By Michael Fontanini / July 2nd, 2015
With manufacturing of Nintendo’s next system, the NX, set to begin possibly as soon as October (and the system possibly launching in 2016), some are wondering what this may mean for Nintendo’s current systems (Wii U and 3DS). Nintendo President, Satoru Iwata, addressed this in their recent shareholder meeting. He says that the company will continue to support its current systems when the NX launches. He also said that they are holding discussions with both internal and external developers on “how to continue creating software for Wii U and 3DS” after the launch of the NX.
“NX is a new platform, so the installed base will have to be built up from zero,” said Iwata before adding that “When NX is launched, there already will be a certain volume of Nintendo 3DS and Wii U hardware widely existing in the market, so from a software business perspective, it would be highly inefficient to stop releasing titles for Nintendo 3DS or Wii U right after the launch of NX,”
Iwata went on to address the Wii U, saying “As for Wii U, we will continue to make efforts, as it is a priority within the company to think about how we can satisfy the consumers who purchased this system to the maximum extent possible,” He also acknowledged that the Wii U has not done as well as they would like, “I cannot disagree with your indication that Wii U is experiencing the most unfavorable situation.”
As far as details about the NX, he had this to say “I will not share details on NX today but with regard to the launch of Nintendo 3DS and Wii U not necessarily having progressed well and not acquiring sufficient support from software publishers, we intend to offer NX through a Nintendo-like solution,” he said. “Thank you for understanding that we are making various considerations and preparations in order to avoid what happened with the previous generations.”
While we will likely not hear any specifics about the NX until sometime next year, that has not stopped some from speculating about what NX might be. Realistically, it seems improbable that NX could replace both Wii U and 3DS, anyway. To do so, it would need to be both a handheld and a home console. This seems unlikely considering portable systems are still nowhere near to matching the processing power or graphics capabilities of the home consoles yet. So it would be difficult to make a system that fully fit both the portable and home console niches. Battery life would also likely be an issue with such a system, among other things.
In the meantime, I personally am not overly concerned with the NX, as there is still plenty to look forward to on the existing systems, such as Star Fox and Zelda to name a few. I do certainly look forward to learning more about the NX in the future, though.