According to Rocket News 24, the online Japanese news publication, Wii U GamePads are apparently region locked. The Wii U system itself is region locked so you can’t buy Japanese games and play them on a North American Wii U system. Now you can’t buy a Wii U GamePad from Japan and play it on a North American Wii U.
The UK retailer Very has started to sell the Nintendo Wii U GamePad as a stand alone product. This would make the retailer one of the first to starts selling them by themselves. This particular retailer is listing them at a price of £89.00. There really isn’t an incentive to have two Wii U GamePads right now since there are no games out that actually support both of them.
You may want to know the Wii U does not support a USB keyboard just yet so you can type on a normal keyboard instead of on the GamePad itself. I guess USB keyboard support is supposed to be coming, but for the time being it isn’t available. I’m just going to stick with the GamePad typing anyways.
EuroGamer had time with the Wii U and were able to test how fast the gameplay was rendered on the Wii U GamePad screen compared to the TV. Here is what EuroGamer says:
Fortunately, we’re pleased to find that latency here is impossible to pick out without some exacting method of measure. In testing the difference, we find results that completely subvert our expectations here; in instances where gameplay is mirrored between the two, the GamePad screen actually renders the image 116ms before the 50-inch LG screen does.”
They found out that the Wii U GamePad actually renders faster than the TV they were playing on. The TV could of lagged behind because of the certain TV they have, but it looks like there will be no need to worry about the Wii U GamePad rendering too slowly.
Do you want to know what the TV button does that is located on the Wii U GamePad? Nintendo’s Director of Public Relations, Marc Franklin explains:
“What that does is, you can operate the Wii U GamePad as a TV remote control. It brings up your channel selector, volume, there’s a TV guide button in there. It gives you the opportunity to use your GamePad as a remote control as a matter of convenience. You can even operate the TV without turning on your Wii U. What we’ve talked about all along is an integrated experience, and in that line of thinking, this makes a lot of sense.”
This is a nice feature. Having the Wii U GamePad and TV remote built into one is convenient.
Satoru Iwata admits that Nintendo almost got rid of the second screen that is displayed on the Wii U GamePad. Iwata explains:
“Sometime during that final discussion we almost gave up on the idea of the additional screen. This was due to our concern over the expected high cost, it may not have been feasible to create this and sell it at a reasonable price point for the consumers.”
Nintendo really seems worried about having the Wii U at a reasonable price. Nintendo almost got rid of the second screen because of cost.
Reggie Fils-Aime talked with Gamasutra and made a comment about Wii U games that will support two Wii U GamePads. Reggie said these type of games will come out “well after launch,” which could be a good thing so you don’t have to fork out more money at launch for that second GamePad.
When people tried out the Wii U at E3 2012 people noticed that the Wii U GamePad would need recalibration. Nintendo has noticed this and Shigeru Miyamoto stated this:
“It’s true that with some of the sensors that are used [in the GamePad,] there are limits to the precision they are able to measure. It becomes our role to look at how can we manage that or how can we make it so that the reclaibration becomes part of the gameplay. That’s what we’re going to be working on going forward.”
Nintendo is going to try and make the calibration process “part of the gameplay” so it doesn’t become a nuisance. Nintendo could use a button on the GamePad to simply calibrate the controller without having to pause the game and go through a menu. As long as I don’t have to calibrate my GamePad every second, this will be fine.
Nintendo has announced that the battery life of the Wii U GamePad will range from 3-5 hours. On the other hand it takes about two and a half hours to charge the controller and while it is charging you can still play with the AC adapter plugged into it.