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Wii to Get New Hardware - Possibly Hard Drive? 151

Posted by Zonk
from the wii-drive-this-way-because-we-can dept.
HoboBob writes "It has been suggested that Nintendo will be unveiling some new hardware for the Wii at the E3 media festival, and some are speculating that it could be a hard drive. According to the article: 'Confirmation back in April that Neo Geo games will begin being added to Wii's Virtual Console download service adds weight to the speculation, considering Neo Geo games are huge — some clocking in it at up to 330MB. One of those bad boys would put serious strain on the Wii's memory.'"
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Wii to Get New Hardware - Possibly Hard Drive?

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  • Form factor (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Agent00Wang (146185) on Tuesday June 05, 2007 @08:07AM (#19394545) Homepage
    While I think having more space would be great, I'd hate to lose the Wii's small form factor in my entertainment cabinet. Maybe it'll be somewhat modular rather than an external box attached via USB or some other wire?
  • by rnmartinez (968929) on Tuesday June 05, 2007 @08:19AM (#19394647)
    I hope they just do a firmware update so that I can use a usb drive or the sd card. I doubt I will personally use the virtual console to go beyond 4gb that an sd card can give me. The only reason I would want an hdd would be if it could play movies and music. I really wish that there was a way to get some type of 5.1 sound (not pro logic II) and some DVD software. I know everyone has a dvd player but it would be nice to have just one magic little box to do everything. And a wireless nunchuk would be cool too
  • by Dance_Dance_Karnov (793804) on Tuesday June 05, 2007 @08:19AM (#19394649) Homepage
    to release new hardware? or to release a patch to let us use network or USB storage? or to re-encode all the redbook audio and fmv with real codecs so that those games don't clock in at anything over 50MB? speaking of, how the hell hard is it to whip up a usb keyboard driver?
  • Saturn Games (Score:2, Interesting)

    by TwoQuestions (1111637) on Tuesday June 05, 2007 @08:29AM (#19394745)
    I hope they come out with some Sega Saturn games, such as NiGHTS [wikipedia.org] or Dragon Force [wikipedia.org]. That would certainly fill a great hole in Virtual Console's arsenal.
  • by Churla (936633) on Tuesday June 05, 2007 @09:02AM (#19395059)
    Just come out with a nice firmware update to more fully utilize the USB support.

    a) USB HD
    b) USB keyboard

    Do that and I am peachy keen fine with the world.
  • Re:Saturn Games (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 05, 2007 @09:11AM (#19395139)
    Except the fact that pcs with triple the power strain to emulate the 8 processor beast. I mean sure it would be great, even if I already own about 150 saturn games, but I dont think it has the umph. Ofcourse my speculation is based off of years of tinkering with Saturn emulation, which even today none of the emulators are close to even loading 100% of the games, let alone running them.
  • Re:Neo Geo games? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by LKM (227954) on Tuesday June 05, 2007 @09:22AM (#19395243) Homepage

    Of course I am a bit skeptic after buying Super Mario Bros for the VC as it runs faster than normal (PAL issue)*, its flickery and has other general playability issues...

    I did not notice any flickering or "playability issues," but actually, I think the speed issue is a bugfix rather than a bug. The NES PAL version ran too slow compared to the Japanese and US versions, right? Nintendo fixed that for the Wii release.

  • Re:Hmm (Score:3, Interesting)

    by cowscows (103644) on Tuesday June 05, 2007 @09:30AM (#19395355) Journal
    I seriously doubt that they're going to release a new version of the wii that includes any sort of hard drive. I don't think releasing a Wii HD makes much sense for Nintendo either way, but if they were to do so, they'd almost certainly do it as an external add-on. They're still easily selling Wii's by the truckload in their current form, why would they add anything else to it to cut down on their margins?

    DVD playback is more likely, because it wouldn't require much in terms of hardware changes, the Wii already has pretty much what it needs to play DVDs.

  • Re:Form factor (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Phisbut (761268) on Tuesday June 05, 2007 @09:42AM (#19395513)

    While I think having more space would be great, I'd hate to lose the Wii's small form factor in my entertainment cabinet. Maybe it'll be somewhat modular rather than an external box attached via USB or some other wire?

    What I'd actually like instead of a hard drive is the ability for the Wii to read directly from the SD card, instead of forcing me to copy the data from the SD card to the Wii's internal memory before using it. Would make managing backups much easier, and even at 300MB, a NeoGeo game can easily fit on a 1GB SD card, which I can then copy to my computer's hard drive for backup when I need more space on the SD card.

    Could that be done with a simple firmware update instead of a hardware upgrade?

  • by DarkJC (810888) on Tuesday June 05, 2007 @09:44AM (#19395543)
    It's obvious what parallels you're drawing here, but really they're two completely different systems. For example, leaving an HD optical storage option out of the picture (or even offering it as a choice as Microsoft has done) works for the Wii, because it's not hugely powerful, doesn't support HD resolutions, and doesn't need all that space in the first place.

    However, once you offer something as a choice to the consumer, it means that you for the most part cannot use that to enhance the gaming experience for the consumer. In the case of the optional 360 hard drive vs. the PS3's built in hard drive, many games on the PS3 use the HD for streaming data to for optimizing load times, like Oblivion or some upcoming games like Uncharted (which, due to the hard drive, will have no load times). They can do that because it's standard. Likewise, when Microsoft chose to keep DVD as the standard format for game delivery, I have a feeling that they'll be coming to regret that decision in a year or two. It's not going to be a dealbreaker, but it will definitely become more apparent as time goes on that with all the space assets take up in HD games, you really do need a higher capacity storage medium. They left consumers the option of the HD-DVD drive addon in case they wanted to watch HD movies, but that approach doesn't let them take advantage of the superior storage those discs have to offer.

    What does this have to do with the Wii? Well, the tone of your post seems to be touting the Wii as the superior choice because you think Nintendo is doing you a favor. For the Wii, the exclusion of the hard drive and HD/DVD playback works, because it's not an HD system and there isn't enough content to really support the inclusion of a hard drive. But to try and draw parallels to the other systems which frankly are offering completely different experiences just reeks of fanboyism to me.
  • by geders (206556) on Tuesday June 05, 2007 @10:20AM (#19396071)
    Ok, seems a bit of overkill to make a harddrive attachement for use only with the Virtual Console. The majority of people using the Virtual Console will never purchase anything larger than an N64 title (max is about 64 megabytes).

    Let's assume they use a 10GB 1.8" harddrive (or flash equivalent) that's integrated into the angled stand that ships with the console (if one can even purchase bulk quantities of those anymore). That would let you buy roughly 150 of the largest N64 games to fill that storage space. Or over 100 of the largest Neo Geo games. That seems to be more purchasing than the smallest tiny niche portion of the Wii market would buy. This argument disappears if original downloadable content ever arrives for the Wii.

    So, if you are going to come out with a harddrive attachement, give it a "normal" size of 80 GB or larger, and allow us to "store" our Wii disc based games on there. Now you would have the ultimate system for lazy people like me that click around in the Wii menu to play old VC games instead of getting up and walking across the room to put in a new Wii disc to play something different. It would be great if we could "surf our Wii channels" and have access to all of our games.

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