Random Thoughts – Randosity!

Why Nintendo’s Miiverse is already dead

Posted in video game, video gaming by commorancy on March 17, 2013

Miiverse is Nintendo’s newest gaming social network only available on the Wii U console.  While it has some benefits, it also has many drawbacks. These drawbacks will become Miiverse’s ultimate failing and why it will ultimately fail to gain traction as a lasting social network.

What exactly is Miiverse?

Miiverse is a gaming social twitter-like network available exclusively through the Nintendo Wii U console and only available by using a Nintendo Network ID (which is also created exclusively on the Wii U console). The Nintendo Network ID (NNID) is much like an Xbox Live ID used on the Xbox.  However, unlike Xbox, you cannot access your Nintendo Network ID from the Internet.  It is only and exclusively available strictly through the Wii U console.  This is one of the major failings of this network and only one of the major reasons why this social network will ultimately fail.

No Internet access to content?

Nope.  There is no web access or any other external access to any of the content placed in Miiverse or, indeed, anything else related to your NNID. So, you cannot review anything about your NNID until you have access to your Wii U console again. This is one of Nintendo’s bright ideas that is ultimately a bad idea. Even Microsoft has learned that you have to allow access to at least pieces of your Xbox Live ID content on the Internet so you can at minimum login and get some information about your Xbox Live account. So, while you can’t get access to the exclusive content on the Xbox, you can at least see your gamer points and profile and set up things about your Xbox Live ID.

This exclusive access via the Wii U console will ultimately be the failing of this network. Basically, if you don’t buy a Wii U, you can’t have access to Miiverse content.  If your console breaks, you have to buy another one to gain access again. There is no way to get access to this content from the web or in any other way than through a Nintendo device. Even Apple produced iTunes so you could at least buy things on the iTunes store without owning an iDevice. Nintendo just doesn’t get it.

Miiverse is limited

Instead of Nintendo providing something more useful like game Achievements, they thought that having a half-baked social network would take the place of this.  Well, as a gamer, I’m here to say that this is not an adequate replacement. Being able to post for help and gain access to it quickly is cool, but you can easily get help by using Google and posting to open forums available on the Internet.  I don’t need Miiverse for this.  Yes, the screen shot feature is cool, but it is limited and the Nintendo admins are strictly fascist with reports of content problems.

Worse, you can’t even edit your posts.  So, if you forget to mark something as a ‘spoiler’, then you cannot fix that. You can only delete your post and start over.  Worse, there’s a 5 minute timer on posts, so if you delete a post and want to repost, you have to wait 5 minutes to fix it.  So, even if the admins mark a problem with your post later, you can’t correct the problem as there’s no way to edit it.  Seriously, if you’re going to flag posts as problems, at least have the decency to add editing tools to modify and correct the problem.

Miiverse administration is stupidly designed and poorly operated

If your content is reported, you can expect that you are always in the wrong. It doesn’t matter whether or not you really are, it matters what the admins say.  And clearly, the admins always side with the person who reports the content and not with the person who created the post.  So, be warned that if someone reports your content, you are always marked as being at fault.  Worse, the whole administration piece is stupidly designed.

There is a ‘Messages’ area where if your content is reported, you will receive a canned response from some anonymous moderator stating that you have violated Miiverse ‘terms and conditions’.  If you want to dispute the process, you can’t.  Your options for response are limited to about 6 different canned responses, none of which are at all appropriate to getting a proper response back from the admins.  No, you cannot write an email or send a text response to someone to ask a question or get clarification.  In fact, if you do need to contact someone in person regarding an issue, you have to go to Nintendo.com, submit their general web form case and then wait for them to provide you with a pin number and the phone number to call in.  That phone number being 1-877-803-3676.  But, don’t try to call it blind.  You will need the pin code provided by a Nintendo staffer to call in. Note, they don’t tell you this anywhere in any documentation or even on the Wii U in Miiverse. You have to somehow just ‘know’ this.

Worse, there is little the admins can really do short of removing the post which they should really be doing anyway. If they delete your NNID, you can simply create another one.  Sure, you might lose all your content associated with the old ID, but it’s not like you had achievement points associated with it anyway. You will lose any posts you made, but no big deal there either.  It’d basically be like losing a private twitter feed that no one but Wii U users have access to. It would not be like losing your Twitter account which would be a much bigger deal.  Although, you might lose money you’ve built up in the Nintendo store, but that’s something I’m not sure of yet.

Yeahs vs Spoilers

There is a ‘Spoilers’ flag that can be set on a post.  Unfortunately, you cannot mark something as a spoiler after the fact and it only takes one report by some random schmo for your post to be thrown into question as being a spoiler. This then throws the content into some random admin’s queue who really doesn’t care and will always side with the person who reported.  You can’t dispute this process at all.  So, your only action left is to delete the post which the admins could have done anyway.

Posts can be marked with a ‘Yeah’ (which is akin to Facebook’s Like feature), but these have no bearing on whether or not it’s a spoiler. With spoilers, you have to report it through a form.  Once reported, an anonymous moderator makes the decision whether it violates terms.  But, it doesn’t matter if it does or doesn’t.  You’re already guilty and you will always be in the wrong. Nintendo is not taking any chances, so the poster of the content will always be dinged on the content. So, how exactly does any of this in any way incent any gamer to want to participate in this network knowing they’re going to have run-ins with admins? Nintendo, you’re biting the hand that’s feeding you.

With any game, any still image is considered a spoiler.  If you’re showing game content, that’s a spoiler for someone. So, it doesn’t matter what image you’ve posted, if someone reports it as a spoiler, it is a spoiler (at least according to Nintendo). This is the wrong approach for a social network. Nintendo shouldn’t be making the decisions about spoilers. Social networks need to operate on likes or thumbs down features.  Instead of taking the word of only one person (which is currently what it takes for Miiverse), it should be self-policed by the software based on the consensus of a number of people participating in the social network.  If a number of people tag something as a spoiler, then mark it as a spoiler automatically. Problem solved with no personnel intervention involved.  Don’t flag an account as in ‘violation of terms’ with this silly and stupid canned response system.  Just automatically take action by allowing the users to self-police the content.  Again, if more people mark it as not a spoiler than those who do, it remains visible as not a spoiler.  Social networks should be governed by those participating in the social network, not by Nintendo employees. Nintendo clearly doesn’t understand the concept of a social network or how it should operate.

Deleting Content

If you decide to delete all of your Miiverse posts, you might as well just go delete your entire NNID.  It’s a whole lot faster.  Trying to weed through your old posts on Miiverse is like watching paint dry. This entire process is majorly botched, hugely time consuming and barely works.  I had about 170 posts and it took me nearly 2 hours to delete most of them. Suffice it to say that you have to refresh the entire list of posts each time you want to get to the next post to delete.  And, because they only load a screen at a time, you have to wait when you pull the screen up for it to load more posts in. Worse, you have to basically unfriend and unfollow everyone in your list to limit this list to just your posts so you’re not scrolling through tons of other people’s posts to get to your own.  Worse, there’s no way to see, at a glance, who you’ve friended or followed.  So, you have to just weed through the ‘Activity Feed’ to find the people you’ve friended and followed. Note, I’m not even filling in half of the details here for deleting content, but suffice it to say that Miiverse was not designed to delete your old content.

No opt-out

If you don’t want to participate in Miiverse, there is no way to do this on the Wii U console.  Basically, you have to disconnect your Wii U from the network to not participate in Miiverse. There is no option on the Wii U console to turn it off or in any other way opt-out.  Note that as long as you have an NNID associated with your Wii U, your console will log into the Miiverse service and show you content on the carousel screen even if you don’t want to participate.

Overall, Miiverse seems like a good idea, but it’s badly designed, poorly implemented and poorly operated.  Yes, the one thing that it does is allow for quick access to help, but that one feature is completely overshadowed by how poorly the entire software is conceived and implemented. I personally cannot recommend this social network for any use other than for a quick ‘Help I’m stuck’ kind of question. Even then, I would suggest using Google first as it will likely be faster.

If you are a parent and don’t want your child participating in this social network, you have no option to turn it off from within the Wii U console.  So, if you’re thinking of buying a Wii U console for your child, you should be well aware of this fact before you consider that purchase. If you would prefer your child to not participate in this poorly run social network, then you should probably consider a different console purchase.  Additionally, considering that Nintendo is having major troubles even roping in developers to put their AA titles on the Wii U, I’d say purchasing (or, rather, not purchasing) the Wii U is pretty much a no-brainer.

Done with Miiverse

I’ve given Miiverse a fair shake and have come to conclusion that because of its limited usefulness and Nintendo’s fascist moderators and ‘terms and conditions’ coupled with bad software design, I can’t be part of that community. This is the reason I deleted all of my content on there. I may yet delete my NNID and just be done with it.

Until Nintendo can figure out that this social network design is crap and until they redesign it from the ground up, my suggestion is to avoid using Miiverse as its sole value is extremely limited and may actually cause more harm than good for some people.  Nintendo, you need to figure this out fast.

18 Responses

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  1. Horrorandfantasy Kathryn said, on January 23, 2014 at 11:58 am

    apparantly , i cant post my friend code because it violates the code of conduct.

    • commorancy said, on January 23, 2014 at 11:49 pm

      Hi Kathryn,

      Actually, it does violate the Miiverse code of conduct. The code of conduct is very strict on personal identification. You can’t post any information that personally identifies you to anyone else. Violations include posting friend codes, gamer tags, web sites, Twitter handles, Facebook handles, other social sites like Tumblr or Flickr, posting your name, your email address, a blog site or any other links that can lead to accounts you hold that are not part of Miiverse. It is also a violation to identify anyone else. Basically, any information that could lead someone to find you or someone else’s real information is forbidden to be used on Miiverse. It’s a very fascist policy and part of the reason I no longer use Miiverse. It also makes no real sense. Every other site on the planet embraces allowing you to connect to Twitter and Facebook. Many sites even use Facebook and Twitter as alternative forms of login credentials. Yet, Miiverse won’t even allow you to identify your handles on these services, let alone actually use them as part of Nintendo’s offerings.

      Let’s consider the PS4 for a moment. Sony’s new PS4 is happy to allow posting to Facebook and Twitter. In fact, screenshots and videos can be taken right from a single button press on the PS4 and immediately posted to Twitter and Facebook. This is the complete opposite of what Nintendo allows. And honestly, I prefer the PS4′s connectivity to Facebook and Twitter over Nintendo’s Miiverse offering. Twitter has been around so long now, it’s the perfect vehicle to post PS4 images to your followers. On the other hand, trying to even get a following on Miiverse is like shoveling snow in a blizzard.

      It’s clear, Nintendo has no intention of supporting Facebook or Twitter. For that I say, you snooze, you lose. If Nintendo is unwilling to embrace standard social media, there’s no real hope this company can really make it with any social offerings. Nintendo simply doesn’t get it.

  2. jackson1442 said, on January 5, 2014 at 3:28 pm

    I agree with @t3hshow3r. Nintendo sets the stage, others follow. First Wii remote, then ps wand? First Gamepad, then ps4 touchpad?

    • commorancy said, on January 6, 2014 at 7:28 am

      Hi Jackson,

      While I agree that Nintendo was ahead of the game (pun intended) with the Gamepad, the reason the touch piece hasn’t come sooner is because of battery constraints. Having a touch surface means constant polling that surface for touch. As a result, that seriously drains battery life from the controller. As an example, the Xbox 360 and the Xbox One controllers both last days on a single set of batteries. The PS4 controller only last 3-5 hours on a charge.

      Note, if there was a way to produce a touch surface on a controller that didn’t eat through batteries like crazy, both the Xbox 360 and the PS3 would have had them available long before now. In fact, the touch surface on the PS4 is just a gimmick. It really doesn’t help gaming all that much. The fact that it’s not square on the PS4 controller is also a bit less useful.

      As for the Nintendo Gamepad, it suffers from horrible battery life. The only way to solve the battery issue is to play games with it constantly plugged in while playing. In fact, while the dual display idea is cool and definitely something Nintendo did right (and thought of first), the game developers still haven’t figured out how to use the dual display in any substantial way yet (other than for maps). Even the Xbox One and the PS4 don’t yet have dual display on the shipped controller. However, the PS4 does have a mobile app that does let you share the display on an iPhone, Android or PS Vita device. Using a PS Vita, it also serves as a game controller and touch surface. Not sure if the Xbox One yet supports dual displays with an app on a touch surface device.

  3. PGWackiest said, on December 10, 2013 at 3:01 pm

    Totally agree with what you’ve said. The completely insular nature of the Miiverse even on a browser level is insane. Please note I’ve only experienced the Miiverse on 3DS.

    It launched today and within 12 hours I had a message from the administrators saying I had violated their terms with my profile comment, which was: “Twitter @PGWackiest” I find this frustrating. There seems to be no substance to the 3DS Miiverse other than random drawings and occasionally screenshots, I say occasionally as some games such as PokemonXY do not even support screenshots! Which was my key interest so I could copy them from the Miiverse website and repost via Twitter!

    I’m going to test the waters with a new profile comment negating the word twitter and the @ symbol to see if they pick up on it. I have “(a)PGWackiest” as my Mii comment in Streetpass and “Twitter (a)PGWackiest for my Villagers comment in Animal Crossing (Due to the @ symbol being unavailable) and I have had no problems with this.

    I hope for changes! People do end up on the one track record of Nintendo being the Innovators. But they are also incredibly stubborn! While Sony and Microsoft noticed Nintendo’s motion control success with the Wii and replicated it with Move and Kinect, Nintendo seems to refuse to pick up on successful innovations put forward by Sony and Microsoft, the most notable being an Achievement system and unified accounts with a purchase history that is tied to the account!

    Bah, rant over ;)

    Main point is, I agree with you :)

    • commorancy said, on December 10, 2013 at 10:38 pm

      The reason your account was flagged is because you listed something that can personally identify you. The Miiverse terms specifically prohibit doing or saying anything that will personally identify you (or others) on their service. This includes mentioning Twitter or Facebook accounts or including any other identifying information such as name or phone number.

      Whether or not this is ‘fair’ or ‘just’, it is what Nintendo specified in their terms. No, I don’t necessarily like it and it’s also part of the reason why I no longer use Miiverse. That and the fact that it’s mostly just ‘is this game good?’ type questions in among drawings and other worthless content.

      The reason my account was flagged was for a different reason. I posted something that I did not consider to be a spoiler, yet the admins eyes it was. There was no contest. They won, I lost. That stupid flag is still on my account. I no longer use Miiverse. If I could remove it from my console, I would. It’s a worthless service that is run by a bunch of fascist dictators. I don’t need or want anything like this on my console. And, because of Nintendo’s lack of being able to supply any real Wii U content, there’s effectively no reason to even turn on my Wii U anymore.

      With the Xbox One and the PS4 now available, the Wii U along with Miiverse is effectively a dead platform. The only game I’m likely to ever play on this system is Zelda. Right now, there’s really no Wii U Zelda planned. The last Zelda game Nintendo released was Windwaker, which was just a re-release of a very old title.. and not even a very good Zelda title at that.

      Thanks for your comment. :)

      • PGWackiest said, on December 11, 2013 at 12:52 am

        Yeah I noticed that in the Terms but wrongly assumed it was just an over sensitive T&C’s and it wouldn’t get acted upon. What happened to you seems much more unfair, especially with the lack of an editing feature to solve flagged “problems”.

        Just curious, do you know of any cases where a NintendoID has been immediately “flagged” or suspended due to the ID itself containing “personal information”? I for example have a very unique name and could have easily used this as my NintendoID do you know if this would this have been disallowed?

        I doubt I will use the Miiverse service in the future, my early interest will no doubt fizzle out much as it did with Nintendo Letterbox.

        I have come to realise that I only really own a 3DS to play specific software (eg. Pokemon) and don’t actually like the console itself from a hardware perspective. I much prefer my Vita in that regard.

        • commorancy said, on December 11, 2013 at 3:48 am

          Actually, what Nintendo does is temporarily suspend your account’s visibility within Miiverse. So, if someone looks at your profile, what those users see is something like ‘Account information under review by Nintendo’ and they see nothing else and can get nothing from your account. I haven’t heard any cases of Nintendo outright closing any NIDs over this issue, but they will definitely suspend visibility to other users until the issue is resolved to Nintendo’s satisfaction. However, I’d have to assume that if they cite you enough over their terms violations, though they’ll probably warn you first, they may suspend the ID permanently. The problem Nintendo faces with doing this is that you may have store credit on your NID that they can’t just forfeit. So, they would have to refund that money back to you.

          To answer your other question, if you were to use your Twitter handle as your Nintendo ID handle, there’s nothing Nintendo can do about this as long as you don’t call attention to it explicitly. As long as you don’t specify that your Nintendo handle name is the same as your Twitter, Facebook or Xbox Live handles in your Miiverse description (which Nintendo actively polices), you won’t violate their terms.

          I should also point out that you won’t violate their terms by sharing your Nintendo ID handle information on forums other than Miiverse. So, if you post your personal identifying information on Twitter, Facebook or Xbox Live regarding your Nintendo ID name, that’s not a violation of Nintendo’s terms (though it might violate those other service’s terms). Even though Nintendo may not like it, there’s nothing they can do to your Miiverse account because the post was outside of Miiverse. Their terms only apply to the Miiverse service specifically and do not apply to forums outside of their control.

          In my case, I simply wholesale deleted every post (text or screenshots) that I have ever posted to Miiverse with the exception of about 5 hand drawn posts.

          Thanks.

    • commorancy said, on December 10, 2013 at 10:56 pm

      I should point out that their administrators have tools that they run to scour the site for violators. If the tools find nothing, they do resort to manual searching which can take a whole lot longer. Basically, I’m saying that just because you didn’t put the @ sign on your profile area doesn’t mean they won’t eventually find your Twitter info. It just may take a whole lot longer than you think. If you have the Twitter near your ID, they will likely eventually find it and cite you again.

      As for their terms, yes, I agree they are very backwater and stubborn. Every other social site jumps over backwards to let you both use and post to Twitter and Facebook. Yet, Nintendo actually prevents you from doing this and makes it an offense to even mention your Twitter or Facebook account under their service. It’s a ridiculous rule that really has no logic behind it. This is one of the reasons I’m surprised anyone even uses it at all. I mean really, alienate both Facebook and Twitter.. the two most popular social networks in the world? Is Nintendo really so pretentious that they think they are better than or can compete with these networks?

      Thanks.

  4. Smelly humperdink! said, on August 31, 2013 at 5:27 am

    Agreed it is literarly inpossiple to fight back with admins!

  5. t3hshow3r said, on August 10, 2013 at 9:58 am

    @Commorancy — This article is the most base piece of reading I have seen in a long time. Not only does it ignore current events and take no time to utilize reference to establish ANY of the points made, it is the most shameful display of Nintendo hate I have read to date.

    First off, Miiverse IS accessible from your home PC:
    https://miiverse.nintendo.net/

    NEXT, Nintendo already has a number of ports from other game systems, e.g. COD and Need for Speed, Batman, Assassins Creed, Deus Ex, and all are integrated with the innovative Miiverse. Not only that, Nintendo has innovative, original titles like Scribblenauts, Earthbound, and Rayman Legends, Sonic, Donkey Kong, and more that have no place on sell-out platforms like Xbox or Playstation. Please provide ONE example of a console-based platform that has a community resembling Miiverse.

    Lastly, Miiverse, as stated by Satoru Iwata in Nintendo Direct @ E3, June 11th, 2013 –
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=13D1I5s236o
    At 13:00, Iwata announces a new title called Art Academy, and also states that initially the developers had no idea that Miiverse would be used to share hi-res artwork from gamers.

    Miiverse is not dead, and I believe Sony has outdone themselves this time by ‘innovating’ integration from all their devices in a community-based environment. Can you say, “Nintendo sets the stage for what consumers expect, and Sony dutifully follows”? If not, you are simply too young, and need to do your homework about the history of Video Games.

    Thank You

    • commorancy said, on August 10, 2013 at 2:18 pm

      Hi Jbob,

      Not only does it ignore current events and take no time to utilize reference to establish ANY of the points made

      Let me start with your first point. You need to refer to the date of this article’s posting. Why is this important? It’s important because this article was written BEFORE Nintendo began publishing the Miiverse stream on the Internet. I know and I did fact check this. At the time the article was published, the Miiverse stream did not exist on the Internet. Note that blog authors cannot be held responsible for changes made AFTER an article is published. It is also not a blog author’s obligation to update an article if commentary changes as a result of a software change. It was written as a point in time snapshot of how the service existed when the article was written.

      I also never said Nintendo was stupid or that they wouldn’t make changes. Clearly, articles like mine and others have prompted Nintendo to make changes to the Miiverse service including publishing the stream to the Internet. That solves the problem of search. At least, it should unless Nintendo did it wrong. If the Google search bots cannot get past the ‘Sign In’ button, they can’t index the questions and answers on Miiverse to allow finding answers to questions by searching Google.

      NEXT, Nintendo already has a number of ports from other game systems

      Ports are ports are ports. I don’t care about ports. I want natively written NEW content for the Wii U. I don’t want ports. If it’s ported from some other system, I might as well use that other system instead as it will provide me with the native game experience. Case in point, the port of The Amazing Spider-Man was done so poorly, the entire game had horrible screen tearing throughout every frame played. Relying on ports to sell your game system is an extremely poor idea. Nintendo needs to entice new developers to write native content, not just port over other game system content, especially six months later.

      Why would I want to wait six months to play a game on the Wii U when I can buy an Xbox 360 and play it now? Answer, I wouldn’t. This is why Nintendo’s Wii U console is third behind the PS3 (and soon, the PS4).

      Nintendo has innovative, original titles Scribblenauts, Earthbound, and Rayman Legends, Sonic, Donkey Kong.

      While I will admit these titles may or may not be ‘original content’, they aren’t original (other than possibly Scribblenaughts even though Scribblenaughts is available on other platforms). Sonic is an extremely old Sega franchise. Earthbound, Rayman and Donkey Kong are also old platformer franchises. And by old, I mean so old why would you (as Nintendo) want to dredge up extremely old platformers? Answer: Because Nintendo is desperate for ANY content for the Wii U. While these games may be original, they are by no means new content even if the gameplay is updated.

      You’re never going to get a Halo 3 gaming experience out of Rayman, Donkey Kong, Earthbound, Sonic or a puzzle game like Scribblenaughts. These are the kinds of games that firmly belong on a the 3DS as portable gaming, they are not games that belong on a high def gaming console like the Wii U. In other words, you don’t design and build an HD surround sound gaming console and ask your developers to produce flat 2D platformers with 8 bit audio quality. Such a waste if you do.

      If gaming expectations are easily set by 1992 gaming experiences, then these games might do it for you. If your gaming expectations are set to 2013 first person shooter level experiences, relying on old platformers or very late released ports from other consoles is not going to cut it.

      Why would I want to invest my money in Wii U game ports released 6-12 months after their Xbox or PS3 counterparts? I wouldn’t. I would go buy an Xbox 360 or PS3 instead. Then I can get the games when first released and play as native content, not ports. Note that even when the ports are released to the Wii U, most aren’t being released with limited edition versions. The limited editions include such items as art books, extra content, DLC map packs, soundtracks and figures. So, you won’t get that with the Wii U versions. You can validate this statement easily by merely stopping by any Gamestop, Target or other retailer and ask or simply visit gamestop.com and search for yourself.

      Nintendo has a real problem with the Wii U and it has nothing to do with this article or my facts. It has nothing to do with me ‘hating’ on Nintendo. It’s clear, the Wii U cannot succeed on 6 month old game ports and 15 year old platformer franchises alone. It needs fresh original new content. Content that is developed specifically for Nintendo’s Wii U by developers actually wanting to release code for the Wii U audience. This console cannot survive on re-runs, has-beens and old content alone. Yes, these titles may carry the system for a while, but the lack of original fresh content WILL BE the demise of this platform.

      It doesn’t matter that Xbox 360 or PS3 doesn’t have a Miiverse feature now. Google searching more than makes up for that and for Miiverse’s shortcomings. It would only take a few months for either of these consoles to implement such an integrated forum feature and do it better. Whether they want to is entirely up to Microsoft and Sony. We don’t yet know what the PS4 or Xbox One will offer out of the box. It’s possible that these platforms will offer a Miiverse-like experience, but better. The point at which forum technology comes to exist on the current and nextgen systems, Miiverse (along with the Wii U) will truly be dead (other than for playing Nintendo exclusive franchises.. Mario, Wario, Luigi, Zelda and Metroid).

    • commorancy said, on August 10, 2013 at 3:23 pm

      At 13:00, Iwata announces a new title called Art Academy, and also states that initially the developers had no idea that Miiverse would be used to share hi-res artwork from gamers.

      Please provide ONE example of a console-based platform that has a community resembling Miiverse.

      The below covers both of these comments. Note, I don’t have to provide one example of any other platform that has this. No other platforms yet have it because it’s not necessary. Even Miiverse makes this abundantly clear (see Random Noise below).

      Let’s just say that Art is pretty much all Miiverse is useful for at this point. Excluding the hi-res art, there’s not much other substance there. You have better odds of finding a gaming answer within a few minutes on Google than putting it on Miiverse and waiting minutes for a response. If you’re stuck in a game, you don’t want to wait an hour for someone to come online and respond. Google is still much more useful for finding a quick answer to a game question than placing the question on Miiverse. The rest of Miiverse is just random noise.

      Sharing game screen shots, while seemingly cool, is really pointless. The images are too small to be of any use. You can’t in any way download or store the image. Nintendo intentionally resizes the image down so it cannot be seen at full resolution. In other words, taking in-game snapshots is far from ideal. Worse, depending on the screen shot you post, it could get your account suspended depending on whether someone deems the image to be a ‘spoiler’ which is all subjective. So, that leaves the idea behind your first point.

      High res doodles are the only real use for Miiverse. While Art Academy might entice some artists, it’s really not going to entice gamers to run over to the Wii-U to start gaming (or drawing). If you really want to draw, you can pick up Photoshop or any number of other commercial paint packages and have much better tools. The B/W drawings on Miiverse were nothing more than 20 minute doodles. Anything beyond a 20 minute doodle and Nintendo is in danger of losing that audience. The limited scope of the tools and canvas is what made the drawing challenging. Giving extra tools like a paint package with actual drawing tools could chase more people away than it entices… especially if it costs money.

      I’m not saying Art Academy isn’t worth releasing (or in the case of some artists, worth buying), but what I am saying is that it isn’t a compelling enough reason to run out and purchase a Wii U.

    • commorancy said, on August 10, 2013 at 3:33 pm

      Can you say, “Nintendo sets the stage for what consumers expect, and Sony dutifully follows”?

      All of the consoles steal ideas from each other. Sony from Microsoft, Microsoft from Sony, Sony from Nintendo and so on. Heck, even Apple steals ideas from Microsoft (just look at IOS 7). You can’t just blanketly say that Nintendo is setting the stage and everyone else is following. In fact, Nintendo is clearly the one following. Innovation comes in baby steps. Nintendo has innovated in some areas and failed in others. It’s all a process of defining and refinement. Miiverse is a forum, plain and simple. Integrating it into the console, yes something new. It’s a simple concept that can easily be copied by other consoles.

      However, Xbox’s Dashboard system is much more innovative and a cleaner system than Nintendo’s overly difficult user interface on the Wii U. That carousel? What was Nintendo thinking? Even the 3DS’s Dashboard is, in some ways, much cleaner without that carousel.

      Overall, in terms of innovation, there is no leader or follower in this space. They all give and take and that’s the way of console innovation. As for popularity and who’s buying what, that’s based on which platform offers the most benefit to the gamer. Right now, that’s clearly the Xbox followed by Sony. The Wii U has a long way to go before they get anywhere close to the position where the Xbox currently sits. For Nintendo to get there, that will require a whole lot more in changes across the board than simply Miiverse or Art Academy.

  6. lol said, on July 16, 2013 at 12:37 pm

    Miiverse is mostly used for drawings, nintendo even announced to release a special drawing kit to help artists make these drawings more easier. Miiverse has getting quite allot of popularity nowadays and people don’t care about the fact that there’s no access online ( unless you’re used to xbox, but nintendo doesn’t focus on them anyways )

  7. Tom said, on June 30, 2013 at 3:34 pm

    After reading this, it only tells me this person has no idea about MiiVerse and is a XBO fanboy! A shame!!

    • commorancy said, on June 30, 2013 at 4:07 pm

      This comment makes absolutely no sense. First, the Xbox console has no forum or anything even remotely similar to MiiVerse on it. So, why would anyone who’s a fanboy of Xbox even jump to this comparison? And, before you get off into the then-you-must-be-a-ps3-fanboy rant, Sony doesn’t have a forum concept on the PS3 like MiiVerse, either.

      Second, as for the what MiiVerse is, the article takes great pains to explain exactly what MiiVerse is. That doesn’t mean that MiiVerse has any usefulness in its present format. If you happen to like its severe limitations, its unnecessarily tyrannical operation, the overall lack of quality posts, great for you. Unfortunately, MiiVerse is truly dead without games to actually play. There’s a much bigger problem facing Nintendo’s Wii U than MiiVerse and that’s the sheer lack of gaming titles. Without games, there’s no point in even using MiiVerse in the first place. Until game developers actually begin embracing the Wii U platform, MiiVerse literally has no use. Based on Nintendo’s E3 announcements, I see no major developers rushing to embrace the Wii U. Worse, the time is ticking away on this console before Nintendo has to either cut its losses and/or it builds a new console. We’re rapidly approaching the 1 year anniversary of the Wii U release and we’re still sitting almost entirely on launch titles.

      Because MiiVerse is effectively Twitter for Nintendo, 85-90% of the posts are useless drivel. If you’re looking to actually get high quality help for a game from the MiiVerse forum, you’re not likely to find it there. Most of the posts are useless hand drawn posts or irrelevant. You’ll find much more help using Google than you’ll ever find on MiiVerse. Sure, you can ask a question via MiiVerse, but you may or may not find an answer. I stand by the article. MiiVerse is dead and likely with it the Wii U.

      One thing your post does say that you probably didn’t intend. It says that you are a Nintendo fanboy and you’re willing to accept anything Nintendo throws at you no matter how crappy it really is. Sorry, but I will never settle for sloppy seconds no matter whether it comes from Microsoft, Nintendo or Sony.

  8. jacob said, on April 22, 2013 at 1:49 am

    No…just no.


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