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In Skylanders, the portal reads a chip in the Skylander collectable characters but how it works with the WiiU tablet isn’t revealed (or in fact, even confirmed to exist by Nintendo). Perhaps the screen senses the shape of the object laid on it or perhaps the camera on the WiiU tablet ‘reads’ the item and then ‘ports’ it into the game once placed on the screen.
Regardless this got us thinking about the possibilities this type of technology adds to video games and Nintendo franchises in particular.
What follows is our list of:
Top Ten Games that could Benefit from WiiU Tablet Scanning
# 10: Mario Sports Titles - Mario has played a lot of sports over the years from Golf (which inexplicably missed Wii completely but would also be a natural fit for WiiU) to Baseball or Soccer/Football. Regardless of the sport, Mario always has power-ups and lots of friends along for the ride. With WiiU tablet’s ability to scan you could physically pick-up a green shell, mushroom, or fire-flower and scan it into the game just in time to make the big play - even if you haven’t earned the item in-game. This would have to be limited to one use a game, but its always nice to know you have an ace in your pocket.
#9: Mario Party/Fortune(Boom) Street - In Mario Party, players move their characters (singly or jointly depending on which version you’re playing) along the board like in a board game. Physical Cards or tokens you collect at specific points on the board could be used as roll modifiers when placed on the tablet. You could use one when it’s your turn to help ensure a favourable roll, or toss one on unexpected when it’s your friends turn, messing their roll up.
#8 Nintendogs and Cats - While this series has yet to see a home console release, Nintendo did explore the idea on Wii. The WiiU tablet would add the physical touch element that’s so fundamental in these games. With the ability to scan in objects, you could ‘port’ in a ball for the dog to chase, a string for the cat or a brush to comb them with. Using real household items would add a whole new level of immersion into the game.
#7 Merchandise based games - What little girl wouldn’t love a game where they could scan in and interact all their My Little Ponies, Strawberry Shortcake figurines or High School Ghoul dolls? And boys are not immune to this as Skylanders has already proven.
#6 New Super Mario Bros Mii- New Super Mario Bros is always pretty generous with the suits and power-ups given multiple times in most levels. However, inevitably you find yourself wishing you had one for a difficult area or prior to a boss fight. Or wishing for a different one than you have. Probably limited to once a play through or once per level you could scan in an icon/figurine of the suit/power-up you want - when you want it!
#5 Kirby - With the exception of Epic Yarn and some off-shoot titles Kirby trademark ability is to absorb powers. Similar to NSMBM above, having figurines/icons of powers you could scan in would allow you to have the power-up you need, when you need it most. Could also be used for health. Some might argue that this would make the game too easy, but then when don’t people complain about that in a Kirby game?
#4 Metroid: Other M - This will never happen, but just for fun. Screw frying your arse off waiting for authorization. Scan in your Varia Suit and be done with it!
#3 Mario Kart - Mario Kart is already fully loaded with items and karts. However if Nintendo joins the rest of the world in the digital age it’s time to add more via DLC. However Nintendo always likes to be the odd duck and do things their own way (remember Wii Speak?). One way to be unique, give added value and appeal to the less-online savvy casual consumer would be to make the DLC be purchasable figures. Instead of downloading a new character/kart - you merely buy a figurine of them and scan them in.
Another use would be to reward loyal fans by allowing them to use the figurines from other Mario games. Got a power-up from Mario Tennis or NSMBM, scan it into Mario Kart and have something your friends don’t!
#2 Super Smash Bros - Just like Mario Kart but to the extreme! Not only do you get the fun and added value of extra downloadable characters but you get to build an awesome collection of them too!
Again to reward fans, you could scan in extra items from all sorts of Nintendo and possibly 3rd party (Ezio and Rabbids in SSB??) games! The possibilities here are nearly limitless.
#1 Pokemon - Perhaps no game on Earth is better suited to cross-merchandise promotion than Pokemon. What Skylanders started Pokemon can take to levels near unimaginable (at least in Japan). You want your favorite Johto Pokemon while playing in Unova? Go buy him and scan him in. Then trade with your friend. Be the first to pre-order / rush to the store to get / get into an expensive E-bay bidding war for: an ultra-rare legendary Pokemon figurine before they’re gone! If you win, you will be impressing - and pounding on - online opponents for months!
Try doing that with DLC.
What are your thoughts? Is this a cool feature or a cheesy money-grab? Did we miss any games? Add your comments below.
Last edited by gamerace on Mon May 07, 2012 6:38 pm; edited 1 time in total