Photos have been circulating NeoGAF and Reddit depicting what the photographers claim is the Nintendo NX controller straight from a dev kit. No one has been able to confirm if it is, but the same controller has now been snapped from two separate sources, and it matches the patent application we reported on from last year. Even earlier than that, we reported on Nintendo licensing screen technology from Sharp that would allow them to put holes into the middle area (“Nintendo Working On Donut-Shaped Thing”). These images match everything we know so far and inspections looking for Photoshop artifacts have turned up empty.
The images, and the patent before them, depict what could be described as a football-shaped smartphone with two control sticks jutting out of each end. The patent also showed what appeared to be gripping handles, but those appear to have been dropped. One other fact lending credence to the photos is that usually, when fanboys fake stuff like this, the results resemble items that please them. A controller with no buttons isn’t something a fanboy would want.
So it shouldn’t be a surprise that no one is happy, but if it’s this far along, Nintendo is unlikely to change it no matter how loud the howling gets. The company has always been very stubborn, and typically will only admit to a mistake after it has lost them millions. Saying “I won’t buy this” beforehand does nothing because they won’t believe you. Saying “I don’t like Federation Force” will result in total disbelief. “You will too, shut up.” Saying “Don’t censor Mortal Kombat” did nothing in 1993. Not buying Mortal Kombat resulted in an immediate reversal of their censorship policy.
Nintendo has filed other patents in recent months, and not all of them sound good. If the system turns out to be discless, football controllers with no buttons will be the least of fans’ gripes.