Don’t Turn Off Your Wii U During The Day One Update

    November 19, 2012

The Wii U is a fun machine with a lot of promise. I’ve only been able to play around with it for a day now, but the potential is there. Unfortunately, the launch was marred by a sizable day one update that takes about an hour to download. In even worse news, those who lost power or turned off the Wii U during the update are now finding themselves with a $350 paperweight.

The first report came in Sunday morning from Ben Fritz, a reporter for the LA Times. He had just purchased the Wii U and was met with the day one system update. He had thought that his Wii U had frozen due to the agonizingly slow update process, and turned off the console. Upon resetting, the worst case scenario had occurred.

Some users have said it was Fritz fault for powering off the console during the update. I have to agree with Fritz on this one though, and argue that Nintendo’s own update process is largely ambiguous. There’s no progress indicator beyond a blue bar to tell users how the update is going. Nintendo needs to take a page out of Sony’s playbook, and show a percentage as well as the amount of data that has been downloaded to disspel any ambiguity.

After the initial story from Fritz, other users came forward with their own stories of the Wii U bricking during the update. Some turned off the console during the update, but others suffered something that was entirely out of their control – a power outage.

Going back to Sony, the PlayStation 3 used to have this exact same problem. My console shut off during a system update and was rendered unplayable. Later on, Sony introduced a firmware update that would analyze and restore the hard drive after an unexpected shutdown. Nintendo needs to introduce something similar before others, especially bright-eyed children on Christmas morning, run into the same problem.

Nintendo has yet to acknowledge the problem while those affected are becoming more vocal. The company will have to address the issue at some point, and we’ll update this story if, and when, the company comments.

[h/t: The Verge]