If this topic has not been brought to your attention yet, then that would mean you have been living under a rock all this time; Nintendo is planning to release a new console codename “NX”. This new console would be the first of the next generation or it could potentially be a Wii U 2.0. In both cases, it is a lot earlier than expected and the Wii U itself has not reached its fourth anniversary.
I will start by saying the “NX” is not a surprise. Nintendo has been struggling during the 8th generation to sell its console, the Wii U. The Wii U launched a year earlier than its competition and despite some of the best games of the generation, it has not been able to maintain decent sales. At this rate, it might not even reached the all-time sales of GameCube which did not do so well either. It is a disappointing situation for the company that released one of the most successful consoles on the planet, the Wii. It was obvious that Nintendo needed to come up with something new to bring back gamers to their system. We can only hope the “NX” will be what the Wii managed to do after the GameCube.
Enough of a history lesson and let’s look at what we know of the “NX”… well surprisingly enough, not much. For something that keeps being talked about and rumors going astray with fake images going around, we actually know nothing. Nintendo has been very tight lipped on the new console and while we do know that software development kits (SDKs) have been distributed to third party developers, they themselves have not talked hardware. There are also quite a few patents that came from Nintendo, which could allegedly relate to the NX. Of interest, the patent regarding a disc-less system and another patent regarding a possible hardware add-on that could be shared with users and provide additional processing power. The last patent caused quite a stir when people made fake images and a replica of what is described in the patent. That specific patent relate to a controller with its surface as a touch screen, 2 stick and perhaps a few buttons. You can check the patents and get excited at what this could mean, but keep in mind that companies file patents all the time and does not necessarily use them. We will know more about the “NX” in the coming months as Nintendo ramps up the information surrounding their mysterious new venture in preparation for E3 with a full reveal during their press conference. That is at least what everyone is currently expecting to happen. Moreover, I agree with everyone on this, Nintendo is set to make the reveal this year.
If you have not seen this yet, analysts (Nomura Securities analyst Junko Yamamura (via Barron’s Asia)) are now saying the “NX” is bound to be launched in late 2016. Well you know what, it will be the case. No I have no official source of what I am saying but I will provide reasons behind this. The “NX” will launch in November 2016. My friends and colleagues have been hearing me say the same thing over and over since the delay of Zelda U and there is a good reason behind this. First, the delay of The Legend of Zelda for Wii U to the end of 2016 was a big indication that something was in the works. Nintendo had stated a release for 2015 and they rarely go back on their dates. There is also the fact that The Legend of Zelda for Wii U still does not have a subtitle. The title has seen little attention since and this lack of attention points toward a release on the “NX”. It would be logical to have this title as one of the launch titles for a new console and it would ensure the system would sell. Yet, The Legend of Zelda releasing on the “NX” also means that fans of the series would not purchase a Wii U when they can just get a brand new system. To further support this, a report from Japan Nikkei indicate Nintendo would stop production of the Wii U console by the end of 2016 while still selling their remaining stock. Nintendo has since denied the report however this denial does not mean that it is not what they intend to do. A more obscure report from Digitimes claims that manufacturers have been asked to produce component so Nintendo could be ready to ship 20 million units by the end of 2016; a very big order and one that would become a monumental loss of revenue if it were to sit in warehouses until 2017. The Wii U has also been scarce if you go by the availability on some of the online retailers. They barely keep any in stock sometimes sitting at one unit for a while or having to restock of the bundles. Amazon.com for example had one unit for the normal deluxe set on March 25th and was out of Super Smash Bros and Splatoon bundle. More proof perhaps that Nintendo is really looking to ship and sell the “NX” in 2016? Of course!
So while we know nothing of what Nintendo has planned for the “NX” and can only speculate based on a few patents and our own fantasy, one thing for sure is 2016 will be the year of the “NX” and by the end of this year, we will have one in our hands. I will look forward to giving you all my first impressions on the first ninth generation console! For those of you who want to refute this, please go ahead and tell us when you think we can expect the “NX” to release.