How would you change the Wii U?

Eugene Allen On February 4, 2013 04.02.2013 with 9 Comments

Patches. Updates. Firmware. All of these words are usually met with disdain for gamers, as usually they go hand in hand with lengthy downloads and/or broken features that need fixing. With the latest Nintendo Direct, we learned that the Wii U would receive not just one, but two firmware updates in the next couple of months. Although the update will indeed take away from our precious game-time, let’s think of the positives. New features!

If you had the power, how would you change the Wii U?

Faster load times

This is a no brainer and already something that Nintendo says they will address through firmware updates, but I can’t stress enough how much I wish for this to happen. For 2013, the time it takes to start a game, open an app, or return to the home screen all take far too long. I’m not sure how difficult this will be or how Nintendo plans to fix this problem, but get on it already Nintendo!

There really isn’t anything else to add here other than hoping that in addition to making load times faster, it would be nice for down speed to be higher. Which brings us to….

Improved Nintendo Network infrastructure

Maybe it’s just me (but I doubt it) but downloading ANYTHING for the Wii U takes forever. Case in point: I purchased Trine 2 from the eShop a month ago, and still have yet to play the game. Why you ask? The game simply hasn’t finished downloading. I left my console on overnight twice only to find the download failed each time. As of the time of this writing the download is paused at 54% and I plan on letting the download finish soon, but this is just ridiculous.

I understand that download speeds depend on location and the available bandwidth provided by my internet provider, but on the Xbox Live service, I have never had such trouble downloading titles.

I worry about saying this out loud, but I wouldn’t mind paying a monthly fee for improved down speeds. The service would need to be packed with other features (perhaps access to a virtual library, discounted games, etc.), but boy could Nintendo make a lot of money with the right added benefits.

System level party chat

Right now, there is no way to start a voice chat session without being inside a game that supports it. Sure, you could call a friend with Wii U Chat, but there is no way to carry on the call into a game session.

The console should have the quick and easy ability to party up with a few friends no matter whether you are playing New Super Mario Bros. U, or at the main menu. Again, Nintendo could lock this feature behind a pay-wall and charge a monthly fee and I would be fine with that.

Man, I should be working at Nintendo with all the money I’m making them today!

Pop-up notifications

One of the coolest things about the Wii U is seeing the blue home button light blink when someone on your friends list gets online. Or wait, is that a Wii U Chat call I’m getting? No, no, it’s a game invite for Call of Duty. Sorry, sometimes it’s hard to tell.

It would certainly be nice to have an option to receive a pop-up notification on screen or on gamepad letting you know exactly what happened. Perhaps you could touch the icon that would appear on the Gamepad screen, and a few input options would pop-up such as inviting your friend into a private chat when they log in, or accepting a game invite.

Right now, however, the ability to go from game to Wii U Chat when a call is received is not even possible, and this is something that must change going forward. Not just for the sake of Wii U Chat, but all applications that send notifications. I’m not sure how difficult that would be to implement, but it is something that certainly should be implemented.

What else would you like to see added to Wii U? Do you agree with all the choices above?

9 Responses to “How would you change the Wii U?”

  1. Hitokiri_Ace says:

    I agree on all accounts, except the pay service. I get that free isn’t always possible.. or necessary, but on thing it always is… appreciated.

    It’s the reason I’ve decided to go either WiiU+PS4, or just solo WiiU into this next gen. The Live service just isn’t worth it to me anymore. I don’t want Nintendo to go that route.

    One thing I would love added/fixed.. is NintendoTVii..
    -Instead of links to open Netflix/Hulu/Amazon Vid in their respective apps… I was really hoping for a fully integrated streaming video service. The lack of that really stinks.. It’s so slow to find the show on NintendoTVii.. click watch an episode… wait 2 minutes to load up the other app.. then load the video.. Bleck… not what I wanted at all..

    .. If I sound bitter about that, it’s because I really expected it to be great.. and it wasn’t, at least for me.

  2. Eugene Allen says:

    @Hitokiri_Ace
    I don’t think the pay service has to be required. Give us exactly what we are getting now, but to combat the expensive of a bigger pipeline for faster downloads, charge a fee.

    Nintendo could add a ton of other features to the package to pretty up the deal, but it is something I wouldn’t mind paying say $50 a year.

    As for TVii, you are absolutely right. It takes far to long to do anything that requires an application switch.

    Not optimal at all.

  3. Gary says:

    To be honest there’s a good bit I’d change:

    1) The loading speed of different applications. This is obvious and Nintendo has said they’re addressing the issue in the next two firmware updates.

    2) Better Wii integration. If I want to play a Wii game (Xenoblade Chronicles recently) I have to boot into Wii mode and then load the Wii game. Why can’t I pull at 3DS move and just boot directly to the older game from the main menu? Additionally, I would like my Wii game play time recorded in the activity log, just like the 3DS records DS game play time.

    3) Main menu folders. The 3DS has folders to organize your games/applications. Why doesn’t the Wii U?

    4) Network setup. I had to manually enter all of my network information to get it to connect to my Wi-Fi. I heard this was a problem for many people. It was tedious at best and significantly slowed down the setup process.

    5) Higher resolution screen shots on Miiverse. Right now when you post a screenshot to the Miiverse the image is scaled down significantly from the native resolution you were playing the game at. Sure it saves database space, but is it really necessary?

    6) Nintendo TVii needs an upgrade. Much like Hitokiri_Ace said. I might actually use it if it was better. Additionally, Crunchyroll integration would be a boon to many of the console’s users, myself included.

    7) Off-TV play. Every game which nominally uses the game pad screen (like Mario…) should have game pad support.

    8) Pro controller support. Why do so few games support the pro controller? It doesn’t make sense to me. Mario doesn’t even support it in single player mode. It makes zero sense.

    9) Pro controller configuration. This thing needs a headphone jack.

    10) Game Pad battery life. I get four hours, at best. Playing Nintendo Land with the game pad plugged in is a hassle and significantly detracts from the experience. A pad that big should have a bigger battery, giving us a longer life. I realize the Game Pad uses Wi-Fi constantly to beam video from the console and that takes a lot of power, but come on.

    11) Online game support. Multiplayer games like Nintendo Land need multiplayer support. I have no local friends with which to play, so this game sees little action.

    12) A bigger, better game library. Right now my Wii U is a glorified Wii. I own New Super Mario Bros U, which I am not playing because I recently 100%ed New Super Mario Bros 2 on 3DS, and the two games are stupidly similar. I own Nintendo Land, which, as stated above, I am not playing. Nintendo’s said they’re working on this and has shown some very interesting stuff (Xenoblade 2, Mario 3D, Smash, Fire Emblem x SMT, etc.) but none of that is out yet. The post-launch drought is just as bad as the 3DS post-launch drought.

    13) Enhanced Virtual Console. When will they get it right? If I bought Mario on my 3DS, I don’t want to buy it again on Wii and on Wii U. If I bought it for $5 on 3DS I should own the game, linked to my account, and I should be able to play it on Wii, Wii U, or 3DS, with a cloud save state. Similar to Steam, but only for Nintendo consoles, and only for virtual console games. FUTURE-LOOKING OPPORTUNITY: Code your virtual console emulators well and you can deploy them on smart phones/other devices eventually.

    TL;DR: nitpicky details that really irk me and show they pushed the console out just a bit before it was really ready.

  4. Matthew C says:

    Yes musch faster load ltimes in between the Wii U menus, Miiverse, etc… Also why are the demos hidden on the eshop? I wnated to check out the demos for Rayman Legends and ZombiU but coudl not find them. How do you do access s those? Nintendo shoudl make a dedicated demo link or section on the eshop. Why is it hidden?

  5. CrusherX says:

    Needs faster load times and would be nice if the console would stop spinning the disk in the drive, when your not running the game.
    Yea more pro controller support would be great.

  6. Nomeacuerdo says:

    1. Worldwide eShop support: Look Nintendo, I’m not on the US, Europe or Japan, and I have a credit card. Why isn’t my money worthy for your eShop?
    2. Nintendo Network profile Change: So, I moved out of the country and the solution to reflect that on Miiverse is to create another account? Come on
    3. 3DS integration: It’s plainly stupid that you have the option to see some (not all) the titles for 3DS on the WiiU eShop, and that it just says “not available at this time” why god why?
    4. Link the downloads with the account, not the console: a system failure just creeps the shit out of me.

    The loading times, gamepad battery and Better Wii integration is something that everybody nags about, but also is something that they’ll surely deliver. The first issues I address is something that I seem to be the only one requesting. And that just sucks.

  7. EdEN says:

    Faster load times, account based purchases instead of system based, and incorporate said account with my 3DS eshop account.

    @Eugene: You must have a very, very, veeeeery slow connection. Trine 2 downloaded for me in 2 hours at most. Another problem could be your Wi-Fi Router. When I first got my Wii U, I couldn’t be in the eshop or Miiverse for more than a minute or two at best as I got frequent disconnects and resets. After that, I went and got this

    http://www.amazon.com/Linksys-EA4500-App-Enabled-Dual-Band-Wireless-N/dp/B007IL7AKM/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1360167924&sr=8-4&keywords=900+router

    That solved all of my problems. Very fast downloads on Wii U, PS3 and 3DS and I’ve never seen a single disconnect ever since.

  8. Alex Ashraf Rushdy says:

    Get the Virtual console rolling and patch online into the NEO GEO games.

    The Last Blade with online would rock my world.

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