Unveiled one week ago today, the Nintendo Switch is a hybrid home and portable games console with a variety of different screen and controller configuration options. Now, in a new interview with Bloomberg, Nintendo President Tatsumi Kimishima says the tablet-style console is just one of many new devices the console holder has in the works.
“It may be appropriate to call them accessories. Or it might be better to call them add-on hardware,” he said. “It’s probably more correct to call them accessories. You can assume that there will be a wider array.”
It’s an interesting choice of words for Kimishima. Nintendo’s current console, the Wii U, has the fact that many consumers believed it to be just an add-on controller to the Wii console when it was announced to thank for much of its failure in the market. Nintendo has taken care to differentiate Switch as its own machine, though, took care to frame Switch as the center of Nintendo’s new product landscape.
“What you see in the video, however, is the core product,” he said. The statement jives with previous Nintendo comments underlining the fact that the tablet is the console; its dock for charging and TV play is an accessory.
As for the accessories, some have already speculated that the Switch’s modular nature could mean a flood of ad hoc controller peripherals will arrive for the console. So far, Nintendo has shown that its Joy-Con controllers can slide onto the sides of the tablet, be removed and used as a single control unit, or be separated from one another and used as controllers for two different players at once.
Beyond simple controller add-ons, it’s another type of accessory — if you can call it that — could be supported by Nintendo Switch. Sony and Microsoft are both preparing to launch new versions of their consoles that will better support virtual reality headsets, and Nintendo might dip its toes into that market too.
“VR offers new ways of playing, but that depends on what kind of software can be played,” Kimishima said. “If you ask us whether there are any possibilities, we can’t say no. It may be that we will build VR software titles, I think that opportunity is available to us.”
Though Kimishima is merely saying Nintendo could develop VR games, not that it will develop them, it’s still looks to be a major change in the company’s attitude toward the technology. In 2015, Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime said that VR was “not fun.”
Of course, Kimishima did say earlier this year that VR was something Nintendo was looking into, but his statement today is the most pro-VR the company has sounded yet.