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Konno: Nintendo "didn't believe in potential" of 3D

EAD boss Hideki Konno explains initial resistance to the 3DS from Nintendo execs

Speaking at GDC, Nintendo's Entertainment Analysis Division development head Hideki Konno has discussed how the concept of the 3DS console initially met with strong resistance at Nintendo.

Konno explained that although he has traditionally been concerned primarily with software, the success of Wii Fit led Nintendo to push for greater collaboration between hardware and software teams.

As reported by Gamasutra, Konno described how he was handed the 3DS project in 2008: "This was the beginning of my journey into the unknown. I believe that being consistently curious about things provides us with the driving force to learn and grow."

According to Konno the team identified three major goals for the device: portability, being able to connect to other users, and getting something new every day.

Konno also emphasised that when original conceived the 3DS did not feature a stereoscopic 3D display. Following the infamous failure of the Virtual Boy, he revealed that there was understandably strong resistance to the feature within Nintendo.

"When we said to them, how about 3D, they didn't believe in the potential right away. Most of the people we spoke with took a defensive stance," he recalled. Doubters were won over with a series of technology demos, including a version of Mario Kart Wii running in 3D.

"I believe we were able to instantly capture the emotions of everyone," said Konno. "When we heard, 'We will be able to bring this to market' and 'The time for 3D has arrived,' we were extremely happy."

The 3DS launched to strong sales in Japan last weekend, with European and North American releases coming before the end of March.

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Latest comments (3)

Junior Enwright Writer - novelist, comic book scripts, game narrative, article writer 8 years ago
Interesting stuff.
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Majora artisan | freelance editor 8 years ago
Really interesting, thanks for writing this article. :)
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Tony Johns8 years ago
I do believe that when the original Wii and the DS were first announced, allot of the reactions from most people were like... WTF???

Even today, I find people who claim to be massive gamers, but scoff at the idea of the Wii or the DS because of the way that they don't like anything different from what they are used to.

I do think it was really highly possible that it must have took years for Nintendo to try 3D again since the failed Virual Boy.

It is interesting, that everything that Gunpei Yokoi experimented with when he used to be with Nintendo has been taken and evolved into the success Nintendo needed since his passing in 1997.
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