Dr. Maureen Becker, director of clinical education for the Willowbrook college’s Physical Therapy Doctoral Program, is using three New York City-area students (Rachel Pollack of Willowbrook, Emily Cochran of Grasmere and Shirley Coffey of Brooklyn) — to study the most effective ways in which young people can get a real-world workout with Nintendo's Wii Fit. The study began in June, and focuses mainly on tween girls, because, Dr. Becker says, girls tend to have a higher obesity rate than boys in the same age range.
Speaking at the recent Edinburgh Interactive conference, Jagex CEO Mark Gerhard said that Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo all opposed the idea of the company's MMO Runescape letting players interact with other players on rival platforms.
"Some console owners wanted us to charge five Euros for Runescape. What? It would be crazy to charge for Runescape on consoles," he said. "But Sony was ahead of the game, they said they get it. They understand free. But all three said, 'okay, but, we won’t let our console play online with any other'."
According to new data released by ABI Research, the most popular method of streaming Netflix content continues to be through a video game console. The new data also shows that console owners spend a substantial amount of time --seven to eight hours a week-- watching online video through their console devices.
While most Nintendo Wii third-party titles don't get much traction with consumers, one game has managed to stand head and shoulders above the rest: Just Dance 2. Citing the latest NPD Group numbers, Ubisoft claims that no other third-party title has sold more than Just Dance 2.
Ubisoft said that the June NPD report confirms that Just Dance 2 has become the best-selling third-party Wii title ever. The game has managed to hold the top spot since its October 2010 release. Unfortunately, Ubisoft did not provide exact sales numbers for Just Dance 2, but did say that the franchise as a whole (Just Dance 1 & 2, Just Dance Kids) has shipped more than 14 million units to date.
Bad news for consumers who want to have more than one Wii U controller when Nintendo's fancy new console ships: it only comes with one and you will not be able to buy an additional controller at launch. Nintendo's Shigeru Miyamoto confirmed the news, but said that if more than one fancy new controller is needed users could "hypothetically use a 3DS."
"Our basic premise is that you can use one [Wii U controller] with a system," Miyamoto told News.com.au. "If we got to an idea of having multiple controllers it might just be more convenient for people to use their Nintendo 3DS and have a way to connect that."
We are not sure if it is simply an issue of keeping costs down or a technical hurdle that Nintendo hasn't figured out how to overcome yet, but Miyamoto says that they are looking into it:
Nintendo has suffered its second substantial drop in its stock price just days after its E3 press conference where it announced the Wii U console and controller. On Wednesday the company saw a 5.7 drop in its stock price and today it dipped an additional 5.2 percent (as of this writing). The consecutive declines for the Japanese console maker came after the company announced its new console, but the exact cause is up for interpretation, according to one Japanese financial analyst.
According to Mitsushige Akino, a chief fund manager at Ichiyoshi Investment Management, the decline has more to do with a perceived shift in the broader videogame universe.
"The product itself is not bad–market expectations had been far too high," Akino told the Wall Street Journal. "..it is also a reflection of structural issues caused by a transformation within the market."
One of the Wii's biggest problems was multiplayer and the way Nintendo handled connecting with friends to play anything even remotely online capable. I'm speaking of Nintendo’s terrible friend code system. Apparently it is on its way out, according to a VG247 report - citing an MTV Multiplayer interview with Ubisoft producer Adrian Blunt.
During a demo of Ghost Recon Online for Wii U, Blunt told MTV Multiplayer that the new console will finally have normal user accounts for online games, rather than having a code representing each console. Blunt says that the new system is a lot like gamertags on Xbox Live.
"Rather than using friend codes, which we’ve had in the past, we’re able to connect players in a much easier way, which allows us to have a community that’s playing together in the game," he said.
While the teams that create such hardcore game franchises as Battlefield and Darksiders may be embracing Nintendo's Wii U platform, id Software creative director Tim Willits has his doubts about the viability of such content on the platform. Speaking to Eurogamer at E3 this week, Willits said that he has a lot of doubts that there is an audience on the platform for the games his company makes. id Software is currently working on its post apocalyptic shooter Rage for PC, PS3, and Xbox 360.
"The Nintendo market is a tough market for us to get into," said Willits. "A lot of first party games, a lot of licensed games – those are the ones that have done the best on that platform. I'd love it if we can get a hardcore FPS community going and build on it, but it's tough."
"I think we should keep our toes where we know best," he added.
Speaking to Kotaku earlier today at the Electronic Entertainment Expo, Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime revealed that the Wii U will not support GameCube games. One of the selling points of the Wii was that you could continue to play your library of GameCube titles on the system - and you could even do it with a GameCube controller.
Sadly you'll have to dust off that old cube or have that old Wii around to play your favorite GameCube games. Nintendo didn't say why it was ditching backwards compatibility with the new system, but this should be the first hint that the hardware is probably going to change dramatically.
We will have more on changes to the system as it comes to light.
Oops! A slightly shocking revelation came out of a recent Game Trailers interview with Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime: the Wii U third-party game footage wasn't actually authentic. More to the point, the footage came from Xbox 360 and PS3 versions of the games shown. For example - THQ's Darksiders 2 footage..
Fils-Aime said that, while the footage was from other versions of games, he is confident that the Wii U versions will look just as stunning. The Wii U will be capable of 1080p graphics according to an interview Fils-Aime gave after its E3 press conference on G4TV earlier today.
"There has been some fantastic content that has not come to our platform," said Fils-Aime. "Third party publishers have told us that the reason they couldn’t bring it to our platform was based on the horsepower of the machine. That excuse is gone. So now all of the best content can come to the machine."
Seeing as Kotaku and about a thousand other outlets outed Nintendo's big plans to create a budget range and release a new lower priced system bundle, it makes sense that Nintendo would simply come clean. Today the company did just that, announcing plans to release a new Wii system bundle. The new bundle will retail for $149.99, and will come with Mario Kart Wii and the Wii Wheel accessory. The new price is for both black and white system models. The new bundle will be available May 15 - well before Nintendo's big system reveal at E3.
Nintendo also revealed its new budget range - first-party titles for the low price of $19.99. The budget range will initially feature Wii Sports, Wii Sports Resort, The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, Animal Crossing: City Folk and Mario Super Sluggers
According to an internal document cited by Eurogamer, Nintendo plans to create a budget range of Wii titles. Nintendo plans to introduce a line-up of lower-priced Wii software, which will consist of repackaged first-party titles according to the report. Some of the games that will be part of this range include Mario Super Sluggers, The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess and Super Smash Bros. Brawl. These and other titles will retail for $19.99 each.
The launch will supposedly coincide with a Wii system price drop. A new Mario Kart bundle priced at $149 (down from $199) will also be introduced.
The follow-up console to the Wii will be revealed next month during the Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles. Nintendo has not confirmed that this story is true.
Nintendo has confirmed that a new game system is coming sometime in 2012. The company also said that the new home console system will be playable at this year's E3. Nintendo made the announcement as part of its release of financial information for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2011. The first public display of the console will happen at its press conference during the E3 trade show, taking place June 7 – 9 in Los Angeles. Further details about the system - including graphics and CPU details were not revealed.
On a related note, Nintendo announced that the 3DS handheld has sold more than 3.61 million units, a lot less than the 4 million units that Nintendo predicted would sell prior to launch. Looking ahead, the company says it expects to sell 16 million 3DS units in the coming fiscal year ending March 2012.
While rumors last week indicated that Nintendo might slash the price of the Wii console to $150, retailers around the country seem to have taken the matter into their own hands. What we do not know is if these price cuts are sanctioned by Nintendo or if retailers simply decided to slash the price to move stock. Whatever the reasons, the Wii is available at a number of retail outlets for $169.99. Best Buy was apparently the first retailer to list the lower price sometime on Friday, but others soon followed.
Now retailers such as GameStop, Target, Toys 'R' Us, and Amazon have listed the Wii at the same price. Walmart has lowered the price of the white Wii system to $179.
We do not know if this is a permanent price drop, sanctioned by Nintendo, or simply an indication that retailers are losing confidence in the Wii (the latter is doubtful). We will wait and see what happens, but if you do not already own a Wii now is as good a time to buy one as any.
Here's a big fat "IF," predicated on the theory that a recent Engadget rumor about a 25 percent Wii price cut to $150 in May is true. If true, say analysts, the price cut could mean that an even bigger announcement will come from Nintendo: a new game console system. While C&VG is calling it "Wii 2," the at-this-point imaginary new console from Nintendo could be a game changer. Nintendo does not ascribe to the long-haul 10 year life cycle that Sony and Microsoft have adopted. so I guess anything is possible but the IndustryGamers piece is more of a "what if" than rooted in reality..
The speculation comes out of an IndustryGamers story quoting M2 Research analyst Billy Pidgeon, EEDAR analyst Jesse Divnich, and Wedbush analyst Michael Pachter. Naturally, all of these comments are speculation based on an unconfirmed rumor. It still makes for interesting reading:
According to an Engadget report, citing a "trusted source" Nintendo will cut the price of its Wii console by 25 percent to $150 on May 15.
Last month Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime said that a price drop is one of the tools the company might use to extend the Wii's lifecycle.
"The Wii has a long life in front of it," he said at the time. "We're still sitting at $199. There are a variety of marketing tools at our disposal."
The Engadget report further speculates that the timing would be good because it would be a good lead in to the Electronic Entertainment Expo, but by the same token price cuts and E3 go together like peanut butter and jelly. A new game bundle might also be another reason to give the system a price cut..
We'll have more on this story as it develops. Hopefully it's true.
A Spring Hill, Florida couple have been accused of pirating video games, and have been arrested by Hernando County Sheriffs. The couple, 25-year-old Javian-Jamal Moore and his wife, 27-year-old Lakeria Monique Moore, were both charged with organized fraud. Javian-Jamal Moore is being held at the Hernando County Jail on a $5,000 bond. His wife was released on her own recognizance so she could care for their children. Police were led to the couple by an anonymous tip.
The anonymous caller said that a craigslist ad was offering modding for a Nintendo video game system (we assume Wii) that would allow the user to install pirated software. The couple was apparently charging $195 for this "service." Detectives contacted Nintendo and the Electronic Software Association (ESA) about the allegations, who in turn asked the sheriff's office to prosecute the couple for their crimes.
Detectives said the value for the software was right around $33,000.
An episode of The People's Court litigates a case involving Wii copyright infringement, piracy, and mod chips. But the case isn't really about all that - it's about a guy that wants a couple of hundred bucks over a modding deal gone sour. The judge, the plaintiff and the defendant never grasp the fact that something very illegal is going on here. Luckily for Nintendo, everyone's name is splashed on the screen for more dramatic litigation down the road - should they find out. We have a feeling they probably will..
And frankly, these two guys get what they deserve for going on a nationally syndicated show to fight each other over both committing multiple DMCA violations. Watch the video, be amazed at the stupidity. Thanks to Andrew Eisen's nameless friend who passed this hilarious video along.
What do you do when it’s too cold for the kiddies to go outside during recess and the gym is being used by another class?
Adjust the schedule? Heck no, raise money selling frozen foods in order to buy a bunch of Wiis!
Ohio’s East Avon Elementary School did just that and its fundraiser pulled in $4600 which school board president Susan Harrison hopes to put towards the purchase of 28 Wiis. While Harrison admits gym time would be the preferable option, the Wii is a popular second choice with some parents.
“[Parents] think it’s a good idea to give the kids something to do. Winter is so long, and they can be inside for so long. What it does is get them up around and moving. It’s not video games, and you have board games, but you can lose pieces. You can buy more, but mainly it’s the interaction of the kids and that they are up and moving.”
Spanish police have arrested a man for allegedly stealing thousands of Nintendo Wii users' data, Spain's Interior Ministry announced. The man, who for the time being has not been identified, contacted Nintendo and threatened to report the company "for negligence" to the country’s data protection agency over data on 4,000 gamers he was able to obtain access to. When Nintendo did not respond, the man leaked some of the user data online, according to police.
No doubt Nintendo contacted authorities first, which lead to the man's apprehension in the southern province of Malaga. Police claim the man intended to release all the user data he had online.
Nintendo had no comment on the story because, according to the BBC "it was the subject of of an active investigation by the Spanish authorities."
Source: BBC by way of our very own beemoh. Thanks beemoh!
The NPD Group said total video game sales for the year were $18.58 billion, compared to sales of $19.66 billion for 2009, and $21.4 billion in 2008.
Console hardware sales were down 13 percent and new video game software sales dipped 6 percent year-on-year. Sales of new and used games and downloadable content were flat (or down one percent), NPD estimates. Video game accessories jumped 13 percent above 2009's numbers, thanks to Kinect and Move.
Nintendo announced that the Nintendo DS family of portable video game systems has sold more than 47 million in the United States since the original model launched in November 2004. The company did not break down the number based on various SKU's of the device (DSi, DSi XL, etc.). Nintendo also said that the Wii enjoyed U.S. sales of "more than 7 million" and that its to date number in the U.S. hit 34 million.
These numbers are based on internal sales figures. Even using the loose figure of 7 million, Wii sales in the U.S. declined from 9.5 million in 2009 and 10 million units in 2008.
We expect to have more concrete numbers from NPD group at some point. Nintendo is set to release its new Nintendo 3DS hand-held system in the United States in March.
We know that the Xbox 360 and PS3 are power hungry devices compared to the Wii, but the Electric Power Research Institute puts some figures down on paper to give consumers an idea of just how much juice it takes to use all of these systems. Chances are the data will not change people’s gaming habits, but it is still interesting stuff. The story comes from the New York Times' Environment section (the Green blog), for the record.
The EPRI calculated the power consumption of the PS3, Xbox 360, and Wii. Not surprisingly, the results show that the Wii consumed the least amount of energy, while the Xbox 360 and PS3 fought for the top spot. The Wii drew an average of 13.7 watts, the PS3 drew 84.8 watts, and the Xbox 360 drew around 87.9 watts.
Data from Nielsen reveals the usage trends of console users in the United States via surveys and metered usage.
According to the data, 62 percent of Xbox 360 users spend their time playing games, divided among offline and online play. PlayStation 3 owners spend a little under half of their console time playing games, says Nielsen. Further, PS3 owners spend more time playing games offline than 360 players.
According to Nielsen: "87 percent of users age 13+ say they have played video games of some kind for Xbox 360 and Wii, with 80 percent saying they have done so for PlayStation 3. Much of this is the result of traditional offline play, but nearly half of Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 users say they play games online."
Glasgow, Scotland-based video game maker Firebrand Games is coming to America - or more precisely, Baton Rouge, Louisiana. City Officials said Tuesday that Firebrand Games of Glasgow plan to move into the Louisiana Technology Center and employ 30. The company expects to have an annual payroll of about $1.5 million USD. Besides developing games, the new studio houses a quality assurance hub for the company's entire product line.
Firebrand creates racing games for Nintendo Wii and PC, but plans to expand development to PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. The company developed TrackMania for Wii, TrackMania Turbo for DS, the DS version of Planet 51, Need for Speed NITRO for DS, and many other titles.
The PlayStation 2 is still king in Japan. It lords over the Xbox 360, PS3 and even the Wii in terms of proliferation. At least that is the truth according to an exit poll conducted at this year's Tokyo Game Show by the General Computer Entertainment Supplier's Association.
According to that survey, 70 percent of 1000 respondents claimed that they still play games on their PS2's. While that's a big number, it is down slightly from a 2008 survey which found that 79 percent still used their PS2's.
Around 68.7 percent enjoy playing the DS, while 68.6 percent used the PSP. The survey allowed multiple choices of frequently-used hardware. Wii, PS3 and Xbox 360 managed 56.7, 47.7 and 19.6 percent respectively.
A complaint filed with the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) by Ohio-based Motiva, Inc. alleges that Nintendo Co., Ltd. and Nintendo of America infringed on Motiva patents in order to import “certain video game systems and related controllers.”
The charges revolve around the Wii, and it isn’t the first time Motiva has taken on Nintendo. The company previously sued Nintendo in 2008 in a case that began in Texas and was transferred to Washington, before a district court issued an order earlier this year staying the case pending a reexamination of the 151 patent at the center of the case and an exhaustion of all appeals.
According to a survey conducted by the Consumer Electronics Association, 18.24 million units of game hardware will have shipped to U.S. retailers by the end of the fourth quarter of 2010. The September survey asked over 1,000 adults in the United States about their plans for spending during the holiday shopping season. Respondents said that they planned to spend an average of $232 on video game hardware - up five percent from last year's estimate.
Video game systems were the ninth most popular item on adults' holiday wish lists, and the fifth most wanted items by adults. Apple's iPad ranked third on overall wish lists and second among electronics item.