Miyamoto’s Team Working On “Decisive” Singleplayer Game For Wii U GamePad

By Ishaan . January 30, 2014 . 1:30pm

The Wii U is in a rough spot. The system has sold just 5 million units to date, and it has been on the market for over a year now. Sales have dried up, third-party support has dried up, and people think of the Wii U GamePad as an accessory for the Wii. Needless to say, turning the situation around will be difficult for Nintendo.


That having been said, Nintendo intend to try, and they’ll begin by trying to turn the Wii U GamePad into a more useful device. Part of this plan involves releasing Nintendo DS games on the Wii U Virtual Console service, but there are plans beyond that, too.


“Our top priority task this year is to offer software titles that are made possible because of the GamePad,” Iwata said to investors and analysts during a financial results meeting yesterday.


“We have managed to offer several of such software titles for occasions when many people gather in one place to play, but we have not been able to offer a decisive software title that enriches the user’s gameplay experience when playing alone with the GamePad. This will be one of the top priorities of Mr. Miyamoto’s software development department this year.”


In addition, Nintendo plan to expand the GamePad’s usefulness of its NFC (Near-Field Communication) abilities. Thus far, the only game to really have made use of them is Pokémon Rumble U, but Nintendo say they’ll have more to show at E3 this year.


Finally, further improvements will be made to the GamePad on a software level that makes it easier and quicker to start games up on the Wii U.

Read more stories about on Siliconera.

  • SetzerGabbiani

    This is when Nintendo is at its best — backed into a corner. They know they have to do something innovative, and whatever they come up with will probably be the next big thing in gaming.

    • 8 X 11 Printer Paper

      I don’t think next big thing, but something fans and I will love yes.Nintendo I find just to hard to predict I mean who expected the health thing yesterday.

    • TheGioG

      Nintendocare’s announcement to one-up Obamacare?
      Sign me the hell up.

      • Taedirk

        IwataCare – because seeing Dr. Mario shouldn’t cost 100 coins.

    • Attribule

      I don’t mean to be “that” guy, but Nintendo has no chance of creating the “next big thing in gaming” because that can’t happen. Period. Nobody is going to create something like that. Technology has developed to the point where there can be no surprises. This isn’t like back in ancient times when gaming going into 64bit was like sending a man to the moon.

      Nintendo has no such history of “doing their best when backed into a corner”. They’ve not actually innovated in over a decade, and definitely not often enough to be able to say they do “their best” in such a situation that’s happened once or twice if that. I think Nintendo does their WORST when they TRY to innovate because they never pull it off. Their consoles have been going downhill since the Gamecube, yet they consistently shine in the handheld department. Nintendo lost their place on top of the mountain in the console department once actual competition started showing up in the form of Sony, then Microsoft. Nintendo has never recovered since then.

      • What are you talking about? Nintendo may not have been the most successful in reason years, but they have pioneered the way for many: Touchscreen and Motion controls being some of the more recent examples, which both Microsoft and Sony followed in their footsteps. And that’s just within the last decade. We could go back even further than that if we wanted.

      • Tiredman

        You don’t understand technology at all do you? Technology stops for nobody, and there is an entire science fiction genre’s worth of new things to invent and bring to the world. Do you know that scientists are actually close to succeeding on making a cloak of invisibility? It isn’t magic but a cloak that reflects and makes the person kind of like a chameleon.

        Nintendo is the company who will innovate out of the 3 main console makers because they believe in innovation where as the other two believe in serving more of what worked the first time around.

    • Samsara09

      Never underestimate a cornered beast,for they are most efficient when they are desperate. I am sure it will be a system seller.

      they say single player…well,then the game won’t be a party game,won’t be a racer game…or anything that would be fun multiplayer…perhaps an action or adventure game?the game pad could be used to do zooms and allow the player to have a tactical advantage…or even to switch to a first person view…

      well,it will be the most important mechanic in the game,so it better have a ton of creative,cool and unexpected uses!

  • pixxxelz

    Just ditch that freaking thing and make the pro controller default

    • Haganeren

      They can’t, that would mean be the same as the others… And they can’t afford that now, it’s too late. They need to show us something incredible and that only the Wii U could achieve. It seem to be the only way to me.

    • Dsvkb

      That would just confuse consumers even more.

    • I don’t see the point. The pad and pro controller are the exact same. I don’t even know why the pro controller exists to be honest. There’s no point to it except to make it look more traditional.

      • Kavyn

        I ended up buying a pro controller today for Windwaker HD. The gamepad is just too bulky for it. That’s not to say I hate the gamepad though, as I really love it (especially for offline play). I just think there are games that are better when using the pro controller.

        I personally like using the gamepad to switch items quickly in Windwaker, while using the pro controller to play the game.

      • KoRLumen

        Only reason why I’m getting a Pro controller is for Smash Bros.

        It will be glorious.

  • Guest

    For now I’d be happy to have an explosive Nintendo Direct as the one of January last year, confirming some dates and revealing some other projects, even if there are slated for 2015.

  • E.T.993

    All you need to do,Nintendo, is make a single commercial showcasing the Off-TV play where, for example, a father wants to watch football but his son is already playing the Wii U. The father asks ”Can you turn off your console?Football’s on.” The son replies, ”Sure, just wait a second.” He then uses the ”Off-TV play” option and changes the channel to Football.The father then asks ”Wait, you’re still playing your game?”.To which the son replies ”It’s the Wii U dad.You can play on the gamepad while someone else’s using television.Only on Wii U.”BOOM!The Wii U rains money!Look, I’ll even give you this idea to you for free.

    • abysswalker

      Sounds good Mr. Altruist

    • Better yet, show some misbehaving teenagers playing Call of Duty in the middle of class, or some guy at work playing on the controller. That would get people interested.

    • PreyMantis

      If I were to make a commercial, I would make one strictly pointing out really, really hard the difference between the Wii and the Wii U while showcasing what the Wii U can do. Besides Nintendo games, I would also show them the third-party games and how multiplatform games are “better” than those on other consoles.

      • Laer_HeiSeiRyuu

        Nintendo already did that

    • Dammit Billy! Stop playing video games! I’m trying to spend time with you!
      -With what? Football?
      Yeah Billy, all the other boys like football!
      -I don’t care about football! All the other Dads like asymmetric local multiplayer!
      I don’t even know what that is.
      -There’s a lot you don’t know!
      Like what?
      -…..I’m gay.
      I knew that.
      You’re pretending to be a baby princess racing a go-kart.
      -I love you, Dad.
      I love you, Billy.

      • Symbol de Au

        Now that’s money. I could see that making a great Super Bowl commercial.

    • Laer_HeiSeiRyuu

      That didnt help Yakuza 1&2

    • Jeffrey Thrash

      They should compare it to the PS Vita/PS4 connectivity. It would show how the PlayStation equivalent would expect you to pay an extra $200 to get the same off-TV play at the same maximum distance. Not that I am hatin’ on the PS4, I love my PS4, it’s just that I don’t want either company to get complacent.

  • subsamuel01

    Nintendo is hugely at fault for this, they still incorporate the Wii Motion controls for most of their games. Casual gamers and parents are going to see it and think the gamepad is just a bonus. I really hope they can turn things around.

  • ecoutercavalier

    Everyone’s got financial struggles. It’s all about marketing, and Nintendo just needs that one thing that makes the Wii U marketable. I have faith.

  • Yan Zhao

    I thought the gamepad was an interesting idea with lots of possibilities, and its a shame Nintendo hasnt shown anything for that in over a year. I really hope they pull it off with this project here. Nintendo is always #1 when it comes to innovation. And in a do-or-die situation like this, Im looking forward to what they come up with.

  • revenent hell

    I still don’t understand to this day why when developing the Wii U they didn’t develop the 3DS to be the gamepad……. That’s all I can ever think about when I see articles about it.

    • Space_Ghost

      For Nintendo’s next generation of home and handheld consoles I honestly think they are leaning towards that direction. They have stated in the past that they are not done with the GameBoy, so perhaps they make something similar to what that looked like, but of course up to today’s technological standards. Maybe they do something similar to the relationship that the GameCube and GameBoy Advance had, except utilize it more than they did back then. There’s a lot more they could do today than they could back then, and they could and should learn some lessons from their competition.

    • Because Sony tried that with the Vita and Remote Play isn’t nearly as good as streaming on the Wii is. Vita and PS4 are two separate devices meant for two separate things, as are Wii U and 3DS. They had very different visions for both platforms.

      Plus, making the 3DS the GamePad makes it an even more expensive proposition for people to buy into the idea of off-TV play. Not only do you have the cost of the Wii U, you also now have to convince people to buy the 3DS if they want that experience.

      • neo_firenze

        PS4-Vita is just as good at streaming as the WiiU-Gamepad. I frequently use both in the exact same way (playing in bed, streaming from my console in another room). Now, price is certainly a factor. A Vita and a PS4 is definitely a lot more expensive than a Wii U. But if you have both anyway, the quality of the streaming experience is just as good as the WiiU, if not better.

        Only real downside is that on some PS4 games with a lot of small text, the Vita screen can be a little too small for comfort. So some games are a little better suited for Vita than others: I’ve played Knack and Lego Marvel Super Heroes almost exclusively on Vita and the experience is great, while I prefer to play Assassin’s Creed IV on the big screen due to the small and detailed map.

        I really wouldn’t be surprised to see Nintendo do something like a WiiU in reverse next time. Have a true portable platform (handheld? tablet? both?) that works on its own and contains all the hardware, but with a small streaming receiver that you can hook up to your TV to stream games FROM the portable to the TV (rather than WiiU’s system of streaming from the TV-connected box to the handheld tablet controller).

      • revenent hell

        That makes sense. I just thought if they had the 3DS, prior to its release obviously, able to become the pad when the Wii U went to market they would have been able to cut down on “pad” costs in a way for certain models of the Wii U who would have preferred to use their handheld for it.

        But it would have made the 3DS even more expensive and such but in theory its not that bad of a thought. I don’t think the Wii U is a bad device but in most things the game pad seems to be the flaw to me in a way, not that it doesn’t work or anything but almost an “unnecessary”. For me I wasn’t thinking “streaming” wise more as just a basic “controller”. I don’t really plan to or do stream so I think for a non streaming method the “controller” being the 3DS would have been a nice touch.

  • ( `Д´)ノ)`ν゜)

    Is this why the new Donkey Kong game doesn’t use the screen on the gamepad at all?

    • idrawrobots

      does it not for co-op?

  • Shippoyasha

    I am not sure if the system takes off just because of the pad controls. It would be great for Nintendo but most 3rd party just seems to want to focus on making games they are comfortable with making. Anything less than a runaway success utilizing the gamepad would likely not sway opinions much. They really have work cut out for them to say the least.

    • revenent hell

      From what I have heard Nintendo doesn’t make life easy on developers when they create a home console like this so creating games for it at or around launch is hard to do because they try and stay so secretive and later developers just have no desire to.

      • Laer_HeiSeiRyuu

        You’d be wrong here then. When a console launches, software tools are usually bad, and parts of the hardware are locked off. On every console.

        Its publishers. They’re concerned about making money and opportunity costs. But many publishers manage their teams badly. Not putting effort where they should.

        If anything there’s also a clash of beliefs in what’s sustainable and fiscally responsible.

  • Space_Ghost

    Miyamoto’s supposedly new IP could to wonders for the Wii U, but why not add to that by taking advantage of some of the older IP as well? Two series that come to mind that could use the GamePad in really unique ways are Star Fox and Metroid. I know people call for these games on the Wii U all the time, but strictly speaking about designing mechanics and gameplay unique to the GamePad, these two series have a treasure trove of ideas waiting to be discovered and brought to the masses.


    So the “nintendo in the corner” story is true after all?

  • Is there really a good use of the NFC chip? NFC is kind of terrible.

  • Mir Teiwaz

    If you wanted to avoid people being confused about what your new console was, maybe you shouldn’t have called it a nearly identical name to the previous console you had out. Just a thought.

    • revenent hell

      Yes because Xbox One isn’t confusing at all.
      Its hardly the name that’s a problem.

      • Mir Teiwaz

        Yet, I don’t see people getting the XBOXOne confused with the original XBOX.

        • Namuro

          I think all the hates back then about the name and the always-on policy helped spread the awareness. Even negative press can help promote your product. LOL

          WiiU’s announcement didn’t cause much of a stir, so a lot of people didn’t even notice that it’s a brand new thing, unfortunately…

          • revenent hell

            Personally I just think the Wii never really got to much credit to begin with. The graphic s being the main flaw , to me at least and then there was the fact that most who bought the original Wii felt kind of ripped off in the end, at least whom I know, because so few games came out for it that they actually wanted to play.
            Ultimately the consensus seemed to be “lack of games” people wanted to play. And that’s not to say the games out for it where or are bad but for my age range and group of friends besides Fire Emblem and the games from operation rainfall the device had very few things going for it game wise if you weren’t a Mario or Zelda fan.

        • revenent hell

          People do. Watch any game reviewer or LP where they have to explain “Not Xbox the first One”
          No one confuses the Wii U with a Wii. The name is by far not the issues with the console. Im also not picking on the Xbox One im just pointing out its silly to correlate the Wii U’s issues being its name.

  • Man, Nintendo’s E3 conference can’t come soon enough. This year is gonna be do or die for them.

  • icecoffemix
  • neo_firenze

    I kind of prefer the Gamepad as a simple alternate display rather than as an integral part of the game. Off-screen play is honestly a bigger selling point to me than inevitably gimmicky use of the second screen. I can play in bed from another room, or play on Gamepad while my wife watches TV? OK, sounds good!

    The only really well-done game I’ve seen that truly takes advantage of the TV plus second screen experience is ZombiU. Outside of one or two unique successes, I don’t really expect that any developer can consistently make good games that really need this functionality.

    Even Nintendo’s strong game design skills can’t seem to make a success out of the gimmicky hardware. Perfect example is Zelda. Neither Twilight Princess nor Skyward Sword were really better games for using Wii functionality as opposed to a more traditional control scheme. I found Twilight Princess more enjoyable in its Gamecube incarnation with a traditional controller setup as opposed to the Wii version replacing button presses with annoying waggle motion controls. I probably would have actually finished Skyward Sword as a controller-only game, but the required motion controls actually made the game worse to me than it could have been, to the point where I didn’t want to see it through to the end.

  • NimbusStev

    Well considering Zelda is now Aonuma’s team, Donkey Kong is in the hands of Retro, we just saw a new Pikmin, and Mario is over-saturated to a point way past producing a “decisive single player” experience… I think we might actually see a new IP from Miyamoto! I’m excited to see how this story unfolds.

Video game stories from other sites on the web. These links leave Siliconera.

Siliconera Tests
Siliconera Videos