2015 is going to be a pivotal year for the Wii U, with new Zelda and Star Fox titles on the way. Nintendo's Shigeru Miyamoto has been speaking about the company's plans for the next 12 months, but has also provided a timely reminder that like any other hardware firm, Nintendo is constantly working on new tech and trying to figure out what the "next big thing" will be.
Speaking to The Associated Press, Miyamoto said:
We're focused on providing a robust line-up of Wii U software for next year. It seems like we've managed to do that this year and people are very happy with what we've done on Wii U. For the time being, our focus is on the Wii U hardware, but Nintendo as a whole has groups working on ideas for new hardware systems. While we're busy working on software for the Wii U, we have production lines that are working on ideas for what the next system might be.
While it goes without saying that Nintendo is constantly working on new hardware concepts — not all of which will see it past the drawing board stage — it has recently been revealed that the Japanese company is working with Sharp on a new kind of display which will presumably feature in a future piece of hardware. Whether or not this will be for a new handheld, the Quality of Life platform or an all-in-on console hybrid remains to be seen.
Miyamoto also hinted — but didn't confirm — that the next Mario title might be reserved for Nintendo's next console, rather than the Wii U:
Since we first created Mario, people have compared him to Mickey Mouse. I've always said Mickey Mouse evolved with each evolution in animation. You saw Mickey Mouse each step of the way. From early on, I wanted Mario to be that character in the digital world, so that with each digital evolution, he was there to usher in the next era. I think that maybe when we release the next hardware system, you can look forward to seeing Mario take on a new role or in a new game.
What form do you think Nintendo's next machine will take? The Wii was a revolutionary concept which allowed the company to claim first place in that particular battle, but the Wii U has arguably proven to be a harder idea to sell to the general public. Can Nintendo's next platform capture the hearts and minds of the masses once more, or do you think the company will focus on dedicated gamers this time around? Share your thoughts by posting a comment below.