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THQ on Wii U controller: "We thought of it 18 months ago"

Publisher "well poised to exploit" drawing mechanics due to uDraw experience

THQ's kids, family and casual division boss Martin Good has claimed that he is not perturbed by the Nintendo Wii U's similarities to THQ's own uDraw controller.

"None of this is a surprise," he told CVG in regard to the Wii U's tablet controller and drawing capabilities. " As you know, we thought of it 18 months ago and released it last season."

THQ claims to have shipped 1.7 million units of its drawing-centric, tablet-like peripheral for Wii, and now plans to release Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions.

He felt the similarities between uDraw and Wii U could even be to THQ's benefit. "We think we're really on the front for it and well poised to exploit this because we've already been playing with the drawing mechanic and we've got a lot of game designs in the pipe. It's only going to get better with that experience."

Good also claimed that "THQ never really went about being a peripheral manufacturer - that wasn't our intent", but had done so due to perceived market opportunities for drawing-based console games. "The fact is we had to create our own peripherals including for 360 and PS3 to be able to play with that audience."

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Latest comments (23)

Alan Pierce Programmer, Digital Delight5 years ago
My brother thought of it in 1998
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David Bachowski VP Business Development, Babaroga5 years ago
@Alan Mine too!!! What a small world...
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Rick Lopez Illustrator, Graphic Designer 5 years ago
Wacom did it way before THQ, and apple has the iPAD...

sorry THQ... you have done nothing original or revolutionary.

And also people forget about a little game Nintendo made called Mario Paint... no tablet but the premise was the same.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Rick Lopez on 10th June 2011 3:29pm

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Show all comments (23)
James Boulton Tools & Tech Coder, Slightly Mad Studios5 years ago
I had a light pen on the speccy in about 1985. Does that count?

Yeah, it's hardly a new idea. It could make some interesting games, though, having each player have their own tablet and screen. Stupidly expensive, mind you.

Now an interface to allow people to use the iPhone as a tablet on the Wii, PS3 and XBOX? That would be sensible. Everyone and their dog has an iDevice.
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Rick Lopez Illustrator, Graphic Designer 5 years ago
Well as far as costs go, I think that Nintendos controller tablet thing, is way cheaper then a Ipod Touch, iPhone, iPAD, android/iOS capable device or using a portable gaming device such as 3DS or PSP/Vita as acontroller. It doesnt have all the processors and guts inside that other devices do. So they shaved plenty of the costs.

I myself have no interest in iPADs, I pod touch and dont own any touch device. I do have an iPOD Nano... but i doubt its a good controller. So the fact that Wii U is a self contained device, that I just buy and have everything I need is good for me.

But I do see your point and lets just see at what price nintendo can get this out the door. The tech specs havent been revealed, but I have a good feeling about the system.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Rick Lopez on 10th June 2011 3:46pm

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Daniel Hughes Studying PhD Literary Modernism, Bangor University5 years ago
Nintendo also tested this idea way back with the GameCube/GameBoy Advance link cable...
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Max Priddy5 years ago
Is it a new idea? Certainly not.

Does it look like it could be a lot of fun? Certainly.

Will console gaming on the toilet become a thing that people do? I know I will be!
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Adam Campbell Studying Games Technology, City University London5 years ago
So did I, but we all come up with ideas we can't put into practice.
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Rick Lopez Illustrator, Graphic Designer 5 years ago
How many people dreamed of motion control or computer brain wave responsis. Many people. But Nintendo makes them work. An idea in a persons head doesnt do much to change the world. And this is were Nintendo is succesful, in making them happen and work.
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Benn Achilleas CEO and Founder, Playabl5 years ago
if THQ should consider to license it for other game developers to create content for - creating a must have peripheral.
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Alan Au Freelance Writer, Games For Health Advocate 5 years ago
Ideas are cheap; implementation is hard. At least THQ actually has a device on the market, which gives them some credibility when talking about ideas. And of course, the business aspects (marketing, distribution, etc.) play a critical role in actually making things like this successful.
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Rick Lopez Illustrator, Graphic Designer 5 years ago
Nintendo has been thinking about this stuff for YEARS! Dont forget the game and watch dual screen games of the 80's. When it comes to gaming with 2 screens Nintendo has been there before many people.
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Haven Tso Web-based Game Reviewer 5 years ago
The thing with uDraw is it is hardly responsive and precise. It was a great idea badly executed. It seems to be a product rushed to market with great ideas. And that's what gave Wii U Tablet an advantage cos Nintendo can perfect that technology with great first party ideas that actually work with the concept.
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Rick Lopez Illustrator, Graphic Designer 5 years ago
The uDRAW is just a cheap version of the wacom tablet for consoles. Besides how many games use it... I think THQ should back down on this one, Nothing original here.
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Tony Johns5 years ago
In another completely different story, I thought of Retro Gaming compliations as far back as 1998.

But I was a kid back then,

uDraw was never going to be successful, it was nothing more than an educational software

Wii U is far more better and it aimed at a really different audience.

THQ should just focus their efforts on publishing games and make sure they are good games instead of trying to pick a fight with Nintendo for money
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Andrew Goodchild Studying development, Train2Game5 years ago
I think people seem to be taking this as THQ criticising Nintendo for ripping them off, when to me it seemed more like them getting on side (albeit clumsily) and saying they already had stuff that could use it, as they already had worked with a controller that used one aspect of what Ninty are trying to do, and that the Wii U opened clear opportunities for an existing franchise.
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Eric Wittmershaus Video game columnist/blogger, The Press Democrat5 years ago
uDraw was never going to be successful? They've sold over a million of those things in a few months and are using the momentum to roll it out for other consoles. I'd say that qualifies as a success. Your benchmark may be higher, though.
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Howard Parry5 years ago
Actually, one André Cassagnes thought of it 60 years ago, with the Etch A Sketch...
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Nic Z5 years ago
As soon as they make these devices waterproof so I can bath and play simultaneously, I'll be happy :P
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Nic Z5 years ago
@howard. Still have one - still one of the best drawing devices of all time.
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Patrick Frost QA Project Monitor 5 years ago
I'm happy that there is a dev that is poised to make software for the Wu. Like all things they do Nintendo always massively underestimate the markets thirst for content.

If there is a dev out there that's ready to get into a rarely exploited genre then +1 for variety :-)
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Peter Stirling Software Engineer, Firelight Technologies5 years ago
Inovation in this field is less about originality and more about commitment. Just because a technology was mentioned or tried on a small scale ten years prior is irrelivant. The point here is Nintendo (and THQ) invested significant resources in mass producing this technology and in both cases have a lot riding on it.
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Adam Parker Academic Coordinator, Qantm College5 years ago
Ivan Sutherland's Sketchpad, 1960, owns all comers for the "I invented it" crown. He actually did. Light pen modifying graphics on oscilloscope screen. Not very portable though, running as it did on the Linc TX-2.
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