Nintendo debuts touchscreen Wii successor

Jun 07, 2011 By DERRIK J. LANG , AP Entertainment Writer
Nintendo debuts touchscreen Wii successor (AP)
Reggie Fils-Aime, President of Nintendo of America, introduces their new gaming console the Wii U during a news conference at the E3 Gaming Convention in Los Angeles, Tuesday, June 7, 2011. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)

Nintendo has introduced the world to the Wii's touchy new big brother: the Wii U.

The Japanese gaming giant on Tuesday unveiled the Wii video game console's successor, which will broadcast high-definition video and feature a touchscreen controller that can detect motion and interact with what appears on a television display.

"Up until now, home console games had to occupy the TV screen in order to be played," said Nintendo president Satoru Iwata. "The new controller for Wii U, with its 6.2-inch screen built in, means you won't need to give up your gameplay when someone else comes in the room and wants to watch a TV program."

The white touchscreen controller, reminiscent of Apple Inc.'s iPad and other tablet computers, can broadcast standard-definition video but also features a directional pad, microphone, dual analog sticks, speakers, two pairs of shoulder buttons and a front-facing camera, which can be used to make video calls.

Global president of Nintendo Satoru Iwata (L) president of Nintendo America Reggie Fils-Aime, speak during a news conference after the unveiling of the new Wii U game console at the Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles.

The console itself will use proprietary high-definition optical discs, 1080p HDMI output and internal memory that can be upgraded with USB and SD technology. No other technical specifications were provided.

The prototype controller was demonstrated during the Electronic Entertainment Expo, the gaming industry's annual convention, in several ways: displaying a player's inventory in a "Legend of Zelda" game, offering an alternative way to play a chasing game, being used as a shield from incoming attacks in a first-person shooter game and showing the image of a teed-up golf ball on the ground before it was struck to a putting green depicted on a TV.

The controller was also shown being used to browse the Internet both on a TV and the controller. Reggie Fils-Aime, Nintendo of America president, noted that the touchscreen controller is not meant to be a portable gaming device and that the system is dubbed the Wii U because its "unique, unifying and maybe even utopian."

A key feature to the Wii U controller is a 6.2-inch (16-centimeter) screen that displays maps or other information to complement game play, acts as a touchscreen game board and serves as a second monitor.

Nintendo said the Wii U will be released between April and December next year and will be backward-compatible with Wii games and controllers.

"Smash Brothers," "Darksiders II," "Batman: Arkham City," "Tekken," "Assassin's Creed" and "Metro: Last Light" were among the titles announced that would be released for the system.

The price for Wii U was not revealed.

The new Wii U will have HD graphics, a controller with a 6.2 inch touchscreen and be compatible with all other Wii accessories.

The unveiling of the Wii U comes after two years of slumping sales for Nintendo's Wii, which remains the overall top-selling home video game console against Microsoft Corp.'s Xbox 360 and Sony Corp.'s PlayStation 3. Those consoles already feature high-definition graphics and added motion-sensing capabilities similar to the Wii last year with their respective Kinect and Move camera systems.

Explore further: Maker of $33 smartphone hails 'new era' for India

More information: http://e3.nintendo.com/

5 /5 (2 votes)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Global sales of Nintendo's Wii top 50 million

Mar 26, 2009

(AP) -- Japanese game maker Nintendo Co. said Thursday global sales of its popular Wii video game console have topped 50 million since it went on sale worldwide in late 2006.

Nintendo's 'Revolution' becomes 'Wii'

Apr 27, 2006

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

Nintendo launches dark Wii, expanded bundle in US

May 03, 2010

(AP) -- Nintendo Co. is trying to expand U.S. sales of the Wii by throwing in an extra game and its MotionPlus accessory for making the console's signature motion-sensing wand more precise. The company is also offering a ...

Wii 2 goes HD?

Apr 15, 2011

(PhysOrg.com) -- Is Nintendo working on a high-definition console called the Wii 2? That is the big question flying around the world of gaming today.

Recommended for you

Hewlett-Packard recalls 5 million AC power cords

Aug 26, 2014

Hewlett-Packard Company is recalling about 5.6 million notebook computer AC power cords in this country and another 446,700 in Canada because of possible overheating, which can pose a fire and burn hazard.

LG bets on pricey OLED technology as future of TVs

Aug 25, 2014

LG Electronics Inc. announced two new giant OLED TVs with ultra-high definition screens Monday, sticking with its strategy of using the exceptionally expensive OLED display technology.

Giant tablets aimed at families

Aug 20, 2014

Costing a little more than an iPad but standing more than twice as tall, a new pair of giant tablets wants families to share cozier group experiences with technology.

Myo armband and smartglasses set for deskless workplace

Aug 20, 2014

Thalmic Labs, Canada-based makers of the Myo armband, has announced the integration of Myo with smartglasses, with the partnership help of a number of companies pairing the Myo with their products. The gesture-control ...

User comments : 0