Wii U coming to America Sunday, November 18

Nintendo logoAt a press event today in New York, Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime announced that the Wii U will launch in the United States on Sunday, November 18.

The system will come in two configurations: A white basic set at $299.99 that comes with 8GB on built-in memory, plus a Wii U GamePad, AC adapter, and HDMI cable. A black deluxe set, costing $349.99, will include everything in the basic bundle plus 32GB of total flash storage, a GamePad charging cradle, stands for the GamePad and console, and a copy of NintendoLand. The deluxe edition will also let users redeem points for every digital download purchased for the system.

Neither configuration will include a Wii Remote or Nunchuk because, Fils-Aime said, "we don't want to require people repurchasing these accessories that they already own."

Overnight, Nintendo announced that the Wii U would launch in Japan on December 8 starting at ¥26,250 (about $337). The system will launch in Europe on November 30, with prices set individually by retailers in the region.

Launch window software

Fils-Aime wouldn't confirm which games would be available on the launch day of November 18, outside of NintendoLand and New Super Mario Bros. U. But he did promise that the launch lineup would be "the strongest for any Nintendo home platform in its history."

The company also listed 50 first- and third-party games that will be available sometime in the "launch window" that runs through March of 2013. That list includes newly revealed titles like party performance game SiNG Party, puzzle platformer Toki Tori 2, and shoot 'em up Nano Assault Neo, as well as ports of upcoming, current, and older games like Mass Effect 3, Ninja Gaiden 3, Darksiders II, Assassin's Creed 3, Madden NFL 13, Batman: Arkham City, and Tekken Tag Tournament 2.

Fils-Aime revealed that Platinum Games' Bayonetta 2 will be a Wii U exclusive published by Nintendo (though it's unclear when the sequel will launch). Platinum will also be bringing The Wonderful 101, a superhero-themed alien invasion game demoed earlier this year at E3 as Project P-100.

Nintendo Wii U

Activision Publishing CEO Eric Hirshberg was also on hand to announce that his company will be bringing Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 to the Wii U, praising the system as "the most capable Nintendo platform ever, especially for the type of games we want to make." The Wii U version will sport a split-screen local multiplayer mode where one player views the action using the GamePad touchscreen and the other uses the TV. The GamePad can be used to view a minimap or your current score without pausing the game, but the game will work with the screen-free Xbox 360-style Wii U Pro Controller or the Wii Remote and Nunchuk as well. Hirshberg also stressed that the Wii U version would run in full HD at 60 frames per second.

Activision will also be producing games like Skylanders Giants, Wipeout 3, 007 Legends, and Transformers Prime: The Game for the "launch window" of the system (meaning they'll be available before the end of March, 2013).

Fils-Aime also announced that Capcom will be bringing Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate to the Wii U in the US and Europe, though precise details about that launch were not made available.

Nintendo TVii

Fils-Aime also introduced what he called "the most different non-gaming initiative Nintendo has ever introduced," Nintendo TVii. Users will be able to scan TV listings from YouTube, Netflix, Hulu Plus, and Amazon Prime videos, as well as their DVR and live TV using the touchscreen GamePad. Different users will be able to view customizable lists of their favorite shows, which integrate streaming, recorded, and upcoming content from all available video sources. Users can also set up shows to record later through a touchscreen Tivo interface.

While watching Live TV, users will be able to follow along with thumbnail screenshots and descriptions of the action on the touchscreen, and interact with things like polls as the episode happens.

For movies from sources like Netflix, users will be able to watch trailers on the GamePad and read additional information and reviews from sources like IMDB. A sports section will let users follow their favorite teams and get supplementary information such as scores and information about highlighted plays they may have missed earlier.

Nintendo TVii will be available in the US and Canada for no additional cost and no monthly fee, and Fils-Aime said the company was looking into rolling it out across the Americas.

Source: Ars Technica

Tags: game consoles, Nintendo, Wii

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