Nintendo 3DS

Will the Wii 2 be in 3D?

With the enthusiastic reception the 3DS has received, you might expect Nintendo to announce a 3D successor to the Wii – but will this be the case?

When announced, the 3DS created an instant buzz amongst fans and commentators impressed by the 3D capabilities. As things stand at the moment, Nintendo are really pinning their hopes on the new machine when it launches next spring to reverse the companies short-term fortunes.

But Nintendo aren’t just in the handheld business. Although the original DS has sold almost twice as many units – a whopping 135 million – as their current home console, the Wii is still important to their strategy and still a major success. With 75 million Wiis shipped, Nintendo remain 35 million consoles ahead of Microsoft, their nearest rival.

Despite this, both the Wii and DS have been hit by slowing sales. On the handheld side, Nintendo’s plan to reinvigorate their business hinges on 3D technology. But could Ninty’s next home console follow suit?

We know next to nothing about the successor to the Wii, but Nintendo have been teasing us for some time that their new project will be very different from the current Wii, and promising jaw dropping surprises to boot. Could this mean 3D?

The Wii 2 - Mind Control?

The Wii 2 - Mind Control?

The short answer is; no. The reason why the 3DS has proved so popular thus far is that the 3D screen is already built in and doesn’t require glasses. Although Microsoft and Sony’s current gen consoles support 3D at home, this feature seems to receive more air-time than play-time. Why? Not only does this kind of 3D require glasses, but you also need to fork out for what is essentially an expensive prototype – a costly 3D television.

Nintendo have a history of only incorporating tried and tested technology into their consoles, even when they use it in innovative ways. The principle behind the 3DS’ lenticular screen, for example, has been kicking around for years, and manufacturer Sharp even introduced a mobile phone with the technology way back in 2001. However, this kind of display works best with small, one person displays like the 3DS – TV screens using the method are still essentially experimental.

Consequently, if the Wii 2 were to feature 3D as a big selling point, Nintendo would have two options, neither of which is especially attractive. They could wait for several years until 3DTV market penetration is widespread – losing the “wow” factor. Or, they could ship 3D screens with the new home console. The second option is astronomically unlikely – the extra production cost it would add would be immense. Even Satoru Iwata has said it’s not going to happen.

So, whatever game-changing surprises Nintendo have in store for the Wii’s successor, the one thing we can rule out almost entirely is – somewhat ironically – 3D.

By on 27 November 2010

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  1. randamo says:

    not unless they have an overlay to make the screen 3d

  2. adamulivi says:

    If you're interested in reading more rumours and stuff about the Wii 2, our writer Peter has a blog following it's progress over at

  3. Evil Lemons says:

    Goodness… I can still remember first getting our Wii 🙂 I would have to say I prefer handhelds, simply because of the ability to be able to play them anywhere 😀 But if the Wii is going to have a successor, better start saving now… lol… I'll be broke after 3DS hehe if the prices rumoured are to be correct 😀

    • Feld0 says:

      Haha, great point. It looks like the 3DS is gonna cost a hefty $300, and as Nintendo's handhelds are always cheaper than their home consoles, I think we could expect the Wii 2 to be a good $400 at the minimum.

      Of course, knowing Nintendo's seemingly neverending ability to amaze, it'll be worth every single dollar.

  4. Zebedee says:

    Well, I don't know if we can rule 3d out totally. I mean, the PS3 didn't ship with 3d enabled but it's been updated to include 3d. What it gains in 3d it sacrifices in frame rate and resolution, correct. So as long as nintendo makes their console powerful enough to run their games at 120fps and in native 1080p resolution then they could very well have a console that has 3d as a major bullet point. The execution of converting from 2d to 3d with little loss in performance could be as simple as taking a game that is of four player split screen campaign and limiting it to two while 3d is on, right?
    Also, there is a third option in the 3d console theory. Waiting for 3d to get market penetration will take too long, and the idea that they would ship the console with 3d screens is ludicrous, but the console itself could be a 3d converter. Think about it, what makes a TV a 3d TV? It needs a transmitter to synch up with the active shutter glasses and a bare minimum 60FPS output. Now, industry standard for a 3d TV is 120FPS minimum which breaks down to 60FPS per eye, but isn't it theoretically possible that you could work with 30FPS per eye? And since 60FPS is a bare minimum for an HDTV, that means that if the console had a similar transmitter and worked with both first party and third party 3d active shutter glasses, wouldn't it be able to convert any HDTV into a 3d TV of sorts? Even if the tech requires a minimum of 120FPS, many of the TVs on the market could still be eligible to display 3d with the help of Nintendo's next console. Maybe I'm not understanding the tech right, but that's my understanding. The only issue would be in synchronizing with the delay that some TVs have, but I feel like the console could account for this as well.
    To clarify my position, I'm not saying Nintendo should ship their next console with a big focus on 3d. Personally, I don't even like active shutter 3d. I'm just saying that it's too early to rule it out. Whether it be on the minimum level of 3D support like the PS3 or the crazy all out method I've outlined above, 3d is still a very distinct possibility for the system.
    Personally, I'm more interested in what they do with the controller. Will the remote finally be sensitive enough to do true 1-1 (not that most games would want to use it)? Will they incorporate a Kinect-like technology that allows for full-body tracking? Will they incorporate a vitality sensor (one that doesn't pinch your finger) into the next design? Will they drop the Wii condoms and instead have a permanent gummy skin stuck to the exterior of the controller? What about that thermal skin that can heat and cool itself as a sort of rumble +?
    Most importantly, will they finally drop the nunchuck concept and instead incorporate a thumbstick into the default Wii 2 remote? Not only will this let them have an all-in-one-one handed remote for those who are disabled or like to eat/drink while gaming, and will also allow for optional dual wielding setups for those who can't live without dual analogue (and for the inevitable 1-1 star wars game).
    How the next console will control is much more important to me than whether or not it's 3d capable, but, as I said, we can't even rule that out completely (though it's, admittedly, probably not going to happen in any other capacity than the PS3's 3d support)

    • Feld0 says:

      Thanks for taking the time to leave such a long comment!

      I like the sound of your alternative solution to 3D graphics, but I feel that there would be one big overbearing problem with it: flicker. I can already notice a slight bit of flickering with current 120 Hz 3D TVs, and I have a feeling that it would be unbearable at 60 Hz. Other than that, though, it sounds very plausible. Nintendo might be better off focusing their budget on doing something truly new and amazing with the console, like getting mind control going (I honestly think there's potential in that).

      Speaking of which, it's also interesting to speculate about the controller. I think a mind control + revised Wii Remote (with Vitality Sensor functionality built into the wrist strap) + Kinect-like camera setup would be perfect. Not all games would be required to use all four features, but they would be giving developers a lot of tasty options.

      Wishful thinking, maybe, but an ultra-powerful Nintendo handheld seemed like a pipe dream a year ago, too.

  5. Pain says:

    Has everyone forgotten about Johnny Lee's Head Tracking? Could maybe that be the "wow" Factor, but modded a little bit making it better, all I know is that the next gen Nintendo system better have all sorts of 3rd party games not just The power houses [Mario, Zelda, Metroid] and then have shitty games like Hanna Montana Sucks out a Juicy Load or some shit like that, Needs to be more open like the 64

  6. Zebedee says:

    Well, I don't know if we can rule 3d out totally. I mean, the PS3 didn't ship with 3d enabled but it's been updated to include 3d. What it gains in 3d it sacrifices in frame rate and resolution, correct. So as long as nintendo makes their console powerful enough to run their games at 120fps and in native 1080p resolution then they could very well have a console that has 3d as a major bullet point. The execution of converting from 2d to 3d with little loss in performance could be as simple as taking a game that is of four player split screen campaign and limiting it to two while 3d is on, right?

  7. Eff Ess says:

    They could wait for several years until 3DTV market penetration is widespread – losing the “wow” factor. Or, they could ship 3D screens with the new home console."

    Or, y'know, they could find a way to develop holoprojectors. ~ your friendly student Trekkie and wannabe online brother

    • Eff Ess says:

      arg, I was addressing Peter there. DX

      • Feld0 says:

        FS! Didn't expect to see you comment here! =D

        Haha, holographic projectors would be awesome. I think that's a little too far, though; they still can't get autostereoscopic 3D right with any screen bigger than the 3DS's.

        • Tom says:

          Apple have made this new projector where 4 lenses shine the video onto this special bubble-like film, and the image reflects off making a hologram. its still a concept though so yeah, google it or something.

  8. xemnas says:

    i have real hope for the wii 2 to do something better

  9. Roy says:

    Feld0's blog is awesome

  10. will says:

    i dont know if anyone else thinks this but i hate the idea of mind control games

  11. Croxyndul says:

    you'd best believe the big n will come up with something out of this world for us. and I'm most definitely sure it won't be called wii 2.

    • Feld0 says:

      I think we're all quite sure of that. But "Wii 2" is only being used as a placeholder name to refer to the Wii's successor until Nintendo actually gives it a name themselves. Hence, the name of my blog.

  12. Johnn¥ says:

    I think 3D in home consoles should wait till 3DTV is widespread. But that doesn't mean leave the Wii successor until then, incorporate it into the successor of the Wii successor.
    It really would surprise me if Nintendo came up with some way of using mind control to play games or something else completely new and never been done before as they usually do. And then we get Xbox and Playstation mind control units a few years later when the novelty has worn off as usual.

  13. jack russel says:

    what does any of the above have to do with 3D in wii 2, supporting 3D is something generic for next gen just like HD ,so i think supporting it is to be expected,its just a natural progression.

    toshiba will have no glasses3D tvs by early 2011 as will other company’s following suit, no glasses 3D isn’t in the experimental faze its already here its cost that there battling against and widening the viewing angle.

    if no glasses 3D tv starts to hit in 2011 then why not a 3D console in 2012 ,one thing il bet me own gran on is 3DS userbase will be bigger than all 3D tv sets put together globally that will happen within months of release

    nintendo also hinted at how big does a screen need to be to replace using a tv that sounded hybrid console handheld to me i think wii 2 will be a wii meets a 3DS in functionality possibly a hybrid but probably not

    and all this down turn for wii and DS is utter hogwash globally wii is number 1 seller for 2010 that is obvious as is DS in gaming handheld terms kinect and move conbined will never hit wii balance board numbers let alone wii remote

    the biggest kinect could do if successful whitch it isnt would be around 24 million by 2014 that below wii balance board numbers and wm+ numbers right now today its released to die as is move

    3DS has sweet nothing to do with short term its long term its a disruption move on ps3 3D and a move to further enhance the nintendo domination of the games industry a simple look at 2011

    wii/DS/DSi/3DS vs ps3 and move / x360 and kinect kinect and move have failed and 3DS will within weeks out sell both and ds and wii shall continue selling so do the basic math and come to a commonsense answer

  14. Matt says:

    I agree, especially because they say the Wii successor will shock us, it has to be something no one has seen or thought of.

  15. DualWeilding_Roxas says:

    i remember reading in an interview in ONM saying that nintendo will only use 3D in the next gen console if there are more than 30% of the population with 3D tvs

  16. bob says:

    Maybe they mean the new console with literally shock us – by sending a bolt of electricity into your hand!

    How come there are no major wii games where you can wield deal wii remotes, really felt like developers were missing a trick there…

  17. Luis Cortes says:

    I highly doubt that Iwata san will go against what he stated earlier. A 3D "Wii" is still unreasonable, and I expect Nintendo to surprise us with something way more amazing than what is already at market though not so popular, and mind control, yeah its not happening anytime soon. Nintendo created the 3DS because people have seen 3D TV's but have people seen a 3D Handheld from a major gaming company? No, its new and that's why Nintendo is where it is today. So expect something more mind blowing than what we know exists today. Who knows maybe behind the closed doors of that little white box in Kyoto, Japan that is Nintendo they've figured out how to amke Holograms work.

  18. Ganon says:

    Nextgen system of nintendo will be special.
    The creater from kid icarus already told us that he have seen it.

  19. jack russel says:

    i dont see how whatever innovation nintendo comes up with cancels out 3D or HD there standard issue video out by the time it hits the street.. a light buily into sencer bar thst makes holographs in front of screen was one i was thinking also 3D heptic feedback 3D rumble in both hands was another or hybrid console

  20. Matt says:


  21. james braselton says:

    hi there your right wii 3 or wii 7 or wii 11 should have 3d wii 2 dose not have enough 3d tvs sure nintendo can sell 3d tvs with 3d wii oh buy the way i am huge on 3d soo i will have a 3d christmax 3d tv 3d camcorder and 3d piture frame too and in march nintendo 3ds soo 4 3d devices

  22. zach pierce says:

    unless new technology regarding 3D veiwing is released within the next year, the wii2 will not be 3D. my guess? it will be using something that is like a combination of the following: controls similar to kinect, but another sensor on your head that reads pulse and brain activiy. i think total game mind control is to much of a giant leap for gamerkind, as well as all the kinks havent been worked out yet in the tech its not finished. my theory is that the wii2 will feature a simple mind control feature similar to a game called mindflex (google it). in this game your brain activity is read and the more you concentrate the fans in the game blowing a ball around will blow more. just this simple mind controll to do something easy like, "think hard to open doors" but not something like "think hard to swing sword" as that would become difficult, tiresome, and hard in tough battle sequences for perfect timing. this control along with kinect controls or i wouldn't mind seeing the wiimotion+ into the next gen. we havent used it enough. and i like not having to stand to play games (like in kinect). this would get old after a while.

  23. 74k says:

    you know wii 2 is the last name nintendo should choose for their next console because of one thing, in japanese, 2 is "nii"

  24. martin says:

    The wii 2 is an amazing machine , Trust me i know. You are all so far of track. The wii 2 is going to make all your jaws drop way past your feet. The wii 2 makes the ps3 look like the ZX spectrum in technology. If you knew i know you just wouldnt believe your eyes.

  25. ricky says:

    they should really also worry bout having some character voices.. i hate playing the wii an having to read everything…

  26. 190halo says:

    I think they wan't the wii 2 to be a total surprise so they are leaking things about the 3DS so people stay distracted … just a guess

  27. billybojoebobfredbob says:

    if its going to be mind controlled, cant they just make it so what your eyes see is 3d and people without the head set would see it in 2d?

  28. Fernando says:

    And how do u know sirr@martin

  29. now&then says:

    wii is done sony will crush anything in their path

  30. jamey317 says:

    nintendo has been holding out till just the right time. the time is now:)

  31. martin says:

    I know because i was a beta tester for it last month.

  32. jaeden says:

    i woudnt have a problew seeing mind control remotes

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