Elbie at Trig dot Net

Tue, 21 Nov 2006

First iimpressions

Well, I was amazed, but pleased. When I pulled into the parking lot of the EB Games at about 7:30, there were only two other people there, waiting in their cars. One of them, fearing the worst, had actually got there at 1am, and slept in his car overnight. It was especially weird, considering the Best Buy around the corner had a nearly full parking lot.

The actual waiting was pretty friendly. More people started showing up a bit later. I had brought my DS in the hopes that there would be a crowd of people, and there was eventually one multiplayer game of Metroid Hunters or something similar. A first person shooter, in which I got pwned. We eventually learned there were eight extra consoles for those that hadn't pre-ordered, and there were about 20 people in line by that point. The EBG guys handed out Take-A-Number-like stubs, a bunch of us went to a nearby Timmies for something to warm up with, and everyone else dispersed.

I got home with my purchase around 11 or a bit before. Waiting in line just over three hours was way better than I expected. Setting the thing up was fairly straightforward. There were a few bits that I was unclear on, but the manual was clear and easy to follow. I like the construction of the box. It's about twice the size of a Mac Mini, and marginally less rounded on the edges. There are two panels on the side (or the top if you stand it up on its edge like you see in all the ads) for plugging in GameCube controllers and memory cards. Just beneath the CD slot, (an opening like you see for Car CD players rather than a tray for desktop CD players,) is another panel that flips down to reveal a sync button (for finding other controllers, called Wiimotes,) and a slot for industry standard SD memory cards.

I'm pretty happy about the feel of the interface. Overall, the Wiimotes perform very well, though I'm having a bit of a problem with finer motion control. The nunchuck attachment I had a lot more problems with, in terms of motion sensing, but the feel of the Wiimote in one hand and the nunchuck in the other wasn't too bad. I found that smooth steady movements worked much better than short jerky movements. This was especially true in the Wii Sports Golf game. But the Bowling game in particular worked very well.

I haven't had much of a chance to play the other Wii games. I tried the Zelda game a bit, but there's so much story and control-learning to get through that I didn't feel like working through to get to the actual game.

I was also fairly impressed with some of the non-game features. Thingo and clan dropped in briefly to check it out, and Zebula had fun playing with the Photo Gallery/Doodle channel. You can stick an SD card into the Wii that was used in a camera device (cell phone, organiser, etc) and display the photos on the Wii, as well as draw or do some very basic photo editing. The online Wii store was also fairly painless. I bought 1000 points for 10USD (plus 14% tax. Did it know how much to charge based on my location?) then immediately spent those points on SuperMario64, which downloaded as a ROM file onto my Wii's flash drive.

So yeah, so far, pretty slick.

[/Blog] permanent link