Activision revealed Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 last week via a glossy campaign trailer, although everyone knows the game's all about the online multiplayer component. We know the game is coming to Xbox 360, PlayStation, PC and (eventually) Wii, but is it destined for Wii U?
For Nintendo's sake, it definitely should be. The company has said that online connectivity is "very important" for the console, but it's not like Wii lacked online functionality: it just lacked the blockbuster online games.
So we know that Nintendo can build a console that can at least house online games, but it's about offering a platform that can allow communities to thrive, just as Microsoft and Sony have already been able to achieve.
Activision gave us Call of Duty Elite -- as critical of it some of you may be -- because of the success and thriving nature of the Call of Duty community, namely on Xbox 360. There's really no reason why Nintendo shouldn't be part of that online growth, especially considering it's planning on releasing its next console right around the time of the next blockbuster "CoD" release.
For the dedicated Nintendo faithful, a big-name first-party title is really all they need for convincing (if they needed any to begin with anyway). But for the "core" gamers Nintendo hopes to attract at launch, it needs the big name third-party shooter in Call of Duty.
Call of Duty sells more consoles than any other third-party franchise being touted as a Wii U launch title, including Ghost Recon, Assassin's Creed and Aliens. Having Black Ops 2 on shelves right next to Wii U would certainly give the hardware some much needed attention from the very gamers Nintendo hopes will buy its next console in droves.
Interestingly, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata has said that the company needs to create hardware that attracted gamers that "played games frequently or for long, consistent periods". Nintendo admittedly neglected that crowd with Wii, Iwata said, which hurt the company's long-term profits, as the Wii Sports-playing crowd only played the console in small bursts.
That's where the epic, long-lasting, community-driven multiplayer shooter comes in, and when considering Nintendo's goal to appeal to "core" gamers, focus on online, and drive to keep gamers playing the console for long periods, Black Ops 2 seems to be the perfect fit.
Just as long as it's not a crappy, downgraded port of the Xbox 360 version.
By Gaetano Prestia
Do you think Nintendo needs a big third-party online game at the Wii U launch?