Officials from Nintendo have announced the launch of an unexpected new online channel for the Wii console called Everybody Votes Channel. The small download is already available free of charge from the console’s online shop and requires a separate system update to run.
The channel allows users to cast their answers for a series of questions, and then compare and contrast their opinions with friends and family, as well as other online users both locally and globally. Questions are updated on a weekly basis with users allowed to suggest their own questions via the channel.
Voting uses the popular Mii avatars, with users indicating their answers with one of two multiple choice responses. At the same time as submitting an answer they are also able to predict which they think will be the most popular generally, with the results being made available after the close of polling. Questions currently being asked include preferences for cats or dogs, hard boiled or fried eggs and eating or sleeping.
Three local questions are scheduled to run each week, with a separate global question (this week cats vs. dogs) set to run every two weeks. Although the channel has obvious applications for market research, none of the current questions relate to Nintendo or video game products. The channel had not been previously announced or hinted at, and it is unclear when and if Nintendo might release further channels.
Also available today on the Wii shop are the first ever updates for existing virtual console titles. Essentially the first ever patches to be released by Nintendo, the company had previously indicated that some virtual console software would receive free updates after purchase but had never previously defined what form these updates would take.
Two were released today, one of which improves the emulation for TurboGrafx-16/PC Engine title Military Madness
, which was previously encumbered by extremely poor scrolling and slowdown. The other update is for Mario Kart 64
and fixes a bug with the selection screen (but does not fix the inability to save ghost data from races).