I have read some loose talk on the net about Nintendo ceasing to bundle Wii Sports with the Wii at some future date.
This would be where I would link such reports, but I forgot where I saw them. Still, I am pretty sure I did not dream them up.
Anyway, I am here to say that is a load of crap. Doubly so if they were figments of my imagination!
Wii Sports is practically the perfect bundled package for the Wii. The games are fun, entertaining, and demonstrate the potential of the Wii and its unique controller system. Wii Sports has on additional factor that makes it a near perfect bundle: The games on it lack depth.
Seriously, they are great games, you can get into them right away, but they leave you wanting more.
Wii Bowling: Probably the most complete game of the group. After all, a game of bowling is just 10 frames. But the game is so good, I don’t want to just roll single games any more. I want to make a new Mii and keep stats. I want to be able to have the game track something like a bowling league. Or better yet, I want to be able to join a virtual Wii bowling league using the internet connection.
Wii Boxing: My least favorite of the Wii games, if only because my 5 year old daughter is infinitely better at it than I am and yet does not really know what she is doing. But it is still fun, and like bowling, you want to be able to track stats and the like.
Wii Tennis: Again, track history, league play, racket choices, different venues, clay vs. grass courts.
Wii Baseball: More control on defense, static teams of Miis, player stats, game stats, team stats, static teams, leagues, play offs, etc.
Will Golf: More clubs, more courses! And I want it to calculate my handicap!
But all of these desires are left as an exercise for the Wii development community. I think that Nintendo is building demand nicely with this bundle, and it would be hard for me to imagine a scenario where it would be advantageous for them to stop and make Wii Sports a stand alone product.
I know that Wii Sports is not bundled world wide. But in the US and Euro markets where there are two strong competing brands (Xbox and PlayStation, even if it is PlayStation 2 selling more currently) something like Wii Sports, a game that really sells the Wii vision, is a serious competitive advantage.
Now Nintendo needs to make sure its developer community leverages this advantage and delivers games that live up to the promise made by Wii Sports. SSX Blur is a good start, but they need more.
Plus I want a virtual bowling league! Get somebody started on that right now!