While E3 is declining in popularity and prestige thanks to the Internet's ability to ruin any surprises that game developers may have up their sleeves, it is still a great time to preview all the new software and hardware in the gaming market.  This year is no different, especially thanks to the announcement of Nintendo's two new attachments for the Wii console.

The list of Wii additions is getting quite long, with the Wii Zapper, Sport Set, Wii Wheel, and numerous third-party additions all being part of the growing family.  That family will soon welcome two new members: the WiiSpeak and the Wii MotionPlus.

The WiiSpeak is Nintendo's attempt to cash in on a market that they often neglect-the online player market.  Quizzically, the WiiSpeak is not a headset, but rather something that you plug in and sit anywhere you'd like in the room.  Personally, I would think that this would hinder its use, because it would pick up every voice in the room.  Realistically, however, how many people are in a room full of people when they decide to play an online game that requires speech?  With a room full of friends, I'd be more likely to just play with them as opposed to online.  In this regard, the WiiSpeak may actually be a great thing for online play: a microphone that doesn't require you to wear a funny-looking headset.

The Wii MotionPlus is the bigger deal this season, as it could change the entire face of the Wii platform.  According to early reviews, the MotionPlus plugs into the end of the Wii remote and greatly increases the level of sensitivity in your hand motions.  In a clever move by Nintendo, the MotionPlus is going to be packaged with Wii Sports Resort, the sequel to the most widely sold Wii game of all time (below is a screen shot taken from Wired Online).

While technology-wise, this is a great step forward for the Wii, I motion that perhaps the step isn't one that needed to be taken, just yet.  Third-party developers already have enough struggles creating game that take full advantage of the motion sensor controls, so I doubt they will be more successful in creating games that have to incorporate even more sensitivity.

This move is also another step in the line of ‘Wiiditions' that my wallet could do without, but you have already heard me gripe about that.  I wonder if most Wii games will eventually require this MotionPlus device, or if all of them will contain some sort of disclaimer that "This game would be way more fun if you bought a MotionPlus!"

Overall, it's great that the Nintendo developments continue to find new ways for people to enjoy their Wii consoles, but I'd prefer if the company simply put out additional great games instead of new attachments that I have to buy.

[This post would be way more fun if you bought the TBGBlogdiggity attachment]