News Article

Iwata Asks Delves Into Wii U Development

Posted by James Newton

Console started life three years ago

Nintendo President Satoru Iwata, and head of the Entertainment Analysis and Development Shigeru Miyamoto sat down for a wide-ranging interview about Wii U, revealing the machine first reared its head in Nintendo meetings back in 2008.

The seven-page chat also addresses the perception that Nintendo's addition of a touch screen controller is an admission of the increasing prevalence of tablets:

Iwata: But because people outside the company do not have an insight into our development process, when people see this for the first time in 2011 when this is revealed, they might think, "Oh, Nintendo is going to add a tablet to their console". I think that's how people may see it.

Iwata: But when we were first talking about this, tablet devices weren't very common. It's very similar with the Nintendo 3DS system, we release something after much internal debate and development, and that release timing happens to be when something like that is extremely popular. I feel like that has been our trend lately.

Be sure to read the full Iwata Asks Wii U interview and check out the Nintendo Wii U E3 2011 video to see how Nintendo's new console will change gaming in the home.

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User Comments (17)

pixelman

#1

pixelman said:

Yeah, this is going to work really well for them. Tablets are all the rage right now, and Nintendo's doing some really cool and innovative stuff with WiiU.

kurtasbestos

#2

kurtasbestos said:

I still don't understand why people buy tablets, but I'm really excited about this new controller.

Chris720

#4

Chris720 said:

They develop a tablet like controller when tablets weren't really around, three years later we get a tablet controller expanding the tablet completely. That is pure innovation Ninty.

I'm still not sold on it though, it's just an upgraded Wii. What I mean is, this is what the Wii should've been from the start. :/

shinesprite

#5

shinesprite said:

@2 Same here.

@4 So you're saying it's Wii 1.5? Anyway, I'm not worried. They'll have the next E3 to really pitch it to us.

HugoSmits

#7

HugoSmits said:

@2 and 5

I didn't understand either.. but now that I'm living together it became my main gaming-device!

You see, I spend around 10 hours developing games each day. The other hours I try to spend at home with my girlfriend. And she doesn't want to sit next to me while I'm killing a bunch of dudes on the tv :D

So I sit next to her, she gets to watch sex & the city. We can talk, and I can play a game on my ipad :)

Also; I don't have to feel bad for buying new games. Since I don't have 40 hours to spend on one game,
I feel really bad forking over 60 bucks. Sure the Ipad games are much smaller, but than again I only
play them for an hour..

SpicyDuck

#8

SpicyDuck said:

@6, Well wii sells are going to drop dramatically, 3DS won't sell much better until we see these games at E3 come out, so there sells are going to be decreasing which will lower stock. So yeah, it's expected.

moosa

#9

moosa said:

Am I the only one who noticed the connection from the U-Draw Tablet to the Wii U controller? ;)

aaronluis26

#10

aaronluis26 said:

@4 I believe the Wii was exactly what it was supposed to be. It may have been underpowered compared to the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360, but it was a fun machine that innovated.

@9 I made that connection as well.

SigourneyBeaver

#11

SigourneyBeaver said:

@4 You say the Wii U is what the Wii should havebeen from the start. So now it is what you presumably want it to be but you're not sold on it?

hal

#12

hal said:

Hope they end 'region locking' for disc-based games.. We want to play SukebanShachoRena!!

komicturtle

#13

komicturtle said:

@moosa
I see you noticed too.

Don't forget that Nintendo worked very closely with THQ on the uDraw tablet.

I guess the rumors of the controller being similar to the uDraw tablet were true after all.

Henmii

#14

Henmii said:

"Am I the only one who noticed the connection from the U-Draw Tablet to the Wii U controller? ;)"

Your not the only one!

And who is Nintendo fooling? They made a 3DS to jump on the 3D bandwagon, They came with the white branding and the using of i's to jump on the Apple bandwagon (Apple has i-pad, Nintendo has wii and DSi), and now they jump on the Apple bandwagon even more by creating a tablet like controller (think of it as the i-pad).

Don't get me wrong: I never saw the i-phone and i-pad as a danger for Nintendo, but it's obviously they want to cash in on their succes!

Pod

#15

Pod said:

I don't think Nintendo is purposefully jumping on any bandwagons. They've always released new consoles on a 5-6 year interval, and this time they learnd from the Wii and DS that the touch screen did a LOT for games, why the motion controls maybe didn't do quite as much.

Hence, their new system will incorporate both, but gamble largely on giving touch control a more prominent role.

DS is still the only device that ever made people enjoy using a stylus for games. All the PDAs before it just ran notebook software and PONG. All the new touch gadgets use capacitive screens.

Ren

#16

Ren said:

I thought it was a weird choice at first, too. But after seeing it, it's really nothing like an ipad. There are some similar functions, sure, but ultimately it's used in a very different way and for different things. This is a game machine first and foremost.
The idea that people seem to be missing is the portablility of an extremely powerful system that also incorporates the functions and interactivity that made the DS so interesting. The E3 presentation didn't even really spell it out well.

Think about your favorite, long form, adventures on the DS and the interactivity they involved. Part of the comfort is just kicking back at home in a corner, not carrying it on a bus. It doesn't really need to be totally portable, it just needs a hub to stream next gen power into a personal sized machine, and still have the motion, mics; everything the Wii had.
Then take everything the other direction and combine it with your big ol' tv and other Wii remotes and you have 50 other awesome game functions; everything is possible. It's kind of the best hybrid that hasn't been tried, between TV, computer, tablet and console/portable. What have portable consoles never gotten right? we can never play our favorite portables on a big screen, but why not go the other direction with a fully HD system and just stream the whole thing into a local comfortable control system without taking away it's usefullness as a main console. It's kind of the perfect bridge to me when I think it over, especially if I can still use my wii stuff and other remotes, it means multiplayer right out of the box which I'm sure it'll come with at launch (games with 4 players like the demos using remotes we all have). That's not even touching on all the cool tablet functions that make it a 360 tracking display for shooters and fuller environments. It's really something they have to learn to define better because it looks like an ipad, but doesn't seem to work like one at all, it's not even focused on touch functions like that.
BTW I hope they add a update that lets us backwards stream out the 3ds display to the TV in the WiiU (in 2D). I'd kill to play GTA chinatown wars on my huge tv even in low res.

Azikira

#17

Azikira said:

@9. I noticed that too. But I really dont want to be shelling out $80+ for a new controller, so I hope the console comes with 2

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