Since E3 2011 the WiiU has become very much of an enigma. Not much is known other than what Nintendo wishes to tell us all. This is of course not unfamiliar for the sort of secrecy surrounding such a large product launch. The level of secrecy is for many reasons least of all to stop the competition getting a heads up about their upcoming competition.
However as is the case with todays modern unsleeping media the reports and rumours already swirling are running rampant. This is not even a problem for just Nintendo with both Microsoft and Sony both having many "details" regarding their upcoming next gen consoles released to the press. These have gained a large following from many online sources (mostly gaming websites) who choose to release them not under the cloud of "beware all who read these as they are completely unverified" but under a much vaguer mantle of "from a source close to the matter". Of course once out into the general ether of the internet it is practically impossible to tell who said what and what is from an original source and what parts have been embellished but the lack of understanding from many corners can be detrimental to both the fans and the company producing the product.
Shortly after the E3 announcement of the WiiU back almost a year ago the stock for Nintendo began to fall and many so called "Industry Experts" began to lower their ratings on the company. When asked why the general response was that Nintendo had in their view not put enough (if any) emphasis on how the new console was going to interact with social networks such as Facebook and in their view this would cause less people to buy the console itself. This was however not a view shared by the crowds of people who actually got to see the console and by and large the gaming community itself. The biggest problem for Nintendo in terms of gamers was a misunderstanding about what the WiiU actually was, was it a new console or just a new controller as many at the time believed. Gamers however did not seem to care about a lack of Facebook integration into their latest mario kart game or the fact that every space pirate killed in a new metroid was unlikely to then tweet of its demise. The reason, the people buying the console are not looking to buy yet another social networking device but a new "gaming" console. The media however did not see it that way as all of their "Experts" were following their own script.
Todays problems for Nintendo come in the form of "reports" regarding the performance of the new console. Some say that it is several times more powerful than the current gen consoles but then there are other reports claiming it to barely be capable of the same graphical fidelity and power of an Xbox 360. Clearly both reports can not be correct and I daresay that until Nintendo decide to come out and definitively confirm the exact specs we will continue to get such reports.Then there is the question surrounding the quality of products being made for the machine. The Wii floundered in a sea of sub-standard games which put many gamers off what is a very good "gaming" machine supported by some tremendous first/second party games. So which is the most important? That the console has brilliant components or that it has brilliant games.
So i for one will be holding back any decision on whether to love it or hate it until i see some finished games and get a look at what the box can do because while it might seem like great fun to speculate and wonder about what might be inside that little white box, speculation without acknowledging the difference between speculation and truth can cause some "real" problems. Dont get me wrong though, im not asking for a complete lack of reporting on such matters and im not asking for gaming websites to stop reporting news as im wholly for a free media (sat here as a blogger spouting my opinion, a free media is exactly what i need). But these websites that choose to promote news as facts need to make sure that their audience gets that somethings are facts and some are not. This is the responsibility of the writer and not the reader.
Thanks for reading,