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Nintendo’s Wii-U Closed Developers Conference

Nintendo Land was the major focus of this keynote, immediately showing off what the “theme park” looked like and how Mii’s would interact. Off the bat, we were told that these games will support multiplayer, co-op, and competitive gameplay modes, but all games will give you the option to play alone. Nintendo intends on making an environment in which third-party developers will be excited to create games for the platform.They also giving a slight *nod* to indie developers. Nintendo is putting a great deal of energy to make every experience substantial, and some of those include:

– Animal Crossing: Sweet Day

– Donkey Kong’s Crash Course

– Zelda: Battle Quest

– F-Zero

– Ninja Castle

These are just a handful of the twelve games planned for launch of Nintendo Land. Each game features different functions highlighting what the Wii-U Game Pad can do. Play style depending on the game will change to tilting the pad for controlling a crazy kart in Donkey Kong, Flicking Ninja Stars in Ninja Castle, or watching “Link Inspired” characters sword fighting as a team, while the main player shoots arrows. The levels change in size depending on the number of players. Each game is reminiscent of a Mario Party title and run very smooth. However, this maybe expected to change when using two Wii-U game pads, which drops the frame rate of particular games from 60fps to 30fps. Although this wasn’t demonstrated, I imagine these smaller titles won’t be affected.

The presentation of New Super Mario Bros. U was a familiar, but rich looking game with great looking backgrounds, animations, and movement for Mario. Teamplay was encouraged when one player would take on the game pad and place floating blocks to boost other players. gold coins, hidden areas, and team combination moves all make a comeback. The “Twitter” like messages warning you about particular high and low points in each level is a big feature for a Mario title.

Nintendo has still refrained from mentioning a price, and could not confirm package details of the release. It has not been confirmed that Nintendo Land will be packaged with the Wii-U. In fact, they were unable to mention any games that will approach launch. Although the digital content was barely mentioned during either conference, the purchases on your Wii e-shop can easily be transferred to your Wii-U.

Impressions on the Wii-U were less than exciting during its press conference earlier today. As stated by Jeffrey Dy (a writer here at Player Affinity), Nintendo has a great deal to prove. Although they stated that they were trying to entice hardcore gamers once again, the direction they seem to be going is far from what anyone expected. I had originally imagined more third party developers supporting Wii-U titles at launch (more than just Ubisoft). After seeing “Nintendo Land”, I also imagined it as a social networking site to be on par with Sony PlayStation’s “Home”. We are still very unclear on how Nintendo will produce a unique service to its old fans, and soon to be players come this fall. Nintendo is still all about the games, but those games are capturing the younger generation…and believe me, that isn’t a bad thing. Don’t forget, that the age that you started playing video games might have been a young one, and if some doesn’t capture the market now, video games could easily lose that impressive mark it has made in entertainment history. 

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