Nintendo 3DS right analog stick attachment confirmed

This photo of Japanese gaming magazine Famitsu may seem like a fake. The existence of a right analog stick attachment for the Nintendo 3DS poses many difficult questions for Nintendo. For example, why is Nintendo fracturing its already diminutive 3DS audience? Who would want to use a peripheral that makes the system not only bulky, but asymmetrical? Finally... why?

Unfortunately, this scan is not a fake. Nintendo has confirmed that it is working on the device, to be first used by Monster Hunter 3G, an expanded version of the Wii hit.

The attachment acts as a cradle and adds significant bulk to the device. In addition to a right analog stick, the peripheral adds R1, R2, and L2 buttons. "I am predicting that added bulk, particularly in its thickness, serves as a battery pack, too," Tiny Cartridge postulates. Well, at least that would be some good news, right?

Given Nintendo's penchant for redesigning their portable hardware, some are concerned that Nintendo will eventually make a 3DS system that has all these control options built-in. If that were to happen, developers would have more incentive to utilize controls that early adopters won't have access to without the bulky peripheral. For many, the inability to play future games will undoubtedly outweigh any benefits of the Ambassador Program--announced after Nintendo hastily dropped the retail price of the system by over 25 percent.

A Nintendo UK spokesperson told Edge: "We can confirm that Nintendo does plan to release the attachment but that any further announcements on the attachment will be made at some later time by Nintendo." The announcement is likely to happen at a Nintendo conference happening next week, before Tokyo Game Show.