Friday, August 19, 2016

Wii U - For an "Unpopular" Console, It's Really Fun!

We acquired our Wii U for Christmas last year in spite of all the doom and gloom that the press has been putting out.  Why?  We wanted a console that focused on family and kid friendly games (my kids range from 14 to 6) and the Wii U fit the bill.  Plus we loved our Wii and were excited to get the next generation console.

It does not disappoint.  We don't buy games prodigiously but the ones we have are a lot of fun.  Super Mario 3D, Mario Cart 8, and Splatoon have all been big hits in our house.  Plus the ability to play our old Wii games has been awesome.  My kids will play as much as their parents will let them.

We recently purchased Minecraft and the kids love the Mario skins and themes that are included in it.  They love playing multi-player and creating their own worlds.  Granted this is nothing new to them as we already own Minecraft for the PC and for the XBox 360.  However, they liked it enough to save up their own money to purchase it.

So, it's a fun console that focuses on family friendly games, but it's a distant 3rd in sales behind XBox and Playstation and isn't getting the new, hi res games that are front and center in the press and that kids seem to be clamoring for.  Why buy console that's not "cutting edge" and/or the be all/end all of consoles?

So here's the deal (in my humble opinion): If you want a console whose primary purpose is to entertain kids and families, get a Wii U.  If you want first person shooters, zombies, blood and guts, etc. get an Xbox or Playstation.  Can you find family friendly games on the XBox?  Sure but that's not their primary market.  Can you find shooter games on the Wii U?  Yes but, once again, that's not their primary market.  Nintendo makes and markets games that are fun to play, kid friendly, and all around enjoyable.  If you're a family with younger kids and you want a console for them, get a Wii U.

The Wii U also has a great online, multi-player service.  First of all it's free - no subscription required.  Second it has amazing parental controls.  I found this out when we purchased Splatoon.  After the purchase, we found that most of the gameplay was online.  Well, I was really nervous about giving my kids unfettered online access - especially knowing how other people talk and act online.  My kids are young, they don't need to deal with that kind of garbage just to play a game.  Well I was impressed to find out that the parental controls on the Wii U are excellent.  I can control just about everything the kids do online.  Whether or not they can browse the internet, chat, buy games, etc.  It's all there.  I was able to set my kids up so they can enjoy playing online without having to worry that they would get themselves into trouble online.  Now they're splatoon fanatics and I can let them enjoy their game without worry.

So there it is.  If you want your kids to have fun, stay safe, and enjoy their video games - get a Wii U.  It's fun!

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