The Nintendo NX is due to hit the market in March 2017, providing rivalry to the forthcoming PlayStation Neo, and Xbox Scorpio which is expected to arrive in the latter half of next year. Nintendo always likes to do something a little different from its competitors, so it will be interesting to see what the Japanese manufacturer has in mind for this next generation console.
Pokémon and Mario coming
Nintendo fans will be delighted by the latest news on the Nintendo NX, which is that there will be new Pokémon and Mario games arriving within six months of the launch of the console. According to MCV, there will be new Pokémon and Mario titles arriving in September 2017, which will obviously be massive for the viability of this hardware. GameFreak, the studio behind the original Pokémon Red and Blue, will be working on this software, while Nintendo’s own in-house team will deliver the Mario title as usual.
Additionally Sega, Square Enix, Ubisoft, Activision and Warner Bros will all apparently provide “third party support”, which it seems reasonable to assume will come in the shape of new NX games. Sega is currently working on a new Sonic title, and this may indeed appear on the Nintendo NX in the early weeks and months of the system’s lifespan.
Nintendo NX Launch date
Nintendo has already confirmed that the NX will launch in March 2017, and it is also believed that it could be unveiled for the first time during the imminent Tokyo Games Show. This critical Asian trade show begins on September 15 this year, and the general media consensus is that we will learn more about the Nintendo NX at this conference.
Nintendo has also indicated that the next Legend of Zelda will launch on both the Wii U and the NX simultaneously. Some people consider the Zelda title Ocarina of Time to be the greatest video game of all-time, so the appearance of the next title in the series will obviously be extremely exciting for Nintendo fans.
Pricing and pre-order
Nintendo traditionally launches its machines at more affordable price points than its console rivals, and this is likely to continue with the Nintendo NX. However, the paltry prices which we charge for such consoles as the Nintendo Wii and Nintendo DS will likely not continue with this next generation machine. Gaming industry analyst suggests that the Nintendo NX could retail at a 50 percent higher price point than the Wii U, which would translate to an approximate $300 price point in the United States. Some have even suggested that the ultimate retail price could be closer to $350.
There hasn’t been a huge amount of information released about the design of the Nintendo NX, but the Japanese company firstly indicated that it will be a new concept. This obviously suggests that there will be a significant redesign of the physical visage of the Nintendo NX in comparison to previous systems from the company. But some analysts have still suggested that the exterior of the console will be somewhat similar to the existing Wii U.
Meanwhile, patents filed by Nintendo regarding the Nintendo NX controller have been found online. The first patent from the US Patent Office outlines hardware with two control sticks and a presumably touchscreen LED display in the center. This new controller also seems to feature only two buttons, which would be a major departure from the standard video game controller featured in other systems. The left and right shoulder buttons have also been replaced by two scrollable wheels, also suggesting that Nintendo is serious about delivering a different gameplay experience with the NX.
Some have suggested that this control patent could be an entirely different system altogether, so we will have to wait for Nintendo to shed more light on the subject at Tokyo. A report from Eurogamer also suggests that the Nintendo NX could be more portable than traditional consoles, featuring a built-in display, and a design enabling controllers to detach from the device itself. This would explain the screen included in the leaked patent, and suggest that Nintendo is again attempting to ensure this is a family-friendly console.
While Sony and Microsoft concentrate on virtual reality and producing beefed-up versions of their PlayStation 4 and Xbox One consoles, Nintendo is likely to depart from the norm with the Nintendo NX. Indeed, the sadly late Satoru Iwata, the Japanese video game programmer and businessman who served as the fourth president and CEO of Nintendo, had already indicated the distaste of the company for upgrading hardware back in 2014.
Iwata stated that “if you only expand upon existing hardware, it’s dull”, and went on to explain that Nintendo is “in some shape or form, we’re always thinking about how we want to surprise players as well as our desire to change each person’s video gaming life.”
Nintendo’s president, Tatsumi Kimishima, has also emphasized that this will be an entirely new concept, and not a console which should be considered a success to either the Wii U or the hugely successful Nintendo 3DS. “The NX is neither the successor to the Wii U nor to the 3DS. It’s a new way of playing games, which I think will have a larger impact than the Wii U, but I don’t feel it’s a pure replacement for the Wii U,” Kimishima commented.
Expect mobility, flexibility, and a completely different ethos to the console mainstream when the Nintendo NX is released.
Specs and games
The consensus of opinion on the Nintendo NX is that the console will be approximately as powerful as the existing PlayStation 4. This would enable Nintendo to deliver its unique brand of gaming in full HD. Nintendo’s combination of proprietary hardware and software usually enables its consoles to pack a punch significantly above its specifications, so this will whet the appetite for the next generation Nintendo NX.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Dragon Quest X and Dragon Quest XI, courtesy of Square Enix are the only games to be confirmed for the Nintendo NX thus far, but Nintendo will also be working on numerous titles internally, not least the aforementioned Pokémon and Mario games.