I got an advance look at Nintendo’s next-generation Wii console on Monday, and got to play several games slated to be released in the Wii’s launch window. Most of my time was spent just getting used to the new controller, which is a complete departure from the past and unprecedented in its innovation.
You aren’t hearing much about this, but the Wii requires that you attach a sensor bar to your television. Nintendo hasn’t quite figured out how to attach the bar, which is thin and several inches long, to the TV yet. Adhesive seems messy, but I can’t think of a better alternative.
Anyway, once the bar is attached, it works very well with the accelerometers in the Wii’s remote controllers. There are two parts to the “nunchuck” controller, connected with a wire. You can just use one part for certain games, like “Wii Sports: Tennis” and it looks pretty much like a wireless remote control. It has a speaker embedded in it — a very cool feature. The second part can be attached for more complex games, such as “The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess.”
The controller is very sensitive to motion. You just need to flick your wrist and it will respond, though the first impulse is to wildly swing it around. It will take some time for gamers to get used to just how different the controller is, but the design could lead to new kinds of games not possible on consoles before.