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WiiU

Should You Buy Minecraft?

by Andy Goergen - December 15, 2015, 8:31 am PST
Total comments: 19

Or just play one of the seven other versions you already have?

When Minecraft launches on Wii U on December 17th, it will serve as something of a victory lap for Mojang, its parent company Microsoft, and 4J Studios who have handled the console ports for the iconic exploration/crafting/digging/creating simulator. Before heading to Nintendo's embattled console, Minecraft was previously made available on PC, Mac, Android, iPhone, iPad, Ouya, Xbox 360, Xbox One, Playstation 3, Playstation Vita, Playstation 4, and even the pocket Linux PC Raspberry Pi. Initially, the intent of this article was to introduce Minecraft to Nintendo fans who may have been blissfully unaware of the game until it was blessed by the House That Iwata Built. As I sat down to write such an article, however, it seemed likely that users who were holding out to play Minecraft until it was released on a Nintendo platform probably... well, don't exist.

In addition to all that, within hours of the game's announcement it was revealed by the game's developers that they weren't working on touch-screen support on the GamePad for item management, which led many potential buyers to swear the title off right out of the gate. It's hard to deny that this is a major misstep, especially since the PS Vita version supports this kind of functionality. Even without GamePad touch support, the game might be worth owning on a Nintendo console regardless.

Consider this; the game is confirmed to support 4 player split-screen multiplayer, and 8-player online multiplayer. Not only that, but according to the Japanese game profile for Minecraft: Wii U Edition, the game supports USB keyboards for sending messages, and even voice chat via headsets. The game even supports the Wii U Pro Controller (which I guess is obvious considering the 4-player local multiplayer). This serves as some evidence that the port to Wii U is not half-baked, they're putting effort in to make this game have a rich feature set.

The most compelling reason to own Minecraft: Wii U Edition, however, is the unspecified "new content for Nintendo fans to be released at a future date." This is awfully vague, but what I read into this is, at minimum, Nintendo specific skins. This might seem a bit underwhelming, but I would happily pay a few bucks to be able to craft in the Mushroom Kingdom. What about building a castle in Hyrule, or digging deep into the caves of Zebes? The potential for building and crafting in Nintendo worlds is incredibly compelling. Releasing Nintendo skins for Minecraft is almost as deep of a gold mine as Super Smash Bros. DLC or the Nintendo Badge Arcade; it's catering to the nostalgia of Nintendo's biggest fans (Wii U owners) and also Nintendo's rich history in one fell swoop. It's a strange conglomeration of modern gaming fads (even with a retro aesthetic) and classic gaming style. It's by far the best reason to own Minecraft: Wii U Edition.

I already own Minecraft about 4 different ways, and the prospect of paying $29.99 to buy it again (at $10 more than competing versions on PSN and Xbox; yes, I know there's extra content bundled with, but that doesn't make the price tag easier to swallow) makes me hesitant. But perhaps there are Nintendo fans that are willing to try this game for the first time, or perhaps give it a shot even though they long ago deemed it as "not for me." Playing online with those folks could be a lot of fun as they explore what hooked me years ago. And if I do bite the bullet and pick up a copy of this game, I hope that Nintendo comes through with the exclusive content, or this will be just another way Nintendo let something with so much potential on Wii U fall through the cracks.

Talkback

I'm one of the few people on earth who has not yet owned or attempted a game of Minecraft.  I feel like Mojang's strategy is more about full market penetration rather than porting to the Wii U & everything else under the sun because they expect a big boost in sales from a new audience.  Kind of like how doom can be ran on basically anything but a toaster.


That way, Anyone who has been living under a rock who'd want to try Minecraft would see they can get it almost anywhere.  It's a win for them.




ShyGuyDecember 15, 2015

I will be getting it, you can play online with me!

ejamerDecember 15, 2015

We don't own Minecraft on anything yet.  I don't really care, but my kids want the game... so we'll be choosing between PS Vita and Wii U before long.  Vita is cheaper by $10+, Wii U is supposedly getting a retail version which is a big plus in my books.  Not sure which way I'll lean yet.

StratosDecember 15, 2015

I own it on PC already and was an early adopter. But getting both 4 player split screen and 8 player online seals the deal for me. I almost don't care about the lack of gamepsd touch support.

I do care about pointer controls. Any word on that being supported?

I've never played Mine Craft before... but I'm excited to get this one! Split-screen local multiplayer sounds AMAZING for the way I like to play these sorts of open-ended things, I totally am gonna drag my brother (who HAS played Minecraft before) away from whatever he's doing so we can work on something together in this worldspace!

Quote from: Stratos

I own it on PC already and was an early adopter. But getting both 4 player split screen and 8 player online seals the deal for me. I almost don't care about the lack of gamepsd touch support.

I do care about pointer controls. Any word on that being supported?

Turns out I'm on the review, and we received a code a few hours after I published this editorial.  I am 99% positive the game doesn't support pointer controls, but I will double check and let you know.

jarodeaDecember 15, 2015

I am, or was, in the camp of waiting for Minecraft to come to the Wii U.  If I had a Wii U before a year ago and Minecraft was on it I would have bought it or held off until I purchased a Wii U to buy it.  As it is I grew tired of waiting and purchased it on my PC, and then grew tired of the game itself after a few hours so sure as heck no double dipping here.  Anyways, can't imagine there are more than a handful of more dedicated hold outs.

BlackNMild2k1December 16, 2015

One question, is this a digital release or is this also going to be a disc purchase?

Just digital for now, but a physical release should happen next year sometime.

BlackNMild2k1December 16, 2015

Quote from: Shaymin

Just digital for now, but a physical release should happen next year sometime.

Well that sux.

guess I don't have to go out to the store to get it though.... just wake up in the middle of the night to download it.

for $30, I'd rather have the disc version that isn't locked in the hardware.
Nintendo better have their digital transfers figured out by the time the next round of hardware comes around.

ThePermDecember 16, 2015

One of the nice things about Wii U Minecraft is the Wii U friends connection.

Just to update, the game does not register any acknowledgement of a Wii Remote, so pointer control is definitely out. 

michaelbaysuperfan616December 17, 2015

I was excited for Off TV play and the thought of item management and the hope of using the stylus to "draw" blocks and cut down on the time it takes to do anything in this game. Since those are no longer an option all I have left is Off Tv play and I already have a separate TV just for my PS4 now so that option is no longer as appealing as it once was. Oh well I will wait for the retail release and get that for the collector in me and be done with it. Not having internet at home means I can't buy a digital release anyways.

ThePermDecember 18, 2015

Minecraft is constantly updated. I don't know how updates work on Wii U though.

ThePermDecember 18, 2015

found this article

http://www.cinemablend.com/games/Nintendo-Doesn-t-Charge-Devs-Patch-Wii-U-Games-49509.html

StratosDecember 19, 2015

Other games get updates often so here's hoping the same comes for the U version. Best case scenario we get pointer and gamepad support patched in. It was for Monster Hunter 3U.

I'm still getting it without pointer support because I want one where there will be more reliable servers.

I'm just torn on getting it digital or waiting for a physical release. I prefer physical games but don't want to wait for an unspecified date next year. Though it would be convenient to have it on my system.

ejamerDecember 19, 2015

Quote from: NWR_DrewMG

Just to update, the game does not register any acknowledgement of a Wii Remote, so pointer control is definitely out.

Thanks!  I've been trying to find out whether Wii controllers were supported for local mulitplayer, but couldn't find that information anywhere.  This is a big hit for us - playing local multiplayer with my kids would be a huge selling point for me, but having to buy an expensive new controller to make it happen (on top of paying more for the base game) makes that a tough pitch.


Really not feeling excited about this release. Kind of want to be... but I'm not. A straight port, with very poor support for the console features, release incredibly late compared to all other consoles, at a higher price, and with updates in a TBD timeline. Hmm...
:-\

StratosDecember 19, 2015

There are sales from time to time on pro controllers. I got mine for $10 in a sale at Best Buy. I wish I had bought more. There are also 3rd party ones, but I agree, the thought of getting three more when I had planned to get one more is daunting. Pity there is no Wiimote support for that classic controller as I have two of those.

ejamerDecember 19, 2015

Quote from: Stratos

There are sales from time to time on pro controllers. I got mine for $10 in a sale at Best Buy. I wish I had bought more. There are also 3rd party ones, but I agree, the thought of getting three more when I had planned to get one more is daunting. Pity there is no Wiimote support for that classic controller as I have two of those.

I've been actively watching/trying to find sales in Canada for the past 2 years.
I've yet to find one priced under $50.


(This doesn't mean they've never been lower than that price - just that I've never been able to find any when/where they are on sale.)


Maybe I should just man up and buy one...

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