And what’s even more surprising: the controller was planned to be cross-platform for easier handling!
Microsoft’s controller has been a significant success, as gamers who are limited can find the XAC a considerable help. Nintendo has also been working on something like it, and Reggie Fils-Aimé, the former US head of the big N, confirmed it in an interview with Inverse:
“Imagine an adaptive controller that you could play with your latest Xbox, PlayStation, or Nintendo platform. That’s what we were working on three years ago. I hope that the effort has continued. I’m not sure if it has or has not, but my hope is that controller, and the ability for that controller to connect with all of the various systems, is launched and shared with consumers as quickly as possible,” Fils-Aimé said.
Fils-Aimé left the company in 2019, so he has no idea if the company has since scrapped the plan. Still, it’s inevitable that the Nintendo Switch already has such a device as the Hori Flex Assistive Controller (which is more expensive than Microsoft’s XAC) that can be used on a PC, for example. Even Nintendo is treating it as a licensed product, so who knows, maybe the big N has secretly handed the plans to Hori so the idea doesn’t go to waste. Meanwhile, the 2018-released XAC is heading to Linux. Last year, Microsoft was already wondering what use the controller would have and where accessibility might be heading, so they started working with developers on such functionality.
But back to Nintendo, Nikkei reported that it’s looking to boost its stock of the base model of the Nintendo Switch with a nifty trick from August: no, it’s not price increase or cheaper parts, it’s the packaging. They’re making it 20% smaller to fit more in a single shipment, which should help international supply and improve shipping transparency.
It’s not a bad idea: Aldi products, for example, have been ‘compressed’ to get more of them on a shelf.