Gamers finally got a glimpse at the future of one of the industry’s largest and most beloved companies last month. With only a single trailer their new Switch console, Nintendo ignited plenty of speculation and excitement surrounding the company’s plans. Both a home console and a mobile platform, many have speculated that the Switch might replace Nintendo’s 3DS. Company President Tatsumi Kimishima says that just isn’t the case though.
Speaking with Bloomberg, Kimishima explains how he sees the Switch fitting into the Nintendo family of systems. “We didn’t just want a successor to the Wii U or the 3DS. So our original concept was, ‘What kind of new experience can we create?’ And what we showed this time was an object that’s both stationary and one you can take outside to play with anyone you want.”
Even with that in mind though, “Thanks to our software, the 3DS hardware is still growing. So that business still has momentum. And certainly rather than being cannibalized by the Switch, we think the 3DS can continue in its own form.”
This is particularly interesting considering how crowded the handheld market has the potential to become, with Nintendo beginning to make smartphone games as well. The argument can be made that there is only so much time that gamers can spend playing games on the go, but Nintendo sees no problem having their games on three different mobile platforms at once. On the contrary, “our smartphone business has helped sell a lot of our existing packages. And it has really proved our original thesis: by releasing our software on the smartphone, it positively impacts our existing hardware and software business. And that’s precisely the synergy effect we were expecting. And as that has been proven correct, we have more confidence.”
Following the lead of Nintendo’s previous president, the late Satoru Iwata, Kimishima promises this is only the beginning of the a new, wider-reaching Nintendo. “We’re at the start—you will see various connections between our smartphones, theme parks, movie-related business, and merchandising that uses our intellectual property,” all with the Switch at the center.
Though Nintendo is so far disputing them, rumors have once again surfaced suggesting the Wii U is ceasing production.
Now with an official name and a sneak peek at it’s capabilities, the Switch seems closer than ever. Aiming for a March release, Nintendo is holding off on sharing anything else concrete about the new console until January. Until then, check out our run-through of every game shown off in the reveal trailer, along with all the games we still want to hear about.