Popularity Channel? A Wii Fanboy staff reaction

Miyamoto's keynote revealed that he is making a new Channel. This new Channel will allow people to compete in popularity contests with their Miis. Now, we don't have any concrete information other than that, nor do we have images of the new Channel, but isn't this enough for us to form an opinion on the concept? You bet it does!

Join us past the post break where we each discuss what we think about the new proposed channel.

Dave says: You know, the Everybody Votes Channel is crap. Sorry, but it's stupid in its current state. I checked it out the first day it was released (you might remember that post) and haven't looked back at it since. I could care less about it and, personally, this new Channel being proposed by Miyamoto sounds like the exact same thing. I mean, who wants to vote on Miis? What are we going to do, vote who's the most attractive Wii user in the world (based on their Mii, natch) or who could make the most accurate looking Mii of Hitler? Come on Nintendo, give us some meaningful content, something that we would like to put some time into and come back for some more. Not this worthless junk ...

Here Nintendo, I'll do your job for you. Here's the list of Channels we should get in the next 6 months:
  • Nintendo Trivia (that could be fun, with all kinds of stats)
  • Nintendo Power Channel (seriously, this should happen)
  • DS Demo Download
  • Wii Demo Download
  • Original Content Channel (give us new downloadable games)
And that's just off the top of my head.

Jason says: For gamers like us, yeah, the Everybody Votes channel and this new "popularity" contest are meaningless junk, as Dave says. For the fifteen-year-old girls that are becoming more and more interested in this system, however, it's absolute gold. Wasn't it just recently that people were saying Nintendo hasn't been releasing enough casual content since Wii Sports started to fade? These may not be games, but they're something that will be enjoyed by a demographic found wholly outside of readers of this website. For the one true gaming crowd? Sit back, relax, and look forward to Super Paper Mario in early April. That game looks awesome.

Alisha says: I think it's a bit judgmental (and probably incorrect) to assume that the only people who are interested in non-gaming content are teenage girls. So many people these days -- even gamers who tend toward the "hardcore" label -- have two important things in common: a love for social networking and less time to play games. I know so many people who say things like, "wow, I'd love to play Twilight Princess or Final Fantasy XII, but I just don't have the time to put into it." If this is anything like the Everybody Votes channel, it seems perfectly in line with the market expansion Nintendo is shooting for. Maybe it's not for everyone, but the beauty of the thing is that it's not in your way, nor do you have to use it. If you want to ... there it is! The thing about these "casual" channels is that everyone assumes that it means that there will be no channels for the hardcore gamer. What's the Virtual Console, if not a channel for us? Also, there's no reason we won't see five new channels this year ... and one that will satisfy dedicated gamers will probably take a little more work than this. My advice is: give it some time.

JC says: I hate to say this as a fanboy, but I didn't buy any of that for a second. Miyamoto's been aching to design a game based around caricatures? The Mii channel as the culmination of his whole career? No way. Miyamoto is acting as a mascot here and pushing what Nintendo happens to be selling at the moment.

I thought the idea of Miis was great, back when they were going to be cute standardized character profiles used across games. But now the Miis are the point of the games? Even casual content needs more ... content.

I'm worried that Nintendo is going too far in the "casual-lifestyle-Brain Age" direction, and abandoning games entirely in favor of some kind of featureless MySpace.

Eric says: While I don't see this channel as a feature that will hold the interest of most hardcore gamers, I think there's just enough there to entertain the casual audience. If there's one thing people love to do on the internet, it's sharing themselves and their creations. Remember the dozens of "Look at this Mii I created" posts you had to suffer when the Wii first launched? This just adds another layer on top of Mii creation. What better way to compare our Mii caricatures than with a popularity contest?

Now all we need is a channel where we can throw them into a Thunderdome-esque gladiatorial pit and watch them battle each other to the death. Two go in, one comes out! Maybe that will satisfy the gamers who feel like their needs aren't being met with these "casuals channels."

You've read what we think, now it's time for you to tell us what you think? Comment away!

This article was originally published on Joystiq.