Inert Detritus The Internet's dust bunnies

9 December 2006 @ 11am

Wii! A remote takes flight

There’s stories all over the internet talking about accidents with the Wii remote.

There’s a series of problems coming together that resulted in this.

  1. People don’t know what a gaming grip is. Strangle that remote, people. When you get ambushed by zombies, act scared. Hold the remote like you’d hold a .45.
  2. Nintendo put a remote strap on the remote. Yes, that’s a problem. Why? When you give people a safety device like that, one that seems effective, they become reckless, and they stop being careful. If the remotes had no straps, people would be much more cautious with flailing arm motions and whole body swings in tennis or bowling.

Speaking of bowling: my friend and I have done more than our fair share of bowling in Wii Sports. It’s quite easy to hold onto the remote. You’ve got a grip on the controller and you’re merely letting off a little bit of force on the B button to release the ball. I guess people are letting their whole hand go slack instead…

In short, there’s nothing wrong with the remote or the strap. People need to not rely on what was meant to be a backup safety device for their primary remote-securing needs.

Update: The gentlemen at Freakonomics have weighed in on a similar matter relating to seatbelts.

The question becomes: does the inclusion of a feature such a seatbelt or wrist strap prevent enough accidents such that it overcomes the reckless behaviour that its existence encourages?

In the case of seatbelts, I think it can overwhelmingly argued that they do indeed do more good than they incite harm. The wrist strap on the remote may be different, however, but it’s difficult to measure without some extensive studies by Nintendo on usage patterns.

However, as my friend was discussing with me earlier, there’s no doubt that if the strap is breaking by the tens and hundreds, this early in its launch, it should be made stronger.