WiiHD doesn't bring you all the news, just the best Core Gaming news for Wii and DS.

by David MarseillesDavid Marseilles
on 22 Jul 2008 21:19
Tags: currents news

Will the Real Nintendo Please Step Forward?

Nintendo seems to have a hard time deciding whether Nintendo focuses on the Core gamer at E3 or not.

Miyamoto (stating the obvious) says no (as does every other gamer out there).

Cammie Dunaway (inexplicably) says Nintendo focused on both blue ocean and hardcore.

Reggie (completely confuzzled) says we gave you GTA (DS) and Animal Crossing, what more do you want?!?

WiiHD 1) trusts Miyamoto implicitly, and 2) doesn't really care what anyone SAYS. When Nintendo decides to keep their promise and focus on both Core and Casual, they won't have to tell us that's what they're doing. The proof will be in the pudding.


by David MarseillesDavid Marseilles
on 21 Jul 2008 17:41
Tags: currents mini-cores pirates shooter shooter

Mini Cores: Pirates: The Key of Dreams

Today's Mini Cores focus is on Pirates, today's new WiiWare entry. From the video (after the break), it looks to be a nice fast paced little shooter on the high seas. If it's not fast enough for you, Oxygen games tells us there is a Turbo Mode.

Pirates: The Key of Dreams is a frantic nautical shoot-em-up available exclusively through the Nintendo Channel - Sail your way across the Caribbean, cannons blazing, looting booty, running blockades, and ultimately, battling Blackbeard himself!

The player takes control of a Navy Captain sent deep undercover as a ruthless Pirate, in order to seek out and retrieve The Key of Dreams, a valuable and dangerous cursed artifact. Rescue castaways to bolster your ship's crew, gaining performance increases to your navigation, weaponry, structural integrity and cartography skills. Collect increasingly powerful weaponry including Rockets, Mines, Chain Shot, Saw Blades and a Flamethrower to hurl destruction into the path of your enemies. Play against three of your scurvy friends or AI opponents in pitched multiplayer battles over 35 levels, in seven themed environments. Choose from different ship types that reflect your play style, and play in turbo mode if you think you're Pirate enough!

It's 1000 points, so check out the video after the break before you buy to make sure this game is what you're after.
Via Oxygen Games | Permalink

by David MarseillesDavid Marseilles
on 18 Jul 2008 19:45
Tags: currents views

Gamasutra and Expectations

One of the main theses behind WiiHD is that looks aren't everything in a game. Even with beautiful games, the wow factor typically lasts a few moments, with occasional renewed bursts of interest when you come across special environments, and then even the most graphics obsessed gamer has moved on to how the game feels to play.

So this Gamasutra article, titled "Looks Aren't Everything" caught our attention. Now understand, it's a sponsored piece, and parts of it read like a used car salesman pitch (for intel). Otherwise, it makes some great points about intuitive design and interface, as well as how and why we're becoming more demanding on that front than we used to be.

It has to do with expectations. Realism was not a factor in the old 8bit gaming days, so we easily accepted the limited rule set of those environments. As graphical realism has increased — as the game world began to look more and more like the real world — we've come to expect real world behavior to match, and we are often disappointed.

WiiHD thinks this metric could explain why average consumers have been less hard on Wii games this generation than they have on PS360 games: 1) Wii graphic design often eschews realism in favor of either stylism, or flat-out cartoony effects, and 2) Wii's hardware interface provides more real world behavior than a gamepad. So Wii sets the expectations lower with visuals, and then matches them better with interface.

This expectations metric could also explain one reason there is so much dissatisfaction with the Wiimote pointer from former lightgun lovers. It looks and feels like a lightgun, from a distance, but it doesn't act like one. Despite the manifest advantages of the Wiimote over both a lightgun and a gamepad, I've watched many a gamer grab one expecting it work like the original NES Zapper or an arcade equivalent, find that it isn't the same, and go back to dual analog for all their first-person needs.

It's confounding, but it makes sense in a sad kind of way. If you're marketing a shooter on Wii, this might be a paradigm you want to pay attention to. Get the expectations right.

Via Gamasutra | Permalink

by David MarseillesDavid Marseilles
on 14 Jul 2008 22:01
Tags: currents e3

Great Expectations

I was just contacted by the Grand Council of Video Game Bloggers (GCVGB) and informed that WiiHD's membership would be revoked if we failed to post an E3 predictions post. We asked if we could just post a predictions thread after E3 was over, but they were not amused. So here's a list of what we want to see out of E3 juxtaposed against a list of what we expect to see at E3. Enjoy, and post your own list after the break.

What WiiHD Expects

  1. Anteaterz, Ubisoft (Wii, DS)
  2. Wii Ballerina, Nintendo (Wii with support for Balance Board)
  3. Useless plastic wraps for Wiimote, various (Wii)
  4. Mario (insert sport here), Nintendo (Wii)
  5. Zelda Pinball, Nintendo (DS)

What WiiHD Wants

  1. Civilization Revolution, 2K (Wii)
  2. Halo Combat Evolved, EA (DS)
  3. news: The Conduit (Wii) won't have Friend Codes
  4. playable demo and footage: The Conduit (Wii)
  5. Metroid Dread, Nintendo (DS)

Watch some (real, from developer pitch) Halo (DS) footage after the break to see what could have been.

by David MarseillesDavid Marseilles
on 08 Jul 2008 05:01
Tags: currents video

WiiHD User Video Upgrade

Today WiiHD is unveiling our new and improved video site. It is for user generated content only, not boring stuff like trailers and official footage. For the time being, it is exclusively for Medal of Honor Heroes 2 footage, but in the future, we'll add support for other titles like Cal of Duty 5 (Wii), The Conduit (Wii), (maybe) Civ Rev (DS) and others. If you'd like to see support for another game, make a comment in this post. With your help, we'll build the biggest repository of core Nintendo videos anywhere. We'll have montages and tournys and glitch vids (oh my) and we'll show them off in style.

As of now, you can quickly and easily upload video content, without needing to register. It's as simple as pasting in the title to the Submission form and pressing submit, then pasting in the Description where you are directed to, pasting in the Embed Code where you are instructed to, and clicking save. Then Wham! It's listed alongside some incredible game footage put together by some of the best players in the game, where other users can rate, tag and comment on it (registration is require for rating) and even submit it to social networking sites.

Your MoHH2 footage will be appreciated by other core gamers, not ignored by the masses at Youtube or mocked by arrogant CoD4 toting Live! users, and it won't be lost in the clutter of millions of unrelated videos.

So what are you waiting for? Go check out the new video site, and take your best MoHH2 footage with you. And while you're there, make sure you watch our highest rated video from Ohio Lawyer (pictured and linked above).
Via WiiHD's User Video | Permalink

by David MarseillesDavid Marseilles
on 07 Jul 2008 03:20
Tags: currents list wii

WiiHD's Most Anticipated Wii Titles

  1. The Conduit (Q1 2009)
  2. TimeSplitters 4 (? and unconfirmed for Wii)
  3. Monster Hunter 3 (?)
  4. SimCity Creator (09/22/2008)
  5. Call of Duty: World at War (11/2008)
  6. Deadly Creatures (10/2008)
  7. Animales de la Muerte (2008)
  8. Quantum of Solace (11/2008)
  9. Star Wars: The Force Unleashed (9/16/2008)
  10. 1701 A.D. (2009)

Honorable Mentions go to Mad World, Civilization Revolution (it could still happen) and Tecmo Bowl Kickoff.

Why is CoD so low on the list? WiiHD still harbors doubts about Treyarch's commitment to Wii, despite their protestations to the contrary. Quantum of Solace could be an exciting title too, but real information is in short supply. Why is SimCity Creator so high? The Wii has the perfect interface for bringing traditional PC genres to Wii, and SimCity would be a great franchise to demonstrate the Wii's versatility. WiiHD would like to see more simulations, RTS and TBS on the system. What is 1701 A.D.? A little taste of RTS. Hopefully not the Wii's last. The sheer and utter lack of any news about Brothers in Arms (08/2008) since last year kept it off the list. If it were going well, you'd expect to see a little more build up.

What are your most anticipated titles?


by David MarseillesDavid Marseilles
on 04 Jul 2008 17:56
Tags: conduit currents fps friend-codes oped wii

Let The White Dog Sing


Open letter to High Voltage Software from WiiHD

Dear High Voltage Software,
You've struck a mighty chord in the hearts of Nintendo Gamers. It's not that we mind there being Wii Fits and Pokemons and Carnival Games (oh my), it's just that when this generation started, we never imagined they would be getting more of Nintendo's attention than a blockbuster like Metroid Prime 3, which you might recall was relegated to a mere "viral" marketing campaign. We never imagined that games like Call of Duty 3 would come to us, but without a multiplayer component of any kind. Or that one of the biggest shooters of the decade, CoD4, would skip us entirely, and look to not miss us much. We never imagined the avalanche of PS2 ports, PSP ports, and flat-out refuse (can you say Cruisn' Wii?) that we'd be buried under, even while the Wii is the world leader in install base. We never imagined that developers would sneer at us as if we only (or ever) played cheap party games or weren't interested in buying quality games.

Now, you've gotten our hopes up. Not just because you're promising a quality game to satiate those of us who ran up a last gen game like Resident Evil 4 into the millions, or who bought Red Steel in droves not by accident, but to encourage progress in the genre. No, because you talk like us. By every measure, you are gamers who have the same hopes and aspirations for Wii that we do. Honestly, we would have fallen in love if you had simply not sneered and made a 2 Gamecubes duct-taped together joke, but you took it a lot farther than that.

Hit the break for the rest of this Open Letter


by David MarseillesDavid Marseilles
on 04 Jul 2008 17:28
Tags: currents oped wii

Let Freedom Ring


Open Letter to Nintendo from WiiHD

Dear Miyamoto-san,
We believe in the Wii. Not simply as a blue ocean surfing, expanded audience party machine. But as a device that can compete head-to-head with the PS3, 360 and even the PC as a core gaming platform. Sometimes we wonder at Nintendo under-selling the device and its owners, as George Harrison did repeatedly last year, saying we weren't the type of gamers that liked aggressive online multiplayer and did not need such features. We remember the promise you made to have a dual focus; on both the casual audience And the core audience, and we find it wanting.

Yes, Galaxy was an incredible game. Nintendo is and perhaps always will remain the king of platformers. Nintendo also does great honor to gamers by really trying to make a new game that has a reason to exist, other than the quest for more money. Mario Kart and Brawl were solid core games that delivered fun and did it in a big way. Metroid Prime 3 Corruption was one of the best games of 2007, not in spite of the Wii, but largely Because its uniqueness, yet it did not get its due.

Of course one of the reasons MP3C didn't get its due was that Nintendo of America didn't bother to advertise it. They allowed Wii Shop users on the 40-some-odd percent of Wiis that had connected to the internet at that point to download a nice video channel if they wanted, and left it at that. Naturally, it still sold around a million and half copies, as many of us were dying to get our hands on it from the first time we saw it at E3 2006. But the larger gaming world was content to ignore the incredible gameplay, the compelling and foreboding enviornments and the heavily integrated adventure elements that made MP3C a unique and exciting game. Perhaps they ignored it because Nintendo did. Sure, you made certain it was a quality game, and when Retro needed more time to fine-tune it, you ensured that they got it, which is more than most publishers do these days. But you didn't promote it, and you let the world ignore something incredible that should never have been ignored. You had the resources to give the world a look at that game, and at the Wii as a platform itself, in a way they didn't see at the time: as a system that was not only suitable for, but brilliant for core games.

Hit the break to see the full letter.


by David MarseillesDavid Marseilles
on 02 Jul 2008 22:41
Tags: currents deals

Get 5% off a DS Lite (and anything else) on Amazon

Update 1: Yesterday's experiment didn't go as well as I'd planned. It's possible that Amazon has recently refined their system to not add higher dollar items to Quick Picks to thwart just this type of deal. I'm not giving up yet though, it could just be a timing thing. I'm going to see if it come up tomorrow and I'll let you know.
Do you want to get a DS a little cheaper (not much point in trying with the always out of stock Wii)? WiiHD can help you knock off 5%. It's not much, but it's enough to buy a travel charger or some other knick-knack. It's also enough to feed WiiHD's indentured hamsters power WiiHD's headquarters for a week. Method adapted and localized for DS from LockerGnome's general guide on the topic.

Okay the basic point of this exercise is to get Amazon to recommend a DS Lite to you, and then to make that DS the only thing in your recommendations list. Once we do that, when Amazon makes a custom Quick Picks deals list for you the next day, they'll grab something from those recommendations, and if the DS is the only thing there, you'll get a guaranteed 5% off.

The catch to the Lockergnome system above is that it didn't work just so when WiiHD tested it out with the DS (check after the break to see why). So here's our tweaked Just for the DS system:

  1. Go to improve your recommendations at Amazon.com (Found under "Your Account")
  2. If there are any items listed there, check the "Do Not Use for Recommendations" box next to each and every item. If you love Amazon as much as we do, this could take a while.
  3. Now go to this embarrassing item, A Nintendo DS Lite Travel Kit Pink, and scroll down to just before the user reviews. There's a check box there that reads "I own it".
  4. Try to forget your serious gamer reputation, and click that check box. If you have a leather belt, placing it between your teeth prior to clicking may help prevent accidentally biting off your tongue as you do the deed. This generates the recommendations that you need.
  5. Now click on "We have recommendations for you" at the top of the page.
  6. There will be several items including a DS Lite (probably the Cobalt/Black version). Select "Not Interested" under every item EXCEPT the DS. Refresh your results to make sure the DS Lite is the only item listed.
  7. Wake up the next day, click on Today's Deals, and scroll down to "Quick Picks". Add the DS to your cart, and make sure you complete your order within 60 minutes of putting it in your cart, and you just saved a whopping $6.50.

5% isn't worth it for just any old item, but it is tempting at around the $50 mark if you are a poor student. So for instructions to use this on Wii games (an everything else), as well as to find out why Lockergnome's original guide didn't work so well for the DS, hit the break.
With help from LockerGnome | Permalink

by David MarseillesDavid Marseilles
on 30 Jun 2008 06:24
Tags: currents ia

WiiHD Housekeeping

In lieu of actual news this weekend, WiiHD brings you a minor face-lift. Our new logo is the pride of WiiHD headquarters, and it keeps our powersource the hamsters mesmerized for minutes at a time in between inhumanely long shifts during their breaks. We've repaired WiiHD's RSS feed so it now delivers the same content you see on the front page, and have given you more ways to access it. That and a few minor tweaks here and there while we're still growing the Contest SuperSite. Feel free to poke around a little. We hope it all meets with your approval.

If there's anything else missing around here you'd like to see (besides wit or competence), just let us know in the comments, or in our new comment forms linked in the header under Contact WiiHD.

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