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Ask any Nintendo Wii owner what their pet peeve about the system is, and they'll most likely deliver a laundry list of issues. High on that laundry list will most likely be Nintendo's terrible attempt at providing an online service where a 12 digit friend code was necessary to be input by both parties in order to add each other onto the Wii. Add on top of that there was no was no way to see what your friends were playing or how to message them without leaving your game, and you can see why gamers were frustrated. That's all about to change as MTV Multiplayer is reporting we won't have to worry about any of that when the Wii U is released next year.
During an E3 demo of Ghost Recon Online, Ubisoft producer Adrian Blunt was asked why he believed the Wii U would offer a worthwhile online experience for the multiplayer only game, especially since the Nintendo Wii had a terrible online service. Adrian's response indicated the Nintendo Wii U would indeed have a similar service to that of its competitors. Users will be able to create their own account instead of inheriting a random set of numbers and letters. In fact, friend codes will be completely gone in the Nintendo Wii U world:
"Also the ability to easily find friends. Rather than using friend codes, which we've had in the past, we're able to connect players in a much easier way, which allows us to have a community that's playing together in the game."
This is certainly a step in the right direction for Nintendo. I have yet to talk to a Wii owner who was a fan of the friend code system, even the children it was originally designed to help protect from adding random adults online. Meanwhile, they can turn on their Xbox 360 or PS3 and meet with random people on a regular basis. Everyone knows that's where the cool peodphiles hang out anyways.