With the Wii U on the horizon, it’s obvious that Nintendo is ready for a change of pace. While the console may not offer the highest specs available, they definitely are on track to change the way we think about games. We can already see that this is true with Microsoft and their Smart Glass initiative. Perhaps this has been in development for awhile, but from the outside looking in it looks like a quick answer to what Nintendo is doing with Wii U. Will Sony soon follow suit and establish a new standard in console gaming? Only time will tell, but rest assured that it is Nintendo that is leading the way.
The real question of them moment is whether or not developers will take advantage of the new technology made available by having a touch screen at their disposal. The obvious usages that come to mind are using the second screen for a map or an inventory management system, but what else will be implemented in the future? Judging by Nintendo’s E3 showing, they would like gamers to really take in the joys of asynchronous gaming with the new Wii U GamePad, and this is where I think the real potential lies.
Nintendo has put their foot in the pool when it comes to asynchronous gaming once before with GBA to GameCube connectivity, but nothing to the extent of what they are planning with Wii U. Nintendo and their third party partners are only limited by their imaginations as to how they plan to best implement the technology afforded by the Wii U’s GamePad, and this is exactly why the concept of the console is so exciting. Nintendo has caught onto the fact that pushing the technical specifications of a console can only take the company so far, you only have to look the PS3 to see that this is true, and are looking so change the industry’s perception of what playing a game is all about.
Whether Microsoft and Sony follow suit with their own second screen gaming implementations only time will tell. Judging by recent events however, what with the development of Playstation Move and the Xbox Kinect, Nintendo will be leading the way once again with their Wii U initiative. Whether developers find value in developing for the console is another story, and one that should be interesting to see unfold.