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Xbox One vs. Wii U: How Do They Stack Up?

Xbox One vs. Wii U: How Do They Stack Up?

Two console generations ago, the approaches Microsoft and Nintendo took in reaching an audience were about as diametrically opposed as possible. Microsoft courted hardcore teenage and adult gamers with their original Xbox, while Nintendo’s focus was mostly on families and children who wanted a more casual gaming experience.

These days, the lines are more blurred. On the one hand, Nintendo’s Wii is tailored to a degree to families and younger audiences, and the Xbox One still has a strong focus on things such as competitive online multiplayer and racking up “gamerscore” points. But on the other hand, you can get some Call of Duty games on the Wii U, and Microsoft has ceded the “hardcore gamer” ground to Sony, instead emphasizing multimedia use with the Xbox One.

If it comes down to your having to choose between Xbox One and the Wii U, your game and use preferences will definitely take you to one console or the other. Fans of first-person shooters, sports games and those that want their console to act as a living room multimedia center will get more mileage out of the Xbox One. Gamers who want a dedicated gaming console, portability and Nintendo’s more casual and family-centric exclusive first-party content will do better with a Wii U. But each system has a wide enough range of games you can put together a good game library no matter which one you chose.

Xbox One vs. Wii U: Hardware Differences

* The Xbox One gives you the ability to play Blu-rays and DVDs, but the Wii U does not.

* The Xbox One also boasts significant technical advantages, with considerably more RAM and stock storage space, as well as a more powerful CPU and GPU.

* The added power of the Xbox One comes at a cost: it uses about 100 more watts of power than the Wii U does.

* The Wii U has robust backward compatibility with Wii games. The Xbox One is just beginning to roll out Xbox 360 backwards compatibility, and then only with select titles.

* The big hardware gimmick of the Wii U is the gamepad, which has a small screen and acts as a portable streaming handheld system that can be taken to other parts of the house.

* The included Xbox One Wireless Controller also requires AA batteries, unless you buy a rechargeable battery pack. The Wii U stock gamepad is rechargeable right out of the box, though the Wii Remote does require batteries.

* The Wii U has Bluetooth 4.0 support, while the Xbox One is yet to have any Bluetooth support.

xbox one vs. wii u

Xbox One vs. Wii U: Online Access

* The Xbox One is more robust when it comes to online access. It offers cloud storage, the ability to play games while downloading, remote download, online chat while playing different games and the ability to access your account from different consoles.

* If you don’t really care about online access, however, the Wii U has one big advantage — it never needs to be connected to the Internet to run, while the Xbox One needs to be connected when it is first set up even if you never go online with it again.

* The Wii U does not have a subscription service like Xbox Live, but users can connect to the Wii Shop to purchase downloadable games and content.

You can see from these features that gamers who frequently socialize online with other gamers are probably better served by the Xbox One. Gamers who prefer to play solo and offline may prefer the ability to play anything without online access and the extra range of games that the backwards compatibility of the Wii U provides. Either way, they’re both great consoles that are comparable in price.

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