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Wii U’s Controller May Have Seen Some Changes

No more Circle Pad-style analog sticks, and some swapped button placement.

Nintendo’s said very little about Wii U since its public debut at last year’s E3, but that should change at this year’s E3, in which the company is expected to answer most of our lingering questions. (Price will not be one of them, though).

Whether or not Nintendo has modified the Wii U hardware has been a topic of intense speculation. While the Wii U’s internal specs will remain a mystery for a little while longer, it appears the controller has undergone changes.

Games Radar picked up on a (now deleted) tweet from a Traveller’s Tales employee, which included a shot of the Wii U controller. Compared to our last look at the tablet-like controller, there’s one major change: proper analog sticks. There were 3DS-like Circle Pad sticks on the last iteration. The start and select buttons have been moved to the right-hand corner, and there’s a mysterious square on the left--it wouldn't surprise me if that was for syncing.

The Traveller's Tales connection should not be surprising. The Grand Theft Auto-style LEGO City Stories is a Wii U and 3DS exclusive, and it's likely Wii U will be added to the lineup of platforms for future LEGO games.

Nintendo declined to comment on the changes.

“We do not comment on rumors or speculation,” said the company in a statement.

Patrick Klepek on Google+
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Posted by patrickklepek

Nintendo’s said very little about Wii U since its public debut at last year’s E3, but that should change at this year’s E3, in which the company is expected to answer most of our lingering questions. (Price will not be one of them, though).

Whether or not Nintendo has modified the Wii U hardware has been a topic of intense speculation. While the Wii U’s internal specs will remain a mystery for a little while longer, it appears the controller has undergone changes.

Games Radar picked up on a (now deleted) tweet from a Traveller’s Tales employee, which included a shot of the Wii U controller. Compared to our last look at the tablet-like controller, there’s one major change: proper analog sticks. There were 3DS-like Circle Pad sticks on the last iteration. The start and select buttons have been moved to the right-hand corner, and there’s a mysterious square on the left--it wouldn't surprise me if that was for syncing.

The Traveller's Tales connection should not be surprising. The Grand Theft Auto-style LEGO City Stories is a Wii U and 3DS exclusive, and it's likely Wii U will be added to the lineup of platforms for future LEGO games.

Nintendo declined to comment on the changes.

“We do not comment on rumors or speculation,” said the company in a statement.

Staff
Edited by Great__defunct__Northern

Still have no idea what to think about the Wii U

Posted by PrivateIronTFU

I still don't know why they think it's a good idea to put the right stick above the buttons. But whatever.

Posted by mrfluke

wii u definitely has potential, cant wait till e3

Online
Posted by swedmiro

I for one, welcomes our new corporate overlords...

Posted by evanbower

Definitely happy about the circle pad change. It works well for the 3DS but for a console game you need that ease of movement.

Posted by Evercaptor

Someone at Traveler's Tales is getting the boot...

Posted by Sammo21

Could they change it to something I actually want to hold?

Posted by Fobwashed

While I'm totally comfortable at this point using tablets since I use an iPad pretty frequently, the idea of wielding this thing to play console games on a TV just seems crazy to me. It just simply doesn't look like it'd be comfortable to hold and use with it's flat sides.

Posted by DeF

It's 100% not the sync button, that one is still on the backside (and red and tiny, like on the Wiimote).

There were patents that surfaced in January or so that showed the changes. The stylus was also moved and the backside should have grips.

Edited by heavyplay

I kinda doubt that they would place sync buttons on the face of the device. That square button has a match next to the power button, so there's two of them.

Posted by hatebitmhz

Definitely a unique placement for the sticks, even in the original pics. Glad the new analogs appear to be proper ones though. I am not a big fan of the 3DS circle pad design :(

Posted by GS_Dan

It just looks cheap.

And the worst part is that it won't be.

Posted by jorok_goldblade

The square below the D-Pad is probably a marker for the Near Field Communication. I'm assuming they'd rather players tap the NFC toys to a spot on the casing then scrape them across the touch screen, leaving Skylander claw marks all over it.

Posted by Moncole

The one by the power button can be a sync button and the one under the dpad can be the one the makes the controller the main screen.

Posted by Ehker

@Evercaptor said:

Someone at Traveler's Tales is getting the boot...

Yeah, I feel bad for the guy. Since the Wii controller had already been revealed he probably didn't think it was a big deal to take a pic showing he had access to one.

Edited by Cheebahh

Looks like cheap, plasticy shit. Suppose it has to be for the kid/casual market though.

Nintendo I've been with you since the NES, through thick and thin, defending you and your silly decisions right up 'til now.

I'm putting it out there, fuck the Wii U.

Posted by Devil240Z

Im tired of missing out on cool wii exclusive games because of how stupid their controller is. i just want a normal ass controller.

Posted by Ohvee

@GS_Dan said:

It just looks cheap.

And the worst part is that it won't be.

You really do get a good feel of the controller in a picture taken from a cellphone.

Posted by evanbower

@PrivateIronTFU said:

I still don't know why they think it's a good idea to put the right stick above the buttons. But whatever.

My guess is that if the right stick were that low, it would be a stretch to use that stick and hit the shoulder button at the same time, making the Wii U version of any first person game cramp inducing.

Posted by Aaron_G

I am so interested to see how E3 goes for Nintendo this year. Nintendo has a lot of people to convince with the Wii U.

Edited by crusader8463

Will see when I get to see it in my hands, but I'm not liking it at all. Looks like it's going to be a pain to hold for long stretches, and just uncomfortable to use. Will see in time, but at a quick glance it reminds me of some fisher price kids toy.

Posted by wumbo3000

@GreatNorthern said:

Still have no idea what to think about the Wii U

Totally agree. Need to see some actual goddamn software.

Posted by DefaultProphet

Sticks/buttons are still in a straight up RETARDED position on the right. Fuck that

Posted by BiG_Weasel

I was duped into buying a Wii, and will not be buying this whatsoever. First party games are all well and good, but like the last 2 systems (Wii, 3DS), third party support is nearly non-existent. I can't keep playing Mario/Zelda/Metroid all over again. I need variety.

Posted by fishless

Looks like Nintendo really is getting more serious about winning back favor with core gamers!

Posted by prestonhedges

@Sammo21 said:

Could they change it to something I actually want to hold?

Nintendo ain't no dating service.

Posted by GS_Dan

@Ohvee said:

@GS_Dan said:

It just looks cheap.

And the worst part is that it won't be.

You really do get a good feel of the controller in a picture taken from a cellphone.

There have been plenty of photos taken and lots of footage. This looks pretty much the same.

Posted by JonathanAshleyMoore

@Cheebahh said:

Looks like cheap, plasticy shit. Suppose it has to be for the kid/casual market though.

Nintendo I've been with you since the NES, through thick and thin, defending you and your silly decisions right up 'til now.

I'm putting it out there, fuck the Wii U.

Picking a strange time to leave Nintendo aren't you? considering the fresh start they have with the WiiU to dedicate more of their resources to the hardcore... and the fact that they have said they would be anyway? surely you could have just said "Fuck Nintendo" during the Wii's lifecycle?

We know almost nothing about this console except that they are dedicating more time and more games to the hardcore, which is great. I think it's just a bit too early to say fuck the WiiU.

Posted by JesterPC238

It still does not look like something I'd want to hold the way they seem to want me to hold it...

Posted by Sammo21

@gladspooky: and they aren't making interesting things either.

@JonathanAshleyMoore: I would hardly say they are catering to hardcore. We need to give them time to see what they think that means. They also stated the same thing about the Wii after about a year and we see how good that worked out.

Posted by PrivateIronTFU

@evanbower said:

@PrivateIronTFU said:

I still don't know why they think it's a good idea to put the right stick above the buttons. But whatever.

My guess is that if the right stick were that low, it would be a stretch to use that stick and hit the shoulder button at the same time, making the Wii U version of any first person game cramp inducing.

I guess that probably makes the most sense. It just seems like it might take a lot of getting used to.

Posted by bug9329

@GS_Dan: Nintendo thinks of itself as a toymaker. As a result, they make things that look toy-like but that have physical durability. I'd bet you can drop this controller, step on it, drip ice cream on it, etc and it will continue to work.

Posted by mbr2

It's like the Genesis controller but even more awkward.

Posted by Phoenix87

Its needs to come with a trash can peripheral so that I have somewhere to put that monstrosity.

Posted by evanbower

@PrivateIronTFU said:

@evanbower said:

@PrivateIronTFU said:

I still don't know why they think it's a good idea to put the right stick above the buttons. But whatever.

My guess is that if the right stick were that low, it would be a stretch to use that stick and hit the shoulder button at the same time, making the Wii U version of any first person game cramp inducing.

I guess that probably makes the most sense. It just seems like it might take a lot of getting used to.

Oh yeah, definitely. It's gonna be a ride, man!

Edited by Jolt92

It may look like a toy but at least Nintendo-controllers are actually durable. I'm looking at you Xbox 360-controller (which is almost the perfect controller in other ways).

edit: And who cares if it looks like a toy, games are toys...

Posted by Xeirus

@JesterPC238 said:

It still does not look like something I'd want to hold the way they seem to want me to hold it...

You said the same thing to me , bastard :(

I just want love!

Posted by RichieJohn

I just want it to come out and I want to have enough money to buy it.

It'll have Mario right?

Posted by Shimafran

It looks like an improvement over the earlier iteration but I'm still not liking the button/stick placement at all.

Posted by Emperor_Jimmu

Does anybody else think that looks like a very unpleasant object to hold? I would feel more comfortable with a bag of dog crap in my hands.

Posted by gorkamorkaorka

A lot of you sound entitled.

Posted by RedRoach

@Jolt92 said:

It may look like a toy but at least Nintendo-controllers are actually durable. I'm looking at you Xbox 360-controller (which is almost the perfect controller in other ways).

edit: And who cares if it looks like a toy, games are toys...

what are you talking about? I've been using the same 360 controller for 7 years.

Posted by Lucidlife

@Cheebahh:

Looks like cheap, plasticy shit. Suppose it has to be for the kid/casual market though.

Nintendo I've been with you since the NES, through thick and thin, defending you and your silly decisions right up 'til now.

I'm putting it out there, fuck the Wii U.

Really? It looks like every single thing that Apple has ever put out. So you think their products are shit too right?

Posted by KarmaPoliceman

The gamecube controller is probably my favourite ever, and the Wiimote was very comfortable when used properly. But this thing...

Posted by IronScimitar

The Wii U is gonna be a pain in the ass to capture for QLs.

Posted by hagridore

NEEDS to ditch the resistive touch screen.

Posted by movac

Regarding the "cheap" look, it's worth noting that this is a pre-release developer unit, not the final product.

Posted by SeriouslyNow

The more I see, the more it reminds me of this:-

Posted by frankiebeanz

The idea of having a touch screen in the controller is really cool but that just does not look comfortable and I will definitely not be buying any non nintendo games on the WiiU i will probably only buy zelda and smash bros just like I did for the Wii sadly I sat outside in the rain for 9hrs when the Wii launched just so I can buy zelda twilight princess and smash bros the only 2 games I ever bought sadly but my nieces played with it till they got an ipad now its just a dust collector :/

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