7 Annoying Things About the Wii U

Those Little Annoyances Can Add Up

The Wii U is great, a nifty piece of technology that offers a chance for fresh, ingenious gameplay and HD versions of Nintendo IPs such as Zelda and Metroid. But for all its virtues, there are a few things about the Wii U that will bug even the most devoted fans. Nintendo occasionally fixes a flaw - they added keyboard support, let you reboot a frozen Wii U without unplugging the console, ameliorated long load times with a quickstart menu, and started selling a replacement battery that lasted more than three hours - but at this point in the Wii U's life cycle it's probably safe to assume that they have fixed everything they're going to.

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Miiverse Babble

The Miiverse is Nintendo's system for social interaction. Nintendo

For some reason, Nintendo dislikes silence. Turn on a PS3 or an Xbox 360 and you get a startup riff and then blessed silence, but the Wii always insists on annoying, repetitive music on its navigation screens. The Wii U goes one further, giving you annoying, repetitive music combined with weird little exclamations from the WaraWara Plaza Miis. This combined with the lack of a mute button on the TV control suggests people at Nintendo like noise, all the time.

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Account Tied to Console

Folders offer a way to organize your games. Nintendo

With the Wii, anything you downloaded to the console would be only for that console. It wasn't ideal, but it was understandable because there were no accounts to tie to the games. With the Wii U, all downloads are downloaded through a user account, and yet, downloads are still tied to a specific console (unlike the PS3 and 360). Nintendo has always lagged behind in the online space; sadly, even when they jump ahead, they never jump all the way to the present.

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Sound Lag

Guitar Hero Live
An actor pretends he's really excited by your ability to pretend to play a plastic guitar. Activision

Depending on your TV, you may or may not have an issue with sound lag, in which the sound coming from your television speakers is not quite in sync with the sound coming from your gamepad. While some TVs have a video game mode that sometimes fixes the problem, some don't, so you have to turn the sound down for games like Nintendo Land and Runner2 to get rid of that echo. Then, when you play a game like Batman Arkham City or Lego City Undercover that offers different sounds on the gamepad, like verbal communications, you can miss things because you have the sound turned down. People who can’t fix the problem with their TV settings would love a Wii U option to shift the audio by a few fractions of a second.

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No Mute Button On TV Remote

You'll be able to use the Wii U as a TV remote. Nintendo

It’s great that the Wii U gamepad doubles as a TV remote, but why on earth isn’t there a mute button? Perhaps Nintendo designers never watch TV, and so don’t realize how annoying commercials are?​

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Google Searches Go Through Japan

In the first years of the Wii U, if you clicked on the search icon in the Internet browser you could immediately type in your search and get results. Then hitting search suddenly started taking you to nintendo's Japanese website, which would redirect to a google search page. You can still have the old instant search box set up, but only if you switch to the Wii U's only other search option, Yahoo. 

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Browser Doesn't Support Flash

Ninja Kiwi

It’s great that the Wii U Internet Browser is forward thinking, embracing the new HTML5 standard. In a few years, HTML5 may be all we need. But right now, it’s really good to have a browser that supports Flash; without it you can’t use Pandora Radio or play most free internet games. The Wii supported it; why can’t the Wii U?

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The Wii Emulator

Remember how you played GameCube games on the Wii? You put a GameCube disk in the Wii and started the game. With the Wii U, you must start a Wii emulator first. It’s a weird, awkward approach to backward compatibility. Ideally, Nintendo should have worked to make the Wii game experience even better by using the power of the Wii U to upscale Wii game graphics. If you do click on a Wii game from the main menu it will at least load the emulator, but you'll still have to click the game again from inside the emulator to start it. On the bright side, this odd approach does mean the emulator can run homebrew.