This is NOT a Wii Website! But… Gamestop has PLENTY of Wii’s…

I know I’m going on and on about the Wii. But here’s my first article after having had the thing for a week, some experiences with its Nintendo emulation and about my trip to my local GameStop.

I must say up front that I’m still quite satisified with my Wii. While I’ve seen much better graphics on other consoles, the motion controlled features of the Wii remotes make it, well, another thing altogether. I should say that, if I had the money that another $300 wouldn’t matter, I’d get the Xbox 360 AS WELL. You read that right.

That suggestion refers to my trip to the GameStop, which is somewhat the cornerstone of this article. If you know anything about gaming, no one, I mean NO ONE sell brand new games for less than anyone else. That includes the warehouse stores. When a game is new, the best thing you can do is, rather than look for a better price, look for the place that will give you the best service, esp if there’s a problem with your game, or some other premium. The simple point here is that do *NOT* pay an extra $10 for shipping and handling in order to buy it for $10 less! Shipping and handling is almost always NON-refundable.

If you’re buying a new game, buy it from a LOCAL retailer. The ONLY exception to this is if you live near a state like Delaware which has no sales tax. If you were buying say, 4 $50 games, it may be worth the trip to take the extra miles, buy it from a chain who is also in your area, save the tax. Doing it this way, if there’s a problem the return is local and easy. That senario is the only exception I can see to buying it locally (except, of course, if you LIVE in Delaware!).

Stopping at the GameStopFirst off, it should be understood that if I’m going to be spending too much time with my Wii, at LEAST I won’t be spending that much money too! One of the extras with the Wii is its compatibility with GameCube games and accessories. This is even better for me because, being an older system, many GameCube titles would be available used at the Gamestop.

My first retail stop after my initial Wii purchase was The GameStop in Deptford, NJ. It used to be FuncoLand, which is now DEfunkoLand (was that merger, or did they simply realize that the name FuncoLand wasn’t very descriptive?). Anyway, they specialize in used games and economical accessories. You will NOT get a discount on new stuff, in fact, Target had much better prices for their extra controllers.

The very first thing that I noticed at the GameStop was that, hey, they have a TON of Wiis for sale! Go get’em boys! ’nuff said.

My trip to GameStop was my first “rude” awakening about the Wii and it’s Gamecube compatibility. It seems that compared to the Xbox and the Sony PS line, Nintendo’s been turning over much more of the portable systems (gameboy, DS, etc) and apparently not compete so much with the other games. Perhaps it was this lack of direct competition which lead Nintendo to develop something as innovative as the motion sensor joystick.

The problem, however, is that there were but a small fraction of used Gamecube titles compared to either the Microsoft or Sony platforms.

So while you have the compatibility, it’s compatible with that many games! Still, I picked up a copy of “Viewtiful Joe”, “Intellivision Lives” (not really appropriate, but I wanted to go back to the days) and a GameCube compatible controller for less than $20. I need an extension cord for the controller, because the Wii’s remote controllers invite you to put the Wii much farther back than the standard 6 foot controller cord. (6 feet? Come on!)

Browsing around, I saw a PS/3 and Xbox 360 games playing. WOW. I can understand the appeal. HOWEVER, recalling the days of Coleco and the first Nintendo, I still agree with the adage, the PLAY is the thing. And while the other platform graphics are INCREDIBLE, the ability to play games with the remote controller is an advantage which continues to make me happy with my Wii.

Checking out, I notice another controller in the back of the checkout. When are you supposed to “shop” at the checkout? When you’re checking out??? I asked if that was somehow a more compatible joystick than the Gamecube controller I was buying, and he said that the other Wii controller went with ONLINE games! Maybe I should read that manual! The point is that, however, I can see this gaming thing creeping more and more into my wallet!

Getting home, it turned out that Viewtaful (sp, whatever) Joe wouldn’t play without a memory card, ANOTHER extra, which I’m in the process of buying on eBay.

Lastly, as a member of Blockbuster online, I got to rent the Wii title, Cars, based upon the movie. Oh, perhaps I should have remembered that, in about 99% of cases, movies and games don’t mix. My one little boy is CRAZY about Cars, however, and I thought this would be a way for him to get a kick out of things as well.

2 out of 5 for Cars. While one does get used to using the Wii’s controller as a driving wheel, the overall play is lacking. Perhaps I should have watched the movie closer, because the lack of quality in the game’s play is not made up for in the copyright, trademarked, patented characters that appear everywhere from soap dispensers to Huggies.

As it is with GameStop, Blockbuster has but a handful of both Wii and Gamecube titles, while they have a SHIPLOAD of Microsoft and Sony titles…