On the heels of Leigh Alexander musing about the potential for 'a Wii for grownups', Jack Patrick Rodgers takes on the Wii's online functionality (or lack thereof, in his estimation). It's clunky, he says, and while he wouldn't expect Xbox Live-esque service from a service that is trying to keep itself 'easy and free,' it really showed its unsophistication while playing SSBB online:
It's legitimate to ask whether the Wii needs an online service as rich and powerful as Xbox Live .... Much of the Wii's charm comes in watching your friends and family make fools out of themselves by swinging the remote like a baseball bat; that sort of amusement would be lost online. But it's important to note that many of the Wii's games (including Brawl) don't require physical exercise and are similar to the games on Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3. And while Nintendo could be forgiven for designing a more streamlined network than Live in order to appeal to casual gamers, the one they've given Wii owners makes it difficult to do even the most basic things, like interact with your friends.
Being the solitary type when I'm gaming, I've never made much of any online features except in a few rare cases, but it would be nice if Nintendo would think of maybe, just maybe, doing some tweaking with online functionality so it's more ... functional.
Listen up, Nintendo.