Wii U: Pong creator Nolan Bushnell baffled by Nintendo's new machine, predicts its failure

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nintendo-wii-u.jpgIt’s only been on sale for a week in the States, and doesn’t even hit UK shelves until Friday 30 November, but already games industry luminaries are predicting Nintendo’s Wii U console will be a failure.

Nolan Bushnell, Atari founder and creator of Pong (making him pretty much the godfather of video games) has offered his two cents on Nintendo’s latest and greatest machine, and hasn’t been all that flattering.

“I actually am baffled by it,” he said, speaking to the New York Times. “I don’t think it’s going to be a big success.”

“It feels like the end of an era to me,” said Bushnell, believing that the current generation of consoles already have enough power and graphical performance to deliver practically any experience a developer can imagine. In this regard, it’s not just the Wii U that Bushnell has a problem with, but the proposed Xbox 720 and PS4 consoles too.

“These things will continue to sputter along, but I really don’t think they’ll be of major import ever again,” he concluded.

In Nintendo’s defence, the Wii U does offer a unique home console experience, thanks to its hybrid, second-screen tablet controller. However, the mobile gaming market’s growth can’t be underestimated, and in these penny pinching times a 69p iPad or iPhone app may have more appeal than a comparatively expensive home console game.

Gerald Lynch

2 comments

  • Nolan Bushnell did not create Pong; Al Alcorn, an associate of Bushnell”s during the early days of Atari, created Pong as a training exercise.

  • Nolan Bushnell did not create Pong; Al Alcorn, an associate of Bushnell''s during the early days of Atari, created Pong as a training exercise.

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