Talk all you want about a new video game console's visuals or its online network or its controllers. The real question on everybody's minds about Nintendo's upcoming Wii U is "What will the game boxes look like?". Thanks to Ubisoft we now have our first chance to see the box art style for video games published for the Wii U. Assuming that all Wii U games will share a unified style at the top of the case, the boxes feature a yellow arc containing a blue banner at top of the front of each box. It's a simple, clean style that draws the eye to the Wii U logo and stays out of the way of the rest of the cover artwork. GameTrailers has the confirmation that this is the real deal (and that it's always Hammertime over at Ubisoft).
We've received word from a delightful Ubisoft PR rep, Mr. Michael Beadle, who tells us, "Why yes, the Wii U box art you sent is legit; in fact, it’s too legit to quit."
What really has my attention about this banner is how familiar this style is compared to another box art style from Nintendo's past. Haven't we seen it somewhere before? Does that Wii U banner look a little GameCubey to you? Take a look at this comparison of the Assassin's Creed III box for the Wii U and the Sonic Heroes box for the GameCube:
That's a repeat of the GameCube box banner style with Wii U branding replacing the GameCube logo (although the Wii U arc is shaped just a bit differently than the GameCube arc). I like to see companies reuse design elements from time to time in this manner. It gives a sense of familiarity and history to a new product line. I can guarantee that Nintendo's use of the old GameCube style is not a happy accident or a mere coincidence. If a Wii U game box can give GameCube fans subconscious warm fuzzies on sight which might persuade them to buy a game, then why shouldn't Nintendo take advantage? Now that we know the secret, however, the mental trick will not work. We're all too smart to fall for such marketing manipulation. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go preorder a lot of Wii U games for nostalgic reasons I don't quite understand.