Rein — Wii U will shock us at this year’s E3

Not everyone in the videogame industry is completely sold on the Wii U yet. Are HD graphics and a unique controller enough to get consumers to spring for the new hardware? According to VP of Epic Games Mark Rein, the answer will be “yes!”

“I like the Wii U. I think E3 will be a big eye-opener for people,” said Rein, “I played Batman: Arkham City on the Wii U and they are doing some really cool stuff with the controller.”

Rein was especially impressed by the Zelda demo at last year’s E3. “Would you not buy a Wii U just to play that?” he offered, “Of course you would. That’s what Nintendo is all about. Their hardware is the software delivery service for their great content. That Zelda demo was gorgeous and we can do even more than that with Unreal Engine 3. I think it will do great.”

That’s a good point Rein makes about Wii U being a vehicle for Nintendo’s legendary franchises. When Michael Pachter said last month that Nintendo is doomed based on Wii U’s prospective launch MSRP, he didn’t take into account that Zelda and Mario bring with them inelastic pricing. Thanks to the brand equity they’ve built up, Nintendo doesn’t need to be extremely competitive with pricing, because consumers will buy Wii U just to play a new Zelda title.

That nifty controller could convince people to buy in as well.

“[Nintendo is] a great brand that a lot of parents really trust and they’re probably ready to buy their kids an HD Wii that does that much more than just being an HD Wii,” said Rein. “Did you play that Battle Mii game? Two players would play with a Wii Remote and Nunchuk and one would play with the Wii U controller. I would buy a Wii U to play that game in a heartbeat.”

As amazing as he believes Wii U to be already, Rein says Nintendo is still waiting until this year’s show to fully unleash its power.

“I think we’ve yet to really see what the Wii U can do and I think at E3 this year they’re going to shock us.”