Multi-touch Wii U GamePad would be too 'unwieldy' according to Nintendo president

While Wii U's single touch screen may seem like a step backwards for gamers used to multi-touch offered by their smartphone screens, Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime disagrees.

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The Wii U GamePad's touch screen only supports single touch. While that may seem like a step backwards for gamers used to multi-touch offered by their smartphone screens, Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime disagrees. "We thought that single-touch was a more appropriate option, especially when you've got other button configurations," he said.

Fils-Aime says that the system's multi-screen gameplay makes single touch a better option. "We envision this as a controller that you're putting in your hands and you're doing a two-screen experience. The concept of putting it in your lap to do multi-touch for us just feels unwieldy," he told Kotaku.

Based on our experiences with the Wii U at E3, multi-touch was not a feature that was missed. The screen certainly felt responsive to touch commands--whether using a stylus or a finger.

While Fils-Aime argues that multi-touch while looking at multiple screens may be cumbersome, he does admit that there's another potential reason for the feature's omission: "Certainly there's a cost to it," he said. Given Nintendo has yet to announce the price of the system or the GamePad, many are wondering exactly how much Nintendo's foray into the next gen will cost.

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  • reply
    June 11, 2012 3:45 PM

    Andrew Yoon posted a new article, Multi-touch Wii U GamePad would be too 'unwieldy' according to Nintendo president.

    While Wii U's single touch screen may seem like a step backwards for gamers used to multi-touch offered by their smartphone screens, Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime disagrees.

    • reply
      June 11, 2012 6:49 PM

      It's not about using the newest tech available. Just because the latest and greatest exists, doesn't mean it must be used. Nintendo has always been about maximizing gameplay with what's given.

      They call it "Lateral thinking with withered technology".

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        June 11, 2012 6:50 PM

        What I am really looking for are games that are indicative of controller hardware. They generally did not meet what was wanted out of the WiiMote. Mario Galaxy games and Zelda games are essentially using the same gameplay model they've been using since the N64 which is a bad thing. If you are going to redefine the controller, you have to redefine the game as well.

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        June 11, 2012 7:27 PM

        is that why they decided to update the Wiimote with motion plus later on?

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          June 11, 2012 11:04 PM

          Like I said, they didn't adhere to this very well with the Wii. The design principle was there and so was the development, but the implementation was garbage.

          They made the wii and wiimote but failed to prepare themselves with design of game mechanics for major titles. They made a bunch of mini games and thought they could think of something later or came in with the full intent to stick to old gameplay mechanics with slight adjustments.

          The fact that their first killer app at launch was Twilight Princess, a game originally designed and later released for the gamecube, is very indicative of the latter thought process. Replace button tap with waggle, call it revolutionary.

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            June 11, 2012 11:32 PM

            In general, not having multi touch is a bad idea.
            Everyone expects it and it really limits devs to only get one touch input.

            Not smart.

            I wonder if it's price or scared of Apple's patent lawsuits?

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              June 12, 2012 1:38 AM

              Likely price point. One serious positive point with the withered technology philosophy is the ability to produce product sold at profit. That means unlike most consoles, a nintendo unit can sell and gain profit on the console's sale rather than relying on sales of software to make up for deficit.

              The funny thing is, Nintendo is mostly known for its first party software. Of all companies, Nintendo should be the least worried about not making up deficit from software.

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                June 12, 2012 12:33 PM

                That's fine, but we shouldn't praise Nintendo for productizing out of date hardware to profit and sacrifice usability for the types of games most Shackers want to play.

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          June 12, 2012 6:38 AM

          fuckin deathofrats

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            June 12, 2012 10:02 AM

            hello stalker

            • reply
              June 12, 2012 11:15 AM

              you post several thousand times a day and you shit on every nintendo post (and most other posts) so i guess every poster on this site is your stalker

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      June 11, 2012 7:25 PM

      Well obviously they are saving that for the 18 month replacement WiiUPlus that adds advanced functionality, just in time for the newest Zelda in which you need multitouch to guide your boomerang and pinch to pick up insects.


      What a joke.

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      June 12, 2012 3:37 AM

      Multi-Touch is not needed , and it would make 3rd parties to use it like a tablet instead of controls.

      This is a very good idea. Multi-touch is for tablets, this is not a tablet.

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      June 13, 2012 1:06 AM

      It's stupid not to include it since they have the option now. Even if it's something that most games never take advantage of, if you've got the choice to future proof and add functionality to your product then why not? Why put yourself in a situation where you could be looking at a repeat of the Wii Motion Plus or that cradle for the DS that adds a second stick?