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Wii Shortages Could Last For Months 307

Posted by Zonk
from the get-with-it-big-n dept.
Next Generation is reporting that, apparently, the Wii shortages could continue for some time yet. This is news from Nintendo's Perrin Kaplan, Nintendo's VP of marketing and corporate affairs, speaking to the Game Theory Podcast. Says Kaplan, "There is a lot going on behind the scenes in terms of working on what we are producing and the numbers continue to rise but the product is so very popular that we may see a supply / demand situation last for some time. We are at absolute maximum production and doing everything we can. The number of units that we have been able to produce has far exceeded our hardware production in the past and the production levels of a lot of our competitors but demand continues to be really high."
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Wii Shortages Could Last For Months

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  • by creimer (824291) on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @01:16PM (#18691505) Homepage
    ... it's only going to be a bit Wii late. :P
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by JordanL (886154)
      A statement from the VP of marketting on hardware production and logistics?

      Call me crazy, but seems like Nintendo is manufacturing hype at this point.
      • by CogDissident (951207) on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @01:27PM (#18691713)
        You do realize, its the VP of marketing's JOB to tell us crap, the VP of hardware production and logistics should be out there making us more Wii-s.
      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by coren2000 (788204)
        Well they have to manufacture something! It's obviously not gaming consoles.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Floritard (1058660)
        It's easy to jump to that conclusion but is there really any precedent from Nintendo specifically for something like that? IIRC, the only sort of consumer-physological maneuvering from Nintendo in the past would be the vaporware SNES-CDrom addon that was announced supposedly just to screw with Sega. I've heard that actually became Sony's PS1 and the big N didn't release it b/c Sony wanted more action than they were prepared to give them. I could be getting this wrong. Other than that the only evil corporati
        • by Applekid (993327) on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @02:48PM (#18692993)
          N certainly earned its share of negative karma. You're dead on about the SNES CD with Sony, but they also broke the cardinal rule of Japanese business and partnered with Phillips (a non-Japanese company) as a 2nd try to not be caught with their pants down on the transition to CD games.

          Also in the day, Nintendo didn't let 3rd party companies release too many games per year to avoid them from overshadowing 1st party title release volume so you find things like Konami releasing games until the Ultra label and other oddities.

          Then you have stock-fixing at stores where they'd be denied the newest most-in-demand SNES games unless they also stocked a bunch of tepid Game Boy items that simply weren't selling.

          Right now there are no saint video game company players. But, I think Nintendo took it on the chin enough with the sales of N64 and Gamecube that they know they gotta be on their best behavior.
        • Re:Not a big deal... (Score:4, Interesting)

          by AKAImBatman (238306) * <akaimbatman@@@gmail...com> on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @03:00PM (#18693151) Homepage Journal

          the only sort of consumer-physological maneuvering from Nintendo in the past would be the vaporware SNES-CDrom addon that was announced supposedly just to screw with Sega.

          Say what?

          I could be getting this wrong.

          Yeah, that sums it up.

          Nintendo was committed to a CDRom attachment for the Super NES. The product (known as the "Play Station") almost made it to market. Right up until the CEO of Nintendo read the contract and realized that they had basically sold the farm to Sony. He nixed the deal at the 11th hour. Nintendo then started working with Phillips to create a joint CDRom design.

          Nintendo eventually realized that Phillips didn't know their heads from their rears and pulled out. But not before Phillips decided that they had the best thing since sliced bread. Phillips managed to get a license to produce a few Mario and Zelda titles out of the deal, and thus the worst Mario and Zelda games ever imagined were made for the (you guessed it!) Phillips CD-i. Nintendo ended up skipping the CDRom format altogether, and stuck with cartridges until the DVD was available. (GameCube discs are Mini-DVDs recorded at Constant Angular Velocity.)
          • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

            by Leviance (1001065)
            Nintendo was arguably right though.. Sony wanted to get all of the licensing fees for games produced for SNES-CD
        • by BobPaul (710574) *
          The SNES has a slot on the bottom for peripheral expansion, just like the Sega with their CD-Rom adapter. Nintendo had a deal with Sony inked, but then decided they weren't happy with the terms--which gave Sony rights over the CD based games. Nintendo had historically been heavy handed in dealing with third parties and licensing terms. Nintendo then announced talks with Philips, shortly after Sony showed a concept, or maybe even a demo, at the '89 CES. In the end, Philips made the CD-I and Sony made the Pla
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward
        This day and age, you need marketing people in those areas. Consumers and users are demanding to know things these days that was generally unknown outside the company in the past. Demands are made to know development information on games, details as to algorithms used in MMORPGs. And something like hardware production, people demand to know why there are shortages, why can't I buy it. That's exactly what your marketing department is for.

        So I don't find it odd that you have marketing directors for depart
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Rolgar (556636)
        One aspect of marketing is figuring out how many of your product to make. Production is a part of marketing, since it is the marketing department who basically determines how many units you need. I mean, you wouldn't let production make 100 million of an item if marketing only saw demand for 20 million, right? Companies shouldn't really have CEOs picking a number out of air about how many he'd like to sell and producing that amount, the marketing department is supposed to figure out what demand is so the
        • "Likewise, if marketing thinks their is demand for 20 million, but you can only produce 5 or 10 million, they kind of need to communicate that to the customer"

          Or else you can have a marketroid that knows how to multiply (gasp!) and knows that at (more or less) constant market capacity, the more expensive you sell, the more benefits you have and he has discovered that early sells manage to be made at higher prices so they have decided to artificially extend the "early adopters" time frame by means of an arti
    • Are all these shortages the reason I keep hearing small children in my local supermarket yelling "Mummy, Mummy, I need a wii!"?
  • Mine arrived today and I can see why it's so popular, my only "problem" is it's difficult to see how "normal" games will work on a wii unless they use the gamecube pads.
    • by yroJJory (559141)
      I didn't buy a Wii to play "normal" games. I can do that on my PS2 (assuming it feels like reading the disc). I got a Wii because the games are fun!
    • by Phisbut (761268) on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @01:29PM (#18691735)

      Mine arrived today and I can see why it's so popular, my only "problem" is it's difficult to see how "normal" games will work on a wii unless they use the gamecube pads.

      It's quite simple actually... the Wii is not made for "normal" games. If you want to play "normal" games, get a PS2 or a PC.

    • by CogDissident (951207) on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @01:31PM (#18691773)
      Use the nunchuck as a movement joystick, and the remote has 2 easy access buttons (1,2) and the nunchuck has 2 (c,z), along with 4 menu buttons (up,left,right,down arrows) and two option buttons (plus,minus).
      Not terribly many games use more than 4 quick access buttons, and 6 menu buttons. A few, yes, but not really that many.

      Most games do use just one joystick, unless its a FPS game, which traditionally use two, and you can see why the Wii won't need two joysticks.
    • by moranar (632206)
      You could always get this [amazon.co.uk], you know.
    • Re:I got mine today (Score:5, Informative)

      by DreadSpoon (653424) on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @02:02PM (#18692317) Journal
      "Normal" in what sense? Keep in mind that the entire idea of a controller with a thumbpad on one side and buttons on the other didn't exist until Nintendo came along. I'm sure people then were also skeptical on how "normal" games would be played. ;)

      The Wii-mote can be turned sideways, and in that respect can function a lot like a "normal" Nintendo controller. Super Paper Mario is one game I own that does this. Plus it also occasionally makes use of the pointing and motion abilities, too, in a very intuitive and easy to play by manner.

      There's also the Wii Classic Controller, which is (as its name implies) a classically-shaped controller. While intended for the Virtual Console, I wouldn't be surprised if new games start requiring it, too. Plus, as you say, you can just use the Gamecube controllers.

      While I'll admit that needing to buy a Wii-mote, and then also buy additional controller parts (classic controller and nun-chuk controller) is irritating, and rather expensive, in the end it's probably a smooth idea, as it increases the number of game styles the system can support. And it's not like consumers aren't already used to buying unique controllers, such as the Guitar Hero controller or DDR mats and the like.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by 644bd346996 (1012333)
        I don't think the thumbpad/button split was all that revolutionary. Arcade games and the like have had joysticks for one hand, and button clusters for the other hand. Putting it into a handheld form factor is not earth-shattering. The Wiimote, on the other hand, adds so many extra dimensions that it will take years for developers to refine their control schemes. People are not good at incorporating another dimension of movement or rotation into their thinking. We are jumping from a 2-stick, 2-throttle/trigg
  • Local Gamestore (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Shadow Wrought (586631) * <shadow.wrought@g ... m minus language> on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @01:23PM (#18691627) Homepage Journal
    I asked about the Wii and PS3 at my local gamestore not too terirbly long ago. The Wii's waiting list had been hovering around 100 people ever since it came out. The PS3 had 18 units in back waiting to be sold. Maybe fun really is more important than pretty?
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by bigstrat2003 (1058574)
      You seem to indicate that the PS3 isn't fun, somehow. I bought a PS3 to replace my dying PS2, and I've found it to be just fine on the "fun" factor. Is it too expensive? Yeah, it is. That doesn't stop it from being fun, though... if you call the PS3 not fun, you're basically calling the PS2, the Xbox, and the Xbox 360 "not fun", because they have roughly the same sorts of games available. What's dragging the PS3 down is not its lack of fun, but its price.
      • Re:Local Gamestore (Score:5, Insightful)

        by nine-times (778537) <nine.times@gmail.com> on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @01:55PM (#18692183) Homepage

        if you call the PS3 not fun, you're basically calling the PS2, the Xbox, and the Xbox 360 "not fun", because they have roughly the same sorts of games available.

        I think that's the point: PS3s are prettier than the XBox or PS2, but they aren't any more fun. So far, it seems like they're offering the same sorts of games with better graphics. For a lot of people, the Wii is more fun than these other systems because of its novel control scheme. Yeah, yeah, it's a bit gimmicky, but it makes certain sorts of games easier and more fun. It makes people get up, move around, and make silly movements.

        And so the question in some people's minds has been, "what's going to have a greater demand: pretty graphics or fun gameplay?" It's not that the Wii can't have pretty graphics or that the PS3 can't have fun gameplay, but which one sells more depends on which feature people are more interested in.

      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by jawtheshark (198669) *

        If my PS2 were dying, I'd probably buy a new PS2 instead of a PS3.

      • Re:Local Gamestore (Score:5, Informative)

        by Shadow Wrought (586631) * <shadow.wrought@g ... m minus language> on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @02:21PM (#18692607) Homepage Journal
        I've only played demos on the PS3 and it certainly was fun- just not $600 worth. And certainly not more fun than my Wii for over twice the cost. Sony, and Microsoft too, both invested heavily on making their next generation systems as powerful as possible. Nintendo focused on making its system as readily fun as possible, with less emphasis on horsepower, and more emphasis on intuitive playability. So as far as the value of fun goes, the Wii is more fun, for less price. And that's why its demand is greater than that of the PS3's.

        To follow this a bit further, lets talk about gaming. We have an Xbox and a Wii. I play Halo and other FPS games with my stepsons and they just flat out pwn me. A good game for me is one in which I can get 5 kills on them before they get 25 on me. (FWIW I'm even worse with PC controls.) When we played multiplayer MoH on the Wii, however, I was within only a couple of kills of them. 10-9, 15-13, that kind of thing. The controls really are that much easier to use, and that much more intuitive.

        I have every intention of buying a 360 one of these months, but won't until after next Christmas since I think there'll (a) likely be a bundle with Halo 3 and (b) a price cut too boot. The chances of me buying a PS3 are pretty miniscule unless corporations pay enough money for the cycles that it will pay itself off in a reasonably short amount of time. Not that that's likely, mind you, just that that's about the only thing that I can see that would get me to spend the money.

        • Are you sure? (Score:3, Insightful)

          by raehl (609729)
          on the Wii, however, I was within only a couple of kills of them. 10-9, 15-13, that kind of thing. The controls really are that much easier to use, and that much more intuitive.

          This doesn't mean the Wii controls are easier to use. It just means your stepsons are just as bad at using the Wii controls as you are.

          Just wait a few months until they've spend 10x more time on the Wii than you have and I'm sure they'll be kicking your butt again. Will that mean the Wii controls have suddenly become less intuitive
    • Re:Local Gamestore (Score:5, Interesting)

      by CogDissident (951207) on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @01:33PM (#18691805)
      I bought a Wii, a half dozen games, a gamecube controller, gamecube memory card, another half dozen gamecube games, and an extra wii-mote, and only just barely hit the cost of a ps3. That was the biggest selling point to me.
    • "Maybe fun really is more important than pretty?"

      It is, although pretty adds to the fun. Was it huxley who coined the term (to paraphrase him not exactly) "emotioneering"? The truth is that what games really are: Emotional and intellectual stimulation engines.

      But there is no longevity in something that is pretty that has no depth. Almost all games today fall under "lacking depth" with a few exceptions because of the unfortunate skyrocketing of developing costs and development time associated with those c
      • I think "pretty" is the wrong word. Yes, a game being pretty ads to the fun. But "pretty" does not equal "lots of polygons." Games like Okami or Paper Mario are very pretty, yet the graphics can't compare with more "advanced" games such as Gears of War. Art direction makes a game pretty, not polygon count.
  • by Mr. No Skills (591753) <lskywalker@hEEEo ... inus threevowels> on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @01:24PM (#18691647) Journal
    I've seen them on TV and on the Internet. I've seen empty boxes with price tags on them in stores. I've seen demo systems behind glass running a demo.

    I'VE NEVER SEEN THE WII

    Does anyone actually own one and play it in their home? These things have supposedly been out since Christmas, I live in a major metropolitan area, I know lots of people, and I don't know anyone that has one or heard anyone talking about playing one. Did they only make a few dozen that were snapped up by Best Buy employees?

    I don't believe the demand is there anymore - I only here people buying XBOX 360 because that't the only thing to buy.
    • by coren2000 (788204) on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @01:26PM (#18691683) Journal
      I know a guy who knows a guy who says that his sisters boyfriends roommate has seen one at a party.
    • by k_187 (61692)
      yes, they exist. I have one. It is all sorts of teh awesome. If the demand wasn't there there would be more on the shelves.
    • by hal2814 (725639) on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @01:29PM (#18691751)
      "I'VE NEVER SEEN THE WII"

      Then you need to lose some weight, dude. You should just be able to look down and there it is.
    • by Quila (201335)
      Yep, and I'm loving mine. I got mine on the first day, but I finally found a second controller/nunchuk in a store last week. Those are apparently in high demand too.
      • by Scorchio (177053)
        I have the controller but no Wii!

        Managed to get an online order in with Circuit City when they had stock at the beginning of last month. I got the bundled games and controller, but the Wii went awol during transit. Somewhere, there's a USPS working having a great time with my console. Meanwhile, I'm back on the damned waiting list.
    • by Rurik (113882)
      The Wii's are out there. I bought one last month with only a week of searching. Use www.itrackr.com [itrackr.com], set up the Wii as a favorite, and pay a small fee to have them email you when one comes in stock. I got a notice, called my wife, and she went down and picked it up at a local Target store.
    • I know a couple of coworkers who walked into Wal-Mart and got one on launch day (no standing in line or anything). Ironically, on launch you could get one anywhere because the Wii was still an enigma and people didn't know what to expect from it. Only the hardcore Nintendo fanboys got one back then. It's grown in popularity since due to word of mouth and all the "talk" on the internet.
      • by joggle (594025)
        Not here (in Colorado). I tried to get a Wii at 6am at the local Wal-Mart on launch day but they had already sold out. I then waited in line for hours at a nearby Target but ultimately missed it (I was 33rd in line and they only had 29 units).
      • by jonnythan (79727)
        Not in upstate NY. There were lines at every store. Every single store was sold out by midnight before launch. People were showing up at the Circuit City where I was in line after they had been turned away at six stores because of the long lines there already.
      • by Wdomburg (141264)
        Nintendo must have an awful lot of hardcore fanboys considering the lines pretty much everyone else saw and the number of vendors who exhausted their allotment of pre-orders in a matter of days (or even hours, like Amazon).
    • by Pharmboy (216950)
      We have one only because the wife was at Sam's Club and someone brought out 5 of them. The wife GRABBED one, and some guy tried to buy the other 4 but was told they limit sales to one per person. Instantly, the others were grabbed up, so, if she had been a few seconds sooner or later to that end isle, we wouldn't have one either.

      Oh, and by the way, it's awesome. You should get one ;)
    • My university's library has one in a computer lab. Every time I walk by it, two things go through my head: cool! and wtf?!
    • by vorpal22 (114901)
      I have one. I wasn't intending to engage in any drastic measures to get a hold of a Wii. During the December break, I was visiting a friend, who had bought one to resell it on eBay, but ended up making the mistake of "just trying it out". After a few hours, said that anyone who wanted it would have to pry it from his cold, dead hands. I also made the mistake of trying his out, and a few weeks of scouring online tip sites and arriving at a Toys 'R Us at 5:30 AM, I was victoriously armed with my Wii, which is
    • by slothbait (2922)
      Just just suck at playing Wii Retail. I got mine on black friday.
      I only had to kill a grandmother, and 2 college students and a little doggy too. The big N an't kid stuff.

      * Goes back to playing Super Paper Mario
    • Columbus OH here...I got mine on launch day from Toys 'R Us. Showed up there an hour before opening. They got 150 systems, and I managed to get the next to the last one. I got really really lucky though, as most stores started getting campers the Tuesday before (system came out on Sunday). I originally went to Target, but there was a huge line. A police officer happened to drive by and said that there were only a few people at Toys 'R Us (it was hidden behind some other buildings so I guess not a lot o
      • by 7Prime (871679)
        Got one here in Fairbanks, Alaska, on launch day. It was -30F the night of the launch. I got in line (outside), at about 1h30m before hand, got 46th out of 100. 45m before launch, they opened the doors and let everyone inside so they wouldn't freeze to death, by that time, all 100 spots were taken. Strangely, we didn't expect them to open the doors, we all came prepared to wait out in the cold.

        So, if ANYONE was able to walk in and buy one at launch, their town was a fucking fluke. Fairbanks doesn't even hav
        • by moeinvt (851793)
          "Got one here in Fairbanks, Alaska, on launch day. It was -30F the night of the launch."

          Semiconductors can be run at faster clock speeds in low temperature operating environments. Obviously they took all the parts that weren't good enough to operate in a temperate zone and sent them to Alaska.
    • by arudloff (564805) *
      I have one, and it was made by the hands of God. I live in Orlando. I went to buy a new controller a couple weeks back at toys r us, and people were lined up around the building waiting in line. The wii exists, it is glorious, and the demand is there. ;)
  • granted, i got mine at release so this is semi-hypocritical, but i don't think the demand should be that high...

    other then WiiSports, Zelda, and some VC games that any PC less then a decade old can emulate, there are no good games and other then PaperMario, which looks ok, none on the horizon either.

    seriously, as of december, my wii has not been touched...the 2 360's in my house, on the other hand, are both played for hours daily and fights break out frequently over the Oblivion disc and now the GH2 g
    • by JordanL (886154)
      No, Nintendo was able to create enormous hype. That's what happened.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by TheGeneration (228855)
        I disagree. All the news coverage I saw when the PS3 and Wii were coming out talked solely about the PS3. The Wii lines were not as long. What happened though was that when those of us who got a Wii took them home and invited our non-gamer friends to play our non-gamer friends LOVED it. They're the ones who create the hype.

        I've always loved Nintendo because of the quality and depth their games have. Everytime I play a PSX game I find that the story is lacking and generally the game play is poorly thoug
    • by stratjakt (596332) on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @01:43PM (#18691985) Journal
      Thats funny, I haven't used the 360 for anything other than a means of watching HD movies since I got the Wii.

      I see Zelda, Paper Mario, Wii Sports, Wario Ware, Elebits - and even "crappy" wii games like Rampage are fun on the Wii. And I see nothing really worth owning on the 360 (I guess Gears of War is alright, I'll pick it up when its cheaper though..)

      To me, the 360 and PS3 don't offer anything that I haven't played before - they're the exact same games I've played since the PSX era, with the exact same controller. The games are just shinier. But, the Wii offers something new.

      I've played Far Cry for both, both are supposedly "crappy" titles, relative to what's out there. But the wii-mote actually works, and I found the Wii version engaging because of it.

      What does that prove? Nothing. Just that different people have different tastes.

      But the numbers seem to show there's more of me than you.
      • by grumbel (592662)
        ### But, the Wii offers something new.

        There have been over 10 Zeldas, five MarioRPG games and three WarioWare games before the Wii even launched, oh, and Mario, MetroidPrime and SmashBros aren't exactly new either.

        ### But the numbers seem to show there's more of me than you.

        Last time I looked the XBox360 still had a 4mio lead to the Wii.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by phantomlord (38815)
          There have been over 10 Zeldas, five MarioRPG games and three WarioWare games before the Wii even launched, oh, and Mario, MetroidPrime and SmashBros aren't exactly new either.

          I haven't owned a console since the SNES... and even then, I only had about 6 games for it. Prior to getting a Wii in November, I went about 14 years without playing a Zelda and haven't played a Super Mario game since Super Mario World. I've still only played the original Metroid. I've never played a Smash Bros or Wario game. They'

        • ### But, the Wii offers something new.

          There have been over 10 Zeldas, five MarioRPG games and three WarioWare games before the Wii even launched, oh, and Mario, MetroidPrime and SmashBros aren't exactly new either.

          Why do you assume new IP when he says something new? Fine, there hasn't been an Elebits, WiiSports, RedSteel before... There are new IP's already but I don't think that's what he meant. Tiger Woods and Madden as Franchises have been on just about every system (including Cell phones) for yea

        • Twilight princiess is basically the second/third zelda with the same gamestyle. Super Paper Mario is basically an entirely new gaming concept in and out. Metroid Prime is the third one with the same gamestyle. Elebits is entirely new, Trauma Center more or less as well, Kororinpha in the way you play it also (but the gamestyle itself is old, but you cannot play it the same way on any console) Rayman Raving rabbits, old characters entirely new gameplay. I would not entirely say that just because the same ch
    • by 99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @01:49PM (#18692061)

      honestly, i don't understand how i can't walk into best buy and not get a wii but the shelves are packed with 360's. Is the hate for M$ really that ingrained that people won't buy it even though it is by far the best system out right now?

      Hate for MS? Are you joking? The average consumer vaguely knows MS is a cool technology company and might know they make Windows. The reason the Wii is in such demand is a series of well planned moves from Nintendo. They aimed at the casual gamer market instead of the traditional game console market. They continued their support for the younger children market. Maybe you are not understanding the demand because you are not the average buyer. The average buyer has an old console and is looking for one from this generation. They do not have two xbox 360's. The average buyer cares about price and the Wii is killing MS on price. The average consumer has seen the TV ads and the occasional article or news program commentary and what they took away from it is that the Wii is new and different with different controls and new types of games, while the Sony and MS systems are the same thing with slightly better graphics and a big price tag.

      Nintendo took a big gamble in abandoning the traditional controller and focusing on a new type of gameplay. They took a big gamble in aiming at a nontraditional market. Those gambles paid off. Most of the big game developers expected them to fail and ignored the Wii as being too different from the others, figuring it likely either Sony or MS would win and they could make a quick port if they backed the wrong player. Those developers are all trying to reverse course and announcing Wii titles in the works.

      I think you're right for the most part that the Wii only has a few good titles right now. That doesn't much matter to the average buyer though, because the average buyer only buys two games a year. I also think the strategic buyer on a budget, looking to the future will probably conclude that the Wii's popularity will result in it getting many of the best games a year from now. The only people it does matter to are people like you, who are going to buy several consoles and pick up a Wii anyway. You did buy one, right?

      In summary, if you're looking to think hatred for MS is the cause, I only wish people were that conscious of MS's actions and that ethical and meticulous in their purchasing decisions. The Wii is winning on its merits, which are merits that don't apply to unusual buyers and hardcore gamers like yourself. Note, I am not a fanboy for any game console. I have a PS2 and an old dreamcast somewhere. I probably will not buy any current console for a year or more, or not at all. Right now, If someone gave me $600 on the condition I bought one, I'd get a Wii and a couple games and pocket the rest of the cash.

      • by nine-times (778537) <nine.times@gmail.com> on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @02:12PM (#18692473) Homepage

        The reason the Wii is in such demand is a series of well planned moves from Nintendo.

        From what I've seen, a surprisingly large portion of the demand is coming from people who normally wouldn't buy a game system, or at least wouldn't put much time into trying to find one that's selling out so quickly. I've watched people who "hate video games" get hooked on Wii Sports because they're so easy to pick up and learn. I've taught people to play and they're surprised by the controls; they have a very hard time believing, for example, that the tennis game doesn't require that you press any buttons.

        "So what button do I press to swing?"

        "No buttons, just swing."

        "Really? No! Oh, wait... really. I see. Cool."

        Big smiles all around. It's almost fun just to watch other people get worked up. People try really hard to make good Miis, people jumping around to play tennis, etc. It's even fun for parties-- when's the last time you heard of a bunch of non-geeks getting together and throwing a party to play video games?

        • by cHALiTO (101461)
          Heh, a couple of days ago a friend of mine invited me and a few others to his apt for some pizza & beer. They've all played videogames (on pc mostly) but they're certainly not hardcore gamers. However, I couln't help giggling when I showed them Wii Sports Tennis and they kept pushing buttons when they swing (even when they knew they had to actually swing the remote, some still instinctively pressed the A button).
          we had lots of fun, btw ;)
          • by hal2814 (725639)
            "However, I couln't help giggling when I showed them Wii Sports Tennis and they kept pushing buttons when they swing"

            But at the same time, I'm quite upset with Wii baseball for requiring me to press a button to throw a
            curve ball or slider. I know the grip and release are probably a bit too subtle to get down accurately with a Wiimote but they could've at least made it possible to throw special pitches with an exaggerated version of the pitch.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @01:56PM (#18692205)
      Clearly you're a gamer, so you don't understand how real people game. You've got a game maintenance cycle. If you can't buy a new game every month, you don't care about the console.

      Real people are not buying the Wii to play a game every month. They're spending $300 to play WiiSports. That's it! If the console never does anything else, they still got to play WiiSports for a couple of months. The entertainment cost is comparable to going to the movies once a week.

      Keep in mind that first, real people don't sit down and game for hours every day. Bringing the Wii out on Saturday afternoon is a treat. It's like Monopoly or Scrabble. This keeps it fun longer.

      Real people also don't have a whole set of consoles. When they're playing the Wii, they're getting the full enjoyment of "I'm playing a videogame!" on top of "I'm playing WiiSports." You no longer have fun just because you're playing a videogame. For you it has to be either a GREAT videogame or a NEW videogame.

      So all these real people are going out and buying the Wii, and guess what? There are about four times as many of them as there are people like you. The whole videogame hardware production pipeline was geared towards the forty million people who buy videogames regularly, divided among three console brands and the PC. When the wider population taps in the pipeline hits capacity fast. I guess you don't remember Pac-man. Same thing happened.

      Each Wii owned by a real person will probably only run four to eight games in the next five years. Shocking, isn't it? Nintendo isn't scared of this because that's where they already were... I know I only played about eight games on my Cube, and only six on my N64. They were all great, and I haven't had time for more than that. A game or two a year is my console limit as an adult, even though I work in the field.

      So think Scrabble, not Halo, and you'll get it.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by djchristensen (472087)
        You saved me a lot of typing.

        I would have included the following quote:

        seriously, as of december, my wii has not been touched...the 2 360's in my house, on the other hand, are both played for hours daily

        The demand for the Wii isn't coming from those with 2 360's who play for "hours daily", it's coming from the likes of me: father of two (ages 5 and 10) who's never owned a console and saw one that wouldn't require hours of investment to become good enough to begin to enjoy a game, and one that the kids could
    • by mingot (665080)
      Wow, I thought I was the only person on the planet with the same story. My daughter wanted to camp for a Wii, so we did. Played it for a week or so, and then she's back on RealGames/Playing GC games/Viva Pinata (so technically, it does get touched, just not for Wii games).
    • by miyako (632510)
      I concur with this sentiment. I got the Wii on launch for Zelda- which is a great game, but once I had finished zelda I haven't played the wii a whole lot. Red Steel got a little play, but really the game sucks. Elebits was a lot of fun for about a week until you realize how repetitive it is. Wii Play actually has some fun mini-games, but they are over so quickly you would swear the game was developed for a hyperactive three year old with the attention span of a gnat. So overall, after zelda the Wii sa
      • by metamatic (202216)
        Kinda telling that half the games you mention playing on the PS3 are PS2 games. How about trying some GameCube games on the Wii?
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      why is the above comment marked as troll? I bought a Wii at launch also and virtual console is the only reason its not completely covered in dust right now. I am a fan of the wii and I'm excited about future games but as of right now even PS3(which I am having much more "fun" with than my wii) has a better game selection.
    • by Knuckles (8964)
      other then WiiSports, Zelda, and some VC games that any PC less then a decade old can emulate, there are no good games and other then PaperMario, which looks ok, none on the horizon either.

      SSX Blur had a very good review in Edge [edge-online.co.uk] this month (granted only 7 points out of 10, but they never cared to explain why in the text; there, they only rave). Many people like Tiger Woods PGA Tour 07 and The Godfather: Blackhand Edition. There is also Cooking Mama and Trauma Center if you are into this kind of thing.

      And j
      • Godfather on the Wii is awesome. It's easily the most violent game I've ever played.

        That may sound somewhat strange, but it's true. While the level of graphic violence can't approach games like Manhunt, the very fact that you're basically doing this with your own hands makes it so tactile and real that you can't help but feel the violence. Knocking somebody to his knees, then picking him up and throwing him through a window just feels so... right... It's scary.

        Don't play that game. I think it's dangerous

    • by fotbr (855184) on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @02:38PM (#18692845) Journal
      Because in the real world, which is made up mostly of people other than hardcore gamers, the Wii gets points for being "cute" and "simple" and "cheap". All of which I've heard said about the Wii, and none of which have I heard said about the 360 or the PS3.

      Yeah, there are more games for the 360. Yeah, the 360 and the PS3 have better graphics. But you know what? To the average real-world person, those don't matter. Price, "cute" and "simple" matter.

      I have no loyalty to any of the consoles. I don't own any of them, and have no plans to buy any of them anytime soon. Maybe in a couple years I'll pick one of each up when the Wii is $149, and the PS3 and 360 can be found for $299 or less -- I can afford to buy all of them them now, but console gaming simply isn't worth that much money to me given how much time I'd spend on it.
    • and some VC games that any PC less then a decade old can emulate...

      ...illegally.
  • by Guntram Shatterhand, (1078103) on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @01:46PM (#18692025)
    I get the idea that Nintendo is going to drop the ball on this. Having a hot system is one thing, but not being able to match demand for a console that your business is going to revolve around (outside of the DS) for the next couple of years while games sit on the shelves untouched because nobody can play them is sheer incompetence. If it's a game, then Nintendo is betting a lot. If they lose and people get sick of waiting, then they're going to sink. Seriously, what is the problem? They're not amateurs at this, this is their bread and butter.
    • by Kingrames (858416) on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @02:04PM (#18692345)
      They can't "drop the ball on this" unless Microsoft or Sony creates their next-gen system right now with a motion-sensitive remote controller.

      Nearly 90% of the "too old to play video games" age people I run into (mom, dad, uncles, etc.) say that they're interested in the Wii. My dad admitted that the reason he's interested in it is because the controller is a remote, and he knows how to use a remote. Or at least, he'd never admit that he didn't know how to use a remote.

      But any other gaming platform? They wouldn't own up to the fact that they could figure out how to play games on them.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @02:07PM (#18692403)
      You, sir, are an idiot.

      Neither games nor consoles are "sitting on the shelves." Being able to sell every piece of hardware you manufacture isn't "dropping the ball"; it's called success.
    • I understand shortages regarding the 360 and the PS3 because of the leading edge technologies, but the Wii is essentially a Gamecube with twice the power. I don't understand where the production bottle neck is considering that the Wii represents mature technologies, unless there are production issues with the "Broadway" and "Hollywood" graphics and CPU chips.

      I know the DS has been in short supply at times, but not to the extent that the Wii has experienced. People are genuinely frustrated with Nintendo's se
      • by 7Prime (871679) on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @03:06PM (#18693235) Homepage Journal
        That's because you're basing value off of horsepower, alone. The whole point of this generation, and the point that Nintendo is trying to make, is that horsepower is a shitty thing to base value off of. You could "duct tape" two gamecubes together, and it wouldn't be able to play a Wii game, you could duct tape two PS3s together, and it wouldn't be able to play a Wii game. The value of the system, itself, is in its design philosophy... a much more valuable commodity than horsepower.

        Even if the Wii used the same hardware as the GameCube, but used the same design philosophy as it does now, it would still sell about the same amount. Creative design is worth a lot more than clock cycles.
        • I addressed the question of Wii production shortages by positing that perhaps Nintendo is running into problems with the supply of the new GPU and CPU chips in the Wii (because they use different chips from those used in the Gamecube). Obviously, there could be other reasons such as a limited number of available manufacturing facilities.

          I don't understand why you come back with a reply to my post with a litany on why gaming doesn't always have to be about performance, which I happen to agree with, when that
          • by trdrstv (986999) on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @05:33PM (#18695209)
            I addressed the question of Wii production shortages by positing that perhaps Nintendo is running into problems with the supply of the new GPU and CPU chips in the Wii (because they use different chips from those used in the Gamecube). Obviously, there could be other reasons such as a limited number of available manufacturing facilities.

            It might also have to do with them selling more units faster than any other system. The Wii is not a trivial thing to produce, nor is a PS3. You see PS3's on the shelf because the initial demand has been met. The Wii's has not and has sold 2 to 3 times more units. It's simply a matter of Nintendo mis-gauging demand. They felt it would take longer for the Wii to 'Catch on' as is evidenced by the lack of 'casual gamer' titles available (both Wii, and VC).

            They ramped up launch production so they could launch with about 2 million units world wide, and meet 6 million by the end of their fiscal year. At that point they felt their demand would be met, and wouldn't need any more capacity since 50% of all their hardware sales are Quarter 4 (typically) and they would have enough capacity to meet the next wave of demand. Wii sales exceeded their expectations, plain and simple.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Wdomburg (141264)
        Cutting edge of performance or not, they're custom components. Which means if they want more produced per month, they need to contract the vendor to increase production. In either case it's likely going to require an upfront investment to generate the fabrication capacity as well as an increase in the minimum volume. With ATI it's more complicated, since they don't actually own any fabs, which means they have to contract additional capacity as well.

        And that ignores the rest of the component. The acceler
    • by seebs (15766)
      Over 6M systems in peoples' hands in under six months is not a bad rate for early production. In fact, it's astoundingly good. The attach rate is beating the PS3 per system sold, let alone in overall game sales.

      I don't think they're dropping the ball; I think they're just not juggling quite as fast as we'd like.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by GweeDo (127172)
      Only the asstounding logic of a /. reader could come up with your brilliant analysis. My favorite statement you make is "while games sit on the shelves untouched because nobody can play them is sheer incompetence". What of the 6 million people that already own Wii's? Are we not allowed to buy games for some reason? Also, each week the # of Wii owners increases more and more there by make more and more software sales.

      It is your good friends at Sony that have issues with software just sitting on a shelf.
    • by rlp (11898)
      > I get the idea that Nintendo is going to drop the ball on this.

      They've sold 4 million of them since the launch at the end of November '06. They plan to sell another 12 million between now and the end of the year. The factories are now churning our over a million a month. There's a limit to how fast you can get manufacturing capacity on-line. Particularly if you want to maintain quality. The WORST thing they could do at this point is increase production at the cost of churning out low-quality units
    • If Nintendo were not making a good number of Wii, you would be right. The fact is that the Wii is selling faster than any other console in the past 2 generations, and they did not stagger the release. The 360 was still out of stock at this time last year and they sold far fewer.
  • I got me a Wii... (Score:2, Informative)

    by Mizled (1000175)

    The idea to getting a Wii is to keep calling your local game stores everyday. Game stores are getting them in and selliing out the same day. You just have to find out what days they come in and get down there and buy it.

    I work a 7 - 4 job and on my lunch break I would call all the local stores...within a week Gamestop got a couple Wiis in and I went on my lunch and picked it up.

    You can get a Wii...it's all about how bad you want it. =p

    • by Fez (468752) *
      I happened to find one at a local Wal-Mart (small town, ~2500 people) they get shipments (at least) Sunday mornings. They had two left when I got there about noonish. I wasn't looking for it, but there it was and I knew better than to pass it up.

      I sort of regret that I didn't buy both of them and sell the other on eBay. However, I figured much of the shortage is from people doing just that, so I let it go and left it for the next person.

      I went to the same Wal-Mart a week later and they had one left then, to
      • by Fez (468752) *
        And for the record: The last console I owned before buying the Wii was a Sega Genesis. Although I do have a DS, which I also happened upon by chance at a different Wal-Mart after a day-long search.

        I love the Wii, and I don't think I'd really care for a PS3/360/etc. I'm more of a casual gamer, more so for lack of time than desire. It's just that the Wii looked like so much fun and it really is. It's lived up to its hype and it's been worth every penny.

        My wife loves it, too -- Wii Sports/Wii Play at least so
  • I've had one since Mid January. When I decided to get one I made a rotation of the local best buys (2 of them), then local circuit cities (1 of them), and the local warmarts (3 of them),plus 2 gamestops.

    On day 7 of making a rotation driving to each one I got the Wii, at a WalMart. Notably it was a WalMart we refer to as "GhettoMart" because of the neighborhood it's in. It's also the leader in "shrinkage" for the area (i.e. more stuff gets stolen from it). I don't know if that was a factor in some way,
  • by ZombieRoboNinja (905329) on Wednesday April 11, 2007 @02:36PM (#18692803)
    According to that article yesterday [bloomberg.com], Nintendo is selling more than twice as many units as PS3 or Xbox360. So I doubt this is really a case of "artificial" shortage, although obviously the Nintendo marketing guys will spin it to their best advantage.

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