Over the weekend we saw a lot of chatter about a supposed leak revealing solid NX details from a source known as Geno. Like reputed seer Nostradamus, it seems some of this individual's previous predictions have come to pass, although of course many of them appear to be unfulfilled wishful thinking. In short, there's room for doubt.
We try to be as careful as possible when posting rumours, and like so many other "leaks" we considered ignoring Geno's claims. However, we thought it might be more fun to look at these predictions in-depth and investigate their source.
Here's what Geno has claimed to know about NX:
- It has a wireless HDMI dongle that attaches flush to the back of the device. A user can pull it out and insert it into any display with a normal sized HDMI output and the devices uses an evolved version of the Wii U's streaming tech to display in HD to the TV screen.
- Allegedly the analog controls for movement has small motors in them for full haptic feedback. Meaning if you control a character and hit a wall, the sticks move away from the direction of that wall to simulate running head first into it. This can also be used for jerking when firing a gun, taking damage, moving over rough terrain, ect.
- It can literally Bluetooth synch with everything, especially smart phone and tablets to the point where one feature is that it can answer phone calls and display text messages from your phone onto the screens itself so you don't have to stop and answer your smart device.
- The closest in terms of "power" it gets to is the Xbox One, but an app idea is Wii U x50 and Playstation Vita x100. The key is that all the tech is exactly the same hardware layout as the PS4 and Xbox One which then combine it with the OS's strong emulation functions and compiler means that any game that can run of a Playstation 4 or Xbox One can easily run on the NX with near-zero modification to the original source code, especially if it runs in Android OS or Unreal Engine 4. This is allegedly why Nintendo has given out the dev kits so late, as one 3rd Party dev put it "It's the easiest device we've ever developed for. You just take your code, compile it and it works."
- Look to Pokemon GO to get the idea of the type of social features that will be in NX that will take multiplayer, AR and the StreetPass concept to a whole new level.
- The real strengths of the device is its usability and ease of use. Developers have described to me more than once that it visually and functionally looks as if "Samsung and the Nintendo 2DS" had a baby, in that it looks friendly but unlike what most people visualize a Nintendo device to typically look. The operating system, named NintendOS alone is very powerful and has so many modern features of mobile operating systems today that Nintendo is trying to be very careful in showing it off for fear that it would be mistaken as running Android. It also has a very strong networking functions as it ties into multiple devices and services allowing a very competent and pervasive ecosystem designed to constantly involve the consumer's lives.
Some of these predictions are just plain common sense - if the Nintendo NX doesn't have comparable hardware power to facilitate making Xbox One / PlayStation 4 ports easy then it could end up being dead in the water, with no third party support beyond the honeymoon launch period. However, others are little harder to swallow. Talk of a HDMI dongle would suggest that all of NX's power is contained within the controller, which - given the claims of it having technical parity with the Xbox One - would make the device one of the most powerful (and therefore expensive) handhelds ever made. Nintendo creating an OS which emulates and matches the functionality of Android and iOS also sounds rather unlikely.
We could pick apart the other rumours for hours, but it's worth mentioning that these latest predictions were originally posted on 4chan in December 2015 - make of that what you will.
Until Nintendo itself is ready to reveal what the Nintendo NX actually is - which should be at E3 this year - we're likely to hear a lot more rumours along these lines. As ever, we'll be very careful about what rumours we post, but in the meantime, let us know your thoughts on these latest predictions with a comment below.