The Wii U will be able to playback original Wii games, but you won't be able to use the new console's "Pro" controller to play them.
Nintendo's upcoming console has a rather unprecedented feature -- the standard controllers that it uses are exactly the same as that of its predecessor.
So if you already have Wii Remotes, you won't need to buy a bunch of new ones for the Wii U. However, it appears that is not the case for the Wii U's "Pro" controller, which looks and feels like a more standard video game controller.
The Wii U Pro controller is very similar to the Wii's "Classic Controller Pro," which contains two joysticks and more buttons for games that require a bit more of a standard, "non-Wii" experience like fighting games.
Sadly, if you want to play those kinds of games on the Wii U, you'll need to stock up on new controllers.
The new system goes on sale on November 18.
Due to problems with the production of the Wii U's touchscreen controller, it's expected that Nintendo will have a fairly low number of units available on launch day.
This is further compounded by the fact that there hasn't been a brand new home console in the industry since 2006. People are clamoring for something new and fresh.
There are two versions of the console. The $300 version will get you the bare bones, with one of the GamePad tablet controllers and 8 GB of memory. There will also be a $350 version that comes with 32 GB, and the game Nintendo Land.