Posted on June 13 2011 by Nathanial Rumphol-Janc
We’ve reported extensively on trickles of information stating that Wii U will only support one touch screen controller, but a recent Time interview with Satoru Iwata seems to suggest something on the opposite side of the spectrum:
First of all, for the SKU, we believe that one controller, the new controller, has got to be included in the package whenever we are going to sell the Wii U console. And as you can guess, this new controller for Wii U is going to cost more than the other controller does, and that’s why, most often, our focus on the software shall be the ones that can be enjoyed with the one Wii U controller.
Sounds like rather than only offering one controller, Nintendo just wants to focus on games that use only one so as not to pressure people into buying more due to their high cost. This means that we’ll probably actually see support for multiple screen streaming in multiplayer games. Maybe these games won’t come out of Nintendo’s studios, but that’s probably just fine with third-parties, who will be looking for some room for their big “hardcore” multiplayer games to take root. Core gamers are also probably more apt to drop an extra $50 to buy a second controller for local multiplay.
That wasn’t all Iwata talked about, though. Read on for some more quotes on other subjects, like 3D on Wii U, video streaming, and more:
I had a chance to play with the Wii U yesterday and it’s really intriguing. The thing that surprises me the most is that it seems like yet another paradigm shift from Nintendo. What are the key points you wanted to address in creating this concept?
We really want to change the structure of home entertainment. As you know, by now, home console video games have been wholly dependent upon home TVs. In other words, without home TV sets, we could not play video games at home. And we thought, “What if we were able to be independent from the TV?”
Then we came to think about the possibility of adding the second screen. And then we started thinking about that kind of possibility, and the mass potential it would provide for us. So far, we have been able to showcase only a glimpse of the total possibility Wii U will be able to provide. This product is slated for next year, not this year. Closer to the timing of the launch, I think we will be able to showcase a lot more.
The other thing that struck me when looking at the device yesterday and the controller, was streaming possibilities from the unit to the controller. Is that something you guys would be willing to explore, like not just games but other kinds of entertainment?
Yeah, of course. [With current technology,] there are a number of opportunities for us to be able to see the videos and images while they stream but in most cases today they are not utilizing that with interactivity. In other words, most people often utilize that kind of technology in order to view photos and videos, et cetera.
Another question is why isn’t the controller screen 3D? Since you guys have already successfully implemented it glasses-free, in a smaller format, what was the thinking of keeping it off of the Wii U?
We have a separate mission with Wii U and Nintendo 3DS. Of course, there are some TV sets with the capability to show the 3D available today but it’s not dominating yet. Of course, you may want to say now that you have the second screen and you have the 3D technology with Nintendo 3DS, however after all, that kind of experience we can explore over the existing Nintendo 3DS machine. As I said, we are trying to make a new structure of home entertainment and because we are trying to make something unprecedented, we just wanted to focus on something different.
You can catch the full interview at Time TechLand if you’re interested in learning more about Nintendo’s strategy and direction with Wii U.