Summary: The Nintendo Wii U is the follow-up to the hugely popular Wii, and introduces a quirky GamePad controller with a second screen. The system is more complicated than the Wii, which may alienate casual players, and doesn't offer the power or game selection to turn the heads of long-time gamers. The controller can be a lot of fun, but it's questionable whether future games will really make use of this interesting hardware.
Cons: Not every game makes good use of the GamePad; Console has limited storage space; GamePad screen is low-res; Tepid launch lineup.
Summary: The console itself is similarly housed, and likewise gives rise to some less-than-complimentary comments. Reviewers also say that both the GamePad and the console attract lots of fingerprints. A few build quality issues are also noted: For example, ArsTechnica.com finds that the face buttons on the controller are a little loose, leading to a rattling sound when the GamePad is shaken.
Pros: Family-oriented titles, Also plays Nintendo Wii games and downloadable classic Nintendo games, Compatible with Wii accessories
Cons: Limited streaming features, No CD, DVD or Blu-ray playback, Underpowered compared to new video game consoles
Summary: So at long last, the next generation of consoles is finally here. Even though the last generation of consoles technically started in 2005, it doesn’t feel all that long ago that we were still referring to the PS3 and Wii as the “next generation.” Well, their successors are finally coming, and even though the Wii U may not have the graphical jump hardcore gamers are looking for, the Wii U provides a unique experience that truly offers something we’ve never seen before.
Conclusion: The Wii U is a difficult piece of hardware to review for two reasons. First, it is unavoidably competing with hardware that exists in a different space, and second, the entire system is betting on a future that isn’t entirely clear yet.
Pros: A fresh, original way to look at gaming, GamePad means previous released best-sellers can be ported to the Wii U with a new twist, Can play console-quality games on the GamePad without the TV, Miiverse is a ready-made community, Backwards compatibility with Wii games, controllers
Cons: Much of the software has been delayed, Short battery life on GamePad, Relatively high price compared to rivals, Won’t play Blu-rays or DVDs, and does not have an onboard video player, No networking abilities, Tiny internal hard drive forces you to buy more storage soon, Several promised online functions are not available at launch
Excerpt: Nintendo is never happy with maintaining the status quo. Like Wii before it, Nintendo's latest home console pivots away from what gamers would expect out of a traditional system. Yeah, can do motion controls like Nintendo's last-gen system--but the GamePad tablet introduces a whole new way to play. I've been lucky enough to have the Wii U for now. Here's what's thrilled me about the system and what's surprised me.
Excerpt: Nintendo was the first company with a next-gen video game console on the shelves. Unfortunately, the Wii U feels more like competition to the PS3 and Xbox 360, rather than a true next-gen console. The Wii U's Gamepad is an excellent gaming controller, and the console offers amazing potential. However, there are some major issues preventing the system from becoming a great gaming machine.
Pros: The Wii U's tablet-like Gamepad offers gameplay potential similar to the DS and 3DS.
Cons: The Nintendo Network is a poor online system, forcing friends to trade numeric codes to stay connected.
Summary: The Nintendo Wii U doesn’t have the same immediate impact that the Wii did all those years ago, so if you’re getting one for Christmas expect to do a lot of hand-holding if your granny wants to have a go. It’s not as intuitive as its predecessor, which may not be a bad thing, especially when you consider how primitive some Wii games were.
Excerpt: Nintendo has just announced the successor to its wildly popular and family friendly Wii system today at E3 — called the Wii U . If the name didn’t clue you in, essentially Nintendo hopes they’ve built a console gaming experience that’s highly entertaining for the entire family and individual gamers.