Monday, July 18, 2011

Nintendo is late to the HD party

Nintendo’s president assures investors and gamers that they have the know-how to develop HD games even though they have yet to develop a full 1080p game. Given Nintendo’s competition’s head start, there could be some grounds to worry.

"You indicated that Nintendo might not have HD video game know-how because we have never developed such games," Nintendo president Satoru Iwata told an inquiring investor. "The scene from the [Zelda HD] demo software we, in cooperation with a development company, created in a relatively short time before the E3 show. A person from another Japanese software development company saw this video at E3 and commented, ‘These kinds of images cannot be easily produced on the gaming machines of other companies,’ and so we believe we have been able to prepare something, and the quality of which can be appreciated to some extent or more. Because we did this in a relatively short timeframe, we could show that we are not completely behind other companies, so I think you do not have to feel anxious about it."

A screenshot of what Zelda might look like in HD

Nintendo opted out of HD gaming with the Wii citing low HDTV adoption numbers and a way to keep development costs under control. The publisher instead focused on innovated technologies, such as the Wiimote, balance board, Wii Speak and the Wii Zapper, to woo gamers. This decision though has put the company six years behind with hands-on experience developing HD graphics. Nintendo is home to many of the world’s great video gamer programmers and if the Zelda HD demo is a peak into what Nintendo is truly capable of regarding HD graphics, than the competition’s head start might not be all that detrimental. -TNGG

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