The Wii Remote

The Wii console is a fine piece of gear, lightweight and with good specs. But what truly sets the Wii system apart from the competition is its superb controller, the Wii Remote. Affectionately known as the Wiimote, it offers a level of realism and control that has eluded gaming systems until now.

The Wiimote contains accelerometers and sensors which permit it to judge the position of the device in space and its orientation. As you move it, gravity and infrared beams that interact with the sensor bar signal 'up-down, left-right, forward-back' and the rotations that are combinations of these.

It also houses a speaker and vibration modules that enhance the control and realism still more. Sound and tactile information flows back to the gamer as he or she makes moves within the game. A sword clang followed by a forceful thud in The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess lets you know you struck your target. A bonk and a swoosh make it clear that the virtual golf ball you just hit in Wii Sports is going to zoom down the fairway.

That same set of sensors and reactors applies to literally hundreds of games and applications that are far from what we usually think of as games. Steer a truck in Excite Truck and you feel close to the real thing during a session. Swing a tennis racket in Wii Sports and you don't even have to imagine that you are on the court, because you are.

Even in more mundane applications the Wii Remote is still outstanding.

One important element of the Wii system is the Channels, an interface to interactive features and more that connect you to the Internet. You can just point to any of six basic channels that will connect you to download areas, the shop, additional characters like the Mii, and more.

An action as simple as using the Wiimote as a mere point-and-click device provides more ease-of-use than a computer mouse. More than just a gaming system, if you want to use the Wii to display images and playback video, the Wii Remote provides a super-simple control device.

For those used to the traditional-style controller with a joystick and tons of buttons, the Wii Remote does take a little getting used to. But try to play golf, tennis, or thousands of other activities with a classic controller then use the Wii Remote. It's much more intuitive and realistic to be able to actually swing a device than use your fingers to 'tell' the system to swing at something on the screen.

With added accessories like the Wii Nunchuk you can increase that intuitive control even more. And, for those who still want to enjoy the experience of computer games as they've been played for more than ten years, Nintendo provides a Classic Controller (for legacy Virtual Console games) and support for a GameCube controller.

In short, anyone who wants to play video games, as well as anyone who has shied away from playing them until now, will find the Wii Remote a revolutionary way to do so. It brings gaming full circle - back to real life in a way never before possible. It's the Holy Grail that gamers, and those who wanted to be one, have been seeking for a long time.

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