Supposedly six months away from the release of Nintendo's highly anticipated new console, codenamed "NX," fans are continually surprised by a lack of confirmed details surrounding the mystery hardware. With a lack of substantial facts concerning the NX, rumors have been circulating the web at a vigorous pace for months at this point. As each major video game trade show passes in 2016 – Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3), Gamescom, Tokyo Game Show – the media and the Nintendo faithful are left wondering what exactly the NX is.
Despite an absence of hard facts surrounding the console, there are more than a fair bit of rumors attached to this piece of gaming hardware. That being said, a number of separate, corroborating reports from fairly reliable sources and trades have recently come to a similar conclusion about the system: the Nintendo NX will likely be a handheld, home console hybrid which will reportedly feature cartridges rather than optical discs. With nothing more than reports and speculation to go off of for the time being, the internet has taken to theories and debate until the console is finally unveiled. While some are extremely intrigued and excited by the idea of a handheld, home console hybrid from the Big N, others are not quite convinced.
YouTube personality gillythekid makes a compelling argument against the idea in one of his recent videos "The Nintendo NX is a BAD idea. Maybe." Claiming that Nintendo home console sales (outside of the massive success that was the Nintendo Wii) have been underwhelming, Gilly argues that merging that home console market with one of the company's major historical successes, the handheld market, would be an incredible mistake.
Stating Nintendo's choice of medium (the cartridge and mini DVD for the Nintendo 64 and GameCube respectively) has "gimped" third party support since the late '90s, gillythekid believes producing a hybrid, cartridge-based console would ultimately be an error in judgment by the Japanese gaming giant.
Gilly does acknowledge the fact that Nintendo has been able to sell some left field ideas in the past, and at the end of the day, he wishes the company nothing but success. His argument, however, does have merit. Handheld gaming is not about getting the home console experience on the go, but rather, providing a platform for a completely unique gaming experience.
That being said, arguments for or against the Nintendo NX are most likely a bit premature at this point in time. The Wii U did not fail because of a choice of medium, but rather a confusing marketing campaign and a lackluster launch lineup – two aspects Nintendo executives have promised to improve on moving forward. The Big N has proven recently with Pokémon Go, Mitomo (albeit for a brief moment), and the buzz surrounding Super Mario Run, that there is still a market for the Nintendo brand. The success or failure of the NX will most likely be due to Nintendo's marketing strategy and the company's execution in relation to games and software applications, and at this moment, we have no idea what any of it actually is. With industry insiders pegging the beginning of October as the NX's official unveiling, however, it appears that fans won't have long to wait before arguing about confirmed specs and details.
The Nintendo NX will reportedly be hitting store shelves in March of 2017.