What’s Nintendo Got Up Their Sleeve?

If you’re reading this, chances are, you’re a fan of all things Nintendo. Good odds, in fact. Otherwise you probably wouldn’t be here.

The codenamed ‘NX’ and roughly anything about it is more a mystery than the whereabouts of the billions of socks that go missing every year, never to be seen again. I’m not personally a fan of coming up with ridiculous theories, or hopping on the rumor bandwagon, but of course, we all have our own version about what our ‘perfect’ next-gen Nintendo console would have.

I had always felt burned with the purchase of the Wii, not to mention the fact that I camped out 14 hours in front of a Best Buy to obtain it, because if I look back, there are so few games I played on that thing, that it was basically the nail in the console coffin. Years after the Wii, I switched exclusively to PC games, dabbled a bit on the DS, etc. Of course, as of last summer, I became obsessed with the 3DS, and I was back on the Nintendo bandwagon.

That being said, I never got into the WiiU. The game arsenal just never interested me, barring a few exceptions. But exceptions that I can count on one hand, not really worth the price of admission if you ask me.

Nintendo is in a tough spot right now, and I predict the sweeping strategic changes being made across the board with aim to rake in that sweet cash are going to continue for the foreseeable future, and I truly believe that they will recover. They have their intellectual properties that are arguably priceless, and will sell no matter what. Then they have the monster that is Pokemon. They aren’t going anywhere. But they really can’t screw this one up.

Here’s how I think they could do that, and what I’d like to see with the Nintendo NX.

Enough with the Motion Controls.

I’ve written about this before, in fact it was my first post on this blog. The Wii’s motion controls, while very appropriate with bowling simulators, was an absolutely travesty. The Wiimote was horrendous. The button positioning couldn’t have been worse.

The WiiU was a step in the right direction with the actual usable controls. The fact that you can play games on it without the TV is even cooler. They definitely made some progress here, although motion controls were still shoehorned into tons of games that they had no business being a part of.

Odds of Happening: High chance.

Convergence?

When I first caught wind of the Nintendo NX, the first thing I pictured in my head was a scaled down WiiU controller that also doubled as a portable platform. I thought that was an amazing concept, as Nintendo has been in the process of merging portable and console departments.

Perhaps this could spell out news for some sort of convergence device? Time will tell.

Odds of Happening: It’s possible…

Device Play Streaming

If there’s one concept that defines Nintendo, it’s the concept of always being 10 years in the past. They are the third world country of the Big 3, and it’s maddening to picture all of these executives in a boardroom, with truly great ideas, years too late.

The Playstation Vita allows you to play your PS4 remotely from anywhere you have a Wifi connection. This is absolutely incredible and there is no good reason Nintendo should not have something like this available in 2017, when we’ve been remote-desktop’ing for nearly twenty years.

Odds of Happening: Fat chance.

Cross-buy

This one actually has me dangerously close to running out and buying a Vita (amongst many other reasons), but the fact that you can buy a game in a physical format and get a code to download the digital copy just makes too much sense to me. I don’t believe in digital copies of games that can deactivate at any time, and something like this would be great for the sake of convenience.

Odds of Happening: Not even remotely likely.

A Second Screen Really Works!

One thing with Nintendo’s recent consoles is that the dual screens has really worked well. Take this quote from a developer of Guacamelee, in regards to the WiiU gamepad:

“With Guacamelee, having the second screen on the GamePad was a perfect place to put the game’s mini-map, and made the game a great fit for the platform.” – Graham Smith 

Just like having a second monitor on your computer station, having a second screen is perfect to keep the top one clean of clutter. Playing the Majora’s Mask and Ocarina of Time remakes on the 3DS was an incredible experience, because there wasn’t anything in the way of the beautifully rendered 3D landscapes. The bottom screen is perfect for that disposable information that does not need to be seen the entire time.

Odds of Happening: Good shot.

Nintendo’s in a hole and they seem to be on the right track for 2016 so far. Not launching at Christmas is going to be a bit of a loss for them, but it’s possible to re-coup those lost holiday earnings if the game selection is respectable at launch.

Overall, it’s more important to have a good game selection than anything else. Seems obvious, but let us not forget how the WiiU got us here in the first place!

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