Thursday, April 27, 2006

Come play with my Wii! (Pronounced We)

If you are living under a rock and haven't heard people screaming WTF, then you might not know that Nintendo's official name for Revolution is Wii. More like Wtf? Seriously, WTF was Nintendo thinking? I'll tell you what they were thinking. Some marketing team put a ton of thought into that one, and they came up with a ridiculous story that explains why they think it's good. Here's a quote from their website:
Introducing... Wii. As in "we." While the code-name Revolution expressed our direction, Wii represents the answer. Wii will break down that wall that separates videogame players from everybody else. Wii will put people more in touch with their games... and each other. But you're probably asking: What does the name mean? Wii sounds like "we," which emphasizes the console is for everyone. Wii can easily be remembered by people around the world, no matter what language they speak. No confusion. No need to abbreviate. Just Wii. Wii has a distinctive "ii" spelling that symbolizes both the unique controllers and the image of people playing it. And Wii, as a name and a console, brings something revolutionary to the world of videogames that sets it apart from the crowd. So that's Wii. But now Nintendo needs you. Because it's really not about you or me. It's about Wii. And together, Wii will change everything.

Let me tell you something. If you need to explain WHY it's named Wii, then that's a bad name. No one gives a crap if the distinctive spelling symbolizes the unique controllers! If you have to explain it, then it’s not a very good symbol. Good symbolism invokes the intended image in average Joe Consumer’s head. Bad symbolism requires a complicated explanation like what appears above and still doesn’t leave an impact. I guarantee you the only reason marketers actually thought up that crap is because they spent hundreds of hours trying to justify such a stupid name.

The Xbox 360 suffered from the same problem. Marketing people went on and on about how 360 is like 360 degrees, which means total immersion, or an all encompassing circle, but pretty much everyone else thought it was silly to skip 359 numbers. People don't want something that has deep symbolism that you'd never figure out unless they told you. People want a name that sounds cool. I'll tell you something, “playing with my wii” does not sound cool. Maybe Nintendo isn't familiar that “Wii” sounds like “Wee”, which is slang for the male genitalia, urinating and small. None of which seem to be a good thing to associate with your console. Let me give you some example dialog and they should conclusively prove what a horrible name it is:
“Hey Bobby! Do you want to come over after school and play with my Wii?”
“My Wii is more fun if two people play with it!”
“Hey Walmart! Do you have any Wii in stock?”
“I like playing with my own Wii.”
“I would like more games to play on my Wii”
“My parents told me to go to bed, but instead, I stayed up late playing with my Wii.”
“I was shaking my Wii to play with my Monkey Balls!” (Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz is confirmed for Wii)
“I was waving my Wii back and forth, and a bunch of white particles appeared on the screen.”

Honestly, I don’t know how developers for “the Wii” can’t be ashamed. If someone asks you what you’re working on, you’re only response is “I’m creating a new game that you play with your Wii.” I’m glad I’m not working on one because I’d die of embarrassment.

I was unnecessarily hard on “the Revolution” before, but I don’t know how anyone can take it seriously with a stupid name like “Wii”. Some of my friends have told me this name actually makes them want to buy it less. That CAN’T be good for business. In response to criticism Perrin Kaplan on IGN said, “Live with it, sleep with it, eat with it, move along with it and hopefully they'll arrive at the same place.” That translates to tough crap! If you don’t like our name TOO BAD! Honestly, that’s a pretty terrible message to send to consumers. If you don’t like our product, DEAL WITH IT! WE DON’T CARE ABOUT YOU!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought it was silly too, but the longer I think about the name the more I like it, actually I think it is very very cool

1:40 PM  
Anonymous Paul said...

In my youth I grew up with the "my computer is better than yours" arguments, in my case (UK, 8-bit era) it was ZX Spectrum vs Commodore 64 vs Amstrad CPC vs all those other computers only wierdos own. ;-)

Of course, part of this involved name-calling. "Spack Drum", "Commode 64" and "Am Sad", for example.

"Wii" is ready-made toilet humor, you don't even have to *think* to come up with something insulting that sounds a bit like it.

2:19 PM  
Anonymous Sammy said...

I don't recall people saying phrases like:

"Come play with my ps2."
"The ps2 is more fun when two people play with it."
"I'm playing with my ps2." and,
"I'm gripping my ps2."

and so on.
Rather, I recall statements such as:

"Come play ps2 (with me)."
"The ps2 is more fun when two people are playing (it)."
"I'm playing (my) ps2." and,
"I'm holding my ps2 controller."

and the developer's quote can be more like:

“I’m creating a new game that you play on (the) Wii.”

Your quotes aren't realistic. Your argument falsified. Rather, your example dialog reflects the inappropriate influence you have had from others regarding the male genatilia and urinating. Grow up.

3:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think people will just get used to it like they did with Google, which sounds stupid too IMO. Having a memorable name, and a cool name are NOT always the same thing. If this is a way for Nintendo to generate non gamer awareness, it may be good. For example, it may alleviate the whole non-savy consumer confusion that is commonly seen (Xcube, gamebox, playstation360, etc) If this is the case, it may prove to be a very useful, albeit lame sounding, name.

3:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

People who think that the Wii name will cause poor sales due to a naughty interpretation aren't thinking about how playing a Game Boy (which sold 100+ million) could be considered illegal behavior with a minor.

4:12 PM  
Blogger The BIG G said...

Anonymous: So, you want to come play with my Wii? You think that's cool? I have trouble understanding how ANYONE can think it's cool. All that marketing mumbo jumbo was BS. I'm not gouing to buy into that. So, let's just look at it for what it is. A mispelling of two homonyms: we and wee. Now, I don't think the mispelling is any good either because in my opinion, wii would be pronounced like "wi" in "wi-fi". So, they are calling it we. The homonym they'd like us to buy into is not very cool. We as in myself and others. Nope, don't really think it's cool. If they were going for that, they should have named it "us". Even that isn't cool.. Maybe if they named it "üzzz" pronounced "us". I think the dumb spelling is just so they can trademark it. Anyway, "wii"="we" doesn't do it for me. So, what are we left with? "Wii"="wee" as in small and puny... Doesn't seem good. "Wee" as in pee and "Wee" as in penis, aren't good things to associate your product with. Especially if we combine it all: "you and I, small penis peeing." Nope, I don't see how you can claim it's cool.

-The BIG G

4:32 PM  
Blogger The BIG G said...

Sammy: Sure, my quotes may be exaggerated, but saying "come play Wii with me" instead of the common "come play PS2 with me" isn't much better than the examples I thought up.

Anonymous #2: I never had a problem with google, since it's actually a number, and a number that describes google's mission well. I instantly got it, and was okay with it. Also, there's no bad interpretations. It's a number, that's it, albiet a goofy sounding one.

Anonymous #3: Game Boy takes a lot more imagination to make it dirty.

4:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


The opportunities for double-entendres are far fewer than they were back in the day contollers were called joy-sticks!

Think of all the references to 'sitting at home playing with your joystick'.

I don't remember people dying of embarassment back then.

6:42 PM  
Anonymous Awol said...

What do you want? Another couple of letters with some numbers after it?

The Wii isn't about the name. It's about revolutionizing the video game industry with amazing new gameplay and features never before seen on any home console.

Plus, it's only gonna be $200.

11:51 AM  
Blogger The BIG G said...

Anonymous #4 - Joystick sounds dirty, but that still requires some imagination and some interpretation... Wii literally means penis... That's a lot worse.

AWOL - What do I want? I want a name that doesn't suck! It doesn't matter what the system is about. The name is still horrible, regardless. For example, check out the Super Soaker Oozinator. It doesn't matter how much fun shooting bio ooze out of your oozinator is, it's still the second worst name ever. (Wii is the worst)

1:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You know, there are other kinds of articles you can write as well as critical, complaining ones.

So far I am counting 7 posts where you complain about the state of the games industry, a whole bunch where you complain about your apparent inability to get an xbox, and one for 'happy pi day'. Are you unhappy?

7:45 PM  
Blogger The BIG G said...

Anonymous #5: There are plenty of positive things on my blog. The BIG G recommends you read: Let Uwe Boll Make a Movie Based on Your Game
Top 10 Reasons You Should Run Out to the Store Right Now and Purchase a Gizmondo
and one of my personal favorites:
Outsource to the Moon

So you see, I have plenty of positive things to say. There's not just much positive I can say about Wii Wii!

I hope this clears up the confusion
-The BIG G

11:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

dude, those articles are all sarcastic. Do you think people are too dumb to recognize sarcasm?

6:54 AM  
Anonymous SoulBrotherRool said...


1. A literary work in which human vice or folly is attacked through irony, derision, or wit.
2. The branch of literature constituting such works. See Synonyms at caricature.
2. Irony, sarcasm, or caustic wit used to attack or expose folly, vice, or stupidity.

10:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ok, let me put it another way in case you are all a bit slow. All of the articles here are 'satirical'. When you can only write satire about video games, which are ultimately just made for your enjoyment, in the end it gives the impression that you are a sad old man. Capisce?

8:20 PM  
Anonymous Sammy said...

The blogger's replies to comments are not those of someone who wrote for satirical purposes.

8:57 PM  
Anonymous Counterpoint said...

Actually I have to hand it to Nintendo... I think they know exactly what they're doing. There's no way that they don't know the english connotations of "wee" and they had to know people would make fun of it.

Looking at the explosion of posts about it on various forums is all the proof you need that this is all very deliberate... they're getting people to talk about Nintendo. Sure, the name "Wii" sounds lame, but it's put them back in the spotlight for the time being!

Besides, we used to say "Would you like to come over and play on my Atari?" all the time... maybe our grammar wasn't the best but that's honestly what we said!

11:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sammy he replies in hopes of continuing on drawing you in on his satire work. He's getting his laughs by pissing you off with his writing.

7:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Eh, you'll just get used to it like we do everything else we think is stupid until it stays around long enough for it to be normal.

It could also be a PR stunt: Let's call it something -really- stupid to draw even MORE attention to it, then we'll change it to something cool! Like, like, the WiiVolution! YEAH WHOOOOHOOOOO!

Funny thing is, apparently MS wanted the 360 to be called the Revolution, but had to change it cause Nin had it for their new console ^^

3:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You suck. Swallow a grenade, bitch.

1:20 PM  
Anonymous jubal_harshaw said...

I, too, remember the days of the Speccy vs the Commode. Everyone used to look at me like I was diseased because I only had an Apple II+.

Playground pronunciation:
Game Boy: The m and e are silent, but still modify the 'a' sound.

4:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Am I the only one who originally thought it should be pronounced W Two?

Pronouncing "Wii" as "Wee" is just stupid.

3:15 AM  
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