Please keep in mind that the following analysis will contain an author opinion sprinkled among the facts, enjoy:
I was recently watching the original 2006 Wii Introduction in Nintendo’s E3 press conference, and it got me thinking “Wow, they did a great job showing this off and building hype, so I want a refresher to see how they did it with Wii U.” I found some interesting things when I looked back at the differences in their ‘Hype-Building Teasers’ at E3.
Here is where they introduce the Wii and show what it could do – https://youtu.be/EUDMg5b-n2w?t=3m
and here is where they introduced Wii U – https://youtu.be/p1JJPkd4Q28?t=39m6s
Notice with Wii in 2006: Nintendo really took time to show everything Wii was, and what it could do; the teaser video lasted about 5 minutes for the introduction, and it was an easy concept to grasp each time they showed something on screen… you use these remotes like a tennis racket/golf club/whatever, or you point and shoot/click/etc. I also liked how they had the couple listening closely to the Mario coin sound coming out of the remote together, to show that the Wiimote makes noise too. But also notice, as they teased the Wii, they showed off all of our favorite characters/franchises, in Wii form… how were we going to play Zelda, Mario, Metroid and also some new (possibly more violent? with Red Steel) franchises, with this new Wii. Later in the YouTube link, you can see the 3rd Party Sizzle Reel had 6 or 7 games shown as well.
Now with Wii U, I still think they did a decently good job showing what the GamePad was capable of, but, it seems as though they mostly showed us existing Wii franchises for the majority of the teaser. Wii Fit, New Super Mario Bros, WarioWare. When I say all this, please note: I hadn’t been this excited for a new console since N64, so Wii U really won me over immediately… but, this video does give a bit of insight into why some people got confused or thought of it as just a “Wii 2.” The teaser was about 3-4 minutes long and opened with a display of how Wii U can go off-TV. The short Zelda clip was actually pretty incredible to me, but it was very short and obviously didn’t even end up being an actual game. I think it confused non-diehard Nintendo audiences, along with showing off all those same Wii franchises we’ve already seen before. (Fortunately, they explain a bit more about what’s coming to Wii U, later in the YouTube video, but it was mostly just a word about Smash, and a small helping of NintendoLand) Lastly, the 3rd party sizzle reel involved quick words from many 3rd party developers, whom we obviously didn’t realize were not all going to be as dedicated to Wii U as they sounded in the reel. There were about 7-8 third-party titles shown off, but many were just ports or multiplat.
Perhaps this comparison does not interest everyone else, but I was intrigued to see the differences in how they introduced the two. Anyone else notice anything interesting or worth discussion? Sound off in the comments!
TL;DR – Notice how differently Wii was introduced in 2006 compared to Wii U in 2011. What went wrong, what went right? It’s fascinating.