wiiu605 -
wiiu605 -


Let's be honest, I'm going to buy a Wii U. I know what it is. I know how it works. I've played one. But Nintendo's first TV advert for the console fell so flat on its shpingy backside that it felt more like an infomercial for a tech product from the 90s than an exciting 'next-gen' games console from the grand-daddies of Mario.

If you've not yet had a chance to see it, take a look for yourself below.

What do you think? It's rubbish, isn't it? And here's why:

It's too long.

If your techy product needs to be explained via an infomercial, it's already too complicated. And the fact that it takes Nintendo 60 seconds to explain the basic features of the Wii U is worrying, particularly when its previous product - the Wii - was sold in just a few seconds. Just think back to those TV and print ads: family gathered around the TV, Wiimotes in hand, playing Wii Sports Tennis. They're having fun. Little Phil wants one. Mum wants one. Dad thinks the golf looks good and quite fancies the cashier at the local Gamestation. Job done. Clear and to the point, and it had families rushing out to stores in their droves. But this was a convoluted mess that made the console and its video games look complicated and entirely unappealing.

It made the Wii U look undesirable.

Where was the excitement? The bright white Wii rooms? The laughter and smiles? The ad's biggest flaw was arguably in its complete lack of fun. Is anybody going to be queuing up day one off the back of seeing someone 'shping' throwing stars towards their screen? I doubt it. Show someone enjoying the product - not a moody girlfriend who would rather watch TV. And just look at that body language. She hates you for playing New Super Mario Bros. Wii U. No cuddles tonight, then.

Where was the whole family?

Wii was successful for its local multiplayer, and Wii U's multiplayer options are by far its greatest selling point, so why wasn't this stressed? Nintendo Land's five-player modes are both fun and highlight the strength of the console's unique selling point - the GamePad. Rather than focus on a lone man playing games to the detriment of his relationship, multiplayer should have been the core message of the ad. It's the antithesis to your typical Wii advert, too. After spending years trying to convince families, couples and groups of friends to play together in the living room, here, Nintendo risks its reputation by having you play Mass Effect 3 and Batman: Arkham City in isolation.

Who is the audience?

If you'd seen the story on VideoGamer.com previously, you'd know that we were expecting to see the advert during this week's X Factor, not an episode of Homeland. The people watching Homeland probably don't want your boring 'shping, shping, shping' mini-games, Nintendo. They want an iPad. And after seeing that advert, I expect they still do.

Has Nintendo created a problem just to solve it?

One of the major points of the Wii U, according to Nintendo's ad, is the ability to continue playing on the GamePad if you get thrown off of the TV. But who of today's gamers doesn't, say, already have a TV in their bedroom? I get the idea: Dad wants to watch TV and the kids want to play games, but there are already so many entertainment devices floating about in 2012 that I'm not sure this is enough of an everyday opportunity to make it one of your most prominent selling points.

Play in real time, for real!

What does that even mean? I don't even know what that means, let alone the people the advert is trying to talk to. Nintendo, you're flipping mental.

The Wii U isn't a bad product. I wouldn't be buying one if I believed that it was. But all the signs from Nintendo suggest that it's certainly a confused console, and Nintendo's lack of punch and creativity coupled with its failure to pose an attractive console has created more questions than it has answered. And with only five weeks to go until launch, that's a shpinging great problem. But what do you think? Has this advert convinced you to shell out a couple of hundred quid on the Wii U, or is Nintendo completely failing to make you part with your cash?

New stuff to check out


To add your comment, please login or register

User Comments

Lew3107's Avatar


The advert must have worked, because both Premium packs are now sold out on Amazon UK. But it was disappointing.
To say that the commentator was overzealous is an understatement, and as an older gamer that would have completely thrown me off. I understand that this was directed at the family-type gamers as it was aired during X Factor, but where's the serious ad? Emphasize the new games, keep the new features short and sweet, make it obvious who's selling it, and for the love of God, make your actors seem interested in the thing! After that ad some people will still have no reason to buy it, so Nintendo need to create another one, and fast.
Popular thing to say, but Triforce Johnson seems to be the real ad. That guy will make people think "it's gotta be worth owning if someone is out camping a month before it hits the shelves". Get that into the news, and there you have some serious promotion for Nintendo for free.
Posted 20:00 on 23 October 2012
altaranga's Avatar


As Bloodstorm pointed out, perhaps the real advert is that dude who has started queuing for one already.
Posted 18:56 on 23 October 2012


"Wii U, Will You?"
Posted 12:14 on 23 October 2012
JaffaTheCake's Avatar

JaffaTheCake@ MJTH

Thats exactly what Apple have done with the iPhone 5. They split the marketing into 3 separate adverts with each showing a different aspect of the device. This meant they had 3 short adverts with a simple message which was easily remembered. The exact opposite of what Nintendo has just done.
Posted 21:49 on 22 October 2012
DancingRhino's Avatar


Did they let The Apprentice contestants knock that together in an afternoon?
Posted 21:38 on 22 October 2012
reynoldio's Avatar


I love Adam Buxton.
Posted 21:21 on 22 October 2012
Batmamerc's Avatar


I kinda agree but I think they are trying to point out that the name hasn't really changed but it is a complete new console showing all the new features in detail like that is what's needed to sell it to a new audience, I think Nintendo know that its not going to appeal to families as much this time with its big increase in core gamer games (i.e. ZombiU, mass effect, batman) and are probably going for and what we should hope they are going for is its original fan base back to the true gamers the gamers that made Nintendo what it was through the 80s n 90s. obviously there not gonna drop the family and same room multiplayer games but I think they are trying to reassure the Xbox n ps3 gamers that this isn't going to be another Wii with all its family friendly only games. And regarding the ability to continue playing on the controller when the pesky missis wants to put god damn hollyoaks on or even worse super nanny, this is a great feature that I'm glad they have kept in, I remember the first showing of the WiiU 2 years ago at e3 shown the missis the video of that separate screen n she loved it, we do have a tv in the bedroom n the kitchen n the kids play room but the sofa n big screen tv is in the living room n we both wanna sit there n the women wanna b around you 24/7 so won't like you going to the bedroom to play with yourself, it is the main reason for why I still actually want one even though I'm unsure how the bits in games that require you to use the screen on the controller as a keypad or scope or summat will work. N I am really glad that there are no over the top smiling families having fake fun they were a joke n false advertising unless your whole family is doped up on something kids shouldn't have. I don't know what I do agree with you on now actually sorry.
Posted 19:55 on 22 October 2012


It wasn't a fantastic advert. Nintendo used to be good at adverts. But then it seems to be par for the course for companies to come from making great ads for one console and then just fail with their ads for the next. Just look at Sony with the PS1 and then PS2. The console was a success but the ads were panned.
Posted 19:24 on 22 October 2012
MJTH's Avatar


Yeah this needed a better advert, I'm getting worried as well Dave. But having watched it again I can say one thing. They could of easily just, instead of making one large advert just split into 5 ads. Each of the five ads could start, give one of the reason for getting a Wii U and sign off. Then they could play the shorter ads between more than one commercial break. Spam the country with reasons.

"PING What is Wii U? Reason Number #) Blah blah blah! With Wii U the possibilities are endless so go forth and play"

Quick and simple.
Posted 18:29 on 22 October 2012
MrHEWBO's Avatar


SPINSPINSPINSPIN my word that made me laugh
Posted 17:50 on 22 October 2012
View Full Site