3. BEAT THE BEAT RHYTHM PARADISE
With great processing power comes great developer responsibility: Nintendo knows Wii U is going to have to push the visual envelope. As Iwata admitted in a recent investor meeting: "There are certainly software titles for which very rich graphics must be reproduced on HD displays and which demand a large number of developers". He went on to promise that the next Zelda would have the kind of "graphical representations" players expect. "When it is necessary, we do not hesitate to roll out our resources." Bold stuff.
Bolder still is Iwata's insistence that not all Nintendo games have to be like that. With Nintendo software," he reminded investors, "rich graphics, massive gameplay volume and astonishing rendition effects are not necessarily the appealing point". Citing the work of Yoshio Sakamoto - in particular, the wonderful Beat The Beat: Rhythm Paradise - Iwata pointed out that "rich photorealistic graphics" wouldn't have been as appealing as the charming art of most of its minigames. Sometimes less really is more.
This isn't necessarily a new thing, as Sakamoto's studio has been quietly doing brilliantly bizarre stuff on the fringes for a while. WarioWare: Twisted, Friend Collection and the baffling Kiki Trick are proof that Nintendo are happy to indulge their quirky side. Why else do you think Captain Rainbow/Chibi-Robo developer Skip keep getting work?
Crucially, Wii U's unique controller setup should further foster this independent spirit, encouraging developers to experiment. What is Iwata's suggestion that Nintendo's rivals "can fight only with massive resources and long development times" if not a clarion call to game makers to get creative? Wii U should have a "dynamic range of appeal" says Iwata - if it means more like Beat The Beat, we'll happily join him in banging the indie drum.