The Wii U will be one year old by Christmas 2013. How is it possible that Nintendo was unable to produce an entirely new iteration of its Mario, Zelda, Mario Kart and Super Smash Bros. franchises within the first year of the console’s life cycle? Nintendo has known for a long time that it will have to face the big debuts of the new Xbox and PlayStation boxes around the 2013 Christmas season. It is inconceivable the company can be so deluded or arrogant that it thinks it can coast along without a major new revival of any of its big franchises until 2014.
Nintendo is doing its very best Miss Havisham imitation, sitting by a mouldering wedding cake and dreaming of its youth that has cruelly slipped away. The new Wii U slate of games is incredibly retro in the laziest possible way. The big Mario game for the Wii U is going to be Super Mario 3D World, which looks way, way too much like Super Mario 3D Land. The latter was a blockbuster for Nintendo’s portable console. But surely consumers who are weighing the Xbox and PlayStation against the Wii U need more than a retread of a 3DS game that they probably already have? The big draw of the Super Mario 3D World is a cat suit for Mario. That is the extent of Nintendo’s dedication to its newest console.
The big Zelda game for the Wii U is going to be a revamp of the old Wind Waker title. The new Mario Kart and Smash Bros. titles won’t arrive until 2014. This means that Nintendo will be attempting to revive the fortunes of a dying home console with Donkey Kong: Tropical Freeze this coming autumn. To top it off, the Wii Fit U is being delayed until December, bleeding Nintendo of any extra holiday momentum.
What an unholy mess. By the end of 2014, Nintendo may be entirely reliant on churning out remakes of sequels of remakes of its two decade-old hits for the 3DS. This company and its fans deserve better than this bizarre self-immolation.