As for details, there are none. But according to Bloomberg, Nintendo President Satoru Iwata suggested that the new console won’t simply be a more powerful piece of hardware than the Wii. “We would like to propose a new approach to home video game consoles,” he said. Iwata added that it’s “difficult to make 3-D images a key feature, because 3-D televisions haven’t obtained wide acceptance yet.” Cryptic.
Still, there are plenty of rumors to fill the void of official information. IGN reported that the Wii successor, code named Project Cafe, will include a button-laden controller with a 6-inch touch screen in the middle, prompting the mock-up pictured above. The console will reportedly stream games to the controller’s screen. CVG reported a similar rumor. As for the console itself, IGN’s unnamed sources said it would look like a modernized Super Nintendo and support 1080p graphics. Based on manufacturing costs, sources estimated a retail price of $350 to $400 (the original Wii cost $250 at launch).
All of this corroborates what IGN reported in the original round of rumors, that Nintendo will try to “recapture the hardcore market” with its new console. If that’s true, it would be a huge change of course for Nintendo. For now, I’m wagering that Nintendo’s next console will retain some hooks for casual players.
A few other questions, in no particular order:
- Will Nintendo finally rethink online, social gaming, or will it persist with the antiquated friend code system found on the Wii and 3DS?
- Will the new console be a multimedia hub, like the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360, or will Nintendo continue to focus mainly on games?
- With Nintendo shifting focus to a new console, can we all finally declare that the Wii Vitality Sensor was vaporware?