Let’s discuss the latest on Nintendo’s latest console. No, it’s not the NES Classic Mini but the upcoming Nintendo NX. Let’s move on to Nintendo’s future for a change. So what’s in store for gamers and Nintendo fans?
For one thing, Nintendo says that it won’t make the same mistakes as it did the Wii U. Nintendo wants the world to know that it’s not competing with Sony and Microsoft when it comes to power and offerings, and while it wants its new console in the hands of the same gamers who love their Playstations and Xboxes, Nintendo really wants to be a console provider for a wider audience; the same way the original Wii did. The Wii U failed because of a lack of games from third party developers and Nintendo itself. The Wii meanwhile succeeded because it was revolutionary despite being underpowered and drew 3rd party developers in. It’s always a problem with new platforms, app-gap. Even though the platform is superior in some aspects, if there’s no one to develop for it, it will flounder and fail. Just like Windows 8, Windows Phone, Blackberry 10 and WebOS.
“We have to do a better job from a software planning standpoint to have that continuous beat of great new games that are motivating more and more people to pick up the hardware and more and more people to pick up the software… Those are the critical lessons. And as I verbalize them, they’re really traditional lessons within the industry. You have to make sure people understand the concept, you have to make sure you’ve got a great library of games, and when you do that, you tend to do well.”
— Reggie Fils-Aime, president of Nintendo of America
Which means, this time around, Nintendo is busy wooing 3rd party developers to create games for the new system. Nintendo itself is busy creating first-party titles from its many franchises in addition to Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild which the company showcased at E3 2016. There’s still plenty of time for game development before the NX console’s expected March 2017 release.
Nintendo takes a page from the computer industry. It’s been confirmed that the console will be a hybrid. It can work as both a handheld and a console with two detachable controllers and will come with a base station or dock which is attached to the TV. As a handheld, it will be similar to the Wii U and will feature a 5 to 7-inch screen. The controllers are said to feature clickable scroll wheels as shoulder buttons which would be very useful for system UI and game menus. The system makes more sense as a console-first-portable-later device since, like the Wii U, it will be rather bulky to take outside.
Again, Nintendo says it’s not competing with Sony and Microsoft for graphical power but will instead focus on hardware and game innovation. The console, however, will be using NVidia’s Tegra X1 or the upcoming Tegra X2 mobile processor. The company also denied that the NX operating system will be based on Android in hopes of attracting more 3rd parties. If it did, then the system won’t be Nintendo at all but a more expensive Ouya.
It’s also confirmed that the console will be ditching optical media and will go back to using cartridges because of the high capacity and lowering cost of flash storage.
The NX is rumored to allow users to make video calls and surf the web. The system will also be supporting achievements or an online leaderboard. Nintendo’s partnership with DeNA makes this possible.
Nintendo promises games from the Mario and Pokemon franchises as part of its NX launch lineup in addition to Legend of Zelda. Within six months, more games will follow from 3rd parties which will include Square Enix, Warner Bros, Sega and Ubisoft. Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild will also launch on the Wii U, the system the game was originally meant to be launched on. Square Enix is expected to launch a Dragon Quest game on the NX. Bandai Namco is also expected to include a new Super Smash Bros. game as a launch title.
It’s also rumored that Nintendo is dabbling into VR for the system but is still reserving judgment until the company is sure that the system will be a success.
That’s it for now, but everything will come to light when the NX is officially revealed this September 2016.