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Nintendo sticks with Wii but plans 3D

Iwata not worried about PS3 growth, but considering 3D for next home console

Nintendo president Satoru Iwata has told Reuters that the company is comfortable with the Wii's performance, despite its recent sales decline.

"I do not think that there is an immediate need to replace the Wii console. But of course, at some point in the future, the need will arise," he said. "We currently do not have an answer as to what point in the future that need will come."

He remained bullish about the competition, despite both Sony and Microsoft revealing launch dates for their own motion controllers. "The fact is that when you look at the absolute number for units sold, it is clear that the pace is dramatically better than either of our competitors," he said. "The absolute level of sales has been widening in our favor."

In reference to Sony's retail boost in the wake of the PlayStation 3 slim, he added "It is easy to talk about growth when you are working off of a very low base."

While this would seem to rule out a Wii 2 or HD any time soon, Iwata has separately been talking about the company's interest in 3D for the living room.

But he appeared to dismiss suggestion of an add-on for the Wii: "If you display a 3D image, the image quality becomes extremely bad," he told newspaper Nihon Keizai Shimbun, "so we'd probably do it with the next system. We're thinking that the timing should be once the 3D television adoption rates crosses the 30% mark. We're looking at the adoption trends."

He was broadly in favour of the technology, however: "It allows us to realize images that are close to what you see in your daily life," he told newspaper Nihon Keizai Shimbun. In the future, 3D will become the mainstream of gaming."

Nintendo has of course experimented with 3D both in the past - with the infamous Virtual Boy - and will do in the future, in the shape of the hotly-anticipated 3DS handheld.

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Alec Meer avatar
Alec Meer: A 10-year veteran of scribbling about video games, Alec primarily writes for Rock, Paper, Shotgun, but given any opportunity he will escape his keyboard and mouse ghetto to write about any and all formats.
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