Final Wii Browser: Thoughts

The “final” Opera browser was released for the Wii yesterday, and after using it I have mixed feelings. They added and fixed a few things that must be noted:

  • better interface
  • more responsive button clicks
  • better performance

However, one glaring omission is support for Flash 8.   With tons of Flash 9/Actionscript 3 content already being developed, it is very disappointing that Nintendo decided to not add support for, at least, Flash 8.   One of the main features of Flash 8 that would really improve Wii/Browser games is “External Interface” which would allow calls to JavaScript from Flash to support more buttons on the Wii-mote than just (A).   There have been some kludgy work-arounds for this involving two Flash movies and “Local Connection“, but the performance is not good enough to make usable games that require quick access to the controller buttons.

As it stands right now, the improved performance of Flash 7 content, as well as the much more responsive (A) button will add greatly to already existing Games and content, but without support for Flash 8, it looks like Wii/Browser games will remain a curious and interesting area of development, but not the ideal playground that it could have been.


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