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Nintendo Reveals Clear White Wii U, Details Heat And Design Challenges

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Posted on October 11, 2012 AT 12:55pm

During a new “Iwata Asks” session with some of Nintendo Japan’s key engineers and designers, the company’s president interviewed his team about the console’s tech. They also showed a new unit you won’t see in stores.

At one point, the developers pulled up a clear-white Wii U unit in order to show off the form factor and build of the new device, highlighting how much they had to pack into it.

Additionally, the Wii U apparently had a bit of a heating problem, one that took a lot of man-hours to fix.

Considering that the console has massively reduced power consumption in comparison to prototype models, that’s saying a lot, as one of Nintendo’s chief console designers notes:

Yasuhita Kitano (Product Development): Compared with the Wii, the Wii U has about three times the amount of heat, so we really had to wrack our brains. We considered solutions such as making the fan bigger and raising the number of fan revolutions. We conducted heat tests for prototypes a number of times and optimized placement of the air holes.

In regards to heat test, the number went over 2,000.

Satoru Iwata: Huh? Two thousand?! I never imagined it would be so many!

Kitano: One test takes about one hour, so we put a ton of time into testing it on the way to its current form.

It’s been noted that the Wii U may suffer from a lack of backward compatibility with GameCube games, as those were Nintendo’s first disc-format software titles.

However, judging from the breakdown of the Wii U’s motherboard and casing, the requirement for the disc drive may not have been possible—or maybe they didn’t deem it necessary. Check out the pictures in the gallery below to get a look.

Source: Iwata Asks (Nintendo)

McKinley Noble, Contributing Editor
McKinley Noble has been writing about video games for seven years as a blogger and journalist, with each job adding to his painstakingly alphabetized collection of retro gaming memorabilia. When not cracking jokes about the gaming industry, he's a talking encyclopedia when it comes to mixed martial arts and anything MMA related. Follow him on Twitter: @KenTheGreat1. Meet the rest of the crew.

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