This “Catch” To Wii U’s In-Game Voice-Chat May Benefit Gamers
Just hours ago, a recently published article on Kotaku stated that the Wii U would have the ability to use in-game voice-chat, but unfortunately there were two catches; the first was that you won’t be able to use the GamePad’s in-built microphone to voice-chat in-game – you’d need to buy a headset for that. The second was that you’d need to use a wired headset plugged into your GamePad at all times, which is all that’s available from third-parties (Turtle Beach and MadCatz) for now – and the Wii U Pro Controller doesn’t have a jack for headphones. That means even if you’re using the Pro Controller alone, you’ll need your headset plugged into the GamePad to be able to use it. How awkward and clunky.
Naturally, despite this not being an official statement issued by Nintendo, this has sparked an outrage from many gamers on the internet towards Nintendo. But after looking into this matter quite further, it’d seem to me that nobody’s seriously thought this matter through from all perspectives and are jumping to irrational conclusions – and Kotaku didn’t exactly do its extensive research too. Without further ado, let me expatiate on the situation fully.
While in-game voice-chatting online with other players, with an in-built microphone integrated inside the GamePad, you’d think that instead of having to wear a bulky headset over your ears once again the controller’s abilities for voice-input would serve a much easier option, wouldn’t you? Aside from the matter of comfort and a more natural method of use, no. While you’re gaming online, there is no doubt that you’ll be doing a lot of tireless button-mashing on the GamePad and as I said before, the microphone is built inside the controller – and what would that amount to? Noise. A lot of it. Using an in-built microphone on the controller while clicking and pressing away tirelessly at analog sticks and buttons means the GamePad’s microphone is essentially capable of picking up every single one of these sounds you make, and imagine how irritating it would be to endure having to hear annoying clicks in rapid succession while trying to make out the speaker’s voice. Don’t believe me? This same problem has been replicated by many laptops which also use in-built microphones for voice-input – if you record yourself speaking and typing at the same time, you’ll see that you can hear every single click and clack of the keyboard you’re making amplified, while trying to make out your own voice in the midst of it all. Now imagine yourself encountering the same strenuous situation while gaming. Not convenient at all.
Another thing I’ve noted is that the article stated that allegedly, you don’t have the option to use the GamePad’s in-built microphone while gaming – and judging from the inconveniences I just stated above, it’d seem that this option is only in our best interests while playing games online. Keep in mind though that, outside of gaming, there’d be a lot less random buttons being clicked and pressed and mashed and mushed all over, which means there’d be less of a likelihood for noise. Seeing as things like voice-chat are still going to be prioritised for use outside of gaming for social applications like Miiverse, it just might be that we could be able to ditch headsets outside of gaming without the fear of too much excessive noise being generated while using the GamePad’s microphone – and as I said before, seeing as the mandatory use of a headset was only stated for voice-chat during gaming alone and video-chat with the GamePad has been demonstrated without the use of a headset completely, it seems that this is more than likely to be the case.
Last but not least, we have the issue of wired headsets, especially when using a Pro Controller by yourself. You might be going, “Hey, I don’t wanna be forced to use a headset plugged into my GamePad”, and I’m 100% with you on those concerns, especially if you’re only gaming using the Pro Controller – the whole experience could prove a little awkward and clumsy. Well, this is where Kotaku came in wrong in their article – you don’t have to. A completely wireless Wii U-compatible headset is available on the market, and from various hands-on impressions, it could be said that it’s a pretty rave product for the optimum voice-chat experience – mind, at a price of $89.95, it could be a pretty pricey endeavor only if you’re truly set on online gaming for the Wii U, but then again that is the average for any top-of-the-range wireless gaming headset. Otherwise, the solution is existentially at hand, and the afore-mentioned problem is fundamentally diminished. Happy days indeed.
At the end of it all you may agree with me, you may disagree – that’s your prerogative. But at least let’s consider all the possibilities here before opening rapid fire on Nintendo.