It’s going to be a quiet year for Nintendo on the home console front. The Japanese company has confirmed that both the “Nintendo NX” console and the new Legend of Zelda game will launch simultaneously in 2017, leaving their holiday release schedule exceptionally bare.
Revealed through their latest consolidated financial report, Nintendo only describes the code-named NX as “a brand-new concept.” To date, there has been no information on its hardware, operating system, or even its control scheme, with the company declining to comment on rumors or patent filings.
Such details are typically unveiled during E3 but Nintendo says that will not be the case. This year’s focus will instead be on the Wii U version of the new Legend of Zelda, which is also being ported for the NX. Considering how it’s the 30th anniversary for one of gaming’s most iconic franchises, it certainly sounds appropriate enough.
These recent developments, strange as they may be, aren’t all that bad. E3 2016 will be dominated by the presence of three separate VR systems, as well as the prospect of both Sony and Microsoft showing off new hardware – Sony has the beefier “PlayStation 4K” while Microsoft rumors point to a new Xbox One device and controller.
Rather than jostle with such titanic competition, Nintendo putting their efforts towards an adequate launch lineup for the NX would be far more critical to its success.
The company is also busy breaking its way into mobile, led by the launch of Miitomo in March and soon to be bolstered by adaptations of Fire Emblem and Animal Crossing.
For their current consoles, Nintendo 3DS fans can look forward to Pokémon Sun and Moon, Metroid Prime: Federation Force, and Kirby: Planet Robobot this year.
The Wii U, on the other hand, only has Paper Mario: Color Splash announced thus far. Four years of disastrously low sales have taken its toll, and Nintendo President Tatsumi Kimishima has said they could cease its production by 2018.