5 things to get you ready for Nintendo’s Wii U

The sequel to Nintendo’s enormously successful Wii console, dubbed the Wii U, is almost here.

The new games console is due to launch at the end of the month, and it’s looking every bit as good as the original already.

If you’re planning on picking one up on day one, here are five things you should try when you get hold of it.

1. Learn to use the game pad.

Where the Wii’s innovation was motion sensing controllers, the Wii U is ahead of the game again with a tablet-like controller with a touch screen in the middle.

You can play games on it without using a TV, and at other times it acts as a second display for a new type of gameplay. It even doubles up as a universal remote for your TV.

2. Keep the charger handy.

The gamepad is amazing, but it doesn’t have great battery life compared to a normal controller. Three to five hours is what’s being reported, which is plenty, so long as you remember to plug it in after each session.

3. Get it online.

There are tons of features in Wii U that are about online only, and the Mii characters from the Wii return to share with your friends. It’ll also play back movies from online services, and allow you to download new games.

4. Don’t throw away your old games.

The Wii U will play Wii games just by inserting the disc in the drive – it’s fully backwards compatible. And as with the Wii, you can play games from even older consoles like the SNES and Nintendo 64 via digital download.

5. Get a copy of ZombiU.

Even if you hate horror games, Ubisoft’s innovative undead shooter is a must play. Take control of a survivor of the zombie apocalypse and – in a unique twist – if you die your character becomes one of the horde.

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