VR has been the biggest topic of discussion in gaming over the last few years. The technology promises massive shifts in how games are made and played. PC headsets are already out, and consoles are following suit with the PlayStation VR and Xbox One’s Project Scorpio. However, Nintendo has been a bit quiet on the technology, with nothing official announced, and no real plans. At an investor meeting they did go into why this is, and it has to do with current flaws in VR gaming.
When asked about the potential dangers of VR and how it might impact game development legendary video game designer Shigeru Miyamoto responded, as translated by Cheesemeister, ” I heard VR was a hot topic at E3, so I went to check it out. It was on display, but it wasn’t what I expected. We’re also researching VR, so we have the core technology. Long play sessions are an issue. We want to release something that can be played for long periods, carries value, and is affordable. We want parents to feel at ease.”
If you have been following Nintendo for some time then this should not be too surprising to hear. They’ve always been fairly slow to adopt new technology, waiting for it to come down in price, and for others to work out the issues surrounding the tech. This happened before with the shift to HD, and even the adoption of the internet. Online multiplayer on Nintendo consoles is still a bit lackluster, though it has seen big improvements over the last couple of years.
VR is currently very much on the bleeding edge of technology, with only a few major headsets even available to the public. These come at high prices, both for the headset itself, and for whatever machine is required to run it. PlayStation VR is looking like the most affordable option, but even that requires around $800 to get the system and headset.
Most likely we won’t see VR included with the Nintendo NX, which is set to launch in March 2017. We might eventually get the technology in whatever successor comes after though, but only when Nintendo gets it figured out, and into an easy to use package.