wii u black gamepad -

The Wii U GamePad screen will not offer multi-touch functionality, now seen as normal with touchscreen devices, but Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime doesn't see this as a problem.

"When we went through the building of this and, given some of the functionality, we thought that single-touch was a more appropriate option, especially when you've got other button configurations," Fils-Aime told Kotaku.

Asked whether the decision came down to cutting costs, he added: "Certainly there's a cost to it. Again, 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."

VideoGamer.com Analysis

I think Reggie has a point. The 3DS seems just fine without multi-touch, and the only iOS games we can think of which require multi-touch are those with on-screen control systems – which the Wii U GamePad obviously won't need because of the physical controller elements.

Pinch zooming will be lacking, but this would only be a problem on web browsing and image manipulation.

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MJTH's Avatar

MJTH@ Endless

We live in a world where people shout out they would like "the option" to do something. Lots of parents and indeed regular people don't like putting in there bank details on anything computerised that isn't a cash machine. Having the ability to walk down to the shop to get a card to allow you to buy a downloadable product is an option a lot of people would like, and makes a lot of sense. It would much simpler then typing a code. Just swipe the card on the NFC reader and it could instantly take you to the online store to download the game. Or better yet download the game in the background. Retail may be on the decline, but it certainly isn't dead and companies still sell gift cards and points vouchers for a reason!

On to multi touch, Rayman legends has already shown that rhythm action games can work on single touch to some degree. And six DS games later layton has made a fuss about single touch. Resistive screens aren't as horrible as you say. Nobody complains about their implementation in the DS and 3DS. Most of your complaints with single touch are easily rectified by using the buttons on the gamepad.

There are lots of people who won't even notice the lack of multi touch, for example, the hundreds of thousands of people who aren't informed and don't look this stuff up on the internet...

The Wii U game pad is "rumoured" to to cost around £130 by itself. The cost of the materials and paying of patents needed to get a capacitive will rise the cost up to more then £150+. More then a 3DS. The cost of a capacitive wii u pad would increase the overall console cost from the £280 price that is tip toeing the line of "is it worth?" to the £300+ region of "its to expensive and not worth it".

I realise that you are not happy with the ideology of the console, which is fair enough everyone is allowed to have an opinion, if you don't like it no one is forcing you to buy it. But please at least let the console to come out and have a complete official component specification list released. Let the the entire gaming public have a chance to experience it first hand. If multi touch is such big problem, then everyone will return and trade in the console and no one will buy it after launch and Nintendo will loose all their stocks and may go bankrupt.

This debate, full of pre judging, speculation and rumours, does not solve nor change anything...
Posted 16:51 on 13 June 2012
Endless's Avatar

Endless@ munkee

You could already buy downloadable games in store if Sony/MS updated their sites to allow commision portals. Public terminal, login using gamertag/psnid, choose what to buy. Pay for it. Done. Game download starts at home and is ready by the time you get there (or a week later on psn :P)

Taking a memory card to a store is an old idea that I believe will never work now. Cloud accounting will be (and to a degree already is) mainstream long before a mass uptake of NFC services. I can already have my Xbox download a title I've bought online while at work miles from the actual console; Why on earth would you take steps backwards from that? Not to mention each retailer would have to purchase/obtain special software/hardware to process said cards.

The one non-skylanders thing I've seen that would work with NFC is the application of a separate Pokedex style device that allows you to carry your entire Pokemon collection around with you. The application of trading card games with NFC is a good one. But this could work with a mobile phone app anyway. Although that could potentially be a recurrence of the Kindle vs Books argument; People not wanting to lose the tactile interaction with physical cards.

A (rumoured/unconfirmed) 50% drop in frame rate from using 2 gamepads is a clear oversight; They had never planned for more than one gamepad and are scrambling under fan/industry pressure to update their offering. Their killer feature is suddenly perceived as sub-par because they thought people would eat it up. Maybe some people still are, but their actions suggest otherwise.

On the multi-touch: What about rhythm action games using the multi-touch screen? puzzles and the like, professor layton would be lamenting the restriction on single touch. if anything multi-touch would certainly allow them to retain mobile/casual crowds without losing any of their focus on more traditional game offerings.

And the multi-touch issue is the lesser of the two problems with the screen. Using your fingers on a resistive touch screen is quite frankly horrible, it's like poking a block of butter. Regardless of how many fingers you can use simultaneously. I can feel my impatience-o-meter rising just thinking about resistive screens.

Nintendo has their work cut out for them this time round. They don't have the fall-back of presenting their idea to an uninformed market any more.
Posted 14:47 on 13 June 2012
munkee's Avatar

munkee@ CheekyLee

"Personally, I want as many options as possible, and I would prefer multi-touch. I just don't think it is as big of a factor as some will make it out, is all."

Personally, I want as many options as possible, and I like the idea of a screen in my controller. I just don't think it is as big of a factor as some will make it out, is all.

Posted 12:06 on 13 June 2012
CheekyLee's Avatar

CheekyLee@ munkee

That keypad example is fair enough, and is actually something I come up against even with physical buttons at times. I still think programming could get round that potential problem, though. Personally, I want as many options as possible, and I would prefer multi-touch. I just don't think it is as big of a factor as some will make it out, is all.
Posted 12:03 on 13 June 2012
munkee's Avatar


Originally Posted by CheekyLee
Or perhaps even as a way to sell downloadable games at retail without the need to have people typing codes into a screen? Again, they have been clear that they want to allow retail to offer downloadable items, so this just makes sense.

That is brilliant. I hadn't considered it at all. But, if they don't do this, then they've missed a trick.

Originally Posted by CheekyLee
Personally, I can live without pinch and zoom, which is pretty much the only feature I think that multi-touch would add to any experiences.

This I disagree with. Even if we take pinch/zoom out of the equation and totally ignore innovation. A screen that only recognises one touch at a time could create issues with game pace. I can imagine situations in which people want to do things really quickly on the pad, but it didn't recognise the second touch because you didn't lift your finger properly from the first touch. Keypads not responding to 1571, but instead expecting 1.. 5.. 7.. 1.
Posted 11:56 on 13 June 2012

pblive@ CheekyLee

Nintendo said that it's possible technically, with a lot of lag, but they're concentrating on just supporting one for launch and moving to 2 later.
Posted 11:35 on 13 June 2012
CheekyLee's Avatar

CheekyLee@ pblive

I'm pretty sure that you can use 2 GamePads with a Wii U? Otherwise, what was all that fuss about the frame rate getting cut in half about?

NFC adds more potential to the machine than just more Skylanders, though. Quick example; a memory card that you can take to any Wii U in the country, even in-store demo pods and promotional events. Nintendo really likes this kind of thinking. Or perhaps even as a way to sell downloadable games at retail without the need to have people typing codes into a screen? Again, they have been clear that they want to allow retail to offer downloadable items, so this just makes sense.

We all tend to just think of consoles as machines on which to play games, which they have not been for some time now. Nintendo will have done countless predictions and calculations balancing the costs of the console against the technology included, and what benefit this would offer to ALL customers. Not just those of us who play games, but those who have Balance Boards as well.

Personally, I can live without pinch and zoom, which is pretty much the only feature I think that multi-touch would add to any experiences. The pad has two sticks and countless buttons, and 5 minutes worth of additional programming gets round any other limitations. We have gotten used to it, but the main benefit I have seen of it has been to allow the use of virtual joypads and buttons. Who needs virtual when there are actual right next to the screen?
Posted 10:38 on 13 June 2012

pblive@ Endless

They've promised huge strides in community and online features, the 3DS store is already much improved over previous DS efforts. Don't forget that the Wii was aimed at families and Nintendo wanted it to be a far safer experience, something echoed by many parents I've spoken to.

NFC will provide a useful option to add character/toy based gaming. Can't think where anyone has had any success with that recently, though, selling huge numbers of toys to use in a game..hmmm...

The single Wii U controller issue is a pain, which Nintendo have been working on. More of an issue with the tech than cutting costs as they need to work out how to process and send that much information without any lag. It doesn't mean that games will only be 1 player, though, as all the other players use standard controllers or Wii Remotes.
Posted 10:02 on 13 June 2012
Endless's Avatar

Endless@ pblive

Yet they somehow thought to add NFC, a system that there is currently very little use for and is a much more expensive and niche inclusion. And they also decided that the 1 unique selling point, the only thing the new system has going for it, could only be used by 1 player at a time; Despite their previous console pretty much championing 4 people playing at home. Absence (currently) of industry standard community features or any kind of modern digital marketplace is also a colossal omission in today's market.

But they know what they're doing. So it's ok.
Posted 09:44 on 13 June 2012


I'm in two minds about this. It does sound like a restrictive decision, but MJTH is also right, Nintendo will have thought long and hard about this and how the tablet will be used.

However, third parties may have liked the multi-touch feature.
Posted 08:03 on 13 June 2012
MJTH's Avatar


Fair enough I suppose. I can see the advantages the device could have with only single touch, but you have got to remember that Nintendo isn't stupid. They feel that the Wii U will do what they set out to accomplish with it, resistive screen and all. And to be honest I'm willing to trust them and live that and so will lots of other people.
Posted 07:32 on 13 June 2012
munkee's Avatar

munkee@ Endless

I also think its a mistake. What's the point in having the shiny new technology with a world of possibilities if you're immediately going to restrict development potential?
Posted 23:10 on 12 June 2012
Endless's Avatar

Endless@ MJTH

Hugely increased price? Really? You can get an android tablet with a capacitive screen for about 90 quid. Add on a few buttons and sticks and you have the Wii-U gamepad.

You only have to look at some of the Vita games, Burning skies, gravity rush and the-like to see some uses of multi-touch. And thats in it's absolute infancy. And thats without even mentioning iOS/OSX devices with gesture support. The entire Wii-U menu navigation, both in and out of games, could be gesture controlled with multi-touch. Even down to using gestures to change weapons or formulate team strategies in sports in realtime.

I just think it's a mistake. The potential to use the gamepad as an actual tablet is diminished if it only has a resistive single-touch screen. Battery life is the absolute only consideration for the choice between the two different methods. but hell, but a bigger battery in it!
Posted 23:04 on 12 June 2012
Batmamerc's Avatar


I can see me going from my iPhone to this tablet and trying to pinch the screen on the tablet n forgetting how to do it on the phone lol. Just don't see the point in touch screen that only allows one touch at a time, had a computer in primary school that did that. Y not lose the buttons n have the touch screen controls instead, it's starting to look like a pointless gimmick now.
Posted 21:57 on 12 June 2012
MJTH's Avatar

MJTH@ Endless

Apart from pinch zooming what would a capacitive screen add to the device that is useful to gaming, and is worth the hugely increased price of the console?
Posted 17:15 on 12 June 2012
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