The Nintendo NX is Rumoured to Have 4K Support

Nintendo’s upcoming console, codenamed ‘NX’, has been the subject of numerous rumours from multiple sources who apparently know confidential details about the system’s key features. Reports have suggested Nintendo will adopt the X86 architecture and be a handheld/home console hybrid. Other leaks indicate it might even use the latest version of Android. The latest rumour was originally posted on Reddit but the author has since decided to remove the post. Thankfully, MyNintendoNews managed to save the details which are listed below:

  • The retail name for the NX is unknown to developers (or they are holding back). I’ve asked multiple sources.
  • I know of at least 1 third-party Wii U game that has/have been successfully ported to NX.
  • Amiibo are still supported (if you hadn’t already guessed).
  • Friend codes are still a thing (unfortunately).
  • I don’t know when the NX will be announced. Speculation is this month.
  • There are multiple “gimmicks” with the NX, one is optional.
  • There are physical dev-kits out in the wild, I don’t have access to these.
  • I don’t know the model of the GPU, however there is little doubt (from what I’ve been told) that it an AMD.
  • The NX is capable of outputting 4k. Consensus is upscaling and streaming.
  • DDR4 Memory (between 6GB – 8GB). EDIT: Available to software.

Apparently, the NX will support 4K, but the games will not natively run at this resolution. It’s not overly surprising given the graphical horsepower required to push so many pixels. Honestly, I’m really concerned by the claim of multiple “gimmicks” because history dictates similar measures proved to be unpopular. While the Wii U gamepad is a novel idea, I found it uncomfortable for prolonged periods. On another note, the Wii remote didn’t really add anything to core games and felt extremely unnecessary. I think it’s important for Nintendo to innovate but create something which doesn’t have any gimmicks.

Of course, this is from an unverified source so it’s vital to take these claims with a pinch of salt.

AMD Earnings Call Suggests New Consoles Are Coming in 2016

Even though the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One are less than three years old, there’s numerous reports which indicates both console manufacturers could release refreshed models with a higher specification. This is unprecedented for the console industry as the usual business strategy revolves around long hardware lifecycles and encouraging developers to eke out every last inch of performance through optimization. Saying that, the situation in 2016 is quite different due to the rise of mobile and impressive profitability on the PC platform. Furthermore, the current consoles are technically outdated and struggle to maintain 30 frames-per-second at 1920×1080. There’s even been instances where the resolution has been reduced to 720P on the Xbox One which really does showcase the performance problems.

Arguably, Sony is creating a much more powerful version of the PlayStation 4 to coincide with the launch of PlayStation VR. Virtual reality requires a great deal of processing power and the current model will struggle to offer a pleasant user-experience. According to information acquired by Go Nintendo, AMD’s earning call predicts future hardware launches this year and reads:

“In our EESC segment, we had record shipments of our semi-custom SoCs powering the Playstation 4 and Xbox One game consoles,”

“Demand for game consoles looks strong for 2016 and we remain on track to generate additional revenue from new semi-custom business in the second half of 2016.

“Game consoles – we see units going up 2016 to 2015. We’ve also said in the enterprise embedded and semi-custom segment that we will be ramping some new design revenue in the second half of 2016. We have new products being introduced in both the businesses with the new design wins in the second half on the semi-custom side.”

It’s important to remember that this might not be a new Xbox or PlayStation 4, and could refer to Nintendo’s upcoming console, the NX. Whatever the case, I cannot wait to see the announcements during this year and look forward to testing new hardware. Also, if these reports are true, I’m eager to know how console players will react.

More Rumors Are Unveiled Regarding The Nintendo NX

Nintendo’s upcoming console has been the subject of numerous reports, leaks and even an elaborate hoax which many believed was a genuine source. Reports have suggested the NX will be a hybrid handheld/home console device offering greater performance than the PlayStation 4. However, it’s incredibly difficult to know what the real truth is because patents don’t always come to fruition. They’re concepts, and a way of protecting prototyped ideas. Whatever the case, the rumor mill is bound to continue until Nintendo makes some kind of official unveiling. The latest rumour comes from Reddit user, untypedhero who claims:

“As promised, I’ve decided to share some more NX information with you. This is second-hand information from trusted sources (like last time) and I have little reason to doubt its validity.

Here you go:

  • x86 architecture.
  • Backup data to Nintendo server (most likely My Nintendo).
  • Support for additional screen.
  • Can handle ports of current-gen games.
  • Will be able to interact with smartdevice apps.
  • Using NX software will unlock My Nintendo reward points.”

As always, it’s important to adopt a sceptical attitude especially when the information comes from one source. However, according to a moderator, the user’s background and credibility has been verified:

“This user has been verified by the mod team. We have confirmed that he has connections to Wii U developer(s) and/or development hardware and very likely has knowledge about the NX via those same connections. This verification is sort of general/open-ended and I unfortunately cannot verify specific details on a point by point basis.”

The X86 architecture would make porting of current generation games fairly simple and help forge the NX’s third-party library. This is essential when you consider how much Nintendo struggled to attract third-party developers on the Wii U. Hopefully, Nintendo will divulge some official information soon to stop the constant flow of leaks from various sources.

Nintendo NX Controller Was a Fake – Here’s How It Was Done

Earlier this week, a programmer, claiming to be in possession of the Nintendo NX dev kit, revealed photos purporting to be the controller for the new console (above), the design of which certainly matched a patent Nintendo filed last year, and the object itself appeared of a high build quality. The leaker – Frank Sandqvist, posting under the name kankki, Senior Project Lead, NX Hardware Design at Nintendo of Europe –  has subsequently revealed on Friday morning that the controller is a fake, writing on NeoGAF:

“I made this fake. Let’s see if I just got myself banned.”

He then posted a link to a YouTube video, exposing how he created the fake controller:

Sandqvist – inspired by a similar hoax the previous week – created the black, button-less gamepad using a copy of the Nintendo controller patent, some nifty CAD skill, and a 3D printing lab. The printed body of the controller was then primed, painted, and decorated with a shiny front plate, shoulder wheels, and a ‘confidential property’ sticker. It sure seems like a lot of work for a hoax that lasted little more than a few days, but it certainly had some fooled.

“When I saw that Photoshopped/rendered white fake, I thought it looked quite easy to reproduce, albeit with a switched-off display,” Sandqvist told Digital Trends. “So that same night I started modeling it up in Autodesk Fusion 360. And I thought it would be interesting to see if I could fool the Internet. At the same time, I guess it could stand as a reminder to people that you can’t really believe these kind of leaks nowadays with the rise of 3D printing.”

Wii U Production Could Cease Before the End of the Year

Despite boasting a number of games such as Smash Bros and Splatoon, the Wii U has struggled for sales throughout its lifespan, which could now be coming to an early end according to a report published in the Japanese newspaper Nikkei. Their article explains that Nintendo is planning to cease production of their current home console before the end of 2016, which may just be set to line up with the release of their upcoming console currently known as the NX.

When it launched in 2012, the Wii U had a one year advantage in release date compared to its competitors, Sony’s PlayStation 4 and Microsoft’s Xbox One. Despite this, the Wii U has only managed to sell 12.6 million units worldwide, a figure which is dwarfed by the PS4’s 36 million sales and predecessor, the Wii, shipping over 100 million systems between 2006 and 2013. The main issue that the Wii U faced was that it lagged behind its competitors in both graphical power, online capabilities and support from third-party developers. Added to this was scepticism over the usage of the tablet-like gamepad controller, with the only real advantage left for the Wii U was its lineup of quality games from Nintendo themselves, which clearly wasn’t enough to drive sales alone.

Despite its weakness in the home console department this generation, Nintendo’s handhelds are still going strong and Nintendo’s first foray into mobile development, Miitomo, saw the company’s stocks jump as it topped the Japanese app store’s free download charts.

There has been no word on how the end of production of the Wii U will affect its availability to retailers and no further word on the release of the NX has been given despite this news. Was the Wii U your favourite console this generation and are sad to see it go, or do you think Nintendo are doing the right thing to cut their losses and move on with the NX?

Nintendo NX May Contain Kinect-Like Features

Rumours galore surround the Nintendo NX, the successor to the Wii U. Now it seems like another one has come forward thanks to a patent showing off what seems to be Kinect-like features.

Nintendo took the console market by storm when it released the Wii back in 2006. Featuring motion controllers through the Wii remotes, the console saw entire families playing bowling together in their sitting room and racing around tracks with Luigi and Mario against the grandparents. Since then several consoles have used similar methods to achieve motion capture gameplay, from the use of light orbs to accelerometers in controllers the consoles have experienced an influx of movement related gameplay features. The Kinect took it to a whole new level and it looks like a similar method could be used to take the NX that little bit further.

The Kinect used cameras to not only recognise who was playing the game but also their movement and distance (something that proved difficult for other consoles). The methods listed for the depth tracking software include everything from a distance measuring laser to using the thermal signature of a person to determine how close / far away from the camera they are.

Combined with the depth measuring technology there also appears to be gesture recognition, something which could see you swirling your arms around like Iron man as you power up and play your favourite games.

Are you excited for the NX? We are excited to see how it will turn out and what rumours are included in the latest console from Nintendo!

New Rumours About The Nintendo NX Have Been Revealed

Nintendo’s upcoming console, codenamed NX, is rumoured to arrive later this year and could feature a revolutionary handheld/home console hybrid design. This is pure speculation though and Nintendo has done their utmost to keep details of the NX confidential. I applaud this approach because it creates a web of intrigue and makes the official unveiling very exciting. Recently, new information regarding Nintendo’s upcoming console was revealed by Geno, and published by the website, DualPixels. Geno accurately predicted the latest Pokemon game announcements which suggests the leaked NX details might be credible. Here’s a detailed run-down of what Nintendo apparently has planned:

“I don’t have many details on the device itself but I do have some background for it and some PR techniques they will use for it. A thing to note about this device is that much of it’s production was started in 2014 and many of the stuff I list here was outlined by the late Satoru Iwata before his passing. Hence in the company, the NX is considered the last project of their late president. Employees since his passing utter a phrase at the end of meetings and during idea brainstorms which is “岩田のために!” which roughly translates “For Iwata!”

“The importance of this is that this “new” Nintendo is highly motivated in delivering a fantastic system and games, something that I quote from an employee “have not seen this much forward momentum on a project since they launched the original Famicom”.

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.”
  5. 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.
  6. 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 eco-system designed to constantly involve the consumer’s lives.

As always, this could be pure fabrication, and it’s unknown what Nintendo’s new system entails. However, the source has been known to be accurate in the past. I’m slightly concerned by the power issue though because Nintendo needs to offer some additional graphical grunt to keep it relevant after the current console generation has subsided.

Developer “Guarantees Nintendo NX Won’t Have Third-Party Support”

Nintendo’s upcoming console codenamed, ‘NX’ is shrouded in secrecy, and no-one really knows what the latest device will entail. There are various rumours stemmed from patents which suggest the product will be a hybrid mobile/home console unit and create a brand new experience. Unfortunately, Nintendo’s previous effort, the Wii U, fared quite badly due to poor marketing and a lack of third-party support.

The Wii U branding confused consumers and made them believe it was an accessory for the original Wii. Furthermore, the console’s lacklustre power and strange launch date before the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 alienated third-party developers. It didn’t take long for key publishers including Ubisoft to discount the system because of the small user-base and terrible sales. This has been a major problem in the past few generations for Nintendo, as they rely too much on first party titles. While their IPs are incredible, the company cannot ignore third-party support for a prolonged period.

Despite this, it appears Nintendo hasn’t learnt anything from their mistakes, and could struggle to entice third-party developers to support the platform according to The Ori and the Blind Forest director, Thomas Mahler:

“This is actually THE singlest most annoying thing for every dev out there. We also talked to Nintendo and got absolutely nothing – I’ll never understand that. And just to be clear, it’s not just Nintendo, every hardware manufacturer is treating their devkits and their unreleased consoles like they’re the second coming and are insanely secretive about it to a stupid degree in todays time. It’s not even that the hardware isn’t finished (duh), but you could at least give me the goddamn specs, so we’d know what to build s**t for!”

“What’s needed to sell hardware is goddamn good software. With Nintendo not having any devkits out there at this point and probably even wanting to sell it in 2016, I can already guarantee that they’ll just not have any software support, since nobody can just jumble games together in less than a year. I mean, you can, but it’ll be garbage.”

“The same is true for Engine Support – Get Unity and Epic to support these consoles WAAAAY ahead of release. By the time the console launches, it should be EASY for developers to develop games for these systems, things shouldn’t just only start at this point. I want the goddamn devkits or at least proper hardware specs ideally 2 years before release – Keep all the developers updated, start a forum where devs can chat and figure out all the problems everyone’s having, instead of everyone just having to deal with it. None of that’s happening anywhere and it’s just braindamaged.”

If this is the case, Nintendo really doesn’t understand the current market, and cannot rely on their first party games forever. There will be a point when dedicated Nintendo fans begrudge the lack of third-party games and need to purchase another console to access other titles. Clearly, this might not be true and an example of a developer venting frustrations online. However, it doesn’t look good, and raises questions about Nintendo’s management.

Macronix is Supplying Memory For The Nintendo NX

Nintendo’s upcoming console, codenamed NX is receiving a barrage of media attention as speculation mounts regarding the device’s form factor. The majority of these reports stem from a number of patents which make for very interesting reading. In theory, Nintendo could be creating a hybrid device which works with PCs, mobiles and tablets. Furthermore, it’s rumoured to run the latest version of Android, and could allow more freedom than you typically expect from Nintendo. The Wii U and 3DS are both region locked and this even applies to digital content! Hopefully, Nintendo now understands how the global market works today and going to adopt a more consumer-friendly approach.

The latest piece of news revolves around Macronix International, a manufacturer of non-volatile memory. During an online Q4 2015 financial results conference, the company’s president C.Y. Lu weighed in on the current ROM business and claimed one of their biggest partners is preparing for a next generation platform. The company confirmed that the partner in question is Nintendo, and the platform in question is the NX console. Here we can see a slide from the presentation:

According to a Yahoo (Chinese) financial stock article translated by ConsoleFood, the NX is a key part of Macronix’s future plans:

“Japanese video-game company Nintendo will launch their new NX system this year. Macronix’s General Manager (CY Lu) said that Macronix will supply products for the NX and has considerable expectations regarding this.

Macronix held an online conference this afternoon. Due to Nintendo releasing their new NX system this year, investors were concerned about whether Macronix (who have a longstanding business relationship with Nintendo) will be part of the NX supply chain.

CY Lu stated that Macronix will provide memory units for the NX and, internally, has considerable expectations regarding the NX.

Despite refusing to disclose whether they will supply the NX with ROM, CY Lu did say that he expects ROM sales to be outstanding this year.”

So what does this actually mean? It’s still fairly unclear, but there’s the potential for games ship via cartridges instead of optical media. This makes sense due to the advent of affordable high-capacity storage. Furthermore, there’s no need to complete a lengthy install which should enhance the user-experience. On another note, optical drives are the mostly likely component to fail, so ditching a drive completely will help reliability.

The New Nintendo NX Controller Looks Seriously Weird!

The upcoming Nintendo NX is shaping up to be a strange beast, at least if a patent for the devices controller are anything to go by. If industry rumours are anything to go by, we know it’s going to be powerful, although with two, going on three years, between the NX and the current crop of games consoles, Nintendo have an advantage of more GPU powerful hardware per dollar to work with. Although, let’s be honest, it doesn’t take a flipping rocket scientist to guess that it’ll be powered by some kind of AMD/GPU/APU hybrid, AMD has that market sealed up pretty tight.

The new patent filings don’t fill me with confidence that Nintendo is learning from this past mistakes. The patent covers a controller which has a display on it, with two holes, most likely to allow for analogue sticks to pass through it. This is a much more refined object compared to the gargantuan Wii U tablet controller, and given that this looks like a relatively normal controller shape, it’s certainly a step in the right direction. What worries me is that Nintendo are likely still pushing into the gimmick end of the spectrum. The price of this controller could be high, limiting it to one per console, like we had with the Wii U tablet controller.

The tech sounds awesome, but the real world applications could cause a lot of headaches that you just won’t have with a simple plug and play controller. If Nintendo wants to capture the hardcore gaming crowd from their rivals, or multi-platform titles, it’s something they’ll need to address. Of course, I’m speculating on a rumour, so take it all with a pinch or three of salt.

If this is the real controller, it’s a huge improvement over the days of waving your arms, so that’s a good start.

Gaming Industry Analyst Michael Pachter Doesn’t Expect The Nintendo NX to Arrive Next Year

Michael Pachter is possibly the only video game and electronics research analyst known to the public and renowned for making bold claims. As a result, he’s often ridiculed by the gaming community and every prediction he makes isn’t taken seriously. Despite this, Pachter has been talking more business sense of late and making accurate, if fairly generic predictions. During his own show, entitled, Pachter Factor“, Pachter was asked by a Siftd.net user:

“When do you predict the Nintendo NX will be released in the United States?”

He replied:

“I would say 20% chance it comes out in 2016 in the U.S., 80% chance it comes out in 2017. If you don’t see it before E3, there’s a 0% chance it’s coming out in 2016.”

While he’s not counting out the Wii U’s successor coming in 2016, it seems unlikely and would give the Wii U a respectable 5 year lifecycle. 2016 just seems far too early and Nintendo needs to focus on releasing a superb Zelda game for the Wii U. Although, I’m pretty sure it will also end up on the NX. On another note, we know absolutely nothing about the NX’s specification, form factor, and if Nintendo decides to drop physical media altogether. I hope not given the prices on the digital eShop store. Currently, the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 are struggling with modern games, so it’s an interesting time for the console market. Nintendo really wants to attract third-party support and this can only be done via serious hardware capable of matching or surpassing the current consoles.

Nintendo Names New President

Nintendo loves ‘new’. Following New Super Mario Bros. Wii U and New Nintendo 3DS XL, the company has announced the New Nintendo President. Following the sad death of Satoru Iwata, Nintendo has appointed Tatsumi Kimishima as its new President.

Kimishima is a figure unknown to many gamers, and for good reason – he’s the first Nintendo President to have a background purely in business, rather than game creation, since Hiroshi Yamauchi moved the company into the video game market during the Eighties. The man is Nintendo through and through, though, and has successfully held management positions at different levels throughout the company for over 13 years, when he moved from his role as President of Pokémon USA Inc. to become President of Nintendo of America in 2002.

Nintendo has also announced new roles for stalwarts Shigeru Miyamoto and Genyo Takeda, who have become Creative Fellow and Technology Fellow, respectively. According to Nintendo’s announcement, a “Fellow” is an “individual selected from among the Representative Directors who has advanced knowledge and extensive experience, and holds the role of providing advice and guidance regarding organizational operations in a specialized area.”

Shinya Takahashi, Nintendo’s former Head of Software Planning & Development, has become the General Manager of Entertainment Planning & Development as the company prepares to move into mobile gaming in partnership with DeNA, while planning its next assault on the home gaming market with its NX console.

Thank you Forbes and WIRED for providing us with this information.

Nintendo Files Patent For Console With No Optical Drive

News has emerged that Nintendo could be planning to make its next console, codenamed the NX – billed by the company as a “dedicated game platform with a brand-new concept” – sans disc drive. Thanks to a post on NeoGaf, we know that Nintendo has filed a patent with the US Patent Office for a game console that has no optical drive. Instead, the device has an internal hard drive for storing downloaded games, plus an SD card slot, which will be good news for prospective crackers and homebrewers.

“The example system is not provided with an optical disc drive for reading out a program and/or data from an optical disc,” the patent reads. “An example system includes an internal hard disc drive storing a program and/or data, a communication unit transmitting/receiving a program and/or data via a network, and a processor executing a program stored in the hard disc drive to perform game processing.”

The console will also include a separate display unit, presumably similar to the Wii U Gamepad. Are we getting our first glimpse of the Nintendo NX? Nintendo has previously stated that it is intentionally keeping quiet about the NX’s new features for fear that its competitors might rip off its ideas.

Thank you Eurogamer for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of Forbes.

First Details Emerge About Nintendo’s “Quality of Life” Device

There has been a great deal of contrasting theories regarding Nintendo’s “Quality of Life” device and its possible relation to the Codename NX project. Recently, a NeoGAF user stumbled upon Nintendo’s WIPO Patent Application WO/2015/107747 which includes schematics about the Quality of Life programme. Unfortunately, the text is in Japanese, so it’s difficult to deduce the technical information within the patent application. However, the diagrams provide a general synopsis of the device’s functionality.

In its most basic form, the Quality of Life device appears to fixate on fitness and trying to improve the user’s overall health. The dock contains sensors to relay information between a number of accessories including a Wii Balance board. Supposedly, the docking station can detect the user’s emotional state through an integrated microphone or webcam. I would also presume that the unit detects movement and begins operating as you enter a room.

The second image suggests the inclusion of a projector designed to gauge an individual’s tiredness. For example, a sensor is used to determine the user’s pulse rate and engagement in mental activities. This projector displays an image onto the ceiling and can be adjusted using a remote control. It’s still unknown what type of image will be displayed but perhaps it’s designed to help people with disturbed sleep patterns. However, it might be a way to save power during a form of entertainment and realize when the end user is asleep.

 

Finally, a terminal system collates information about each person’s health and sets targets to improve their well-being. Perhaps, the device measures your fat %, weight, heart rate, and other vital aspects. That would make sense given the image appears to show the Wii Fit board being an integral part of the experience.

Whatever the Quality of Life device entails, it’s a major change from Nintendo’s gaming focused market. Perhaps, Satoru Iwata’s poor health and eventual demise made his team reconsider their priorities and try to help extend people’s lives. Traditional fitness is quite boring and engaging people in a new, visual manner to improve their lifestyle could make such a profound difference.

Thank you Nintendo Life for providing us with this information.

Nintendo’s NX Console Rumoured to be Less Powerful Than Playstation 4

Nintendo’s home consoles have struggled to attract third party developers since the Wii and this could be due to the lack of GPU horsepower. Traditionally, this wasn’t the case as Nintendo’s systems pushed the graphical boundaries through innovative technology such as the SuperFX chip. Furthermore, it’s often overlooked that the Gamecube was more powerful than Sony’s Playstation 2. The Wii U has struggled to be a commercial success and Nintendo’s ethos of their consoles being supplementary to the Xbox One and PS4 doesn’t look like changing any time soon.

According to Liam Robertson of Unseen64, Nintendo isn’t targeting the graphical capabilities of the PlayStation 4. In a Twitter post, he said:

As with any rumour, it’s important to question the validity of each source. Liam Robertson’s pedigree shows he is credible and accurately leaked information in the past. For example, he divulged that Criterion Games almost created a new F-Zero if it wasn’t for their commitments to Need For Speed: Most Wanted. Additionally, his evidence proved correct in regards to the appalling working environment at Project H.A.M.M.E.R. Even though this doesn’t prove anything, it does suggest his statements should be taken seriously and are more than a baseless rumour.

While this move isn’t unexpected, it is quite disappointing. Nintendo’s home systems have suffered from a lack of games, and support from 3rd party developers. Surely, their experience with the Wii U would shift their focus to a more traditional console without expensive gimmicks based on raw performance and enticing games. I hope this story ends up being false, but I’m not too hopeful.

Thank you NintendoLife for providing us with this information. 

Miyamoto Not Working on Nintendo NX

Nintendo’s creator extraordinaire Shigeru Miyamoto has revealed that he is not participating in the development of the company’s next gaming console, codenamed the NX. Instead, the brains behind Mario, Donkey Kong, and The Legend of Zelda, is concentrating his energies on developing games for the new hardware.

“I’ve pulled myself back out of some of the hardware section and I’m really focused on some of the software that I’m involved in—for example, the new Starfox game,” Miyamoto revealed. “Of course I am observing and looking at the hardware, but I am not actively participating and making decisions.”

It seems that Nintendo may have learnt a valuable lesson from the subjective failure of the Wii U: the company spent so much time and effort in developing the hardware that it totally neglected the software. Poor sales of the console only picked up a couple of years after its launch with the release of titles such as Mario Kart 8 and Super Smash Bros. for Wii U.

Miyamoto, however, puts the Wii U’s lack of success down to other factors, specifically the rise of tablet computing. “I feel like people never really understood the concept behind Wii U and what we were trying to do,” he said. “I think the assumption is we were trying to create a game machine and a tablet and really what we were trying to do was create a game system that gave you tablet-like functionality for controlling that system and give you two screens that would allow different people in the living room to play in different ways. […] Unfortunately, because tablets, at the time, were adding more and more functionality and becoming more and more prominent, this system and this approach didn’t mesh well with the period in which we released it.”

Thank you Fortune for providing us with this information.

Nintendo NX May Be a Home Console

Nintendo announced a few months ago that they are working on a brand new platform called “NX”. The company hasn’t told us any more details, and never confirmed if we can expect it to be a home console or new portable system.

Recent comments made by Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime caught our eye when interviewed by The Wall Street Journal.

“We’ve also said publicly that we are already hard at work on our next home console and that’s another element we’ll be talking about much later.”

It’s pretty obvious what this may mean, it’s a very strong hint and maybe confirmation that this all new Nintendo NX will be a console rather than a handheld device. What will it look like? what will it do? we have no idea.

With any luck, it will pack some of the features of the Wii U, but in a much more hardcore console. Nintendo is very good when it comes to consoles, but they’re nowhere near the same league as Xbox and PS4 when it comes to the latest games. They’re amazing for family and group fun but try to play a fast paced FPS on it and you may as well give up.

What do you think Nintendo are up to behind the scenes?

Thank you to NintendoEverything for providing us with this information

Nintendo Denies NX Will Run Android OS

A report emerged yesterday, courtesy of Japanese business site Nikkei, that Nintendo was considering using an Android operating system with its new console, codenamed NX. However, a Nintendo spokesperson has categorically denied that Nintendo’s in-development hardware will sport the Google-made OS. “There is no truth to the report saying that we are planning to adopt Android for NX,” the Nintendo spokesperson’s curt statement reads.

The original report from Nikkei suggested that Nintendo’s reasons for considering Android as a viable operating system for the NX were to take advantage of the sheer volume of software available for Android systems, while giving “developers more flexibility in making content that can also be on smartphones and tablets.”

Android has certainly grown from its humble beginnings as an operating system for mobile phones, since spreading to tablets, televisions, wearable tech, and even game consoles, so adoption by Nintendo would not have come as a great surprise, especially since both the Wii and Wii U have been criticised for their ungainly user interfaces.

Nintendo is keen to launch a new game console after the Wii U failed to meet sales expectations, despite strong demand following the release of Mario Kart 8 and Super Smash Bros. for Wii U, and is pinning its hopes on the NX, described as a “dedicated game platform with a brand-new concept.”

Thank you Wall Street Journal for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of Wired.

Nintendo NX to Run Android OS?

Reports suggest that Nintendo’s next console could boast an Android operating system. The in-development Nintendo system, codenamed the NX, might opt for the Google-made OS in an effort to give “developers more flexibility in making content that can also be on smartphones and tablets,” according to Japanese business news site Nikkei (translation courtesy of NeoGaf user duckroll).

Nintendo’s current-gen console, the Wii U, has been a commercial failure, despite strong sales following the release of popular titles Mario Kart 8 and Super Smash Bros. for Wii U., so the company are eager to move on to its next innovation.

The NX is described as a “dedicated game platform with a brand-new concept” by Nintendo President Satoru Iwata during the reveal that the company was working on mobile games, though he added that “It is too early to elaborate on the details of this project, but we hope to share more information with you next year.” During a sales call earlier in the month, Iwata said, “we are calling it a ‘new concept,’ we are not thinking of this as a ‘simple replacement’ for the 3DS or the Wii U,” adding that the NX will not be revealed at this year’s E3. We do know, however, that the NX could be region-free, based on comments Iwata made during that same sales call.

Nintendo’s venture into mobile gaming, in partnership with DeNA, should see its first release by the end of this year.

Thank you IGN for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of TechCrunch.

Nintendo Says 3DS Won’t Become Region-Free, But the NX Could Be

Nintendo President Satoru Iwata has revealed that, despite calls to make its consoles region-free, that the handheld 3DS will remain locked. However, he admitted that there is a chance that the company’s new, in-development console, codenamed the NX, could be region-free.

During a recent investors meeting, Iawata was asked:

“When you were asked if you would lift the region locks at the Financial Results Briefing six months ago, you answered that you would take it into consideration. Please explain the current situation.”

Iwata answered:

“My understanding is that it is not realistic on the existing video game systems because unlocking them after they are already on the market poses a number of hurdles. On the other hand, regarding NX, we understand that many consumers hold such opinions and such suggestions exist in the market, and although we have nothing concrete at the moment, we are internally analyzing what hurdles exist to lifting region locks. That is the situation right now. We acknowledge your request, and I personally want to give it positive consideration.”

Great news about a potential region-free NX, but it’s a shame about the 3DS. Thankfully, for those of us unconcerned about voiding warranties, there is a simple home hack to break the region lock on your 3DS:

Thank you Kotaku for providing us with this information.

No Nintendo Console Reveal at This Year’s E3

Nintendo’s President and CEO Satoru Iwata has revealed there will be no news regarding the company’s new console, nicknamed the NX, forthcoming this year.

“We do not plan on talking specifics about the NX until 2016,” Iwata said at a recent investor’s meeting, from a translation courtesy of Kotaku.

“Presently, we cannot talk about the time period when it [the NX] will go on sale or what it’s like,” Iwata told investors. “Because we are calling it a ‘new concept,’ we are not thinking of this as a ‘simple replacement’ for the 3DS or the Wii U.”

“Incidentally, we’re getting various questions for this year’s E3, like ‘Won’t there be a NX announcement?’, ‘Will there be a presentation on smart devices?’, or ‘Will there be more on the quality of life platform?’ However, since we understand that E3 is an event for dedicated video game machines, we do not intend to discuss the smart devices as well as quality of life,” he continued.

Iwata added that he didn’t want anyone thinking that Nintendo was abandoning its game consoles after announcing a deal with DeNA to produce a series of mobile games, assuring both investors and fans that the “new concept” NX will definitely be revealed in 2016.

Thank you Kotaku for providing us with this information.

Nintendo to Launch First Smartphone Game This Year – Four More by 2017

Ninendo CEO and president Satoru Iwata has announced that its partnership with publisher DeNA will see five mobile games released by 2017, the first of which will be out this year. Nintendo and DeNA will also release a cross-platform gaming service for smartphones, tablets, and PCs, as well as Nintendo’s 3DS, Wii U, and its in-development NX console.

Iwata insists that Nintendo’s mobile games will not be ports of previous titles, instead being built from scratch. “If we were simply to port software that already has a track record on a dedicated game system, it would not match the play styles of smart devices, and the appropriate business models are different between the two, so we would not anticipate a great result,” Iwata said. “If we did not aim to achieve a significant result, it would be meaningless for us to do it at all. Accordingly, we are going to carefully select appropriate IP and titles for our smart device deployment.”

“Regarding the number of the titles, you may want to know that we will release approximately five titles by the end of the next fiscal year, which is the end of March 2017,” Iwata continued. “You may think it is a small number, but when we aim to make each title a hit, and because we want to thoroughly operate every one of them for a significant amount of time after their releases, this is not a small number at all and should demonstrate our serious commitment to the smart device business.”

The move marks a big shift in strategy for Nintendo, with the company hoping to maintain a level of success after posting a profit for the first time in four years recently.

Thank you Android Central for providing us with this information.

SpeedLink Medusa NX 5.1 Headset Review

Today is the turn of a headset, but from a company you have probably not heard of much or even at all, in fact excluding this one recent news story then they have not been mentioned on this site. This is mainly due to them being very focused on their own German market.

That is not to say they are a small company, in fact Speedlink have one of the largest collections of products I have ever seen. To put this into perspective under ‘Headsets’ they have 31 different products – although several are the same model in different colours, this is still a lot of products.

Speedlink have  included a nice, circular, carry bag, and as the headset is fold-able it should fit in easily.

This headset is a full 5.1 headset and so we expect it to have a good collection of cables, as such the Medusa NX has front, rear, centre/subwoofer and microphone jacks.

There is also a USB connector to provide  power for the headset, although SpeedLink do make a fully-USB version of this headset.

As we would expect with this type of headset, there is also an in-line remote with plenty of options. This side has 1 on/off switch and two volume controls for the Centre speakers and the Bass Vibration.

 

The other side of the remote has 2 more volume controls for the Front and Rear channels, each control goes from 0 to 10.

Moving to the headset itself, we find a flexible microphone that includes noise cancelling technology for crystal-clear voice transmission.

Each ear cup rotates 90 degrees outwards and folds inwards making them very easy to store away which is especially useful for gamers who take their own peripherals to LAN parties for instance.

The ear cups are made of a soft fabric style padding which make them extremely comfortable to wear especially for long periods of time.

The headband is also well padded, and is fairly springy to help it fold up into a smaller space, perfect for fitting it into the carry case. They have also made it fairly obvious that its made by speedlink due to the rather large lettering on top.

The first thing we did when we got this headset, after plugging it in, was to sit down and watch a good film. This was to test the surround sound and sound quality aspects of the headset, as well as the general comfort and usability of the headset. We then tested this headset during several skype conversations to check the quality of the headsets’ microphone and the noise cancellation system.

The surround sound of this headset is very impressive, and while not the best we have tried it is certainly in the same league. Due to the use of 4 speakers in each ear cup the headset is able to produce a fairly encompassing sound which during films and games allows you to know exactly where the sound is coming from. It did however feel that everything was very close, as if you had 5.1 surround sound set-up in a very small room, or you were fighting in a broom cupboard, the range and depth of sound was just not there when compared with other headsets. The sound quality was also fairly good with a nice tone and decent balance of bass, although when needed the bass can really pack a punch which is very impressive for this size headset.

We also found that the noise cancellation and microphone worked well together and that during skype conversations we were heard very clearly, although we found it very easy to knock the microphone out of place as it rotates a bit too easily. The flexibility of the microphone is certainly useful as you can literally get it into any position you want.

In terms of comfort we found the Medusa Headset really excels, compared to other full 5.1  headsets it is extremely light and so after a few minutes you do forget you are wearing a headset. The ear pads are just the right size that they support some of the weight without crushing your ear and still block some of the external noises.

The price of this headset makes this one of the best value headsets we have ever seen and tested here at eTeknix. For just £48.60 you can have the full surround sound experience which does have pinpoint precision and impressive sound quality as well as punchy bass and full control over each channel. A perfect peripheral for everyones computer demands, whether a serious gamer or just wanting to enjoy films without annoying the neighbours, and at this price, we really couldn’t knock it.