Nintendo patent application shows portable system with interchangable controls

#51
To be honest, I kind of expected them to go back to a single screen for the next system.

Actually, is this a "new" patent though? They've wanted to do stuff like this for a while I think...maybe this is just an older patent surfacing?

Regardless I think it'd be pretty cool if they can pull it off. It'd be nice to have some sort of custom system, but then I also worry about the pieces as a few people said. Hopefully, extra ones wouldn't be that expensive. Styluses are still like $10 for a 3 pack though.
 
#52

:lol my dreams of a third analogue stick are almost a reality.
edit: Those are not analogue sticks but 3D “character operation instrument" character models which double as controllers.

Actually, is this a "new" patent though? They've wanted to do stuff like this for a while I think...maybe this is just an older patent surfacing?
Filed 6 months ago.
 
#53
If they step away from the DS name at least it means we can get rid of the "people are confused by the name, they dont know it's a new device" argument.
I really think they have to drop the DS name after this generation.

DS, DS lite, DSi,DSi-XL, 3DS, 3DS XL, 2DS.....

GameBoy Advance 2 would be a great name :p
 
#54
There's not enough known for me to give a fair opinion, but I never had a point where I wanted the controls to be different, so, with the information we got so far, it's not a feature I'd be super enthusiastic about.
For me, a lot is going to depend on whether or not it's going to have a region lock. Because if it has, Nintendo can give me a million and fifteen hundred different control puzzle pieces in all the colours of the rainbow road, but I'll be steering clear of it.
 
#57
If they step away from the DS name at least it means we can get rid of the "people are confused by the name, they dont know it's a new device" argument.
Maybe people will assume that the new handheld is just a rerelease of the original Gameboy.


:lol my dreams of a third analogue stick are almost a reality.
Has anyone ever really needed to press Y and A at the same time? I don't think so.
 
#59
It's not a new idea, but if done smartly it ends the concern about not having two analogs, or not supporting left handed players in games that also use a stylus.
 
#62
The best part is that there is no second screen in sight. Hopefully this is a sign that the primary one will be high quality for a change.
 

Ataru

Unconfirmed Member
#69
I think the point of this patent is to give their next portable the ability to be played in either horizontal or vertical orientation (like an ipad).

Play in vertical/portrait mode and emulate 2 screens for backwards compatibility for DS/3DS games. New games will be in horizontal/landscape mode.
 
#70
The best part is that there is no second screen in sight. Hopefully this is a sign that the primary one will be high quality for a change.
I doubt its a sign of that. The images look exactly like the bottom half of a 3DS with the tiny, square screen and all. They probably just didn't bother showing the top screen because there aren't any controller inputs up there.
 
#71

:lol my dreams of a third analogue stick are almost a reality.
Heh, if you read/see closely those are not analog sticks.

The operation instrument 7 illustrated in FIG. 6D has a structure in which an indication part 7b formed to represent a three-dimensional game character stands on the base unit 7a. The operation instrument 7 is to operate, for example, a specific character appearing in a specific game. Hereinafter, this operation instrument 7 will be referred to as “character operation instrument 7.” Several kinds of character operation instruments 7 may be prepared for different characters that appears in a game and may be operated.
 
#79
These always interest me because Nintendo is crazy enough to bet on this sort of stuff. Customization is a big part of Nintendo's design since the Wii. The concept is perhaps a little too complex unless they can get the modules down enough in manufacturing costs to include them with individual games (and they can make special game-specific color variants for collectors).
 
#81
I feel like I've seen this before...

Either way, interesting concept.
Around the time of the 3DS release, there was an Iwata Asks about its design and conception. One of the prototypes was one where you could swap out the face buttons with the d-pad/circle pad to make it more customizable. Basically it would work for right-handed people and lefties.
 
#82
I've been waiting so long for a portable or official controller like this. This way you'd solve all the major control conflicts; 2D vs 3D, symmetrical vs asymmetrical, left vs right handed...

And to those worried about losing the swappable parts, why would you? The system would come with 4 slots and 4 modules (2 analogs sticks, ABXY and a D-pad); there would be no spare parts lying around.
Sure, someone could make a game that would require 4 sticks or something but I kind of doubt that would be all that common.
 

Kai Dracon

Writing a dinosaur space opera symphony
#84
This may solve another problem - Nintendo never likes the release hardware that's utterly generic. They always want something unique to make it novel. The 3D on the 3DS may have been a miss. But interchangeable controls is both practical and unique. It may satisfy Nintendo's worry that their device will look too ordinary.
 
#86
I don't suppose it could be QOL related?

Obviously they have concentrated on the gaming side of things here..but that doesn't mean the patent would have to relate wholly to that. The QOL was supposed to be a platform that served differing audiences ..starting with health.

In theory you could slide something like a blood glucose meter into one slot, a pulse meter into another etc.

..adapting the hardware to serve the specific market they are after throughout its life.
 
#87
Fig 6D is the most interesting since it seems to be a control of some sort rather than just a Skylander type figure if I'm reading correctly.
 
#88
Yeah, I'm coming around to this idea. We could get shit like trackballs and those big rubbery pressure thingies like in the arcade - miniaturized, of course. And the short range radio thing is a novel way to reduce complexity and likelihood of mechanical parts breaking. I would hope and imagine that the common attachments will be cheap ($20 or less) so losing them won't be too big a deal if that does happen.
 
#89
I don't suppose it could be QOL related?

Obviously they have concentrated on the gaming side of things here..but that doesn't mean the patent would have to relate wholly to that. The QOL was supposed to be a platform that served differing audiences ..starting with health.

In theory you could slide something like a blood glucose meter into oneslot, a pulse meter into another etc.

..adapting the hardware to serve what specific market they were after throughout its life.
Well, they do mention mobile phones:

An information processing device such as a game machine or a mobile phone is provided with an operation unit with one or more buttons, switches or the like for accepting operation by a user.
;P

But seriously, that's where I'm coming from too.
 
#91
It feels too soon to replace the 3DS, right? This doesn't seem like it's backwards compatible, either. Maybe this will be the '3rd pillar'? Hosting games/apps similar to what kids play on phones, including educational/fitness apps?
To be fair PS4 development started at 2006...
 

Kanik

Sonic handles my blue balls
#92
This would be the ultimate solution for accommodating every game genre out there and people's personal taste in controller layout. (dual sticks being parallel versus diagonal to each other)
 
#93
I also find the emphasis on describing how this concept applies to mobile phones and smart devices interesting- Nintendo's next handheld may not be a smartphone, but it may be a smart device, and it may be the first device on the market to solve the buttons problem.
 
#94
If they are gonna roll with this idea, the timing of the patent is weird. For major system features, they usually announce something before they let the patent go public.
 
R

Rösti

Unconfirmed Member
#95
I haven't read through the whole text, but could this potentially be used for other things than controls? Perhaps something like the Expansion Pak to add RAM etc.

Anyway, I like the idea as long as it is paired with not too many different control sets. Having to keep track of specific controls for specific games seems like a big hurdle. Especially if you want to maintain an extensive library.

If they are gonna roll with this idea, the timing of the patent is weird. For major system features, they usually announce something before they let the patent go public.
Yeah, I thought about this as well. Weird indeed. Who knows, perhaps it's related to QOL?
 
#97
I also find the emphasis on describing how this concept applies to mobile phones and smart devices interesting- Nintendo's next handheld may not be a smartphone, but it may be a smart device, and it may be the first device on the market to solve the buttons problem.
With a patent like this, you have to make the terms as broad as possible, or you risk a manufacturer "being inspired" by your idea then claim yours is different because their's specifically mentions mobile and you're doesn't.
 
#98
Rösti;110222008 said:
I haven't read through the whole text, but could this potentially be used for other things than controls? Perhaps something like the Expansion Pak to add RAM etc.

Anyway, I like the idea as long as it is paired with not too many different control sets. Having to keep track of specific controls for specific games seems like a big hurdle. Especially if you want to maintain an extensive library.
Hmm, interesting.

I'll go through it and see if something like that is mentioned.

Edit: Giving it some further thought, wouldn't that require a physical connection to the main system though?