'Ambassador program will get Wii users online' - Braben

LostWinds man "wouldn't be surprised" if Sony and MS copy Nintendo scheme

Nintendo's new 'Connection Ambassador Program' will help encourage Wii users to go online, says LostWinds and Elite creator, David Braben.

Speaking to CVG in London yesterday, Braben said he "wouldn't be surprised" if Sony and Microsoft adopted something similar to Nintendo's program, which rewards Wii users with points for helping friends get online.

"I think it's fantastic," he said. "I think it'll bring a lot of people to connect their Wiis online and also bring them to WiiWare and to Virtual Console which I think is a really good thing.

"Getting free points for it is a fantastic incentive," he added, joking that he hopes many of the cash freebies go on purchases of his two LostWind games.

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When asked if he thinks there's a low percentage of Wii users aware of Wii's online features, Braben responded: "I think it's true of all platforms. If you look at Xbox 360, initially the percentage of people who are on Xbox Live was higher than it is now... the numbers are much bigger now.

"As the audience moves to a broader audience you get fewer people who are aware of what's possible," he said.

"I think there are a lot of people who bought Wiis with the intention of playing just one game like Wii Fit, not perhaps realising the other things that it's capable of."

Read more about the really rather good 'Connection Ambassador Program' here.