Nintendo has just wrapped up their E3 press conference in downtown Los Angeles and has wowed the crowd with the unveiling of the Nintendo Wii U.
While the company failed to show off the console itself, the focus was primarly on the new controller, as was the case when Nintendo unveiled the Wii years ago. The new controller looks like a marriage between a tablet and a typical game controller. Gamers will note the 6.2-inch touchscreen, along with two analog sticks, shoulder buttons, two bumpers and the usual four face buttons (A, B, X, Y). The controller also features a front-facing camera that can be used in games and also for video calling, which Nintendo demonstrated during the press conference.
Like the Wii remote, the Wii U controller includes an accelerometer and gyro-sensor, along with a speaker and a built-in microphone.
During a few demos at the press conference, Nintendo showed how you can share images from the remote to the console by simply making a sliding motion on the remote’s touchscreen, as well as using it as a scope for shooters, as an inventory manager for The Legend of Zelda, and even using it to shoot ninja stars to targets on-screen, just to name a few.
One of the biggest features of the controller is the ability to take a game that is being played on the console, and playing it on the widescreen (touch-screen) on the controller. Say your significant other wants to change the channel, they can go ahead and do so while gamers continue playing on the controller’s screen. For stuff like multiplayer games, the player using the new controller can have a different experience than those looking at the TV. The console will play optical disks and have downloadable titles with Wii games being backward compatible, though not enhanced. The console will of course support the Wii remote as well.
Nintendo says the system will be released in 2012, but after March 31.
As for the games, Nintendo teased the crowd with a Legend of Zelda game, as well as a New Super Mario Bros., game that allows players to use their Mii characters.
To show off some hardcore games and excellent 3rd party support, Nintendo also revealed the following games in development for the Wii U:
– Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor’s Edge (working title)
– Darksiders II
– Assassin’s Creed (working title)
– DiRT (working title)
– Batman: Arkham City
– Ghost Recon: Online
– Tekken (working title)
– Alien: Colonial Marines
– Metro: Last Light
Among other companies who were pledging support for the new console were EA Sports, EA Games, Disney, Vicarious Visions, Irrational Games, Namco Bandai, THQ, Ubisoft, Warner Bros, and 5th Cell.
Additionally, EA’s John Riccitello announced that games like Madden and Battlefield 3 are games he would like to see on the Wii U.