The last time Col­in and I did some­thing goofy like this was for the Apple Store open­ing @ East­view Mall. We got up at 6:30am and stood in line for 3 hours at Best Buy… but we final­ly scored the new Nin­ten­do Wii!

It had been a week of try­ing to get it (5am on launch day at Tar­get & EB Games) and then the whole week track­ing rumors of Wii sight­ings.

We had a blast in the line. It par­tic­u­lar­ly helped that some employ­ees told us there were 52 in stock and we had #21. The best part was when peo­ple would dri­ve by and ask what the line was for and kids had them con­vinced we were there for an Amer­i­can Idol try­out! A woman cut loose singing an liv­ing it up and I did Elvis.

User report: The Wii total­ly lives up to the hype. I love the fam­i­ly focus Nin­ten­do has. That’s what put us over the edge on buy­ing this. We didn’t own any con­sole before (well, for 15 years, since the NES), but Nin­ten­do is going a total­ly dif­fer­ent direc­tion from the oth­er com­pa­nies (Sony and Microsoft XBox). Where they are push­ing more jazzy look­ing graph­ics and crazy prices, Nin­ten­do is improv­ing game­play and focus­ing on ease of use and fam­i­ly fun.

We bought 3 games (in addi­tion to the ter­rif­ic Wii Sports that’s bun­dled free):
Ray­man Rav­ing Rab­bids: Goofy fun. Ray­man has par­ty games… danc­ing, run­ning sil­ly, shoot­ing plungers, etc. We’re real­ly addict­ed to this one.
Excite Truck: just a fun rac­ing game, where you steer using the Wii’s motion sens­ing remote
Zel­da Twi­light Princess: Role Play­ing adven­ture. Haven’t start­ed it yet, but it looks like an epic quest.
Also Ani­mal Cross­ing for the Game Cube, since the kids knew they loved it.

What’s cool about the Wii:

    Inex­pen­sive ($250 com­pared to hun­dreds more for the oth­ers). This leaves mon­ey to buy games, extra remotes for fam­i­ly play, etc.
    Motion sens­ing remotes total­ly change how you play. I hat­ed the old ‘press these 7 but­tons togeth­er to run real­ly fast’ thing. If you want to hit a base­ball, just swing the remote like a bat.
    Games that are about fun and meant to be played as a fam­i­ly
    Ele­gant soft­ware inter­face, small con­sole
    No charge for the online uses
    Cre­at­ing our own char­ac­ters and trad­ing them with fam­i­ly, then they all show up in games
    Because of the new remote, learn­ing a game is fast, easy and fun
    Lots of fam­i­ly games, not just shoot­ers
    Down­load many old Nin­ten­do games for cheap ($5-$15), also play any Game Cube game… so there are many great games avail­able, includ­ing the ones we grew up with
    The Wii tracks play time, so you don’t go nuts
    Many of the sports games are real­ly ath­let­ic. We actu­al­ly are sweat­ing play­ing. There are even games to track your skill and I can see some real exer­cise poten­tial to future games. I’ve read Nin­ten­do inter­view where they real­ly are into that idea.
    The idea of stick­ing it to the oth­er com­pa­nies to tell them, it’s about inno­va­tion and cool games, not poly­gons. I read an ARSTech­ni­ca review that said the oth­er sys­tems’ games just look like the old games ‘with a new coat of paint’, and for more mon­ey.

The final fun part of our quest to get the Wii is that my par­ents in FL heard about the Best Buy sale and did an amaz­ing thing… they also got up at 6am to score a Wii for the grand­kids. How sweet was that! And here’s what Mom said about the expe­ri­ence : “We enjoyed sit­ting and chat­ting with the young peo­ple on Sun. morn­ing. We were sec­ond in line so we knew that we would get one.” My folks are in there 70’s, and Mom’s nev­er up before 10am with lots of cof­fee, so that’s love, eh?!

We found a good home up here with friends for the Wii they got as well, since we both got one at the same time. Ah, what an adven­ture.

Learn more:
IGN: Wii Launch Guide

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