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Iwata Keynote - Clifs Notes Version!

This week is a huge week for gamers. The Game Developers Conference (GDC) is happening right now in San Francisco and besides E3 in June this is the biggest conference dedicated to all things games. This years GDC was going to be especially satisfying to Nintendo fans since its president, Saturo Iwata, was set to deliver the keynote. For months the rumors have flown about what he would announce. I’ve heard everything from a new Mario or Zelda game, to the Wii 2. Well, today’s the day and we’ve finally got the juicy details.

The biggest thing to be announced has got to be Wii System 4.0. Why is an update the biggest announcement? Well, because with 4.0 comes the ability to save Wii channels to an SD card, and launch them directly from the card. That’s right, they’ve finally given us the answer to our storage problems. The Wii will support up to 32gb SD cards, which I’d imagine will hold nearly all of the WiiWare & VC titles available. The fact that you can also launch directly from the card is amazing. From what I’ve been reading it’s smooth and nearly flawless. No lag at all, the games just launch and you’re ready to go. You’re also now going to be given the choice about where you want your purchases to go from the Wii store if you keep the SD card connected all the time, and why wouldn’t you??

Arcade

Another big announcement was that the Virtual Console is now going to have a brother in Virtual Console Arcade. The VCA is going to be filled with classic arcade games. Spce Harrier, Mappy, Druaga, Star Force, Emeraldia and others are already available and they’ve promised us that Space Invaders is on the way. I think this is great as there are tons of arcade games I’d love to see hit the Wii, Frogger!!!

Iwata also made some DS & DSi announcements but, you’re here for the Wii so I’ll be sticking to that. He also gave the mandatory “my company is amazing” spiel noting that the Wii has shipped over 50 million units. That’s incredible! The GDC has also given us a sneak peak at a new climbing game, Rock ‘N Roll Climber that utilizes the balance board as well as the Nunchuck/Wiimote combo. Speaking of balance board, the blogosphere is burning with the news that Punch-Out!! is going to utilzes the board. Apparently you will shift to bob and weave. Let’s hope that works but honestly, I think I’ll be sticking to the classic control setup. GDC still has two days to go so there will be plenty of previews and videos to hear about, and I’ll be the one hitting you with it, for now enjoy a video of Rock ‘N Roll Climber.