ign.com reports on the Japanese giant's next console, allegedly codenamed "Project Cafe", which is a weirder name for a console than Wii was if you ask me. It is said to be marginally superior in hardware to the Xbox360 and PS3, capable of HD gaming, with a fancy controller that includes a touchpad and a camera.
Additionally, IGN has learned that the system will be based on a revamped version of AMD's R700 GPU architecture, not AMD's Fusion technology as previously believed, which will, as previously reported, out perform the PlayStation 3's NVIDIA 7800GTX-based processor. Like the Xbox 360, the system's CPU will be a custom-built triple-core IBM PowerPC chipset, but the clocking speeds will be faster. The system will support 1080p output with the potential for stereoscopic 3D as well, though it has not been determined whether that will be a staple feature.This all sounds great... if you are still in 2007. Because this sort of hardware is not impressive any more - we can assume the next PlayStation will be twice as powerful as the current one, not only marginally.
The controllers do bring interesting proposals. The camera and touchscreen will probably bring new and innovative ways of gaming, something Nintendo has been always pushing for. I imagine, for example, a multiplayer game where players can play in first person looking at their controllers, and there's a general view of the battle being shown in the TV. But with all this sophistication also comes high cost and frailty. Better not throw those expensive controllers in a fit of rage because a replacement could cost around 100 dollars.
One of the main advantages of the Wii over it's rivals was always it's gentler pricetag. That would be gone with a proposed retail of 350 to 400 dollars, which would put it in direct competition with current generation consoles.
Nintendo's bet could pay out though by bringing their next gen console 2 years before their rivals, as was the case with the Wii, which although less powerful, outsold the competition.
Looking forward to the next 'tendo? Or will it be an epic fail?
Trivia of the day:
Air traveling at high speed generates low pressure