Jimmy Fallon Thought The Wii U Was A Wii Peripheral

This morning we ran a roundup of clips from Late Night with Jimmy Fallon's big post-E3 "Video Game Week", highlighted by his hands-on time with the Wii U. Fallon's opening monologue, however, is where the entertainment is, really.

Nintendo can't be too pleased that its Late Night close up begins by describing the Wii U as some kind of a hardware extension to the regular old Wii. But that's what Fallon does in setting up the evening's guest list for viewers.

"This is the new system. You add it to your Wii or you don't even need to use the Wii. Do you need to use the Wii?" he rambles. "You can just use it on your own, but you can also use it with the Wii."

Perhaps that explains why Reggie Fils-Aime, the president of Nintendo of America, was so specific in his on-camera segment. "This is the Wii U. Right?" says Fils-Aime. "This entire package, the console and really what makes it different is this new controller." You can almost see him arching his eyebrows at Fallon off-camera.

Nintendo keeps having this problem with the Wii U. Not a week after its unveiling at E3 2011, company president Satoru Iwata already regretted its presentation, which seemed to emphasised the controller to the exclusion of the console, perhaps leading some not to see it as an entirely new system.

But that's the risk you run when you make the controller the face of the system, not the hardware itself, as Shigeru Miyamoto said when explaining why the Wii U won't stand upright. The console's designers didn't include a stand because they wanted to differentiate it from the upright Wii. However, "The Wii U GamePad is really the face of the system," Miyamoto told Stephen Totilo, "whereas, with the Wii system, we had really designed it so that that system itself really stood out when you looked at it."


    When your target audience is children and parents buying games for their kids, you NEED to make sure people aren't confused by this. Most people I speak to at work don't know what it is, or the ones that do thought it was just a new controller.

    It seriously needs a new name.

      It's just terrible marketing on Nintendo's part. I remember the first time they actually unveiled the WiiU, the keynote was so vague that we spend days wondering if it was just a controller, until people eventually revealed the actual box. I can totally see people not following E3s to be confused.

    This is the logical conclusion of marketing campaigns that refuse to simply add a number next to the latest installment. The "New" iPad, the WiiU - both lose their identity of being a true step forward because someone in marketing decided it would generate more buzz than simply calling them the "iPad 2s" or the "Wii 2". Sure it might sound cliched, but it is USEFUL to have that obvious next installment title. And IMO, usefulness should trump buzz every time.

      Completely agree, even in games and movies everyone seems to be allergic to numbers, so annoying.

      Yeah, is a number really that bad? It should be called the Wii 2.

      Well, as the 64 for the N64 implied 64-bit, why not do the same for the WiiU? They could call it the "Nintendo 1080p."


      I actually like the way you think and will take this formula into consideration when launching my own campaign this fall.

      PSP2 would have been more welcome than PS Vita as well.

      I agree, but then you have the Wii "2" against the PS "4" & Xbox (any number = or > than 4).. nobody wants to be the console with a smaller number.

    Jimmy Fallon always makes himself out to either like games or be a gamer, but his video game week has shown that he's absolutely clueless when it comes to games. I wish he'd shut up about them.

      He only plays Nintendo games and Uncharted. I think it's totally understandable to make the "WiiU is a Wii controller" gaffe.

      Yeah, the Wii U mistake is completely understandable. The guy is super busy doing a show every night. Plus he lives in Manhattan so he's probably be having shit loads of fun outside work, rather than reading up on Kotaku :P
      But, i agree, I don't think he's really a gamer. No point him faking it. It shows through real bad.

    I was really surprised by the reaction to the Wii-U's announcement, when we were hearing stories of even journalists hadn't picked up that the Wii-U was a new system and not just some expansion. I remember thinking "that's pretty clear to me", and assumed it was for most other people as well.
    But my little bro didn't know it wasn't just a controller for the Wii when I chatted to him about E3 last week, and that kind of took me by surprise. He plays a lot of games but he wouldn't bother commenting on videogame forums, for example. Just goes to show the misconception runs pretty deep, and anything like this definitely needs to be avoided. Focus on the controller, yes, but ram home the basics: new console, HD graphics , online features.

    The worst thing the big N have done is to re-hash the "Wii" name. they should have abandoned this ridiculous moniker the first chance they got.

      the reason they stuck with it is because a lot of people who bought Wiis were not looking for a Nintendo, they got wind of the Wii brand and now its well known there's no way they're abandoning it.

    they should have called it the SNES 2 that would have got hype going. Wii U is just a terrible name.

    Poor Nintendo.

    F**K Nintendo. They screwed over their fans who supported them through the GameCube era. Wii Fit, Wii Music? What about some new IP? Worst thing is, I don't even play my Wii, can't sell it because it isn't worth shit. Waste of $400. Someone needs to get a kick up the arse... and by 'someone' i mean Miyamoto. THe guys living in the past.

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