Nintendo's Wii is Released

Nintendo released their own next generation system, the Wii, earlier this morning. While the system wasn't as hotly anticipated as Sony's Playstation 3 (meaning there were no armed robberies and riots involved), there are many gaming fans excited to get their hands on the Nunchuk controller and, for a comparably measly $250, who can blame them?

The launch event took place at the Toys 'R Us in Times Square in New York City. While the line of eager gamers was long enough to completely circle the block, there were no issues in terms of crowd control. In fact, Engadget even has shots of people calmly enjoying some wireless MarioKart DS fun while waiting in line. To keep everyone entertained, Nintendo retrofitted a Segway with a fully functioning Wii kiosk and moved it along the line in order to let people get a few minutes of play time in. Along with that, there were small giveaways including free t-shirts and the like.

As for the console itself, Nintendo took a very different approach to their next generation system when compared to the PS3 and Xbox 360. Besides the fact that they actually make a profit on each unit sold (the horror), Nintendo decided to focus more on game play instead of graphics and early reports show that it may have been a risk worth taking. The previously mentioned Nunchuk controller is definitely different and will take some time to get used to, but Nintendo has you covered. Besides including a tutorial in the Wii packaging, Nintendo also threw in a free game. "Wii Sports" isn't going to blow your mind with over the top graphics, but what better way to get used to the Nunchuk than by playing a free full version game? Crazy Nintendo.

In preparation for the release, Nintendo also set the Wii store to live. Through the store, you can purchase credits to use towards the download of games,from earlier Nintendo systems, to play on the Wii. Each credit is valued at $0.01 US, so a full thousand credits will set you back $10. Those 1,000 credits, though, can garner you one N64 game, one SNES game, or two NES or Sega Genesis games.

Link: Neowin's Nintendo Forum

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