Nintendo's NX: The Story So Far

Steve Anderson : End Game
Steve Anderson
The Video Store Guy
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Nintendo's NX: The Story So Far

For those who got to wondering if maybe Nintendo wasn't planning to cut bait on the Wii U, there's a little more to suggest that Nintendo might be getting ready to throw in the towel on this round of the console wars, accept third place with dignity, and regroup for the next generation. Word has emerged around that next generation in the form of the NX, said to be Nintendo's next gaming device. But what's known about this device so far?

According to word straight out of Satoru Iwata, the company is actively developing the new system, and has brought in some help in a new partnership with mobile game firm DeNA. The partnership will be developing a membership service that's not only geared toward the 3DS and the Wii U, but also smart devices, PCs, and the newly-revealed NX.

The NX is described as a "dedicated game platform with a brand new concept", though just what that new concept was was kept very close to the vest. Iwata noted that Nintendo "...hope(s) to share more information with you next year."

So what we know right now is not much, but there's a possibility opening up here that's particularly noteworthy. In much the same way that Microsoft was looking to narrow the gap between PC and Xbox titles, perhaps Nintendo's looking to do likewise with Wii U, 3DS, the NX and mobile devices. It's been suggested more than once--and usually out of my own mouth--that Nintendo has an absolutely staggering amount of IP out there, and bringing it more into play would be a welcome development, particularly in the form of a subscription streaming service or a one-and-done pay structure.

What's more, the Wii U's performance has somewhat shown that Nintendo's competition attempts for the "core gamer" console market have been less than stellar, so going after the mobile gamer market might just be the solution to a lot of Nintendo's ails. Further, what if it kept its big name properties in play for the console market, but as a developer? Consider the new Legend of Zelda game, a huge open-world affair, playable on the PS4 or the Xbox One? Now that's a concept worth considering too!

So whatever the NX finally looks like, it's likely to be quite a bit different from the consoles we've seen from Nintendo in the past. It's going to be something worth watching, no doubt, but it's almost certainly not going to look like the devices we're familiar with from Nintendo.

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