Nintendo has had a somewhat turbulent history with virtual reality (VR) harking back to the Virtual Boy in the 90’s, and then with its current consumer resurgence dismissing it as anti-social. Over the last few months however the company seems to be taking a new tact, expressing more of an interest. Most recently Nintendo president Tatsumi Kimishima has commented that the company is studying VR functionality for the new Switch console.
In an interview with Nikkei, Kimishima said: “If we are able to resolve the issues with playing [VR] comfortably for long hours, we will support it in one form or another,” without divulging an actual timeframe.
While this is certainly a more positive outlook from Nintendo this isn’t the first time Kimishima has hinted at VR capabilities for Switch. Back in October he said: “If you asked as if this might be possible in the future, certainly we can’t say no.” Adding: “I can’t say that we have no interest in VR because VR offers new ways of playing, but that depends on what kind of software can be played.”
This is slightly in contrast to Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime, who when asked about VR in 2016 commented: “In my judgment, I think VR is a bit further out there for mainstream, mass market applications,” going on to say: “for us the technology has to be at a point where it can be mainstream,” which he didn’t see at the time.
Nintendo is such an innovating, forward thinking company that it would be hard to imagine VR not being in its mindset, but as and when it decides to venture into the industry once again is another matter.
For any further updates on Nintendo and VR, keep reading VRFocus.