Nintendo is a very innovative company when it comes to videogame technology and quite often ahead of everyone else in many respects. However, that didn’t quite seem the case when it came to virtual reality (VR) recently, releasing the rather basic Nintendo Labo: VR Kit for the Switch console a few months ago. Today, during a Q&A with shareholders at Nintendo’s 79th Annual Meeting, veteran designer Shigeru Miyamoto addressed a concern the company was ‘behind the curve’ when it came to VR.
Up until the release of the Labo VR Kit the gaming giant remained fairly coy when it came to discussing VR, always saying it was ‘interested’ or ‘looking into’ the tech. It has widely been assumed Nintendo has been somewhat standoffish when it comes to VR thanks to the failure of Virtual Boy way back in the 90s.
When asked about VR Miyamoto gave a rather candid response reports SoraNews24: “While we entered virtual reality and online gaming later, it isn’t a matter of us being ‘behind’. We have actually been conducting practical research on these technologies from the very beginning. During that time, we have been thoroughly checking whether users can use the technology with ease, and whether or not we can provide such services at an affordable cost.”
“The Nintendo Labo Toy-Con04: VR Kit recently went on sale, and I believe this product is a great and easy way for users to engage with virtual reality. As the Nintendo user base is composed of a wide range of ages, including the very young, we work to develop and release products that we think everyone can enjoy,” he added.
So it sounds like Nintendo isn’t done with VR just yet. No figures have been released just yet regarding sales of the Nintendo Labo: VR Kit, and how well (or bad) it has done in comparison to the other Labo products.
When answering a question regarding 5G, Ko Shiota, a senior executive at Nintendo responded with an answer that really sums up Nintendo’s approach to any tech: “It must be said, however, that Nintendo is not in the habit of following trends just because they are popular. We prefer to consider what experiences said technology can give to our players, how to use it in our games and the results of implementing it.”
Hopefully one day Nintendo will decide to release a far more grownup VR device. Until that happens, keep reading VRFocus.