So the last in the Nintendo conference line-up is scheduled to get underway in less than 30mins.
Same drill as before, i'll post a mixture of updates from the live sources, you guys just need to refresh. I'll open the thread once the show is over.
*fingers crossed for an early European release*
After an hour of waiting around the halls of ExCel the press and trade are filing into the conference. Running time should be an hour.
Keep an eye on http://www.wii.com/ for the European link to be activated.
There's a podium and a lot of Wii logos up on stage, with a huge screen playing monochromatic videos of Wii software. Iwata's here apparently.
Nintendo’s adamant about not using laptops, mobiles, Wi-Fi or Bluetooth devices, so we may get cut short. Didn’t happen at E3, mind. Can’t stop the signal.
There's still scores of people left to come in, so it may be a little while.
Nintendo UK boss David Yanton's taking his place in the audience. Nintendo UK staff make up about a third of the row behind me.
Sounds like live updates could be thrown into darkenss.
Seems weird they are causing so much fuss over the mobile devices...
These images just appeared on the Austrailian Nintendo website:
The live feed news sites are getting hammered btw.
Australian Price & Date
December 7th for $399.95
Still sod all happening. Lanyard commentary: elegant, simple, nice font, while the strap bears the "Wii Play Together" slogan. Decent clip mechanism. 7/10.
I'd estimate about a third of the seats are still waiting to be filled. Give it time. /impatient
Well we've waited this long, whats another 5mins
Apparently it's going to start "in a few minutes". "Please take your seats," the PA asks hopefully.
"Please switch off all electronic devices." "No."
Fan request #1: "Totty commentary". Well, there are lots of women in Wii t-shirts. There is nothing yet to rival Germany's magnificent pink-dress DS creature.
The last few stragglers are taking their seats. There's a danger it might actually start soon.
Almost forgot: one of our spies who got here at about 10am claims that Tim Henman and Greg Rusedski were wandering around.
- They're British Tennis players if you didnt know, im thinking Wii tennis live demo?
Aaaaaaaaaany minute now.
It's started! WE're kicking off with that Wii trailer featuring those exuberant ii's. Okay, so we've got a fact video thing going on now with some peeps prancing with the remote and some lovely quotes about the Wii. Also the Scissor Sisters are on the soundtrack. We HEART the Scissor Sisters.
I Don't Feel Like Dancing is playing. Gerhard Florin from EA has a quote up: apparently Wii is ace!
Bloody hell. This video's going on a bit. Oh... it's done! Gabby Logan has just appeared on the stage. "Many of you here are BIG gaming fans!" - but she's not apparently. Anyway, "She's not alone" and apparently loads of non-gamers are here. Who'dathought?
FYI Gabby Logan is a UK sports presenter - quite the hottie too.. some would say..
Laurent Fischer, European marketing director is talking about how much of a challenge it is to reach out to non-gamers. Logan is badgering him quite aggressively about why she should care about the Wii. And they're talking about sports - are we about to see Wii Tennis?
13:01"Please welcome your hose for today... Gabby Logan."
Gabby isn't a gaming fan, but she's excited anyway. Laurent Fischer from Nintendo Europe comes on. "Can you really get me interested in gaming?" says Gab.
"How can you get me interested?" "Maybe you like sport.""I do." "Not everyone is playing games, because right now people see it as a narrow sort of activity."
Gaming landscape is changing, says Fishcer. Nintendo is creeping towards a 50/50 gender split. 44% are women. Best-selling title in last year sold to over-25s.
He's explaining the DS for the benefit of the mainstream press, I'm guessing. Did you know it has a touch screen? DID YOU?
Nintendo Europe President Satoru Shibata coming on to talk about DS.
"Thank you everybody for joining us today." He'd like to talk some more about DS before he talks about Wii, apparently.
Regardless of age. gender or past gaming experience, he reckons they can get people involved.
Touch generations software has helped get people interested, he says. Train your brain, learn English, walk a dog, etc. They want to "welcome women to gaming".
Aha! Satoru Shibata, president of Nintendo Europe has just jumped on stage. Not literally. He's talking about the DS and expansion still. Just in case we hadn't already got the message. WII WII WII WII. Please.
We're now onto the subject of sales. How Nintendo is going again the norm with game launches with games like Brain Training showing incredible logetivity on shelves, rather than peaking at launch. Something blah blah blah, Brain Training. I wish I hadn't drunk so much juice before this thing started.
Nintendogs: 4 million in Europe alone. 60, 000 sold a week even now. Responsible for the upsurge in women gamers on the DS he says.
Brain Training: half of the owners are over 26 years old, he says, which is very unusual.
In Japan, the series sold over 5 million copies since May 2005. In nine weeks it's sold 500k in Europe, which took 17 weeks in Japan, he says.
In Germany, Brain Training is on top of the charts two months after launch, he tells us. DS software has dominated European charts in July and August.
He's showing Nintendo's favourite graph: the one that shows sales spiking in later weeks, and not just big sales in the first week that tail off.
"Our strategy is paying off."
Graph: DS sales account for 70% of handheld sales accross Europe.
More than 100k were consistently sold every week, he says. DS has now reached over 6 million people in Europe alone.
10 million sales predicted by the end of 2006. Says to look forward to Sudoku, English Training, Starfox, Yoshi Island 2, and Pokemon Dungeon.
- Man, this conference seems to be dragging a little.
"In the very near future we'll be launching another console that will go even further in making games accessible and fun for everyone."
Gabby's back. Introducing Wii Sports' boxing game. Shibata's going to play against Iwata, who they say is actually in Japan.
A hologram of your player in front of you, jabbing with the Wii remote and Nunchuck.
Oooh this is quite good. You punch and jab with the Wiimote and guard by holding the nunchuck and remote close to you. AAAAAND Satoru Iwata has just come on stage to tell Shibata off - it was all big comedy ruse!
Aha! And Satoru Iwata's walked on behind him. "And this is what goes on when you think I'm away."
"I woke up many hours ago and many thousands of miles away, so I assure you I won't take any more time than necessary to share my thoughts."
- They're really enjoying this
He's talking about the very-old days of working out what to do after the NES. The same questions have continued ever since, he says.
He says we've been focused on tech up to now. I think I've typed him saying that at about 15 different conferences now.
Today, says Iwata, it's time to introduce the fifth mileston in Nintendo's strategy - the Wii Channel. And the offers a much tougher sell for Nintendo. Games consoles don't travel see! So generally, they're only seen by the people who live under that roof. Iwata says, to expand console audience, Nintendo started by increasing the number of gamers playing in one household.
When the Wii is first turned on, they'll see the Wii channel page. First up is the Disc Channel, used to access either Wii or GameCube titles. Now he's going through things like the photo software designed to offer "simple organisation and manipulation of photos".
Onto the Mii Channel - and idea that came about after the E3 Wii Tennis demo where everyone wanted to know of they'd be able to put their own faces into the game, as with Iwata's character.
Now onto the message board system, calender, weather channels and of course, the Internet Channel. Provided by Opera. Virtual Console now. Offering an "instant library" of games - 15 VC games available during launch period. Roughly 5-10 titles will be added per month. When purchased, always accessible and will become a new channel on the main screen.
WiiConnect 24 - constantly updated information while we sleep.
Iwata's stating again that Wii is for everyone, not just gamers. Wii will have its own range of Touch Generation software too. Although he's just buggered off the stage, so who knows what they'll be.
Ah! Logan's back and she's showing us Tennis. She's bandying around the names 'Tim Henman' and 'Greg Rezetski' - a name I've never needed to spell before. Logan's just spend a good five minutes hunting around for a bunch of avatars bearing likenesses to them. And now the curtains have just whizzed open and there's a fake tennis court on stage! Guess who's there! Yup, REAL LIVE TENNIS STARS!
They're in their tennis whites and everything. Gabby's commentating. Greg's really getting into it, but they're 30-0 down.
Henman misses one on the baseline. And Greg gets one back. Oh but Henman's hit it out. Game.
Second game. Tim's beaten down. He's arguing the line call.
15-15. "We move quicker in this game than real life," says Greg.
30-30. Tim's serving. Decent rally this time, and Greg wins it. Game point. "Nintendo's gone mad," my friend says.
13:35 - Somewhat embarrassingly, I was just staring at the ceiling so I have no idea who won. Sorry. AH! European launch specifics. Launch games first! Wii Sports, Wii Play - which enables novices to get the hang of the controller. It'll be bundled with a second controller. Just like the Japanese 'My First Wii' package in fact. Zelda too, obviously Wario Ware will arrive 'just after launch'.
Tony Hawk, Rayman, Red Steel, Monkey Ball coming from thirdparties amongst other things.
WII LAUNCH DETAILS: European launch date December 8 2006, priced at £179 (249 Euros). Package will include console, Wiimote, nunchuck, cables and all that jazz. Oh and Wii Sports. Er, games will cost £35 - £39 in the UK and 49-59 Euros elsewhere. Europe, for example.
Right, with that bit of frenzied excitement out the way, we've moved onto that Wii games trailer that was doing the rounds on the Japanese website yesterday. Incidentally, it looks a bit more impressive when it's blown up slightly bigger than the size of a postage stamp.
The enormous Wii software trailer reel shown on Nintendo's website is now playing, showing off many titles including Resi Evil, Zelda and countless others.
Iwata's back. He's inviting us to stand up and enter the demo area behind the stage. So that's it folks!
Thanks to live sources: