Nintendo, in a bit of a pre-E3 tease, revealed quite a bit about the Wii U today, not the least of which was a couple new morsels in regards to how you’ll be controlling the new console.
The Wii U Gamepad has undergone a few changes since it was last seen. The first thing we noticed is that it’s actually gotten a little bigger than the last time we saw it. (More to love, am I right?)
The circle pads (a la 3DS) have thankfully been replaced, in favor of legitimate analog sticks which are also clickable. Circle pads are great, just not for a home console. Also, the start and select buttons have been placed vertically on the right hand side, just below the face buttons.
There’s a NFC reader on the left hand side of the controller which Iwata said could be used for scanning “accessories or figures”, similar to the way a Skylanders portal works. We wouldn’t be surprised if Nintendo had you waving your credit card over it sometime in the future.
The last addition to the Gamepad is the ability to use it as an infrared remote. Nintendo only metioned using it as a remote for TVs specifically; it remains to be seen if the feature will work for other devices.
Finally, the big N revealed the Xbox U… excuse me, the Wii U Pro Controller. We can’t quite put our finger on it, but something about it seems a little familiar. Actually, we can slam our finger right on it: It’s an Xbox 360 controller. 100%. The only difference is that the right analog stick and the face buttons have swapped places. Don’t get us wrong, the 360 controller is great, but we can see a lot of muscle confusion when switching back and forth between the two.
So rest easy, the Wii U will have no shortage of buttons for your whole family’s chubby little grease-fingers to mash. We’ll have to wait until Tuesday to find out if there will actually be any games worth using them on.