I've been following the Wii news pretty actively ever since E3 2005 but never bothered posting to any of the communities. To be honest, I registered with WiiChat today so that I could view some of the screenshots and whatnot, but I hope I can have some good discussions with those of you with similar interests.
I'm male, American, and have been living in Japan for the past two years (plus another year in Japan several years ago), but I'll be returning the US in a month or two. I can speak/read/write/understand Japanese pretty well, so if anyone out there needs help with a translation or whatnot, I'll do my best to help you out.
A bit of my gaming background: I started with the NES back shortly after it came out...I believe I was seven at the time (you can draw your own inferences as to my age). I started out with Super Mario Bros., Duck Hunt, and World Class Track Meet (with the Zapper and the Power Pad). Later I got the original Game Boy, the SNES, and N64. After the N64 had been around for a few years, I sort of gave up gaming because I had to study a lot and devote a lot of time to sports in high school, and that carried on through most of university. My fiance got me a DS for Christmas 2004 which sort of got me interested in games once again. I never ended up getting a GameCube because it fell right in the middle of my hiatus from gaming. I have never owned a console other than one made by Nintendo, not out of fanboyism or anything, I just happened to be most interested in Nintendo's franchises and their prices have been consistently reasonable with what I have willing to pay for consoles/games throughout the year.
Okay, onto the issue at hand: the Wii. First off, I'm really psyched about it, in particular about the unique controller, but also about the first true online support from Nintendo for a non-portable console. I am particularly looking forward to Super Mario Galaxy, Twilight Princess, Red Steel, and Wario Ware: Smooth Moves. I've never played any version of Smash Brothers (or even seen it played for that matter) but it seems to be a hugely popular game so I am interested in checking that one out as well.
In my experience, Nintendo fans tend to get flamed a lot in the online community for being hyperdefensive fanboys who can't spell or put together a sentence well. I'm hoping you guys can prove me wrong!
I don't have any insider friends at Nintendo (despite the fact that I live in Kyoto where Nintendo is headquartered) or at any video game company for that matter, and I'm not interested in getting involved in flame wars, even on Nintendo's behalf. I just want to hear what fellow Wii fans are excited about, and maybe form some friends with whom I can play online once the Wii comes out in Q4.
I have been saddened that Nintendo has lost much of its once-dominant market share to Sony and Microsoft, but I have high hopes for the Wii. I think the controller is genius and am excited by the prospect of being able to play games in a much more active way than has been possible in the past. Like many of you, I'm sure, I saw the Nintendo ON video by Pablo Belmonte back when it came out, and was dissapointed when it turned out to be fake. I was also fascinated with the various rumors about 3D projection technology and whatnot but although the moniker "I want to believe" does indeed apply to me, I flatly doubt that the Wii will have this feature. We'll have to wait and see though.
Here's another issue I've been devoting some thought to. Gamers don't have the greatest image as viewed from the general public. People accuse the industry of making games that rot our brains, rot our bodies, are too violent, too sexy, etc. I think a lot of that criticism is deserved but many non-gamers don't understand that it's very possible to be a very peace-loving person and still enjoy a violent videogame from time to time, without it adversely affecting one's personality. I mostly go for relatively wholesome games but also enjoy games with violence some of the time, and I'm vegetarian. Going back a bit to the bit about games rotting our bodies: I think Wii shows a lot of promise in this regard. I have a number of ideas regarding a game that I hope to make in the future that would be fun and help the player get fit at the same time. Without releasing specifics on my idea, I'm just curious how many of you in the WiiChat community would be interested in a game like this.
Anyhow, I just meant to write a Wii bit but it turned into a longish self-introduction so I'm gonna quit now that you've all gone to sleep.