For the first time ever, Nintendo has alluded to next generation hardware and their attempts to rethink the modern game controller.
While Sony and Microsoft are little more than a year away from releasing their next gen consoles it’s a mystery, even by their standards, as to what Nintendo might be planning in terms of future hardware.
There’ve been lots of rumours about new models of the current Switch, but nothing about a next generation console that would be considerably more powerful or has markedly different features.
They are no doubt working on one, but the answer to a strange question at their Annual General Meeting is the first public admission that they have a new system in development.
‘Looking at this year’s E3, it seems like the mainstream for video games is the same as it has been for the past 30 years, namely, looking at the screen and playing with controller in hand’, asked one investor. ‘How do developers regard this, and do they think it will continue?’
We can only assume the Nintendo board get these questions in advance as the answer was surprisingly long and involved execs Shigeru Miyamoto, Shinya Takahashi, and Ko Shiota.
‘I also believe that we should quickly graduate from the current controller, and we are attempting all kinds of things. Our objective is to achieve an interface that surpasses the current controller, where what the player does is directly reflected on the screen, and the user can clearly feel the result’, said Miyamoto.
‘This has not been achieved yet. We have tried all kinds of motion controllers, but none seem to work for all people. As the company that knows the most about controllers, we have been striving to create a controller that can be used with ease, and that will become the standard for the next generation.’
Previously, Nintendo has suggested that the Switch will last longer than usual for a console, at anything up to 10 years, and have avoided talking about any kind of next gen hardware.
Whether Miyamoto had in mind something specific when he mentioned it, or he just meant ‘next generation’ in a more general sense, is unclear.
Since this is Nintendo it’s probably pointless to hope for clarification, but you can read the full transcript of the AGM here.
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