intends to greatly expand on the Wii's Mii Plaza, its Friend Codes will be "a lot simpler" than previous versions of Nintendo's online buddy system, and many of its retail games will also be available digitally. In that context, it's hard to understand why the Wii U's flagship first-party title, Pikmin 3, won't include online multiplayer.
"In the situation of Pikmin, for example, since you would have lots of individual, small creatures, the Pikmin, whose every movement and location is going to be really important in the game, it would be very difficult to sync up over an internet connection," Nintendo design lead Shigeru Miyamoto told IGN in a recent interview. While Miyamoto acknowledges that games like, say, Mario Kart Wii were online-enabled, it apparently wouldn't be possible with Pikmin 3 on Wii U.
Mario Kart worked, he said, because Nintendo was able to make up for any dropped frames over an internet connection. The issues with Pikmin 3 going online are different, and apparently insurmountable. "Unfortunately, no online multiplayer for Pikmin 3," he said.
"But the co-op local multiplayer is really fun."