Nintendo’s Next Console is on it’s Way. Wii! [Update! Controller has landed!]
When I thought about the possibilities of the next console from nintendo, I guess I expected something similar to what they do with their handhelds. ie the ds, ds lite and dsi. They are all the same hardware wrapped up in a nice package that slowly shrinks, or adds more tech, as technology allows. Except they have never really taken this approach with their home consoles. Maybe it’s the difference in price, though the 3ds’ price tag is creeping into console territory, or maybe they just see handhelds as a statement or a collectible as much as a gadget.
Whatever their view I was expecting, after the initial success of the wii, that we would eventually get a wii HD. Throw in an HDMI plug that can output current wii games and new games in 1080p, but still using essentially the same controllers and peripherals we have come to know and love.
It’s a bit if a shock then that rumours are that the wii 2 will feature a new controller that is more of a classic game pad. Not the simplified, stripped down “remote” we have grown to love or hate. but a controller that has shoulder buttons and 2 analogue sticks and a 6 inch touch screen display. Say again? Yeah a 6 inch touch screen display.
Never mind this takes it dangerously close to the original xbox and its monstrously oversized controller, but this is a 6 inch screen. Thats only an inch smaller than most tablets and almost double an iPhone. Is there any need for a screen that big on a controller? And how much would it cost? Not only that but it would mean everything they built with the wii and it’s Wiimote would be undone. The wiimote style of gameplay would be got rid of just as Sony and Microsoft are moving into the arena as if it’s the definitive control structure going forward.
So that pretty much confirms it can’t be a 1.5 Wii HD upgrade. It’s a new console entirely.
Now when I think to the future of home consoles I always try And figure out their “thing” that thing that defines them over the previous generation. The 360 and PS3 are HD (and more powerful than the previous gen) and the Wii had motion control. Some people see 3D as the next big thing, but if you base a console on an experience most people won’t be able to get, it would make it a hard sell. Who wants to have to buy a new TV for a console? The only way to make a 3D console is like the 3DS, where they give you the 3D screen WITH the console and I never assumed a home console would give u a TV to play games on the way handhelds do because it’s so prohibitively expensive. Oh wait… They are.
Now it could be that nintendo thinks the most important part of the DS line is in fact the DS or Dual Screen, that enables you to play Zelda on the top screen while keeping the visual clutter of the map and items on the bottom screen. Or in this case, the top screen is the TV and the controller would act as the bottom screen – freeing up some screen space.
However it’s been confirmed more recently that you will in fact be able to play the game on the controller screen, with all the computational horsepowers confined to the console itself, which means the controller can stay fairly slim and light. But really, think of the moolah you will have to shell out for controllers with 6inch screens in them, unless… Unless there is something that will make the proposal worth every penny. Perhaps nintendo’s big idea is a way to get something to the consumer that they couldn’t otherwise afford. Perhaps all those Netflix deals they struck for the 3DS where just paving the way. Perhaps you will indeed be able to play and watch in 3D. Could that be nintendo’s next big thing?
[This is an editorial on the Wii 2 or Wii HD console that is due to be unveiled at E3 2011 and released in 2012. This Editorial is mainly speculative with any information and sources used being mainly rumours with a healthy dose of guesswork and knowledge about the industry and looking at where the industry is headed.]
[The Above image is from electricpig and is merely a representation of the Wii2]
Update: Holy Crap Batman! We have the Controller!
Well WE don’t, but we have an image of it!
Mmmm Me WANT!