An updated YouTube application for Wii U is now available. After performing a software update, users will be able to use the YouTube app to watch videos on the Wii U GamePad’s screen. Additionally, they will be able to search for YouTube content via the controller while another video is playing on the TV.
Advanced Gaming Innovations is working on a new gaming controller that looks similar to the Wii U GamePad. The “Cross Plane” will also have some of the same functions as Nintendo’s touch-screen controller, and is designed to support PC, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Ouya. It will allow users to play an entire game strictly on its screen, akin to the Wii U GamePad’s Off-TV Play feature. The Cross Plane is currently seeking funds on Kickstarter. Read some of the project’s description below:
“The Cross Plane” is the worlds first multi-platform WVI (Wireless Video Interface) gaming controller that brings a new angle into the way we play modern video games. Designed to support gaming platforms like XBox 360, PlayStation 3, OUYA and PC, “The Cross Plane” puts your favorite games from your favorite platforms right to the palm of your hand, all in beautiful Hi-Def quality!
For the first time, PC users will have to opportunity to “Cut the cord” and take the full power of their machine anywhere in house. That means “Steam” can go with you to the couch or Crysis 3 can actually be played on a handheld.
The button layouts were carefully considered and based around what most console gamers would be used to. This layout went through many changes via 3D Printed case tests to make sure it felt comfortable and natural in your hands given the body style is flat out different from any controller (except the Wii U) on the market.
Platinum Games’ Hideki Kamiya was recently asked on Twitter to reveal whether there’s an element he would change in the Wii U hardware. The outspoken designer replied, “I want multi touch.” Rather than allowing for multi-touch gestures, the Wii U GamePad has a resistive touch screen that only supports single-touch input. Kamiya is currently working on the Wii U-exclusive The Wonderful 101, in which players draw shapes on the Wii U GamePad’s touch screen to deliver attacks on enemies. The game is due for release in Europe on August 23rd and in North America on September 15th.
Touch screen. I want multi touch. RT @A25R02B19C86: Question: Is there one hardware component you’d change in the Wii U? If so, why?
— 神谷英樹 Hideki Kamiya (@PG_kamiya) August 3, 2013
If you’re not happy with the Wii U GamePad‘s three to five-hour battery life, you’ll be pleased to know that Nintendo is making a new larger capacity battery for the Wii U’s 6.2-inch touch-screen controller. The new battery, which launches on July 25th in Japan, promises five to eight hours of battery life, will cost 3,000 yen – about $39 – and it will need to be manually installed by the user. There’s no word yet on international availability, but would you purchase a bigger battery for your Wii U GamePad? Or are you happy with the controller’s originally-installed battery?
Respected tech analysis site Digital Foundry has written an interesting article titled The Secrets of the Wii U GamePad. The Wii U GamePad has been reverse-engineered by the developers behind Dolphin. The team contacted developer Pierre Bourdon to find out more about the innovative device. The conclusion that the team came to is that the Wii U GamePad isn’t anywhere near as complex as the most basic Android powered tablet.
The GamePad itself isn’t anywhere near as complex as even the most basic Android tablet – essentially it’s a standard game controller, with a touch-screen and a WiFi card, paired up with a decoder chip for the incoming video stream. Controller inputs themselves are beamed back to the Wii U via the same WiFi channel (180 times per second no less), in contrast to the Bluetooth employed by the Wiimote.
Datel Japan have released pictures of a sleek aluminium Famicom-style faceplate for the Wii U GamePad. This design is intended for use with a Deluxe Wii U set, as the buttons on a Famicom controller are black. With the faceplate on, the GamePad will not work in the standard Wii U charger cradle. Luckily, Datel Japan offers an alternate cradle that allows the GamePad with faceplate to fit. It is not clarified whether or not the faceplate will interfere with NFC-based activities. The faceplate will be launching July 31st, at ¥1,980 (about $20).
During a recent financial results briefing, Nintendo President Satoru Iwata said his company feels “deeply responsible” for not trying hard enough to explain the Wii U to consumers. Unfortunately, for Nintendo, there are still some people who think the Wii U GamePad is a peripheral for the Wii console, and some think the Wii U is merely a Wii with a tablet controller. Iwata says it’s been a “grand challenge” for Nintendo in terms of trying to communicate the product value of Wii U to consumers.
Regarding Wii U, the release intervals of first-party key titles have been so much longer than we expected at the Corporate Management Policy Briefing in January that we have not successfully maintained the momentum of the platform. In addition, we have not been able to solidly communicate the product value of Wii U to our consumers yet, which has been a grand challenge for us.
Some have the misunderstanding that Wii U is just Wii with a pad for games, and others even consider Wii U GamePad as a peripheral device connectable to Wii. We feel deeply responsible for not having tried hard enough to have consumers understand the product.
Wii U might still have no such captivating game title as “Wii Sports” for Wii, with which people immediately comprehended its product value, but it surely has a lot of factors appreciated by users. We would like to take time to work thoroughly for its penetration, by making various efforts to have many people understand its product value as well as enriching the software lineup.
-Nintendo President Satoru Iwata
Nintendo has launched three new commercials in the US to advertise the Wii U as, once again, a family console. Despite what Michael Pachter said, Nintendo has decided to market the Wii U as a ‘family orientated’ console, just like its predecessor.
The first commercial, featured above, sees the Vanorsby family playing on the console and saying ‘we gotta upgrade’. The second and third families skate along the same line, exploring the main differences of the GamePad against the Wii Remote, emphasising that you can play both on and off-screen. The Haskins family even says that when you hold the GamePad it’s much ‘easier’, providing smoother game play. Do you think the new commercials will help bring in the family market and create a success similar to the Wii?
The latest issue of CoroCoro Comic reveals that the first Wii U game to use NFC is Pokémon Rumble U, which launches in Japan next month, on April 24th. On the same day the game is out, consumers in Japan can purchase Pokémon figures from Pokémon Center stores that appear in Pokémon Rumble U via the Wii U GamePad’s NFC feature. The Pokémon figures resemble their toy counterparts in the Pokémon Rumble series, and they will cost 200 Yen each, which is roughly $2.
Nintendo has released a new Japanese overview trailer for Wii U title Game & Wario, which launches in Japan on March 28th. There are a total of 16 minigames in the party game, all of which utilize many features of the Wii U GamePad, including its 6.2-inch touchscreen, gyroscope, accelerometer and buttons. Based on the new trailer, it looks like all the minigames in Game & Wario integrate asymmetric gameplay, where in each minigame, the TV and Wii U GamePad display different images, but both of their screens must be used.