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E308: Live highlights from Nintendo's private conference

Candace Savino

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Did yesterday's Nintendo keynote leave you wanting more? Well, pipe down already -- you're getting more. The company is holding a private conference, and our very own JC Fletcher is invited to the party. Since you can't be there, we'll be posting JC's highlights right here, live. We hope your F5 buttons and refresh fingers are ready, because the word on the street is that something big is going to be revealed. Of course, that could just be disgruntled fans' hopes evolving into a rumor, but we'd like to believe that's not the case. We'd hate to be disappointed by the big N two days in a row, after all.

If we hear something big (or not so big), don't worry, you'll be the first to know (well, uh, after us).

Update: So far it looks like the same stuff from the keynote. Katsuya Eguchi takes the floor.

Update: Eguchi is talking, playing Animal Crossing.

Update: They're talking about new features in the game, but nothing too special. Just holiday-centered events, like Halloween.

Update: There's an auction house in the city, Gracie's store ... okay Nintendo, we get it. Animal Crossing, woot.

Update: Wallpaper, furniture, and that sort of thing will be updated through WiiConnect24. More about holiday events -- besides Jingle (the reindeer) bringing presents, there's new events like a stranger hiding eggs and a carnival.
Update: Now they're talking WiiSpeak.

Update: With WiiSpeak you can converse in different locations as if you're in the same room. Since it's on the TV, you can have group conversations! Now that's kind of cool.

Update: Eguchi is the producer for Animal Crossing, Wii Sports Resort, and Wii Music.

Update: You can now edit all different parts of the shirt. The Wiimote works well with this, but still, nothing too exciting.

Update: You can rate designs as "Loud," "Proud," or "Simple." Oh ... kay. Also, other animals in the town can give feedback on your designs.

Update: You can take pics, save them to an SD card, and send them to friends.

Update: Now they're having a Q&A session for Animal Crossing. If a guest disconnects, everyone gets disconnected like in Wild World. You can do more things together in the town than last time, though, like see a show.

Update: DS-Wii Animal Crossing connectivity! You can port your items from the DS to the Wii.

Update: You can also load up your Wii character data on the DS and use that to transfer your stuff to different Wiis. Neat!

Update: In Japan you can download things like furniture from DS download stations, then transfer them to your Wii. They hope for this to be the case elsewhere in the world, too.

Update: From what we understand, you can port stuff from your DS Wild World character to the Wii. You can also use your DS as a conduit to get new stuff from download stations. (Sounds like a bit of a DLC workaround.)

Update: The NES games (as seen in the GameCube Animal Crossing) won't be returning. Nintendo wants you to play the Virtual Console on the Virtual Console. Sad -- that could have been a nice VC multiplayer opportunity.

Update: Animal Crossing seasons are still backward (you know what we mean) for the Southern Hemisphere. The Forecast Channel (and weather) won't have any influence on the game because that might hurt/hamper some players with non-ideal weather situations (like constant rain, etc). End of Q&A, now on to Wii Sports Resort.

Update: More dog frisbee. Looks fun.

Update: It also looks precise and not laggy. JC (from Nintendo Treehouse, not our JC) is getting some applause. We're still waiting for megatons, though.

Update: Now they're doing Jet Ski. This kind of seems like deja vu. The audience is getting into though, so at least that's something. (Guess you had to be there.)

Update: Beach Fencing now. Engarde! The swordplay looks (and we quote from our own JC) "SUPER FUN." Hmmm no wonder Nintendo decided to add fencing to a beach game -- to show off.

Update: Eguchi explains the sword fighting controls. You have to do more than swing a sword, since you have to block, too (by pressing B). You also can't win by flailing around (like, say, Wii Sports Boxing?). Instead you have to find the right time and place to attack, getting the right opening on your opponent.

Update: Eguchi isn't sure if third parties have access to MotionPlus yet. Hmmm, that worries us a little. Hopefully they do.

Update: How does Wii MotionPlus work? It measures angles of rotation, and adds that to the Wiimote's accelorator data. He also mentioned a rate integrating gyroscope, which is what measures the angles (like in aircrafts).

Update: When asked about multiplayer, Nintendo wants you to buy a second Wii MotionPlus, it seems. Or, for events that don't have simultaneous multiplayer, you can pass the peripheral around.

Update: Eguchi hopes to have ten games in Resort. Keyword: "hopes." Matt Casamassina from IGN asks about Wii MotionPlus and whether it was designed out of necessity, as an admission of failure about the Wiimote.

Update: Of course not, says Nintendo. They always wanted more, but realized that they could create a great product with the technology they had to work with.

Update: Eguchi doesn't know if the MotionPlus technology will be integrated into the Wiimote, and if that will become the Wii's default control scheme. We guess we'll have to stay tuned.

Update: Now, onto Wii Music (with Miyamoto, of course).

Update: Miyamoto talks again about the controls of Wii Music. They were going for something different, so they didn't make the game like others (using the precise matching of notes). Instead, they went for the motions, making it seem like you're really playing the instrument.

Update: Miyamoto acts adorable, as usual, saying that he's too scared to play the game's guitar in front of people. He does anyway, though, and jokes that any mistakes are really "ad libs."

Update: He chooses to play "Yankee Doodle" to appeal to his American audience. As cheesy as it is, we can't help but love him.

Update: The demo that Miyamoto is playing only has 26 of the 50 instruments available. That still seems like a lot, though, so we certainly won't complain.

Update: One song Miyamoto plays to sound like the song, but another he just messes around. It still seems to sound okay, though (which probably means you can't mess up too much in the game). Vibraphone is next (wow talk about random instruments!) and then the harpsichord. There's also a tiny piano, cute! And, the instruments sound like they're real, which is neat.

Update: Woah, wait up. There's 60+ instruments! Looks like they were underplaying it a bit at the keynote.

Update: They look like they're having a blast, and don't even have to watch the screen to play -- just gelling to the rhythm of it all. They're playing the original Super Mario Bros. theme now.

Update: You can change the arrangement (dare we hope something akin to Mario Paint?!?) and also the tempo. You can also record it in a Music video and send it to friends through WiiConnect24. Children seem to love the game, if that means anything to you.

Update: Mothers will love it, too. Since we're neither in the child nor mother demographic (sans Alisha) we only really care if we'll love it.

Update: Aaron Rosebeck shows that using the Wiimote, Nunchuk, and Balance Board, he can control a nine piece drumming set. That actually sounds exciting. He makes it look easy, but it's clear he has practice. There will also be instrument lessons in the game.

Update: Now comes the Q&A. The drums were created with the Wii in mind, and are not "related at all" to schemes seen in other Nintendo games, like Rhythm Tengoku.

Update: The music will include a variety of stuff, like public domain songs (stuff like classical, we assume). But there will also be licensed songs.

Update: There will be 50 songs. Someone asked if Wii Music was more of a musical toy than an actual game. Miaymoto takes the questions gracefully and answers, "That's why it's more interesting than a video game." Oh, snap.

Update: Remember Wave Race 64? Staff members of that are working on the Jet Ski game in Resort. They're making something that "surpasses Wave Race." No comment on there being a future Wave Race game for the Wii, though, unfortunately.

Update: JC says: "So far this hasn't been worth the freakout." We agree. Will things pick up? Or is this just an extended keynote?

Update: Miyamoto adds that the Jet Ski game in Resort will "exceed Wave Race in depth."

Update: Pikmin!!!!! Miyamoto: "We're making Pikmin."

Update: It was a throwaway statement -- we'll wait to see if they say something more. But until then: OMG Pikmin!!!

Update: [Note: Above picture is from Smash Bros Brawl, but well, you get the gist! Pikmin Wii!] So, are you excited? Do you consider this a megaton?

Update: Well, that's all there is. No elaborating on Pikmin. They did add that MotionPlus won't improve any already-existing games without MotionPlus controls. And, well, that's really it. Event over. Whether or not you're excited about Pikmin will determine whether or not you found the private conference to be a success, it seems.

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