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The Wii U online revolution: Welcome to Miiverse

Social hub can be accessible from iPhones and PCs; Online plaza opens up to more connections

Nintendo's grand plan for providing a globally-connected online infrastructure was laid bare today during the company's pre-E3 broadcast.

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The Miiverse is an online forum for people to share thoughts, make friends, discuss games, swap notes, post doodles, offer guides for games, as well as a whole host of other interactions.

Nintendo has broken its walled-garden philosophy and will also allow the Miiverse to be accessible on the Wii U, 3DS, PC and - tellingly - the iPhone and other smartphones.

Another shedding of old habits its Nintendo's insistence that the Miiverse can be accessible even on games that offer no connectivity- the company's habits were quite the reverse in the days of the Wii.

The famous Mii plaza, first introduced on the Wii, will now open the gates to more friends and connections. Wii U's plaza will be populated by people playing the same game, Miis saved on the system itself, as well as connected friends.

Nintendo's aim is to reconstruct the Mii plaza into an all-encompassing, live forum for all Wii U users.

Further features included video conferencing, with the Wii U tablet controller filming the user while the TV screen displays the signal from the other end.

Company president Satoru Iwata described the Miiverse as an extensive online social hub, and to drive home how seriously Nintendo is taking online gaming, claimed it would be the first thing customers see when the new console is switched on.

If you didn't stay up late to see it all unfold you can watch the broadcast again via our Nintendo pre-E3 broadcast: As it happened article. Enjoy.

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