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Your Questions Answered

by Steven Rodriguez - December 18, 2006, 9:12 pm PST

Don't let the calendar fool you. Today is really Sunday! Here's the mailbag update to prove it!


So there are projects out there to get Wii Remotes working on computers. I have downloaded and played with the early version of this software on my Mac and it is quite impressive. My question is, has Nintendo made any response to these efforts to get the remote working on other platforms then their console? I know that some companies would try to sue these developers to prevent them from creating and distributing these solutions, has Nintendo made any suggestion they would do such a thing?

Thanks

- Brendan
Colorado, USA

They haven't suggested anything at this point, and probably don't care. Because it's a standard Bluetooth device, the Wii remote can be detected by any Bluetooth receiver and someone clever enough to make the connection. It's no different than using a USB adapter with a PlayStation controller to play games on a PC, a practice that has been going on since the original PS1 was released.


Hi!

I'm stressed out over wheather or not to get a gamecube copy of Zelda. I won't be getting a Wii until at least the summer and at the latest early 2008 due to a bunch of traveling where TVs, let alone wiis will not be.

I leave at the end of January and want to know whether I should play the gamecube version or wait so as to not miss out on the control and all it adds to it. I, like many, have been pumped about this game for a long while.

Thanks muchly,

- wii are still waiting
Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

In my opinion, I would wait for the Wii version of Twilight Princess if and only if I was going to get a Wii in the near future. If you're not going to be getting one until later 2007, you're doing yourself a great injustice by not playing Zelda. The GameCube version is going to give you pretty much the same experience as the Wii version; the story is the same, the graphics are about the same (except for no widescreen on GC), and the feeling you get while playing it should be the same. Are you sure you can go a year and not have the game spoiled for you? Don't bet on it.

Get the GameCube version of Zelda right away. Play it, enjoy it, finish it, love it. When you finally get your Wii, rent the Wii version to see what all the fuss is about. You'll probably be aching to pop Zelda in again by then.


2 questions guys.

#1. I upated my wii no sooner than the moment I set it up at home. one thing it gave me was "screen burn-in reduction" and i'm still not sure what it does. so my question is, what is it?

#2. about the wii's controllers....I noticed dragonball z budokai tenkaichi 2 can support the wiimote and nunchuck or classic controller OR the gamecube controller. since one game is capable of supporting any and all of those, couldn't the wi theoretically support 8 player multiplayer offline games?

- ghost of hyrule

1) LCD, plasma and large rear-projection TVs are prone to image burn-in, also known as "ghosting." If an image is displayed in the same place for a long period of time, it can potentially damage the TV screen by literally burning-in the image into the screen. It's like pressing a stick into your hand. Newer electronic devices, like game consoles and DVD players, have options for burn-in reduction. It simply dims the display when it has been inactive for a period of time. In doing this, the brighter areas are made less bright, which helps to extend the life of the television screen. It's a glorified screen saver, basically.

2) It probably can. Bomberman '93 on Virtual Console supports five players, meaning four Wii remotes and a GameCube controller (or four GameCube controllers and a Wii remote) are needed to get a full complement of human bombers. I would rather that offline Wii multiplayer games take full advantage of the Wii remote instead of having some mode that forces four Wii remotes to act like GameCube controllers.


Is it possible to take the Wii or DS online with a satellite internet connection? I've heard that while you wouldn't be able to play games on it, you would be able to download classic games or get updates through the WiiConnect24. Is that true?

- WhoDey

Isn't satellite Internet slow? As long as there's no minimum speed requirement for WiiConnect24 or the WiiShop channels, I don't think it would be too much a problem. The Wii isn't going to know you're not on a broadband connection unless it internally does a speed test to see if the connection is fast enough to support it. It might take you a while, but I think it could work.


I was thinking about the question posed by the young man from North Dakota concerning the pricing of certain Virtual Console games, particularly the scenario where you could pay 1500+ points to purchase Super Mario Bros. 1-3 for the NES, but there's also the 800+ Super Mario All-Stars to consider. What about this possibility? Could Nintendo perhaps have Super Mario All-Stars as an "unlockable" free VC download, after buying Marios 1-3 for the NES? Or even better, you have to buy Super Mario 1-3 and The Lost Levels which Nintendo could release in its original form in the US for the first time. That way, Nintendo is still providing the updated version of the games, but earns more money than a single 800-1000 point download would get them.

Also, while it's on my mind, what do you think about the potential for original games being available for download on the Virtual Console? Or perhaps updated versions of old games, with extra levels? Furthermore, do you think they'll have pack-in deals with existing games? Buy Sonic Wii, and get Sonic 2 for the Virtual Console free? Although I suppose it's a more likely scenario that Sonic 2 will be released shortly before the new Sonic in order to generate hype for the new game.

- Steben
Auburn University, AL

Nintendo won't do any kind of "package deal" on Virtual Console. The scenario you point out is something Nintendo would like very much to happen. After we all bought the three Mario games on the NES, we all bought Mario All-Stars on the SNES. Nintendo didn't cut us any deals back then. It'll be the same for their VC incarnations.

For free VC games with a Wii game purchase, I'm finding it less and less likely that we'll ever see Nintendo do it. It actually may work the other way around. If you take a look at latest NES games they've been adding lately (Tennis, Ice Hockey, Soccer and next week, Baseball) you'll see that they all seem to be coinciding with Wii Sports. People who have been having fun with Wii Tennis might be tempted to try out NES Tennis. Also, those who got Twilight Princess at the Wii launch might have been more willing to buy the original NES Zelda. It appears Nintendo is going to ride the success of their Wii games to entice more sales on Virtual Console. Including a free game on top of something you'd buy anyway wouldn't be a smart move on Nintendo's part. Third parties might offer free VC games to encourage retail sales (perhaps as a pre-order bonus), but then again they'd just be losing out on some easy money.

The other thing, then, is when we'll see original games on Virtual Console. I say "when" because I believe it'll happen eventually. I don't know what requirements Nintendo will impose on developers looking to bring their games to the service, but chances are they will mirror Microsoft's 50MB size model. (All Xbox Live Arcade games are required to fit on an Xbox 360 memory unit, hence the small file size.) I mentioned this in this week's podcast (check back later this week for that), but I think indie developers will start to go multiplatform. That is, we'll eventually see the same small-scale games on Virtual Console, Xbox Live Arcade and Sony's PlayStation network. But that's a couple of years off.


Yo Dudes -

In your last mailbag you covered the issue of Wii game lag. I'm not all that concerned with Wii game lag, I'm concerned about old school nintendo game lag, and this happens on any darn TV. I recently bought a 26" LCD and playing Super Mario World on my SNES is really tough, definitely feels very different than what I'm used to. Is there any solution ANYWHERE in development to remedy this problem? Seems like an accessory company should be all over this issue. Any guidance is appreciated, and yes I realize I probably should have done more research before I bought my darn TV.

- DonSilvestre
Minnesota

There is a way to counter it, but it only works for music games. The DDR games and Guitar Hero 2 have a nice feature in where you can re-sync the note charts by making the patterns come sooner than the music plays. After the video signal goes through the television, the sounds and video sync up allowing you to play normally. It's possible in the genre because actions in these types of games are pre-determined. You either hit it at the right time or you don't.

The only way it can be done with action or platforming games is if an action happens before you press the button. Since game systems cannot read minds, getting game to be 100% lag-free on LCD/plasma screens is impossible. Like I said previously, it is entirely the fault of your television. As far as the game is concerned, everything is running perfectly inside the console and the video is being outputted to the monitor instantaneously. It's what happens to the video inside your television that's mucking things up.

The only thing I can tell you is to get component video cables, if you don't have them already. Lag is the worst when the television needs to upscale from a composite or S-Video connection. It's still there when in 480p, but definitely not as bad. I just hope you can find a set!


I will be the first to admitt that I have no clue about all these game systems. My husband and three children love playing their Gamecube and since it is becoming kinda obvious that the Gamecube is going to be phased out, I was wondering if the Wii games would work on a Gamecube since the Gamecube games will work on the Wii system?

- Cluelessinmi
Michigan

We've gone over this a few times in the bag, but I think it's a good time to explain this again for people that still don't know. You cannot play Wii games on the GameCube for three reasons:

1) Wii discs are 12cm, and the GameCube disc tray is designed for its 8cm discs. Wii games cannot physically fit in the GameCube.

2) There is no way for the Wii controller or sensor bar to connect to the GameCube.

3) The Wii is more powerful than the GameCube, so Wii games wouldn't work on the GameCube anyway.

Even though the systems are similar, compatibility only works one way. Sorry!


Hey, hows it going. Sorry if this is a bit off topic, but I recently bought an LCD TV/Monitor combo (i have a really small room) and this got me thinking about HD and all that junk, purely because the pixel extrapolation stuff the tv does makes my 'cube look crappy. i noticed a digital AV output on the cube, and this got me wondering. a quick google search, however, turned up nothing. So in short, what is this port, why is it there, and can it make my cube look better then my composites on the analog AV?

Many thanks.

- skud
Dublin, IE

It's what allows the GameCube to output in progressive scan. For Europe, that would mean a 576p (at 50hz) resolution. You'll need a set of GameCube component cables (or whatever the connection is in Euroland) to take advantage of that. Nintendo phased out the port and cables from the GameCube a few years ago, however, so you may have a hell of a time finding them. But yeah, they do make GameCube games look a lot better. If you can find a set, get a set! (Just remember that Wii cables won't work on the GameCube and vice versa.)


I've been wanting to get the Wii component cables for a while now, but they have a glaring flaw. You see, with every composite AV cable that Nintendo has released, you could peel apart the seperate audio and video cables so that they could connect to your TV while at the same time reach your sound system receiver that might be sitting at a different level.

The problem is: the Wii component cables aren't peelable, so the audio cables won't be able to reach my sound system that sits 18 inches lower than my TV. Will I be forced to sacrifice surround sound to have component video for my Wii? Is there a way to work around this?

- Al

This is unfortunate for people that have their video inputs and their audio inputs far away from each other, but there is a cheap way to get around it. Go to your Radio Shack or equivilent electronic parts store and pick up two female/female RCA jack adapters and a length of RCA audio cable. (They'll have the same plugs as your component cables.) Simply plug the adpaters into your red and white audio jacks of your component cable and plug the audio cable into the adapters. Presto, you have an extended audio connector. This solution will only cost you around $5 or $10, which is worth the investment. Believe me, I know!


Sorry about the late mailbag update this week. I've been busy with a lot of things behind the scenes, and just plain forgot that it was Sunday yesterday. That's no good!

You can help me remember to update the mailbag on time next week by sending me a lot of questions! Wii questions are good, but don't forget about the DS or GBA. Don't you people remember Nintendo's handhelds?

See you next Sunday. No, really!

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