Friday, April 28, 2006

Wii this, Wii?

But that name, eh? Awful.

Or at least, that's what I'm saying now. Presumably in six months time I'll be singing its praises, much like how I used to hate the new controller, and democracy. No doubt in six months I'll be saying "Wii love the name!", be the proud owner of a MySpace account, and will have Daz Samson as the number one song on my iTunes playlist.

Count down to the first "bodily function" joke to be made about the pronounciation of the new name... 5... 4... 3...

In a surprise announcement this morning, Nintendo revealed the new name of its forthcoming game system: Wii. "As in 'we'," the official statement adds. For the official announcement, visit the Revolution...err...Wii Web site.

After a brief Flash introduction, the site explains Nintendo's move. "While the code-name 'Revolution' expressed our direction, Wii represents the answer. Wii will break down that wall that separates game players from everybody else. Wii will put people more in touch with their games...and each other."

The site goes on to say that Wii should be easy to remember for people around the world, no matter their language, and that it will avoid abbreviation. The "ii" spelling is intended to represent "both the unique controllers and the image of people gathering to play." It may also be worth noting that "ii" means "good" in Japanese.

Nintendo sums up the name change with the following comments. "So that's Wii. But now Nintendo needs you. Because, it's really not about you or me. It's about Wii. And together, Wii will change everything."

Yahoo! Games
We are no longer expecting to see the name 'Revolution' when Nintendo's next-generation console is finally shipped out. Instead, we'll have to resign ourselves to a rather funny name, 'Wii'. Although by the second article they state that it reflects aesthesis, the reviews above give the name a big, fat goose egg.

Nintendo began its life in Osaka as a toy manufacturer in 1962, and in the early 1980s it picked up on the newly popular arcade game industry and started its Donkey Kong games, one of which would star Mario and set off a chain of games that would star the plumber in the Mushroom Kingdom. Donkey Kong was, to say the least, an odd name, yet the name Mario fit a fat plumber very well, as it became easy to match an Italian accent to the persona and later make a movie out of it. So far, so good.

The name targets started to be missed in 2002, when the codename for the GameCube, Dolphin, was chosen. We then had to warm up to the slightly more appropriate name for the unit that is in use today. Then we receive word that 'Revolution' will be the name for the console of theirs that would take on the Xbox 360 and possibly offset the PlayStation 3 for the better. Now, though, it is just a three-letter word, a misconception of good things, gone horribly awry. 'Wii'. It sounds like the earsplitting shrieks of holidaymakers descending a coaster.

Fortunately, though, it's offset by the new controller. It has to be held in two hands, as it consists of a remote and a small joystick, separate but working tandem. It's supposedly to facilitate better handling. But since I haven't held it yet, I can't really criticise it.

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