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One Touchscreen Only Confirmed On Wii U

It's my turn to have an analogue stick!

Miyamoto, the legendary Nintendo idea factory, has confirmed to an Australian news site that the Wii U will only feature one of the new tablet-style controllers per console. Apparently, the controller configurations are not yet set in stone and Nintendo are still looking into ways of allow you to take your Wii U tablet to use on a friends a console but the language used implies that this might be limited use, if at all.

They’re also looking into the possibility of allowing players to use a 3DS as an extra controller but the initial plan is simply to allow one tablet controller with extra players using Wii Remote Plus controllers.

This seems like an excellent way to allow a less costly upgrade path from the current Wii console but one which might disappoint many existing Wii owners who have grown accustomed to the multiplayer aspects on offer.

It also raises questions about controlling single-screen multiplayer games like fighting and football franchises. There are enough buttons, sticks and triggers on the tablet controller to enjoy a game of FIFA but if player two has to make do with a Wii Remote Plus, there’s going to be fights in front of the flatscreen.

Source: News.com.au via CVG

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  1. djhsecondnature
    Since: Forever

    Seems like a step backwards to me. Going from the ‘group’ play appeal of the Wii to the just ‘U’ play of the Wii U. Still not overly impressed.

    Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 15:09.
    • JesseDeya
      Since: Jan 2010

      Totally agree. I had this argument today actually, I was complaining that the Wii U doesn’t seem to be embracing the connected world (which it seems not to be). The counter argument was that ‘hey, Wii has always been about social interaction in the same room, not isolating people’. The thing is, only one touch screen thingy means you’re automatically isolating everyone else – or at least giving them a watered down experience.

      Oh, and I’m sure only having one awesome screen controller thingy per console won’t cause kids (and adults) to fight :).

      Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 15:15.
    • colossalblue
      Team TSA: Editor
      Since: Forever

      yes, I am hugely impressed with the imaginative uses they mocked-up for the show and I think it could be really amazing but it seems odd that they’re going from equal group play to this kind of system of elevating of one player above others. Or just saying “no, play by yourself now”. Although, all the old party game Wii stuff will still work with a handful of Wii Remotes (Plus…)
      I am losing some enthusiasm for it though.

      Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 15:17.
      • djhsecondnature
        Since: Forever

        Really? I watched it back and thought… meh. I love the idea of having a map whilst playing Battlefield or an inventory for Zelda but thinking it’s more a nice tickbox rather than the selling point.

        My “ooo I might want this” is quickly turning into a “oh dear…”

        Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 15:27.
    • Tuffcub
      On the naughty step.
      Since: Dec 2008

      I just don’t see how having a screen on the controller is a good idea – you can only look at one screen at a time so what’s the point? If you’re playing a fps the last thing you want to do is to have to glance down to check a map.

      Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 15:27.
    • retro_
      Since: Jul 2009

      Nintendo needed to come up with a ‘new’ control concept and this is it. My personal view when all is said and done is that you cannot beat the good old fashioned Dual Shock 3, it does exactly what it said on the tin.

      Comment posted on 10/06/2011 at 14:41.
  2. colmshan1990
    Since: Apr 2009

    There should be an option for more.
    I know there can be nasty arguments over who gets which controller with local games.

    Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 15:10.
  3. jayjay119
    Since: Apr 2010

    Forgive me but the more I hear about this the more I lose faith! Only one per console? it just seems rather silly to me that the main controler for the system could be so limited.

    Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 15:11.
  4. Klart
    Since: Jun 2010

    And down go the stocks…

    Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 15:16.
  5. Armonster9000
    Since: Feb 2010

    It’s ok, the PSVita is here to save us.

    Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 15:40.
    • cam the man
      Since: May 2009

      That’s the one I want.

      Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 22:23.
  6. hazelam
    Since: Feb 2009

    so that’s why they called it U.

    seriously, it’s one step forward, two steps back with nintendo.

    they’re getting rid of the friend codes, but no hard drive and now only one of the main controllers per machine.

    i’m guessing there’s a technical reason why, maybe bandwidth or having the processing power to generate the graphics for more than one pad screen as well as outputting to the tv.
    but still, nintendo should have planned for some way to provide more than one.

    seems like a sacrifice made for the sake of making the console cheaper to make.

    Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 15:43.
  7. teflon
    Community Team
    Since: May 2009

    This doesn’t make sense. Unless you can have 4 WiiU controllers hooked up at the same time it’s a bit silly, and will kill a lot of the local MP possibilities.

    I think the reason for this is more to do with wireless than the main console’s hardware. It has to push a lot of data constantly to the WiiU controller, and is likely doing so on an already established frequency set, probably a mix between 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz. The more devices, the more bandwidth it has to put out, and the increasing likelihood that you’ll encounter interference from other things, restricting how wide a frequency set you can use and so on.

    The main way to get local, individual screen based multiplayer, then would be to have the processing done on the handheld, and be able to use much lower bandwidth. That’s where the 3DS could come in, or for Sony the NGP (or even the PSP, really), for some cross platform play.

    This shortcoming definitely diminishes the appeal of the WiiU for me.

    Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 16:04.
    • ruinereraser
      Since: Nov 2009

      I’d rather assume Wii U controller will be communicating via Bluetooth rather than Wi-Fi, just like Wii Remotes? BT version 3.1 has enough bandwith (40Mb/s) to handle this surely?

      Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 22:09.
  8. david
    Since: Apr 2010

    Nintendo want their cake and eat it. They want a console with technological poweress with out loosing money on a single unit unlike MS and Sony.

    Its going to backfire this time because its confusing for the normal consumer why they can only use one tablet-like controller instead of 2 or 3 or 4 like a 360 or PS3.

    Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 16:08.
    • hazelam
      Since: Feb 2009

      isn’t it like 7 for the ps3?

      Comment posted on 10/06/2011 at 10:19.
  9. cc_star
    Team TSA: Writer
    Since: Forever

    I think the ability to use the 3DS as a controller with a screen will implemented

    And surely they’ll allow at least two of WiiU controllers once the specs get finalised, other than that the ability to use your existing peripherals is brilliant, although I think they should lock it to Wii Motion + only so as devs aren’t forced to cater for the huge inaccuracies on non+ controllers

    Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 16:23.
    • djhsecondnature
      Since: Forever

      But they’ve said it won’t… And using the 3DS controller as a screen is hardly cost efficient. By that use, the PS3 and Vita may be a far more viable option surely.

      Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 16:30.
      • Watchful
        Team TSA: Writer
        Since: Oct 2008

        But if you’ve already got a 3DS anyway, cost efficiency isn’t an issue. You’d have an extra touchscreen controller for your Wii U console for no direct additional cost.

        Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 23:56.
    • david
      Since: Apr 2010

      What if one doesn’t have a 3DS or DS etc? What then? I think this needs to be looked at critically and rightly so instead of looking for work arounds.

      Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 19:08.
    • Mason_Mk
      Since: Feb 2010

      You sound hopeful, but truth is this is what they have confirmed now and that’s the way it seems. A 3DS wouldn’t be that good since it’ll loose the large screen, the right nub and 2 of the back buttons.

      Personally I think this should’ve been an extension of the wii, not a new console. But i suppose that isn’t possible because they need the bandwidth, power and graphics to make it possible.

      Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 19:36.
      • cc_star
        Team TSA: Writer
        Since: Forever

        The “its not set in stone” leads me to believe they can revisit it and see if they can make it work within their budget… maybe

        Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 23:27.
    • hazelam
      Since: Feb 2009

      but the 3ds only has one set of shoulder buttons and only one analog control.

      that limits it from being used as a second controller if some of the controls aren’t there.

      Comment posted on 10/06/2011 at 10:21.
  10. R4U Eldave0
    Since: Aug 2008

    Hmm, that does sound like a crappy limitation. Nintendo’s big focus has always been local multiplayer (Mario Kart/Tennis/Party, etc + countless mini-game collections) so this does sound like a step backwards.
    Still think the overall tech is wicked though ;)

    Comment posted on 09/06/2011 at 16:26.

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