Nintendo's 'Revolution' becomes 'Wii'

April 27, 2006
The Nintendo exhibit draws visitors at the Electronic Entertainment Expo, or E3, in 2004

Japan's Nintendo announced that its new gaming console -- known during development as "Revolution" -- will be called "Wii" and will be unveiled next month.

"Wii", the replacement for Nintendo's "Gamecube", is scheduled to be launched by the firm on its home market and in North America in late 2006 to compete with Sony's upcoming PlayStation 3 and Microsoft's XBox 360.

The name deliberately sounds like "we" to emphasise what the firm hopes will be its universal appeal, Nintendo said.

"Wii will break down the wall that separates video game players from everyone else," it said in a statement.

"While the code-name 'Revolution' expressed our direction, Wii represents the answer."

"Wii" is to be officially unveiled at "E3 2006", the world's biggest show for video-game makers, which is being held in Los Angeles from May 9 to 12.

Nintendo said that "Wii" uses an infra-red game control that senses the movements of the user to give increased control.

Nintendo has lagged in the game console stakes since about 2000.

In the battle for new-generation gamers, the XBox 360 has already had a poor reception in the key Japanese market while Sony has had to put back the PlayStation 3's launch because of technical difficulties.

© 2006 AFP

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