As I write this, I'm very aware of how dusty my Wii has become over the last few years (insert obvious joke here). I remember the day I first got it - free with a mobile phone contract, which I'm sure a lot of you reading this would have done too. I didn't even go out of my way to pay for it. The simple fact of the matter was that I already had a PS3, didn't want an Xbox with that little memory, and didn't see the point in owning two iPods. I'd always wanted a Wii, but none of the games really grabbed me enough for me to save the money. I love Zelda and Mario, but could I really justify dropping close to £200 to play two games, and a sports game?

Now that the full specifications for the Wii U have been released, I feel an all to familiar feeling of wanting to get it, but not being altogether too keen on shelling out for something that is very likely going to end up on my shelf, gathering dust, with a couple of uncompleted games cluttering up my collection.

PhotobucketI think it's the new GamePad that puts me off. Sure, the old Wii controllers are still compatible, but I have enough controllers cluttering up my house - do I really need one the size of a 90s PDA with a touch screen that I just know is going to get scratched in about ten minutes? However, the prospect of being able to carry on playing whatever game I'm in the middle of when my wife wants to watch TV is very appealing - until I remember that I already own a 3DS, and while it can't play Wii U games, it still does a pretty good job of satisfying my craving.

As far as launch titles go, the range is pretty impressive, and they look gorgeous - but not if you already own one of their competitor's consoles. I've completed Arkham City and Mass Effect, and I'm most probably going to pick up Aliens Colonial Marines and Assassins Creed 3 for the Xbox and PS3. Is a new Zelda and Mario game, and bundled game, Nintendo Land (which doesn't look like it's going to have the same impact as Wii Sports) really going to get me to reach into my pocket?

Nintendo's ace in the hole appears to be a first person zombie game, ZombiU (which, admittedly, does look quite impressive) and Bayonetta 2, which is now a Nintendo exclusive. Now, don't get me wrong, I enjoyed Bayonetta, but it's hardly a show stopper for a new console.

Personally, I think Nintendo should have waited for Sony or Microsoft to show their hand first. No matter how impressive the Wii U is, as soon as the next Xbox or Playstation hits stores, it'll get left behind by gamers and developers alike. That's not to say it won't sell a shedload first!

But enough editorialising. What did we learn about the Wii U?

Online gaming appears to have received a much-needed simplification. It's called the Miiverse, and it looks like it's taken the lead from its competitors. You can see what your friends are playing, ask to join in, and communicate them, even if they're not playing the same game as you.

PhotobucketThe GamePad can also be used as a remote for your TV which is... nice? The Wii U Pro controllers are, in my opinion, a very welcome addition. They've finally caved and mirrored the design of a more traditional controller.

The WiiShop is getting an overhaul, so you can buy full Wii U titles and download them from the comfort of your own home. Video streaming, video chat (via the GamePad) and an Internet browser have also been added.

The console itself looks like a rounder version of the old Wii, which means you probably won't be able to keep it in an upright position (unless they release a stand for it - which is probably likely). It has between 8GB and 32GB of memory storage on an internal flash drive, and it will still support SD cards as well as external USB hard drives.

The CD drive still doesn't support Bluray or DVD - just Wii U and Wii discs, but this might not be such a bad move considering the current trend for digital download and the increasing popularity of streaming services such as Netflix and LoveFilm. For all anyone knows NONE of us will be using discs in a couple of years (doubtful, but possible). Still, for anyone wanting to use the console as a central media centre that's a bit of a minus.

The video output supports full HD at 1080p, so great graphic potential - whether developers will utilise full HD is another matter - the norm is still 720p on other consoles.

Now, for the important part - price and release date. It's going to hit the UK on the 30th November, and based on gaming hardware companies' insistence on ignoring the exchange rate, you're probably going to have to shell out around £250* for the basic white 8GB model (sans sensor bar!), while the premium black model will cost almost £300*, and come bundled with a copy of Nintendo Land, a sensor bar, and free subscription to the Nintendo Premium Network (which seems to be their version of Xbox Gold membership, but with discounts on games and a points reward system - not sure how long the subscription is for, hopefully a full 12 months).

So, in conclusion, we have a console that has finally caught up with its rivals, but is prohibitively expensive and boasts a controller that looks cumbersome, and likely to become a tired gimmick in a relatively short period of time. Is this going to stop people buying it? Who knows. People bought the Wii in droves, and Nintendo have a strong fan base. However, their plans to tackle the less than casual gamer with a console that only just competes in a market dominated by their competitors may well be their undoing come 2013.