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Brier Dudley's blog

Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest.

October 9, 2006 at 9:42 AM

Today’s column on Nintendo’s Wii

Last week was a rough one.

One day I was at Microsoft fiddling with the Zune, the next I was at Nintendo playing the Wii. Both are the same price — $250 — which seems to be the entry point for a lot of today’s cool gadgets.

In addition to the column on the Wii, we’re running an online slideshow with more images of the device and game screen shots.

I’ve been playing video games for about 30 years, starting with my neighbor’s Pong. It got serious when a friend introduced me to the Atari, which gave us arcade-quality games without having to pay 25 cents a turn.

That thrifty streak probably colored my views on the Wii; I think it’s a little more fun to play video games when I know they’re a good deal.

The Wii comes with a collection of sports games that are simple, a little silly and nowhere near the visual quality of Xbox 360 titles. But you can play them over and over, without having to shell out another $60 for your first game.

Eventually you’ll buy more games, of course. But the free stuff in the Wii box sweetens the deal and warms your feelings about the device. Microsoft is doing the same thing by preloading the Zune with a collection of music and videos.

Here’s how the column starts:

I’ve been watching the container ships in Elliott Bay lately.

I’m wondering which ones are bringing Nintendo’s new Wii game console to America. Millions of Wiis are coming, all through Seattle, in advance of its Nov. 19 launch. After playing with the Wii last week at Nintendo’s Redmond office, I may swim out and see if any spares are floating around.

I try to be skeptical during product demonstrations, but this one left me convinced the Wii (pronounced “we”) will be a huge hit and the hottest toy this holiday season….

Comments | More in | Topics: Gadgets & products, Games & entertainment

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