Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime has talked about the Wii U GamePad and revealed that multi-touch support for the controller’s screen isn’t ideal, because players will only use one hand when interacting with it.
The biggest claim to fame of Nintendo’s upcoming Wii U
is the unique GamePad, which sports regular buttons, like any old controller, but also a touchscreen in its center, similar to the one found in the 3DS handheld, for instance.
Like the 3DS and unlike any other touchscreen device nowadays, the Wii U GamePad doesn’t support multi-touch gestures – aka when players use multiple fingers on the screen at the same time.
According to Reggie Fils-Aime, Nintendo of America’s boss, multi-touch isn’t needed as players will barely use it.
"When we went through the building of this and, given some of the functionality, we thought that single-touch was a more appropriate option, especially when you've got other button configurations," he told Kotaku
Fils-Aime believes that players will support the controller with a single hand, probably the left, while the other will be free to interact with the touchscreen, so they won’t be able to perform lots of multi-touch gestures.
There’s also a cost factor and the design philosophy behind the GamePad’s single-touch support, according to the Nintendo executive.
"There's a cost to it," Fils-Aime added. "Again, we envision this as a controller that you're putting in your hands and you're doing a two-screen experience. The concept of putting it in your lap to do multi-touch for us just feels unwieldy."
The Nintendo Wii U’s GamePad will prove instrumental in its success, so it is peculiar that the Japanese company didn’t invest in a multi-touch screen, especially since practically all mobile devices, besides Nintendo’s 3DS, are multi-touch enabled, allowing for different gestures to be performed by users.
Would you have liked a GamePad with multi-touch or are you satisfied with the current system?