Wii U Available Nov. 18 in US, Launch Details Revealed [Updated]

Nintendo’s tablet-based, next-generation console, Wii U, will be available Nov. 18 in the U.S. starting at $300, the company confirmed today at an event in New York.

A “deluxe”, black version of the console, bundled with Nintendo Land, 32 gigabytes of internal storage, and additional accessories, will sell for $350. The base model drops the memory to 8 gigabytes, does not include a game, and only comes in white. Both versions include the Wii U tablet controller, sensor bar, HDMI cable, charging cable, and power cable.

Nintendo revealed a list of games to be released for the console within its release window starting Nov. 18 and ending March 2013. The games include: Assassin’s Creed 3, Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, Darksiders 2, Just Dance 4, Lego City Undercover, Mass Effect 3, New Super Mario Bros. U, Pikmin 3, Rayman Legends, Skylanders Giants, ZombiU, and more. Release dates for third-party titles have been left to the publishers to announce. Nintendo Land and New Super Mario Bros. U, Darksiders 2 (with 5-hours of additional content), and Scribblenauts Unlimited are among a growing list of games confirmed to launch day and date with the console. Kotaku has a full list of the games announced, while CNET is keeping tally of the games releasing on Nov. 18.

According to Kotaku, Wii U titles will be $59.99, up from the $49.99 price of Wii games.

Platinum Games’ Wii U title The Wonderful 101, formerly known as Project P-100, will be available sometime in the console’s launch window. And the sequel to the company’s frenetic, action-game Bayonetta — which launched on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 in 2010 — Bayonetta 2 will be exclusive to Wii U.

Popular video applications Hulu Plus, Netflix, Amazon Video, and TiVo are included in the Nintendo TVii service on the console. The hub will allow users to browse content — using the tablet controller as a remote — from each service, and share what they’re watching with included social networking ties to Twitter and Facebook. The DVR capabilities are not built into the console itself, but will require existing TiVo or DVR units. Speaking to Engadget, Nintendo Director of Strategic Partnership Zach Fountain said it will support “all” cable and dish carriers in the U.S. and Canada.

The Wii U allows for memory expansion via USB. “You can plug in a full-on three terabyte hard drive if you want,” Nintendo America CEO and President Reggie Fils-Aime told Engadget. “The reason we did it that way is that the cost of that type of storage memory is plummeting. What we didn’t want to do is tie a profit model to something that’s gonna rapidly decline over time. We’ll let the consumer buy as much as they want, as cheaply as they want.”

Users looking to purchase additional Wii U tablet controllers in the U.S. will have to wait. Nintendo confirmed to Shacknews the controllers will not be sold separately at launch in the U.S. In Japan, the controllers, available in black and white, will cost ¥13,400, which, according to monetary conversion site XE.com, equates to about $172. Speaking to Polygon, Nintendo Product Marketing Manager Bill Trinen said, “None of the launch window titles support dual GamePad play.”

The non-tablet Wii U Pro Controller, also available in black and white, costs ¥5,040 in Japan, roughly $65. Nintendo has previously confirmed the Wii U supports two tablet controllers. According to Polygon, the Wii U Pro Controller will be available in the U.S. at launch for $49.

At the time of this writing, U.S. pre-orders of the console are only available at Gamestop. I’ve contacted Amazon about its pre-order plans, and have not heard back.

Nintendo originally announced the Wii U at E3 2011.

[Clarification: Originally the article read, “Nintendo Land is currently the only game confirmed to launch day and date with the console,” in error. New Super Mario Bros. U was also confirmed to be launch alongside the console.]

Source: Nintendo, FacebookKotaku, Engadget, Polygon, Shacknews

Author: Tyler Colp

Tyler Colp has been writing about games as a journalist and a critic for over five years. His work has appeared on The Escapist, Venture Beat, BitPulse, and Pixel Enemy. He's into loud music and anything that has to do with Dark Souls.

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