A recently published Nintendo patent indicates the company could be working on a virtual reality accessory for its upcoming console-handheld hybrid Switch console. In the past, various executives from the Japanese gaming giant have stated that the company is not interested in virtual reality.
The patent, originally posted to NeoGAF, outlines a head-mounted display that holds the Nintendo Switch tablet, similar to the Daydream View or Samsung’s Gear VR. Nintendo writes that the headset is designed to “enhance the sense of immersion,” and that it could include its own tracking sensors, or that it possibly could utilize sensors built into the actual Switch tablet. According to the patent filing, users would play VR games by sliding off the Switch’s WiiMote-like removable controllers.
In an interview with Polygon earlier this month, legendary Nintendo game designer Shigeru Miyamoto said, “One technology that I’m often commenting about is VR, and it’s one that I’m definitely interested in,” before stating, “But it’s one that I think that, given the environment right now, is difficult to bring to market in a way that reaches the broadest audience.”
Nintendo’s concept for a Switch powered headset could, however, run into resolution issues, with recent reports indicating the console’s display sits at a lacklustre 720p resolution.
Of course as always with patent filings, this accessory could never see the light of day. Still, it’s interesting to know that Nintendo is taking virtual reality seriously.