Nintendo's Wii successor is set to utilise an entirely new controller and will be more powerful than Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, well-placed international industry sources have told CVG.
CVG sources understand Nintendo plans to officially unveil the console, which will feature full HD visuals and graphical capabilities beyond Sony and Microsoft's current hardware, at E3 this June.
Leading games publishers have already been briefed on the new console, we understand, and launch titles from third-party developers are in the works right now.
What's most exciting about the Wii successor however is its all-new controller, which industry sources have indicated is not simply an upgraded Wii Remote, and will even feature a built-in HD screen.
Our sources did not specify whether or not the controller displays will feature any other functionality, such as that of the DS's touch screen, but it's easy to imagine the sort of innovation an extra screen could bring to Wii 2 games.
"Nintendo's plans sound unreal," one source said. "Publishers are already planning launch titles and it's all very exciting.
"The hardware is even more powerful than current HD consoles and backwards compatible with Wii. The controller will be all-new and has a HD screen on it."
We're told Nintendo plans to launch the Wii successor in late 2012, which lines up with earlier reports from other games media.
As if you haven't had enough today, the latest Wii 2 rumour report has emerged - and it's a big one, claiming tech specs and controller details for the not-so-secret-anymore Nintendo console.
French site 01net, which previously released the NGP specs long before any official announcement, has backed up widespread claims that Nintendo will reveal its next console at E3 this year.
It's also backed up CVG's scoop that the console's controller will feature a built-in high-resolution screen.
According to the latest report, 'Wii 2' is being internally referred to as 'Project Café', and sports architecture similar to that of the Xbox 360, "but a bit more powerful".
It says the console will include a custom IBM PowerPC CPU with three cores, a GPU from the ATI R700 family with a shader unit at version 4.1, and at least 512Mb of RAM.
This would of course make HD console ports very easy for developers, but 'Project Café' will also include backwards compatibility with both the Wii (including all peripherals) and GameCube games, it's said.
The controller has a six-inch touch screen, a front-facing camera, D-Pad, two bumpers, two triggers and "possibly more," and can allegedly be used as a Wii sensor bar.
Late 2012 is the release date, and another "big surprise" about the console is set to be revealed at E3, the report concludes.
Following reports that Nintendo is on the cusp of announcing a new home console, new rumors have suggested that the platform holder will adopt Sony's Blu-Ray disc format for its new hardware.
Development sources have told Blu-ray.com that Nintendo is currently looking at using the disc format as its primary optical media of choice, which - if true - would make it the second home console to use it, the other being the PlayStation 3.
Nintendo's current home console uses standard DVD's, but as the site points out it is unclear whether the new hardware would use Blu-ray for movie playback or for games too.
Following rumors of a price cut yesterday 'multiple sources' claimed that Nintendo is set to announce a new console this summer.
Our own report indicated the new Nintendo controller is set to include a controller with on-board display.
The Wii U is a controller with a 6.2 inch screen that can operate games on its own with information included that isn't on the TV. If someone wants to watch TV, a video gamer can play their full gaming experience on the Wii U's screen.
The new console also includes an accelerometer and a gyroscope, a rumble feature, an inward-facing camera, a microphone and speakers. It has the classic control scheme two analog Circle Pads, +Control Pad, A/B/X/Y buttons, L/R buttons and ZL/ZR buttons, which allows it to operate as a controller for the big screen as well.
In this sense it has motion sensing game play for either gameplay on the Wii or the Wii U mini screen. There is also gaming overlay, the Wii U can show the gamer a closer up view of the action on the big screen. Basically it can operate on its own or it can operate with the Wii on the TV.
The Wii U also interacts between itself and the TV through the internet. Users can access a picture, a file, or something on the Wii U and by making a swiping direction at the TV it has the ability to be sent wirelessly. The Wii U also has a video calling function.
The theme of the Wii U is that it's a more personalized experience for the gamer. Nintendo said it would have wider appeal than the Wii but it would be deeper gameplay. With this strategy, Nintendo has taken aim at both casual and hardcore gamers.
"It's a system we will all enjoy together, but also one that's tailor made for you," Reggie Fills-Aime, President of Nintendo of America, said at the press event. "Is it unique, unifying, maybe even utopian? The answer is even yes to all of this."
Nintendo has had the leader in this generation of console sales with 86 million Wiis sold. However, over the past year the Wii's appeal has died down and Microsoft has actually managed to sell more Xbox 360's while Sony has also closed the gap with its PS3. Nintendo is hoping the Wii U reinvigorates the console.
"Wii U redefines the structure of home entertainment by fundamentally changing how the TV, the game console and the Internet function and interact together," Nintendo President Satoru Iwata said at the event. "The experience enabled by Wii U and the new controller takes players deeper into their games, while reaching out wider than ever before to be inviting to all kinds of gamers."
The Wii U isn't truly a standalone console; Iwata even pointed that out during the event. Users must have the Wii if they want the Wii U.
"Please understand that it was not designed to be a portable gaming machine, even though it shares some characteristics. The images displayed on the new controller are generated only by Wii U," Itawa said.
Developers seem to be excited about the possibilities of Wii U. In a video presentation, several major game developers talked about their excitement for Wii U and announced their titles, including Darksiders 2, Batman: Arkham City, Assassin's Creed, Ghost Recon Online and Tekken, will all be available when Wii U launches. Nintendo also announced another title for the Wii U, Lego City Stories.
In addition to announcing Wii U, Nintendo also continued its push in 3D gaming. The company previewed several major franchise titles for its Nintendo 3DS portable gaming console including Mario Kart, Mario Brothers, Luigi's Mansion, Starfox and Kid Icarus.
"We hear you: you want what you've also wanted, but you also want something new," Fils-Aime said regarding the introduction of classic franchises on 3DS.
Nintendo is hoping the introduction of classic franchises can give sales of its 3DS the push it needs. Thus far, the system has underwhelmed in sales, which slowed consistently after a fast start.
The company also announced its detailed plans to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Zelda. The company will come out with games for each console and an orchestra playing all of the Zelda music will be touring the world.