Saturday, May 31, 2008

Two ways to fix Nintendo's WFC




So for the last couple of weeks I've been playing Mario Kart Wii, and enjoying the new Wii Ware titles with friends and family members, and although I'm pretty impressed with everything so far, I do have a few gripes about Nintendo's WFC. Gripes that other gamers have voiced about in forums.

So what Can the Big N do to rectify said problems? Well Here are at least two things that I feel could help. If anyone from N is reading this, don't take this as me bitching. I really think that these things are reasonable, and worth considering.

Friend Codes

the issue - In all Seriousness I think the Friend code is really just too much. Between having to memorize your Friend code to give to someone else, and to have them give you their friend code to verify them for online play. wayy too much stuff going on to add friends.

Possible Solution - With most social networking sites, instant messaging services, and even MMOs the solution would be as easy as just allowing the person to search for a particular screen name and clicking on the "add user" button, But of course with Wii it's a little more difficult than just that. the only thing you could possibly look for to add would be the console name that was set by the user, but that wouldn't be much help for those who share a Wii.

The best possible solution would be to establish a system where the gamer's main Mii would have his or her own identifier that would make it available to be contacted to be added for various games. It would be as simple as just making an option in your Mii edit panel to enable "friending" for that Mii. that way if that person is playing someone in say Dr Mario Online RX and wants to friend that person to play again they could add that particular Mii. Once added the information of someone adding your character could appear in maybe an email which would promt you to go to the mii plaza and add that person. You could also create a randomized 4 to 6 digit number for that particular Mii to ensure that you won't have the issue of names being already taken.

you could even go so far as selecting from the Mii Parade and bringing him or her into the Plaza makes them automatically a friend and deleting them from the plaza takes them off the friend list as well.

Messaging system

The issue - I understand that Nintendo wants to make a safe online environment for younger gamers, and older gamers alike, but allowing typed messages in the games would definitely help bring some life into an already good thing.

Possible Solution - Online MMOs like Maple Story have taken the high road with their messaging system, by establishing code that sensors out swear words and sexual terms. Ninty could come up with a similar way of monitoring foul language through messaging. The issues with Xbox Live's voice chat is possibly one of the reasons why chat and voice chat are severely limited in Wii's WFC, but the answer could be as simple as a configuration of Parental controls.

Many people feel that instead of severely limiting the Wii to keep things safe, that they should just extend the limitations of Parental Control. this way The older gamers will be able to enjoy fantastic games, and communicate with their friends. Personally I've played Mario Kart with friends and wanted to tell them that we should switch over to SSBB, but with the premade messages I would have to resort to using the 3-way calling to do so. this would just make for an easier time altogether.

While these are only 2 ways to improve the WFC, I'm sure Nintendo R&D have addressed tons of other gripes people have about the online play. I didn't include the laggy-ness of Brawl's Online, because I'm sure that has more to do with the unstable nature of wireless routers (Or at least that's what I've noticed with mine.). With the pay-to-play option developers are also creating servers for their games so that too may end the lag issue.

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