Another area of concern is the Wii U's confusion about how it wants people to interact with it. You see, you have the much-hyped tablet-like GamePad, the Wiimotes, and an optional controller that looks like an Xbox 360 controller with one of the thumbsticks in the wrong place. This is confusing to me because it feels like an indication that Nintendo isn't all that confident in the tablet controller. It's like they're spreading their control options thin in an attempt to appeal to a broader audience, though all they are actually doing is making third-party developers hesitant to support the tablet.
And really, Nintendo, that tablet controller is the centerpiece to your master plan going forward. Don't forget about it; it's the very thing that sets you apart from the other consoles at this point. (Though not for long, as I've already explained in a column titled "Console-Makers Are Crazy for Tablets.")
Additionally, there's still no word on an actual launch date or price for the thing. I know there's a need to be cautious here (remember the 3DS pricing snafu?), but this just reeks of lack of confidence. Give us a price point and stick with it. We all know you're watching the market and waiting for the right time to strike, but I'm beginning to feel like that "right time" may be in the rearview window at this point.
My prediction: I'm still going to buy a Wii U, because it's a journalistic obligation of mine. How else am I supposed to cover video games if I don't stay on top of the latest consoles?
But for the "everyman" gamer, I have to admit that I'm a bit skeptical of Nintendo's abilities to wow consumers at this point. Maybe I'm just underestimating the feverish enthusiasm of the casual crowd, but I'm worried that Nintendo is losing touch with its fan base.
Either way, I'll be watching Wii U sales figures closely once the thing's as-of-yet-unannounced launch date arrives.
Editor / News Director
Date: July 5, 2012
*The views expressed within this article are solely the opinion of the author and do not express the views held by Cheat Code Central. This week's is also purely a work of fiction*