That's a progress bar 1/8th full after 30 minutes—a four-hour process at this rate—for the Wii U's infamous firmware update, said to be 5 gigabytes (according to Geoff Keighley of GameTrailers TV, and repeated by numerous others). Sony, you are officially off the hook with the PS3's interminable, poorly timed and mandatory system updates.
It's not like Nintendo's just fixing typoes in the help file, either. This update lets you access online features, transfer data from a Wii, visit the Miiverse and use other online features. So, basically, you're bringing home an unassembled bicycle, and depending on your Internet connection speed, it could be between 1 and 4 hours before that battle station is fully operational. Expect this story to resurface again around Christmas morning.
When it does, expect it to bubble up where it did last night: Twitter, everyone's forum of first resort for complaining. We've collected some voices of frustration for your information and amusement, beginning with the person who supplied that picture above, @LouisLamarche
Got a Wii U this morning.Its been downloading an update for 30 min and... I guess ill be able to use it tomorrow :( twitter.com/LouisLamarche/…— Louis Lamarche (@LouisLamarche) November 18, 2012
Fun fact, Louis, the San Andreas Fault slipped 0.17 millimeters in the time this update took.
3 people so far who have tweeted at me their Wii U also bricked b/c of update problems. Vs. 2 have tweeted I'm an idiot, it's my own fault— Ben Fritz (@benfritz) November 18, 2012
This was the big scandal kicking off the topic. Ben Fritz writes for the L.A. Times. His update was so slow, evidently he thought his machine had frozen, so he shut it off. It's now completely inoperable, unless there's a recovery mode. Yes, that raises the question of what happens if the power goes out in the four-hour span of a Wii U firmware update. My advice: get a UPS and don't update during a hurricane.
Ah ha ha. Some idiot bricked their Wii U by shutting off the console during a mandatory system update.— That Fucking Cat (@MrCullen) November 18, 2012
Make that three, Ben.
I guess I'll take a nap while I suffer the Wii U update everyone dreads— Julien Lavoie (@pixelfenix) November 18, 2012
Make that three, Julien.
Good thing they're not sharing this conversation over Miiverse. Oh, that's right, nron10 can't access Miiverse yet.
Wait what? The Wii U firmware update is 5GB? Will we still have 3GB of free space after it?— The Tower (@malek86) November 18, 2012
This guy obviously has a white Wii U. I hate to say it, my friend, but this is your answer, and it probably explains why NintendoLand is not offered to basic model owners.
@passiko Yeah, it's a 4.7 GB update, in total, meaning it takes up a bite more than half the storage on the basic set Wii U.— The Dragon Reborn (@Rand__alThor) November 18, 2012
Don't know how this guy is pegging it at 4.7GB—there seems to be no way to expose how big the firmware update is. But most Tweets put the size of this monster at 5 GB.
Wii U Update: One hour left, no line, already been told ill be getting one. Excited. :D twitter.com/comet5o4/statu…— Benjamin Wadhams (@comet5o4) November 18, 2012
Your campout begins when you get home, @comet5o4.
1/2 hour later, Wii U system update is ~60% complete. Nintendo’s servers must be Commodore 64’s with 300 baud modems.— Scott Anderson (@room34) November 18, 2012
Yeah, try talking to @LouisLamarche. Compared to you, he's getting 0s and 1s by carrier pigeon.
Day 1 system update on Wii U driving me CRAZY— Aaron Newton (@fignewton) November 18, 2012
i feel sorry for those about to sit through the update process on the wii u.— Joel (@limewizard) November 18, 2012
Yeah, well, that'll be me, whenever my machine arrives from Toys 'R Us.