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Nintendo Press Event - Wow Wii

Posted BY: FoolThrottle, Tuesday, May 09, 2006, 9:37PM EST

This morning we dragged our undercaffienated carcasses over to the famous Kodak Theater to see Nintendo's official unveiling of the complete Wii experience. Hours later, I realized that I never had my morning coffee but somehow, I was riding on an exhilirating buzz from seeing the Wii in action.

The full Nintendo press event will be on E3TV later today, and an edited vertion will be posted in our Floored video player tomorrow. For right now, I just want to share some of my favorite parts.

The event opened with grand master Shigeru Miyamoto conducting a virtual orchestra by waving his Wii remote as a baton. It was a charming, light-hearted way to open the show, and Mr. Miyamoto's sheer presence instantly captured everyone's attention and imagination.

A montage of people playing the Wii for many different types of games was amazing, and I predict many people at home made a buying decision based on that video alone. It showed people pointing and shooting, twisting, stabbing, slashing, jumping, flying, and swinging. Game Mechanics such as swinging a club or bat, slashing with a sword, or reeling in a fish have been tough to replicate with thumbstick controllers. The intuitive and natural motion of the Wii controller makes all these simple movements simple again, allowing us to lose ourselves in a fun game experience. This video was also memorable because it showed a nice variety of game styles - some for young gamers, some for older adults, and many for core gamers. They're clearly breaking down all of the gaming boundaries.

The next highlight was the announcement that the Wii Remote, part of the two-part controller scheme, shall contain a small speaker that allows the sound to travel to and from the television, creating an unparalleled sense of 3D. I can imagine lots of ways this simple feature can enhance gameplay. One of their examples was the blowshots during Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess: the "twuck" of the bowstring will be heard in the remote, the arrow will "whizz" from the remote to the TV, and the "thunk" of the arrow hitting some enemy in the noggin will come from the TV. Since I'm still actively playing Metroid Prime Hunters, I was thrilled to see a glimpse of Metroid Prime 3: Corruption. Cut into the gameplay video were shots of the player using the Wii remote in various ways. Similar to the way the DS has revolutionized the Metroid experience with Metroid Prime Hunters, this new gameplay style looks brilliant and I can't wait to try it.

We were treated to an extended gameplay demo of Zelda Twilight Princess, which helped overcome the disappointment of hearing that we won't have the game in any form until Wii launches. The enticing Wii techniques of shooting arrows, slashing with swords, and throwing objects makes this a must-play on the show floor.

If I were disappointed with anything, it was the fairly light coverage of the DS Lite. They announced that over 100 new games will be released for DS before the end of the year, and they showed a number of exciting titles. But they didn't mention the Web Browser or Video Player we've been hearing about overseas, nor did they talk about enhancements to the Nintendo WiFi connection. Also, the GBA was completely overlooked.

The most impressive moment for me was the tennis match between Nintento Executives and Scott Dier, a fan who won an AOL-sponsored contest to play the Wii first. This was impressive because if ever there was a moment where Wii had to work, it was here. They showed tremendous confidence in the Wii controllers and systems to put their executives in the position of playing it live before the world. The fact that Scott, a newbie to the Wii system, could pick it up instantly and play it fairly well, was a powerful testiment to the wisdom of Nintento's disruptive technology, and their assured continued success.

The next highlight was the announcement that the Wii Remote, part of the two-part controller scheme, shall contain a small speaker that allows the sound to travel to and from the television, creating an unparalleled sense of 3D. I can imagine lots of ways this simple feature can enhance gameplay. One of their examples was the blowshots during Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, the "twuck" of the bowstring will be heard in the remote, the arrow will "whizz" from the remote to the TV, and the "thunk" of the arrow hitting some enemy in the noggin will come from the TV.

Since I'm still actively playing Metroid Prime Hunters, I was thrilled to see a glimpse of Metroid Prime 3: Corruption. Cut into the gameplay video were shots of the player using the Wii remote in various ways. Similar to the way the DS has revolutionized the Metroid experience with Metroid Prime Hunters, this new gameplay style looks brilliant and I can't wait to try it.

We were treated to an extended gameplay demo of Zelda Twilight Princess, which helped overcome the disappointment of hearing that we won't have the game in any form until Wii launches. The enticing Wii techniques of shooting arrows, slashing with swords, and throwing objects makes this a must-play on the show floor.

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