just so you know, you are 100% for certain going to need external storage in order to play zelda: breath of the wild on a Basic Wii U console.
you may think that the zelda game, which the internet reports takes up only ~3GiB of data will fit on a 8 GiB model, because 8 - 3 = 5, but the system requires an internet update which makes it impossible to fit the installation data onto the console.
just a heads up, for anyone who is looking to cash in on the fact that Wii Us are pretty cheap now in this console launch cycle, given the quality of games that it plays.
Part 0: The Hardware is Shit
make sure you have a good relationship with your second hand video games store.
the disk that i was sold for my Wii U, Zelda: Breath of the Wild, does not work.
apparently it is a very common issue. the only other disk that i have to check is Super Mario 3D World, and that works fine.
i was able to get through the entire installation process with the disk, only to be told seconds into the opening credits of the game that the Zelda disk could not be read.
i have no means to investigate the issue further, other than hot and cold power cycling the console, and reinstalling, which did not fix the issue.
luckily i have micro fibre cloths, and i duly and vigorously cleaned the disk i purchased, but it did not work. the console told me the disk could not be read.
Part 1: The DRM is Shit
so i turned to downloading the game from the eShop. sounds simple, right? wrong.
i had to create a SECOND account with nintendo in addition to my NintendoID account, in order to ‘merge’ the funds i already had in my eShop account, so i could add any funds at all, so i could purchase the game AGAIN, except this time digitally.
i was not presented with a dialogue box asking me how much money i wished to add to my account, in dollars and cents, i was only presented with a ‘funny money’ interface. i could only add money in the increments that nintendo specified.
so for a game that was AUD$89.95 online, i had to surrender AUD$100 in order to make up the funds, because there was no other combination of money amounts that could help me make up, roughly, AUD$90.
so i now have a weird amount of $10.05 in my account, languishing, presumably unusable without adding MORE money.
Part 2: Funny Money is Shit
then, i was treated to their rewards program, because, i foolishly, wanted to investigate more about whatever personal data i had surrendered to this Multinational Corporation.
i was informed with great pomp that i had ‘earned’ 450 ‘gold coins’, and 220 ‘platinum coins’. these ‘coins’ are not redeemable for hard cash, they only allow one to get ‘discounts’ for online purchases—and the only platform i was allowed to get discounts for was my 3DS. there did not need to be any software i could access through this ‘ReWaRdS’ program for my Wii U, which is all i am interested in.
in order to keep my ‘platinum’ coins, i had to SPEND some of them to buy a ‘coin jar’ in order to ‘hold’ them (????)
Conclusion: Nintendo is Shit
i knew my suspicion apprehension about the following that nintendo has on the fedi was well-founded.
i was fairly dismayed to see how popular the nintendo game animal crossing was here, and my experience with attempting to get this game working was far too difficult.
given i had purchased nintendo hardware, the process i should have gone through should have been one of “it just works”.
but it was no so. in addition to having to be out of pocket 10% of the money i surrendered to nintendo, when i went to download the Zelda game i wanted, i was duly informed that there was a phantom 4GiB of data taking up space on my external storage, preventing me from installing the game.
when i interrogated exactly what was taking up this space, i was told that the external storage was holding ‘No Data’.
FURTHER: every model of the Wii U was woefully under-resourced in terms of data storage capacity. purchasing external data storage hardware is a necessity when it comes to being able to play more than one game late in the console’s release cycle.
there may also be a nasty surprise for some when they come to use this console these days: only certain types of external hard drives and USB thumb drives work with the console—and the list of devices on the official nintendo website is very, very short, and has not been updated recently.
so good luck sinking more money into that.