Monday, May 21, 2007

The Wii-volution

Okay, I promised some content about our trip to Taiwan a long time ago, but have obviously found more trivial issues to write about in the meantime. That, and the fact that I lost my little notepad I had in Taiwan with some thoughts and topics to blog about… I have since found it, but it makes for a convenient excuse as to why it’s taken me this much time to get around to discussing a phenomenon that’s sweeping the States… and my extended family: the Nintendo Wii.

Making it’s debut on November 19, 2006, the Wii is Nintendo’s foray into the current “next-gen” gaming console wars, coming on the heels of the much-hyped Sony PlayStation 3 and the year-old Microsoft Xbox 360. However, whereas Sony and Microsoft have delivered machines capable of extremely realistic graphics, Nintendo’s aim was to create a gaming console “for ages three to ninety.” Judging by the way my family’s reacted to it, they’ve succeeded.

The way the Wii has separated itself from the PS3 and the Xbox 360 is the promotion of its motion-sensing controllers. Dubbed the “Wii-mote,” the controller transmits a wireless signal to a sensor bar attached to the Wii and enables users to control action on the screen via movement of the controller. Thus, a player is able to “play” tennis by swinging the controller like a tennis racket, “bowl” as they would in a bowling alley, or “golf” as they would with a regular club.

What the heck does this have to do with our trip to Taiwan? My first-cousin once removed (dang, I hate the English language – he’s my cousin’s son), George, brought his back to Taiwan. Suffice to say that EVERYBODY loved the thing. My cousins love it, my aunts love it, and my mom even played it and loves it. Now, my entire family (aunts, uncles, cousins – even my mom) wants one. They look at it as a form of exercise, since you can really get into it (never mind the fact that you can play the games without actually going through the physical motions).

To be honest, I got to play it for the first time while I was in Taiwan and enjoyed the ten minutes I spent on it. I’m not sure how much actual exercise you can get out of it, but I figure that anything that gets my mom interested in playing video games is all right by me. They’re in a little bit of a short supply right now, but people with patience can pick one up if they look hard enough for one within a week or two. When I got back home, I ended up spending a couple of days searching for two – one for my cousin who really wanted one, and one for whoever else might want one. After searching online for the best ways to find one and heading to a couple of Targets and Best Buys, I ended up just buying two consoles online, so it wasn’t that big of a deal.

I’m just hoping that somebody gets bored of it and gives one back to me. Of course, I really don’t have room for it, and Danica’s not old enough to enjoy it, so I can’t really justify having one. Besides, they’re supposed to come down in price (??? they’ve been saying this for a while), and now that I’m older, I’m starting to look at video games as the black hole – a couple hundred for a console, $50 for every game, and $50 for another controller/accessories. Geez, I really must be getting old. On the other hand, there are a couple of games that look interesting on it…


a mindless zombie said...

Mine is still in it's box.....I need a second controller though. Also I am trying to sell off some of my ps2 games (still going to keep the console though).

Steve said...

Just by the Wii-Play game... it's not too bad, and it comes with a second controller... $50 for a game and controller is pretty good. Your birthday is coming up. =)