This is an opinion article. Nothing has been announced that absolutely confirms that the Nintendo NX VR concept is real. There’s only circumstantial reasons to believe Nintendo is designing the NX with VR capabilities.
There are many reasons to point towards the Nintendo NX being VR capable in some form. Nintendo could’ve started developement for on the NX’s VR support late in the R&D phase. Virtual reality has been on the rise with launches of the HTC Vive, Oculus Rift and the resent launch of the PlayStation VR. While sales for these devices have been steady so far the saturation or player pool remains small at the moment. Nintendo originally pioneered VR with the Virtual Boy back in 1995. While shunned and rejected by most gaming journalists, players and Nintendo, the Virtual Boy was a first small step towards framing a virtual reality experience for home use. Nintendo’s interest in VR technology is chronicled throughout it’s history. Here’s our top 5 reasons to expect the Nintendo NX to be VR capable.
Top 5 Virtual Reality (VR) NX Reasons
- Nintendo History Suggests VR – Like the above paragraph explained, Nintendo’s history suggests it has a deep fascination with immersing players in virtual worlds.
- The Nintendo 3DS – Nothing suggests Nintendo’s interest in virtual reality than having an entire system dedicated to augmented reality and glasses-free 3D technology. The Nintendo 3DS has some really important patents covering it’s glasses-free screen technology. The screen tech could become a crucial aspect of the NX’s VR add-on, cutting the costs and giving Nintendo many other advantages. Nintendo and it’s partners know how to make games that really pop and shine on the 3DS. Nintendo would be able to leverage years of 3DS game development to make NX VR something truly special.
- Report on Digitimes – A report on digitimes suggested that Nintendo delayed the NX manufacturing process because it wanted to add in VR functionality. This should be taken as a rumor only.
- The Technology Is Ready, The Virtual Boy Legacy – Nintendo attempted to brand VR back in the 90’s. Nintendo has hinted that one of the biggest reasons why the Virtual Boy failed was that the technology wasn’t there. Over the last few years we’ve seen Nintendo re-embrace the Virtual Boy. With appearances in Tomodachi Life and Super Smash Bros for the Wii U we’ve seen a new embrace for the Virtual Boy in Nintendo games. Why is this important you ask? Maybe Nintendo is trying to cement itself as one of the earliest pioneers of VR technology. If Nintendo is going to support VR on the NX the company may be trying to put itself in an authoritative source for VR based on several attempts throughout its history.
- The VR Wars Have Started – There are 3 dedicated competitors in the VR wars, Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and PlayStation VR. Nintendo’s early attempts at VR and the 3DS suggest it’s software designers would be ready for VR game development. Nintendo’s patents on the 3DS along with the horsepower and scale-ability of the NX could spell a win-win for Nintendo and the NX. The industry is changing, console makers have to change the game – With smart phones and tablets taking more peoples attention everyday, console makers have to reinvigorate their brands by introducing new technologies. Nintendo has been a huge pioneer in different ways to play, from the Wii remote to the DS and 3DS. To help separate players from their mobile devices Nintendo would be smart to offer as many creative gaming experiences as possible.
In conclusion I’ll leave you thinking with a quote from forbes.com. This quote taken from their article “Nintendo Is Right About VR, Wrong About NX Horsepower“. The quote below suggests Nintendo is taking a wait-and-see approach with VR.
“So the way we look at VR or even AR, which we do have within our Nintendo 3DS system, or us, the technology has to be at a point where it can be mainstream, then it takes content creating companies like us to really make things that the consumer wants to experience, that makes the consumer want to jump into that particular technology. That’s how we move it forward. We’ve been looking at the VR space since the days of the Virtual Boy. With us, we want to make sure that our next content is going to be mainstream, mass market approachable, and when VR is at that point, you can expect Nintendo to be there.”
Nintendo isn’t really known as a company that waits for others to cement the demand for a product, they usually work on something they know the industry will respond to. While Nintendo’s many gambles don’t always workout (Wii U, Virtual Boy etc) Nintendo hasn’t played a mute role in the evolution of gaming. I feel confident a workable / fun Nintendo NX VR solution is in the works!
What do you think, will the Nintendo NX offer VR support? Let us know using the comments below.