Nintendo Network to rival Xbox Live and the PSN

Nintendo has always been behind Microsoft and Sony in terms of developing a robust online gaming service for its various consoles. However,  this week Nintendo announced plans to launch a new service, the Nintendo Network, that looks on the surface to finally be Nintendo's answer to Microsoft's Xbox Live and Sony's PlayStation Network.

The Nintendo Network will first be used for the company's Nintendo 3DS portable game console. While no game titles were announced that would support the new service, Nintendo did say that the recent Communities feature in the 3DS game Mario Kart 7, where players can set up their own rules for online racing with their friends, is just one example of what could be supported by games in the new Nintendo Network.

Nintendo expects that the new service will offer downloadable add-on content for games. The company is also "considering" offering full games via download from the service but has not yet decided on when it might launch such a feature.

The Nintendo Network will also be a part of the company's upcoming Wii U console, which is currently scheduled to be launched before the end of 2012. Wii U users will be able to use  "a personal account system compatible with Nintendo Network." This sounds like it will be similar to Xbox Live's Gamertags.

While it remains to be seen how this new system will really work on the Wii U, it's clear that Nintendo plans to offer up an online service that will be much closer to the experience that Xbox 360 and PS3 owners already have.

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Sounds fine, but if the Wii U doesn't play blu-ray or DVDs, like the Wii doesn't, then there simply isn't space for it in my living room.

But if they make it fit well with my current technology, I'll think about it.

Hopefully they'll get some better wireless tech in the Wii U, because what they currently have in the Wii can't connect worth ****.

Okay I just checked out the Nintendo Wii U website, WTF is up with the huge controller? Am I missing something or not understanding it? What I am looking forward about is that you can finally get better resolution like 1080p ( ABOUT DAMN TIME) and seems like we will also get 5.1 surround?

TsMkLg068426 said,
Okay I just checked out the Nintendo Wii U website, WTF is up with the huge controller? Am I missing something or not understanding it? What I am looking forward about is that you can finally get better resolution like 1080p ( ABOUT DAMN TIME) and seems like we will also get 5.1 surround?

The huge controller is their gimmick for this new generation. It's a touchscreen with motion sensing etc. but you only get one per system and it will be prohibitively expensive to add more. They are looking into allowing you to use a 3DS instead if you want multiple so that implies the huge controller is more expensive then a 3DS. Players beyond the first will use the same controllers as the Wii so if you already have a Wii and buy a Wii U you won't need to buy any new controllers.

We don't know the price of the controller, and we dont know how many will be able to connect. Everything isn't set in stone yet and the newest dev'kit(final version) is supposed to be a huge improvement compared to older dev-kits.
Yes there will be 5.1 through HDMI(most TV's have optical output sound).

1080p is confirmed and and total system shoulæd be about 5 times the power of Xbox 360.

TsMkLg068426 said,
Okay I just checked out the Nintendo Wii U website, WTF is up with the huge controller? Am I missing something or not understanding it? What I am looking forward about is that you can finally get better resolution like 1080p ( ABOUT DAMN TIME) and seems like we will also get 5.1 surround?

It's a light, comfortable controller, with enough technology packed in it to open up new gameplay experiences. However, you and developers are still free to use normal Wii Controllers, including Wii Remotes and the classic controller if they so wish to forgo innovation. Note - that the controller itself has handgrips on the back and a ledge where it rests on your fingers - and is as light as Nintendo could possible make it. It has a built in camera, NFC, 6" touch screen, microphone, speakers, gyroscope, accelerometer, Wii Remote Sensor bar and NFC. Developers can use the screen as a secondary display to augment the on screen action, or use it was a primary display (i.e - you can play the game straight to the controller, without the need of TV)

The WiiU wasn't design especially in mind to use multiple of these controllers. Reasons, apart from cost: The WiiU renders the actual screen data for the controller on the console itself, and streams it over - so each of these controllers running taxes the system's CPU & GPU some amount depending on what developers decide they want to do - so Nintendo really designed it only with one screen in mind. Hence the "U" part of the WiiU name - it's designed for YOU.

The controller itself is technically a "dumb slave". No real processing power, just a screen and a bunch of sensors and a battery. (If they were to sell it, you'd be looking at about a £70 retail RRP).

You know, people keep mentioning Virtual Console games, but does no one remember WiiWare, DSiWare, & the unnamed downloadable 3DS games? Cuz Virtual Console was just classic console emulation, all of those were the actual new games you could download for Nintendo consoles...

I hope they go the Sony route with a real internet connection for free and not the MS route of a (pay - even if very cheap) walled garden.

Asmodai said,
I hope they go the Sony route with a real internet connection for free and not the MS route of a (pay - even if very cheap) walled garden.

Well, Nintendo Network is essentially what Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection is becoming, & that's free...

The Wii already had online gaming capabilities and ability to purchase games off the Virtual Console. So basically they're just turning all of this into the Nintendo Network and adding additional features? Sounds good to me!
Maybe they'll add game demos too.
BTW: The Super Nintendo had online capabilities back in 1995

Tha Bloo Monkee said,
The Wii already had online gaming capabilities and ability to purchase games off the Virtual Console. So basically they're just turning all of this into the Nintendo Network and adding additional features? Sounds good to me!
Maybe they'll add game demos too.
BTW: The Super Nintendo had online capabilities back in 1995

The SNES only had online in a Japan-only add-on...

MASTER260 said,

The SNES only had online in a Japan-only add-on...

Not true. There was a product released in the US called Xband, which was a modem for the SNES and Genesis that allowed certain games to be played "online".

Not sure what you're thinking of. Maybe the BS Satellite add-on thingy?

Please... There's only one measure for any online gaming network's quality: minimize the amount of time it takes to hear your first racial or homophobic slur after joining a game. Somehow I doubt they can 'rival' LIVE in this way.

Considering how late to the game they are, one has to wonder just how much expertise they're going to have at their disposal to pull this off.

I suppose Sony PSN-style attacks can be expected. The question is, how resilient is it going to be?

Definitely like this and this is what they should have had all along. I was never big on that Virtual Console gig they had before.

este said,
Definitely like this and this is what they should have had all along. I was never big on that Virtual Console gig they had before.

You wern't big on playing retro games? VC was just a game store not an online system like Live is

what no more "game player codes" that are impossible to remember? *cries*

I wish Nintendo would come out with hardware that smoked the next xbox or PS4 and kept it a secret until it came out, like downplayed the specs of the next console to get the others thinking eh its just another wii, and then have it be boom look at us again..

Sounds like someone at Nintendo finally used the internet, not just read a description of it in an encyclopedia from 1997.