"Everything I have been told is "best of the current generation by a country mile but not significantly beyond that."
It is the XBox to the PS2. The Gamegear to the Gameboy. The Mad Men Alison Brie to Community's Alison Brie. It'll look better, but generational transition probably won't apply to it.
On the plus side, there will probably be nothing hardware-wise stopping downgraded ports from what people think the new XBox will offer. We're talking, like, Witcher 2 on high settings vs. Witcher 2 on low settings. Same game, same basic idea, different graphics.
But games that do take advantage of the Wii U's hardware are going to blow this current gen out of the water. I am not sure we'll see that at E3 (seriously, think back to nearly every console's launch, most of those titles don't stand up today), but I'm sure we'll see it eventually."
"The XBox was a crazy beast if used right. But it was just an analogy, it wasn't meant to be a proper comparison of power.
Dreamcast to N64 might be a better comparison?"
To tell you the truth, this is kinda what I was expecting the systems power to be like since the rumored specs were announced last year. When games are made from the ground up for the Wii U, it should be a big leap from the current HD systems. The Dreamcast was a pretty big leap from the N64, but the N64 was still able to play ports from the Dreamcast (some of them). The Dreamcast in my opinion was never truly used to it's full potential since it died off only 2 and a half years into it's life. Many of the Dreamcast games looked as good or better than Playstation 2.
Having the Wii U be a leap similar from N64 to Dreamcast is certainly not bad news by any means. This also means that the Wii U would be able to handle ports from Microsoft and Sony's next systems as well. The hype train for the Wii U has been way up and way down over the last month, so it's nice to get something positive that re-enforces what has already been said by official developers on the Wii U's power.