You Won't Be Able To Buy An Extra Wii U GamePad At Launch
Posted by Damien McFerran
Primarily because no games support two GamePads yet
Much has been made of the Wii U's ability to support more than one GamePad. Early rumours suggested anything from one to four GamePads could connect to a single console, but we've since heard from devs such as Blitz Game Studios that the system is now designed to work with two GamePads at once.
Interestingly, we've not seen any evidence of that from the games demoed so far. According to Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime, who spoke to GI.biz shortly after yesterday's Wii U preview event in New York, the reason for this is simple: the feature wasn't available when development was started on the current crop of software.
GI.biz: We haven't seen much about using two GamePads, and in the Japanese event last night, they had a price point for standalone GamePads.
Reggie Fils-Aime: The reason you don't see games with two GamePads [at this event] is the technical ability to make two GamePads work was delivered to publishers after they started this current round of development. So you'll see those two GamePad experiences at a later date; when those games are coming, that's when we'll make a separate GamePad available.
Look at it this way: when we're preparing for launch, I need to make consoles and I need to make GamePads, and I need to put them together in a box to sell at retail. And if I'm using my inventory assembling GamePads that don't support any games in the marketplace, all I'm doing is reducing my available inventory to sell on launch day.
GI.biz: So we won't have individual GamePads at launch.
Reggie Fils-Aime: Not here at launch.