reggie fils-aime spills wii details

August 16, 2006

USA TODAY is running an interview with Reggie Fils-Aime, Nintendo America’s President and COO, about the company’s upcoming Wii console. Among other things, he confirms that the Wii Connect24 online service will not have any “hidden fees or costs”, as Microsoft’s Xbox Live does and Sony’s PlayStation Online service is expected to carry. According to Fils-Aime, Nintendo is hoping to gain market share with a “completely different” approach from its competitors’ emphasis on realistic graphics, high-definition resolutions, and next-gen movie playback, focusing instead on “fun” and accessibility to casual gamers.

More significant is a detailed listing of the technical specifications of the console, including an “under $250” asking price. This is sourced from “USA TODAY research” and not from Fils-Aime’s or other Nintendo representatives’ statements, but if true it will certainly increase the product’s appeal, especially among prospective buyers who do not currently own a high-definition television (the X360 and PS3 both feature graphics that look best on such displays). That price point, combined with the promising Wii Remote controller device and familiar game franchises like Mario and Super Smash Bros., may be all that it needs to make a big splash in its November debut.

–D. S. W.

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