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Nintendo Wii U vs iPad: Which Is The Better Touch Gaming System?

Updated on February 12, 2013

Tablet based gaming has risen from a niche platform to a major contender, all in the space of a few short years. Apple's iPhone gave way to the gaming-friendly iPad and now the old guard is racing to catch up. The first of the so-called "Big 3" console manufacturers to try to integrate tablets into gaming was Nintendo with the Wii U system. Of course, this wasn't Nintendo's first time integrating touch into gaming: the DS line of handheld games has been using touch-based controls for years. However, this is the first time anyone has attempted to include tablet-style gaming into a console framework.

When all the pros and cons are stacked up at the end of the day, who wins the tablet gaming battle? Which is better, the Nintendo Wii U or the iPad?

iPad Pros

There are a number of reasons to choose an iPad over a Wii U.

Reasons why the iPad beats the Wii U

  • The iPad is an established brand with little competition. Although a number of other tablet makers are competing for their share of the market, there is zero chance that a major game release will not find its way to the iPad. By contrast, the Wii U is competing for exclusives with Sony and Microsoft.
  • The iPad is a proven multi-media device, capable of high quality internet, streaming video, music, and other helpful non-gaming apps.
  • The iPad is totally mobile. Designed to be taken with you anywhere and connect to the internet via mobile hotspots or 4G, the iPad is portable in a way the Wii U could never hope to be.
  • iOS titles can range from simple casual games to modern favorites like Tell Tale's The Walking Dead. The diverse library is already established.

Wii U Pros

Not everything is in the iPads's favor, though. In fact, there are a number of arguments as to why the Wii U is better than an iPad.

Reasons why the Wii U beast an iPad

  • The Wii U is a dedicated console that will not have any compatibility problems for years to come. With every new release of the iPad, there are more and more games released that no longer work on older models. With Apple's policy of regular new releases and planned obsolescence, your current gen iPad could quickly become unsuitable for modern games.
  • The Wii U has dedicated stand-alone hardware that will ensure that most games on Nintendo's console will look and play better than the average iOS games.
  • Wii U allows for easy-to-use multi-player games. iPads do not lend themselves well to local multi-player. The apple device often requires multiple copies of the game on two different iPads, meaning a brother and sister trying to play together on an iPad could become prohibitively expensive very quickly.
  • The Wii U is home to all of Nintendo's beloved first party characters like Mario, Luigi, Link, and Zelda.

What do you prefer: iPad or Wii U?

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Which is better: iPad or Wii U?

For those dedicated to gaming, the Wii U is definitely the better purchase. Of course, for these same gamers, the better system might be neither one of these all together. A MicroSoft or Sony console might fit their needs better.

For the casual gamer who likes to have everything all in one package, the iPad is the best value. Especially if they primarily play games on the bus or train to and from work.

Leave a comment below if you have an opinion about whether the iPad or the Wii U is king of the gaming mountain.

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