Nintendo might not be having all the success it had hoped for with the Nintendo Wii U, but that hasn't stopped the gaming company rolling out a new update for the console on Friday.
The new update, available for download now, promises a host of enhanced features, such as improved stability and performance, as well as faster load times when switching between applications.
The update also "lays the groundwork for the imminent launch of the Wii U Virtual Console service", says Nintendo.
The Virtual Console service will enable Wii U owners to play some of their favourite games from classic home consoles.
Games available so far include Super Mario World, Excitebike, Mario’s Super Picross, F-Zero, Ice Climber, Donkey Kong Jr. and Punch-Out.
Nintendo says others, like Pac Man, Super Metroid and games from the Mega Man, Street Fighter and Super Mario Bros. series will be available soon, while popular Game Boy Advance and Nintendo 64 games will also be added in the future.
NES games will cost £3.49 and Super NES games £5.49. People who have already downloaded these games to their Wii system can transfer them to their Wii U consoles and play them in Wii Mode at no charge, although to take advantage of the improved Wii U features they will have to pay an additional 99p for NES games and £ 1.49 for Super NES games.
Also new to the mix is Wii U Panorama View. Nintendo hopes gamers will be happy to pay £1.79 for a 360-degree video guided tour of a famous city via a double-decker bus. Cities include London and Rio de Janeiro.
The full overview of the update is included below.
Addition of Standby Functions Feature
- This feature enables data for purchased software, system updates and software updates to be downloaded and installed automatically even after the console has been turned off
Updates to Miiverse
- Controls using the Wii Remote, the Wii U Pro Controller and the Classic Controller are now supported.
- The input screen for handwritten posts is now also displayed on the TV.
- The input screen for handwritten posts now features an undo/redo button.
Updates to the Internet Browser
- Controls using the Wii Remote and the Wii U Pro Controller are now supported.
- It is now possible to switch search engines when performing a keyword search.
- It is now possible to navigate to the start page from bookmarks.
Update to Nintendo eShop
- When purchasing downloadable software, any available updates for that software will be downloaded at the same time.
Updates to Download Management
- It is now possible to reorder downloads.
- Newly purchased downloadable software will automatically install once the download completes.
Updates to Parental Controls
- The "Viewing Distributed Videos" restriction has been changed to "Entertainment Excluding Games". A screen requiring parental consent will be displayed before the first use of any non-game software (including video-viewing software) or other new service.
Enabled Direct Opening of Wii Menu
- When the Wii U logo is displayed after turning on the console, holding down the B Button on the Wii U GamePad will open the Wii Menu directly. (If no default user has been selected on the console, the user-selection screen will be displayed, and a user must be selected.)
Updates to System Settings
- Under Data Management, two USB storage devices can now be connected to move and/or copy data. You can move and/or copy data between the system memory and a USB storage device or between two USB storage devices. (Up to two USB storage devices can be connected when moving, copying or deleting data. In all other cases, only one USB storage device can be used at a time.)
- Under Data Management, you can now move, copy or delete data for a selection of software titles.
- The TV option now includes the option to adjust the screen size of the display on the TV. (This replaces the similar options previously available within Miiverse, Nintendo eShop, and the Internet Browser, which have now been removed.)
- The "Auto Power-Down" option has been renamed "Power Settings", which now includes both the auto power-down setting and the new standby functions feature.
Improvements to System Stability and Convenience
- Improvements have been made to system stability and convenience for greater user enjoyment.
- The time required to start the Wii U console, launch built-in applications, exit software and return to the main menu, jump between applications and jump between software and Miiverse has been reduced.