun with the Wii U than I ever did with the Wii.

    I just hope that the Switch has some of the good features that the Wii U had. It at least has something very similar to Off-TV Play and amiibo support, so that’s a start.

  • キロ

    Goodbye Wii U! Well, officially. You’re not going anywhere on my end. xD

  • chancetime

    The Wii U had quite a few games that were very enjoyable (Super Mario 3D World, Splatoon, Bayonetta 2, Mario Kart 8 and Super Smash Brothers for Wii U come to mind). The Wii U’s Miiverse also had some really good integration for some games and I hope a similar feature returns for the Switch.

    However, as time went on we got less and less releases and my Wii U caught more dust. I’ve been playing and buying games for my 3DS regularly while nothing has caught my interest in the last year and a half for the console.

    I’m really hopeful that the Switch will iron out some of the problems the Wii U had; I think one step in the right direction is moving away from the ‘Wii’ title which had people concerned from the start.

  • Addy

    No. And you did not unfriend me, I’m looking at your entry as a speak. Your NNID is “beezzle” is it not?

  • Exy

    It’s telling that though the marketing for Wii U was at first about asymmetrical
    multiplayer, that aspect actually never caught on. We all had great memories about Nintendo Land I’m sure, but after the first year, the focus shifted to
    creative uses of the GamePad for a single user. Wii U’s best games tend to be ones that make the most of the second screen, but there’s no denying that such games make up only a small fraction of the library: Pikmin 3, Game & Wario, Super Mario Maker, Splatoon, etc. I still think the Gamer part of Game & Wario is one of the best gaming formats ever conceived, if only for one of the most effective jumpscares this decade when the mother gets the drop on you big time after 10 minutes in Endless. The rest of the top games are just really good core games that don’t need the GamePad: Super Smash Bros., Super Mario 3D World, Mario Kart 8, Bayonetta 2, etc., and the multiplayer in those games was splitscreen or cooperative with one player having a screen of their own that was no different from the others’.

    The Wii U represents to me Nintendo’s willingness to try new things at huge expense. They took the gamble and lost, and I’ll always be happy they did. They tried with the concept of the GamePad and there were hits and misses, but the hits will probably never be seen on another platform again. With Switch, Nintendo is sending the message that sacrificing it is worth the loss in gaming possibilities if it means regaining the audience that wants to just focus on portability over all else. It’s not as big a risk as the GamePad since there is precedent for traditionally grounded experiences being made to with the players with products like Nvidia Shield and various emulator boxes finding market success. I mean, I used the off-TV function some times and I know some people swear by it, and though I never really considered it a feature, it’s clearly the focus of Switch. Only time will tell if it’s a wise tradeoff for Nintendo.

  • Annie

    Marketing sucked, if you watch the Wii U’s reveal trailer you’ll notice they just kept repeating: ”Do this and that with the NEW CONTROLLER”, never did the trailer convey that it was the Wii’s successor and it even showed the Wii U gamepad being used in conjunction with all the other peripherals for the Wii so no wonder tons of people assumed it was just a new peripheral for the Wii, but still, the Wii U is a great console with great games, some of the best Nintendo has ever published, my top 3 Wii U games would be: Smash Bros Wii U, Bayonetta 2 and… SPLATOON!

    P.S. currently on the floating continent in FF6, I love this game so much <3

  • Games. Games. Games!
    There should’ve been more games. The great ones were so great. But alas! The dry spells were destitute and nigh unto endless! That is an unbearable tribulation for the average consumer.

    Just look at the gaping chasms between the release dates of the Wii U million sellers:

    2012
    November (launch) – New Super Mario Bros U

    2013
    October – Zelda: Wind Waker HD
    November – Mario 3D World

    2014
    May – Mario Kart 8
    September – Hyrule Warriors
    November – Smash Bros

    2015
    May – Splatoon
    September – Mario Maker
    October – Yoshi’s Wooly World

    • ForeVision

      These gaps could have easily been filled by third-parties, and have had them sell their stuff well enough I’d reckon. Alas indeed, that sad story is one we all know.

    • Lolo

      Awww, what about DK tropical freeze? That was a fun game for February 2014.

      • Absolutely great game! But it didn’t sell over a million copies somehow. It’s a shame really. It’s one of the best 2D platformers ever

  • ForeVision

    I’ve enjoyed my time with it, despite the lack of third-party it had some great games. But sadly it’s poor hardware, the mis-marketing, and the gamepad’s forced use at times haven’t helped it. I can only say that I hope Nintendo has truly looked at every aspect of the Wii-U, thought hard on why it failed, chalked it up on a board and brainstormed about it for quite some time, before the coming of Switch. I suppose we’re all to soon find out about it when the 12th hits, and the time after that.

  • EssentiaX

    To me, the WiiU was a huge failure. Lack of games was the biggest failure, and as always, Nintendo going their own way. Going one’s own way is fine, really, but Nintendo has just shown time and time again that they’re out of touch with the market. It’s time they stopped just looking internally (Miamoto: hey, I just came up with a great concept – I always wanted two screens for our console!) and actually asked people what they wanted. Y’know, did some research.

    Slow OS, painful and slow applications, petty storage, complicated transfer processes, no account system, extremely slow download speeds, etc, etc, etc. That’s not a bonus. That’s a big disfavor. I doubt the Switch is going to be any better and that is why I probably think it’s going to fail. People get fed up with Nintendo and time just makes it worse.

  • Lolo

    I bought the Wii U, on day one, the basic edition (8 GB). While the games were fun, I agree with everyone that the droughts were horrible. I did wish I saw more from third parties, because pretty much I eventually fell into just buying first party games. If anything I had a blast with, it was Splatoon. That game is amazing to me, and I fell in love with the series after playing the global test fire demo twice and getting the full game. I finally managed to make it to Lvl 50, which took forever!

    But like I said earlier, the droughts really hurt this system. Splatoon is really the main game I have played since May 2015. And this will be the first time (from what I can see), Nintendo concludes a system without Kirby coming in with a late game, come on Kirby, where are ya buddy?

    I know I choose the 8GB edition, but man, if I had known the OS was going to take more than half the hard drive space, I would have gotten the deluxe edition.

    The Wii U has fun games. I hope the switch will drop the living room expierence only junk, and start adding online play to games. I would have loved online co op with tropical freeze.

    • ForeVision

      Even with the deluxe edition (I can attest, owning one) the machine still struggled at times, especially if you buy a lot of DLC and such. One of the games I’ve enjoyed a lot at the start was Warriors Orochi 3 Ultimate. I’ve played that with ever character acquired and till completion, save for every character on max.

      But yes, the droughts MUST be solved, it would be far to damning for that happening again, though I doubt Nintendo would let it happen again, as they’ve clearly acknowledged that as a major fault with Wii-U. I just hope it goes well and third-parties stay on board, I would wish no developer to be subjected to crunch time.

  • supermario69

    Terrible console. It’s overpriced, underpowered and had very few games. I regret my purchase, but at the very least I can use it as an emulation box.

  • R.Z.

    Seeing how little Nintendo pushes the system this holiday season I’m really getting a feeling that they want to see it drown with as little fuss as possible. It seems crazy not to try to milk it to the end with some good bundles and discounts, but I hypothesize that they count on WiiU games remasters to make the lineup of the Switch and don’t want too many people to experience these games beforehand, or maintain the WiiU in place and make it look like a cheaper alternative to the new system.

    As for the WiiU cycle, it was quite a failure. I loved the premises of the console, but Nintendo ended up barely making any use of the console’s features and had a very underwhelming software output throughout the console’s life cycle. I never got the ambitious single player adventure games that I was expecting from the company (outside of maybe Xenoblade, but where were Metroid, Zelda, Mario and others ?), and most of the software felt rushed in some way.
    I have a feeling that the console could have had a decent success had Nintendo been able to publish some iconic software/system sellers in its first year. Unfortunately Splatoon and Mario Maker came out too late to make a difference and any notable software before it could have existed on any system.

    I think Nintendo really needs to significantly expand its software producing capacities to be able to match its output on previous consoles on these new generations.

    • ForeVision

      I’ve gotten it day one, and albeit that third-parties jumped ship, and those droughts really wrung the noose around it’s neck, I’ve gotten over the bitterness I’ve felt when I noticed that the Wii-U is basically dead in the water.

      In the end all the people working at Nintendo are all human. And as some others have said, whereas Sony and Microsoft keep climbing up the same safe, stable and reinforced ladder, Nintendo tries different, riskier routes. And although innovation purely for the sake of innovation is, what I feel, a bad thing, if there’s no innovation at all, then it will eventually grow stale, and people will lose interest.

      If they learn from this, and truly make the Switch shine, then personally, they’ll prove that the Wii-U didn’t fail for nothing, for without failure there can be no success.

  • Killey

    It will go down as Nintendo’s worst home console, and deservedly so. It is too pricy for what it offers.
    With no third party support, the droughts between releases were appaling and sometimes only interrupted by games so awful that I hardly believe Nintendo was ok with them, like Ultra Smash and Amiibo Festival, or low budget titles that showed a complete lack of ambition, even if they were still decent games, like Rainbow Curse, Captain Toad and Yoshi’s Woolly World.
    I feel that while I had fun with some unsuspected surprises (The Wonderful 101, Tokyo Mirage Sessions) if Nintendo treats the IP well from now on Wii U will only be remembered as the console where Splatoon was born, as nothing else came even close to beign memorable.

    • The more time passes, the more I consider Captain Toad to be one of the best “new” Nintendo games in a long time.

  • Kenshin0011

    I remember my Wii U very fondly, it kept me great and comfy during parts of undergrad. On it I played NSMBU and Nintendo with joy. I also truly enjoyed Assassin’s Creed 3 and Ninja Gaiden.

    After that launch wave I played the great hits like MK8, Super Mario 3D World, SSB4, and Xenoblade Chronicles X.

  • Mason Phelps

    The WiiU was definitely not a complete failure. While it’s specs may have not been the most desirable, it had some amazing features and games with it. For example: Sm4sh and Splatoon were absolutely game-changing for the WiiU, as was Mario Kart 8 and Super Mario 3D world. Miiverse was and still is controversial, and probably is the most controversial feature of the WiiU, other than the GamePad. Overall, the WiiU could definitely have been designed better, and certainly didn’t sell as well as many had thought, but it has been OK in the long run.