The rumors had been circulating for weeks. Would Nintendo, which has experienced so much success with its family-friendly Wii, finally enter the next generation of console gaming and bring back the hardcore gamer? The answer is “We think so.” At the Electronic Entertainment Expo, Nintendo unveiled the Wii U, their first 1080p HD console which will be released sometime between April 1 and December 31, 2012. Final specs weren’t released, nor were any close-to-finished games or a price point. The focus, instead, was on the brand new controller.

Half iPad, half Nintendo DS, the WiiU controller has a full 6.2 inch touch screen as well as a camera, all the buttons of a normal console controller, and offers unprecedented interaction between your TV and the console. Read more after the break.

First of all, here’s the extension of the above image with an idea of what the Wii U graphics are going to look like on a Zelda game

The Wii-U will be totally backwards comparable with everything on the Wii. But it’s all the new Wii-U games (some of the titles announced were a new Smash Brothers, Lego City Stories, think Grand Theft Auto, but for kids with Legos, Darksiders 2, Batman Arkham City, Assassins Creed, Ghost Recon Online, Dirt, Aliens Colonial Marines, Tekken, Ninja Gaiden 3 and a title whose in development title is New Super Mario Brothers Mii) where Nintendo is innovating.

Imagine you had an iPad that was 100% fully integrated with your console in that they were almost one in the same. So if you’re playing a game and someone wants to watch TV, you can simply port the game to the controller. You can use the controller as a motion controller, it can provide a second view of a game you are already playing (for example, while driving, you can use it to look around), it’ll extend the game you’re playing with new info (such as above) you can video chat, browse the internet and much more. It was a pretty impressive, albeit it slightly confusing presentation. But I think Nintendo is confused too. They still aren’t fully aware of all the ways developers will change their games to incorporate the new controller.

However, Nintendo was quick to say that the Wii U controller is NOT a portable gaming system, it’s totally integrated with the console itself, which kind of looks like a beefed up Wii. Click here for a photo.

Here’s a video of the announcement to try and explain further. Nintendo has also updated their official website with all the brand new information.

What do you think? Will you be lining up for this one?

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