Iwata: Upcoming Nintendo consoles and handhelds could have an “integrated” development platform

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Nintendo’s next game console and handheld device could be “integrated” into a common development platform similar to Apple’s iOS or Google’s Android, company president Satoru Iwata said in a statement. call to investors Last week.

The question-and-answer session followed a presentation from Nintendo officials regarding the company’s poor third quarter financial results.

In response to a question from an analyst who highlighted Iwata’s previously expressed concern of losing customers when Nintendo introduces new hardware platforms, Iwata said that last year Nintendo restructured its research and development groups. . Now the development teams for both handhelds and consoles exist under a division headed by senior general manager Genyo Takeda. According to Iwata, “the vast technological advances” of recent years have enabled Nintendo “to achieve a good degree of architectural integration.”

Iwata also acknowledged that “a huge effort” is required to port the Wii games to Nintendo 3DS, or the 3DS titles to Wii U, as the three systems are “entirely different” in their display resolutions and development environments. .

“If the transition of software from one platform to another can be simplified, it will help address the problem of games shortages during the launch periods of new platforms,” Iwata said.

Nintendo wants to advance what it has done with the Wii U, according to Iwata, instead of starting from scratch with something new. “While we will only be able to start this with the next system, it will become important for us to accurately leverage what we have done with the Wii U architecture,” Iwata said, adding that the plan should break down the walls between home consoles and handhelds so that they become “like brothers in a family of systems”.

Iwata does not yet know if Nintendo will also integrate the form factor of its next platforms to produce a single hybrid device between handheld and console; which will be determined by consumer demand. He cited iOS and Android as examples of platforms that allow developers to release the same software to a wide variety of devices, and said, “Nintendo platforms should look like these two examples.”


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