The Wii U generation had a lot of potential but its life was eventually cut short due to poor sales of the system. One thing that has never been expanded is the ability to play with not just one console, but two gamepads at the same time – allowing players to huddle together to do some action on the dual screen.
While Nintendo acknowledged that was possible, many were left wondering why this feature didn’t appear at all. In a recent interview with YouTube, MINMAXAmy, former president of Nintendo of America, Reggie Phils, has made this clear. yes, Technically GamePads can communicate with the Wii U, but other factors such as the system install base, age, and the lack of games or unique ideas for such a feature played a role. Here is the full exchange:
MinnMax: When you first unveiled the Wii U, everyone was asking you – can we use multiple Wii U GamePads? And in the end, it was fun, because the messages just came out and you guys [Nintendo] Everyone said “Yeah, yeah, sure you can, here we go”… It was never asked again, and it was never implemented to the best of my knowledge… How was that from your point of view?
Reggie: Well, what was interesting was that with the Wii U, there was a complete development plan for all the interesting interactions and all the interesting capabilities that the system could do, and in this case, could multiple GamePads technically communicate with the Wii U? The answer was “yes”, but the install base wasn’t large enough for this kind of implementation to make sense. More importantly, the company didn’t create a game where you needed another GamePad in order to get a great experience, and development never lasted and ended up being very short in the life of the Wii U, and it never did. … in order for these initiatives to come to life (at least from a Nintendo perspective) there has to be a game driving this app that enables the player to see why you need a second GamePad as an example, and that game creation process is just very critical.
So there you go, it comes down to the low install base and lifespan as well as the usual case of needing a game that uses the feature properly in order to support it. If you’d like to learn more about Nintendo’s Wii U generation, Reggie’s new book offers more ideas:
Would you like to see this feature rolled out? Have you been supporting Nintendo yourself during the Wii U generation? Leave a comment below.