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Your Questions Answered

by Steven Rodriguez - October 15, 2006, 9:59 pm PDT

This week's episode has some concerns about launches in Europe and at home, a Miiningful Smash Bros. Brawl idea, and a comment on Wii-order madness.


What do you think of the European Launch in respect to the launch schedule elsewhere?

My opinion is, in terms of launch date this is the best one in a long while. I can't comment on hardware quantities yet because 3 million will be available worldwide excluding north america, and i dont know how many everywhere else will get individually. However, I can comment on software and that there is only 8 launch titles confirmed presently against the 19 for America and 17 for Japan which is pretty surprising.

Europe should be praising Nintendo. In stark contrast to Sony's feelings toward the market (apparently you guys "don't mind" needing to wait a few extra months to get a PS3 while it launches everywhere else in the world), Nintendo is set on treating everyone in the world equally and delivering the console to every major market by Christmas. And it's not going to be a half-assed launch, either; it looks like there will be plenty of systems and a respectable number of games. Remember that there's the possibility that Nintendo could have as many as 11 million systems distributed worldwide by the new year. (More on that little tidbit later.) Some of that's gotta be headed to Europe. I just hope you'll see more games coming your way, but at least it's nice knowing you won't need to wait no more than a few days to get your collective hands on Zelda.


I have 2 Questions:

1) As I understand it the classic controller plugs into the wiimote just like the nunchuk. My question is, it would seem awkward to be playing the classic controller with the wiimote dangling down, does the wiimote have to be pointed at the sensor bar when sending classic controller signals to the wii?

2) In the wii sports titles like golf, do you think it will save players stats? For example if my buddy & I play a round & then want to play a 2nd round to improve our score or see what the best score on a particular hole is, is that possible in your opinion?

1) As I understand it, the classic controller works via the controller's Bluetooth wireless transmitter. There will be no need to point the remote at the sensor bar in that case. I don't understand why Nintendo didn't just make it fully wireless and as capable as a GameCube WaveBird controller (and without the need for a wireless receiver), but I guess if you had to plug it in to something, it might as well be the Wii remote.

2) It might. Like I said in my Wii Sports preview, there is some kind of "skill level" attached to each person's Mii. It could only keep track of something like that if it knows how much you've won or lost, or how well you've been doing in general. I'm not going to go as far as saying they'll be stat tracking a la Madden football, but you've got to think there's something in there that will keep track of basic records in each of the five games.


Mr. Bag,

The fact that Zelda is a launch release is enough to get me to buy a Wii. But frankly, I don't know what other games to get. I'm one of those people that only buys a handful of games a year, and when I buy a game I expect it to be excellent and last a long time. As far as I can see, Zelda is the only game that qualifies. Let's be honest, WiiSports is going to get very boring very fast, and games like Call of Duty and Redsteel while fun aren't exactly killer apps. I know Super Mario Galaxy, Metroid and Super Smash Bros are coming, but god knows when. Where are my Rogue Leaders, Diddy Kong Racers, Mario Karts, Pikmins, Eternal Darkness', GoldenEyes, Perfect Darks etc etc? Are those 4 games (zelda, galaxy, metroid, SSBB) all I have to look forward to insofar as killer apps are concerned? While N64 didnt have very many launch games (understatement?), it did have Super Mario and DKR which held me over for a VERY long time, not to mention goldenEye when that came out. GCN also had at least a couple. For Wii, im looking at Zelda and nothing else. Am I wrong?

You should look at more than just Zelda. WiiSports, if you want me to be honest, is going to be a lot of fun, and definitely will stay that way for months if you have a group of people to play with. Either Call of Duty 3 or Red Steel will be great options for FPS fans (I'm getting Red Steel), and both are coming from top-flight developers. You said they'd be fun. Don't you want to play games that are fun? Is not being a "killer app" disqualify them from your consideration? Activision and Ubisoft are more than capable of making a good video game. Just because it's not coming from Nintendo doesn't mean it's not worth playing, you know.

Metroid will be released for the Wii sooner than you realize. Mario and SSBB will get here soon after that. Nintendo will be releasing games like Wario Ware and Battalion Wars 2 to fill in the gaps on their end. If the amount of quality third party launch titles is any indication, there will be more than enough fun stuff to play until Nintendo can get to releasing their other biggies, and third parties can start releasing games that really show off their creative talents. Expecting to get all the good stuff right away is asking too much.


Dear PlanetGamecube,

I have been a long time reader, since before the Gamecube was even released. And I have been left handed for even longer. I am fearful that this will cause problems for me with the new Wii controller. I mean I guess I could just hold the thing in my other hand … but will that have any adverse affect s on game play, and what about for other controller additions like the nun chuck. I am worried mainly because I have had a hard time adjusting to DS games that require you to use the main buttons and the stylus. Do you think Nintendo will make controller adjustments for us southpaws or is 10% of the population just out of luck.

Tully Fletcher

Nintendo has always included an option to change which hand you use the stylus with in their DS games. Any decent third-party developer also offers such an option. There's a high probability that at least Nintendo's games will give people a choice of what hand they want to hold the controller in, since how a controller would roll is going to vary depending if you're a lefty or a righty. They couldn't have overlooked that in developing the controller. It would probably be really easy to do too, since they would probably only need to reverse the left-right accelerometer readings to mirror hand movements.


Hello Planet GameCube!

According to Nintendo, the Wii can connect to the internet via ethernet with a USB 2.0 LAN adapter. Do you know if this adapter comes with the console? If not, could you use a regular PC USB 2.0 to LAN adapter, or will you need to buy a proprietary Nintendo adapter?

Thanks for listening to my question, and stay awesome!

- Nintendud

Sold separately, proprietary and only available from Nintendo. Even though it's USB, that doesn't mean Nintendo will let you use anything you want. They want you to buy it from them. Similarily, the Xbox 360 has USB ports, but you can't plug in any gaming device that isn't an official Xbox 360 accessory.


Hey PGC,

What do you think the chances are of having our Mii's as playable characters on SSBB, or even a wierd item or something. I hope it's a posibility. Nothing like pitting you against your sister, grandma, and girlfriend all at the same time. Or taking on Mario, Samus, and Snake using the Mii version of yourself.

I was also wondering if it would be possible to hook a Wii up to a Gamecube and play MK:DD with 8 players via LAN.

Thanks,

Mii

Hey now, there's a thought. Playing as yourself in Super Smash Bros. Brawl might be just as cool as the inevitable Mario vs. Sonic match up that the game will almost certainly have (...or else). The style of the Mii characters would fit perfectly with the game and the comic mischief that goes with it. Actually, they would make the perfect opponents to fight against in the next version of the multi-man melee mode. Instead of fighting against dozens of polygon team members or hundreds of wireframe team fighters, imagine needing to hold off thousands of Miis, most of which you may have encountered while playing against other people online. It almost makes too much sense!

Your second question will not get as elated of a response. Like how the Nintendo DS's wireless functionality is off-limits to GBA games, so too are the Wii's wireless Internet and wireless LAN capabilities to GameCube games. Remember that when using the Wii to play GC games, it behaves exactly as if it were a GameCube. The Wii doesn't support ancient GC accessories like the ethernet adapter (and really, why should it?) so you won't be able to LAN it up in the three or four GC games that offered such functionality. It's was fun stuff on the GameCube, but a big hassle to get it all set up. Too bad it won't work on Wii, but them's the breaks.


Jon from vancouver, canada. preordered my wii at toyrus but pretty sure they'll screw me over because it's toyrus. Question: is there anything on Wii supporting the new SD protocol, SDHC? because if it does (or it will through a firmware upgrade over wii24) i can live without a harddrive/usb thing since SDHC is currently maxing out at 32 or 64 GB. which would be excellent. thoughts?

please put this in the mailbag. pleasssssse. maybe.it will please me much for its sheer geekyness.

An excellent question. (PROTIP: If you want to be in the mailbag, write an excellent question!) From what we know of the Wii at the moment, I do not believe the hardware will support the high capacity cards. SDHC is possible because of the new 2.00 specifications for the SD memory format, but that new spec was only finalized this year. That's way too late in the game for it to be compatible with the Wii, which was designed with the the older 1.1 SD spec in mind, probably. If I'm not mistaken, that means the highest capacity SD card the Wii would be able to accept is 4GB. It might even be 2GB is the Wii SD card reader is a cheaper model, which could be likely given Nintendo's frugality.

Could they update the system to allow for higher capacity cards? Maybe, maybe not. But seriously, why on earth would anyone need that much storage space? The most I would ever see myself needing is 4GB. It's not like we're going to be downloading 1GB demos or 100MB+ movie files onto the system. Only a handful of Virtual Console games will be over 16MB, and everything else will take up a trivial amount of room. Will people fill up their 512MB? Yes, eventually. It doesn't mean people will fill up gigabyte after gigabyte after that.


Alright, so I read the story you posted about Wii pre-orders being that same as PS3 as far as quantity is concerned. It's probably just where you live. While I can't really give out which GameStop I work at, we were allowed double what we were for the PS3. We had a bunch of stores in our district allowed to take a little bit more than 30. Most stores were well under 20 if not 10 for the PS3. For the record, it wasn't just based off reservations. While factored in, it was also done by sales volume and such, so a store that is in a no name town isn't going to get much. I hate employees for GS/EB who make stuff up. Don't listen to him, he isn't smart.

Thankfully for people waiting in lines everywhere, the report we posted early Friday turned out to not be case for stores across the nation. The store in question actually did turn out to only have as many as they said they did, but another across town had 14 or so systems available. It looks liked stores across the country were allowed to pre-sell as many as three dozen Wiis, averaging out at around a dozen or two per store. People still walked away empty-handed, though, which is saying something about the demand for Wii.

As I talked to people waiting in line at these stores, I wasn't too surprised to find out that some of them had stayed overnight, as long as 14 hours in one case. What really surprised me was the type of people who were doing it. I expected two guys at the front of a line to be the hardcore type that would want to wake up at 3am to pre-order a console. They got there at 3am, but when I asked them why they did it, I was caught off-guard by their answer. "I want it because it sounded cool. I guess Zelda's gonna be cool." They said that to me in a way that made me believe they have very limited experience with videogame systems. And there they were, just casually standing at the head of the queue, in front of five or six guys who had brought folding chairs, blankets and DS Lites. Unbelievable.

After hearing all the reports and seeing a little slice of the madness first-hand, I'm starting to get the feeling that we may all be underestimating exactly what Nintendo is doing. I'm not entirely sure that most of the pre-orders went to the typical "hardcore" Nintendo fan. They might be waiting to get one at launch day without a pre-order. (That's my plan.) The thing that I'm really curious about, maybe even a little frightened of, is whether or not Nintendo can actually sell as many Wii systems as they will allegedly make by the end of the year. Why would Nintendo make 11 million systems if they knew they wouldn't sell that many? What if they knew they would sell that many? What if Nintendo has an installed userbase of 10 million worldwide in six weeks?

I want to say that it's impossible, but I'm not so sure anymore.


I don't think there's much left to say. Actually, I will say you should be reading old mailbag editions before you send in questions! If I'm not answering one you sent in, there's a good chance I've already covered that topic. There's no point in answering something more than once!

I'll get you next time Gadget. Next time.

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