Reggie Fils-Aime was on CNN the other day talking about the Wii U, and the question of graphics came up. To paraphrase- Sony and Microsoft have new consoles on the way, and the Wii U is on spec with the 360 and PS3. Aren’t you worried about the Wii U being a generation behind? And Reggie Fils-Aime responds by saying third-party games look dramatically better on Wii U, despite all evidence to the contrary.
There’s a difference between marketing talk, boosting your company at the expense of your competitors, and saying things that are easily proven wrong. Call of Duty doesn’t look better on Wii U. It doesn’t looks worse, either. It looks like Call of Duty. While that’s all very nice for still screenshots, though, when the action gets heavy the Wii U framerate drops in places where it remains steady on the other consoles. Eurogamer did the homework on comparing the two, so head over there for full details. It’s possible there’s going to be some kind of marketing-speak coming out explaining the talking point and analyzing it so it’s semantically correct, but who cares? Current gen games look the same on both consoles, and saying otherwise while the demo from 2011′s E3 runs on a side-screen (rather than, say, comparison footage, which to be fair would be tough to have ready in a live interview) implies that the audience will believe any old crap a talking head spouts.
It’s early days for Wii U. We get it. No console shows off what it’s fully capable of on Day 1, or even Year 1. The Wii U should mature into a very nice machine over time. Right now, though, it needs a strong start for the holidays and lying about the state of its launch games isn’t going to make anyone any friends. Reggie is a Nintendo employee, and the talking head for the company in the US, so it’s expected he’ll follow the marketing line he sets for the company, but this claim crossed the line. It’s not Marketing any more, but rather pure bullshit. We’re neither stupid nor blind, and we can tell when something is obviously wrong.
On the plus side, where a politician would be wearing the American flag he’s got a Mario pin, so that’s pretty entertaining.
The question and his answer run from 2:06 to 3:04. He takes a mid-answer change in direction, but it’s a much better answer to the interviewer’s question than the preceding bit.