A new report has spilled more information on the NX, reaffirming a lot of the previous rumors while revealing a few other bits of juicy info. The report, which comes from Eurogamer, cites multiple sources as confirming that the NX will be a portable console that also connects to your TV. Correlating with prior rumours, Eurogamer claims the handheld will run cartridges and will also have detachable controllers which will attach to either side of the display.
The report also states that when the controllers are detached, the NX screen has a stand that will fold out – presumably for watching movies or for second-screen gaming.
Sony and Microsoft have been in an arms race to see whose gaming console can squeeze in the most graphical muscle, but for two consoles now Nintendo has taken a more creative approach to its hardware. Sadly, the Wii U has struggled to sell. After the breakout success of the Wii, the Wii U has had a tough time competing with the Xbox One and PlayStation 4, despite its early release. Even so, Nintendo’s announcement that it would reveal a brand new console in 2016 came as a surprise to many.
At this point, we don’t know a lot for certain. Late Nintendo CEO Satoru Iwata revealed the NX’s existence at a March 2015 press conference, alongside the announcement of its mobile game licensing deal with DeNA. Iwata described the project, code-named “NX,” as “a dedicated game platform with a brand-new concept.” Nintendo confirmed soon afterward that the NX will launch in March 2017, though it wouldn’t be at E3 2016.
THE NX NEEDS A BUSINESS MODEL FIT FOR TODAY.
The NX needs a business model fit for today, and a subscription service would guarantee revenue from Nintendo’s loyal customers and make the system appealing to a wider audience; the company could sell it at a reasonably low price and yet support the widest, most technically impressive range of games yet.
This would be a huge change of direction for Nintendo, so it’s difficult to see it happening. And the company could, of course, just continue to sell $60 games and ignore the way people are increasingly expecting to pay for movies, music, and other entertainment in 2017. But looking at how the Wii U flamed out? That actually feels like the bigger risk.