Are you tired of your huge, bulky Wii? Nintendo has the answer! This morning during Gamescom 2011 the Big N announced they will be releasing an even smaller cuter Wii Family Edition for the holiday season this year in UK. The system, colored similarly to the original, is designed to lay horizontally and a little smaller than the already tiny Wii, but buyer beware; it will no longer support GameCube games or controllers. There’s no confirmation on if the bundle will be making a debut in North America.
A significant portion of the size of the original Wii was dedicated to the GameCube controller slots on the side which appear to have been removed along with the GameCube memory slots on the front. Many Wii games have supported GameCube controllers over the years, as many players prefer the old controller for non-motion controlled games. For example, in the fa- favorite Super Smash Bros, using anything other than a GameCube controller is considered a handicap, but the sequel to Super Smash Bros is years away and hardcore fans will already own a Wii. Wii Family Edition buyers will be forced to buy the Wii Classic Controller which will prevent further sales of used GameCube controllers, cutting Nintendo in on a bigger piece of the accessories market. That is, if people will still be buying Wiis going forward.
It’s not as though Nintendo hasn’t entirely given up on GameCube games; They confirmed that some GameCube games will be downloadable on the Wii U WiiWare just like they’ve done for Super Nintendo and Nintendo 64 games in the past. Don’t worry everyone, your favorite games aren’t lost forever, you’ll just be paying for them a second or third time.
The new Wii bundle comes with a fully upgraded Wii Remote Plus controller and a nunchuk accessory – which you’ll need for the new Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword coming out November 20th. Wii Sports and Wii Party games are both included in the bundle which is a bonus compared to the original Wii bundle’s offering of only Wii Sports. Take a look at the box art below and you can see if the size reduction is worth sacrificing a few features. Click to enlarge:
The Wii Slim follows in the footsteps of both the PlayStation 3 Slim and the Xbox 360 Slim which are upwards of 30% smaller than their predecessors. The Wii was already smaller than the competition’s updated models so the small decrease in size isn’t exactly a key selling feature. The Wii U is due for release in 2012 so you have to wonder if this release might confuse Christmas consumers looking to buy “the new Wii” and what they bring home to their kids is a scaled back model of the five-year old console. Poor kids. Maybe they’ll get a Wii U next year.
If you don’t already own a Wii, can a smaller model that includes two games and a fully upgraded controller entice you or does the removal of GameCube support or the PS3 pricedrop ruin it?
The new Wii Family Edition bundle to set for release in the UK before the 2011 holiday season.
Source: Official Nintendo Magazine