WiiWare: Quietly Disappointing

WiiWare launched to to resounding cries of...ehh...on Tuesday of this week in Japan. I haven't downloaded or played any of the titles yet, but several people have been posting online about the mediocrity of the offerings so far. These same posters have also been bemoaning the prices of these games, which also happened with the launch of the Virtual Console.

Over at the Wired.com Game Life blog, Chris Kohler has written quite a bit about testing the current WiiWare crop. Here's what he has to say of the pricing structure: "When you buy a WiiWare game, you can't try it first, and if you don't like it, you're totally boned because you can't sell it to someone else or trade it in. WiiWare needs demos."

From the preview coverage I've seen, none of the current Japanese titles seem worth their cost to me. But I couldn't agree more that WiiWare needs demos. I would even like to extend that to seeing the availability of demos of full Wii Games. But my desire for demos is counter balanced by the fact that the memory in the Wii is depressingly small. I hope Nintendo eventually expands this, but who knows what they'll do.

Microtransactions are also starting to show up, even with the WiiWare Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles game, for which this feature had never even been announced. I've never been that comfortable with extra costs for games, thinking that everything I need and want from the game should be included in it from the beginning. But it seems like microtransactions are one direction the industry's headed in. Hopefully, some better games will be released for WiiWare in the near future.

In other matters, I'm leaving for a trip to Kyoto, Osaka, and Hiroshima tomorrow, and I won't be back until April 6. I may or may not be able to upload a quick post while I'm gone, because who knows what kind of Internet access I'll have. So, I'll leave you with this:
If challenge had a taste, you'd be quite delicious.

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