Revolution Q & A

source: IGN
Nintendo-revolution-faq-20050525023041926-000

Q: Will Revolution feature screens on the console or the controller?

A: No. At a June 2004 analyst briefing in Japan, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata said, “We have no intention of making a two-screen console akin to the [Nintendo] DS.”

Q: What makes the controller so revolutionary then?

A: At E3 2005, Nintendo’s executive of vice president of sales and marketing, Reginald Fils-Aime, offered a hint.

“We announced the ability to download and play the best NES games, S-NES games, N64 games, in addition to Revolution games and GameCube games,” he said in an IGN/G4 interview. “If you put those controllers all lined up together, they’re all very different. So think about what kind of device is going to allow you to play all those different types of games. It’s pretty interesting.”

This, of course, suggests that Revolution’s controller may enable gamers to configure their own layouts in order to best suit their different gameplay experiences.

Further, Revolution’s controller will very likely make use of motion-sensing technology. Leaked documentation shows that players may be able to twist and turn the device in order to twist and turn objects and characters in Revolution games. Nintendo has dabbled in this type of technology in the handheld sector with such games as Kirby Tilt ‘N Tumble.

Q: Will Revolution hook up to a television?

A: Yes. It will also be able to interface with a computer monitor. In June 2004 Nintendo engineer Genyo Takeda said: “You’ll be able to play [Revolution] not just by linking up to a television but to a computer monitor as well.”

Q: Will Revolution go online?

A: Yes. The Revolution console will feature online play out of the box. Nintendo at the March 15, 2005 Game Developers Conference in San Francisco announced an aggressive new Wi-Fi strategy for both DS and Revolution. Wi-Fi enables wireless, high-speed connections to the Internet using such popular standards as 802.11b and 802.11g. Company executives made strong statements about Nintendo’s belief that gamers should be able to wirelessly go online and play against each other.

“We intend to incorporate wireless technology in all we do,” Iwata announced at the event. “Therefore, Nintendo Revolution will be Wi-Fi enabled, built into every system.”

Q: Will Revolution owners be able to connect online and download classic Nintendo games?

A: Yes. Nintendo announced at E3 2005 that Revolution would be able to go online wirelessly and download classic Nintendo games. Nintendo has not yet announced what titles will be available for download. However, it has confirmed that Revolution owners could theoretically download every NES, Super-NES and Nintendo 64 game ever made. The publisher is reportedly already working with third party publisher to ensure that popular third party games are also available to download.

At E3 2005, Shigeru Miyamoto said: “We have not set a price or determined a list of software for the Nintendo Revolution download service. But, we’re looking at this as a consumer service and not so much from the business end. What we want to do is provide the product that is going to make the Revolution the console that people want in their homes. So it actually might be driven from the consumer end rather than from us. You know, the games that they most want might be the ones that we do. From a technological point, we can do any of them. It’s just, we haven’t determined which ones we’ll do yet.”

Q: Will Revolution support high-definition?

A: No. Nintendo is more focused on making Revolution small, quiet and affordable, according to company executives. As a result, it will not be able to output in the accepted 720p, 1080i and 1080p high-definition formats. It will, however, support 480p (progressive-scan), which means that it will once again be able to use component outputs.

“It is accurate that at this time we will not support high-definition [on Revolution],” confirmed Nintendo of America’s vice president of corporate affairs, Perrin Kaplan, in early 2005.

“Nintendo’s Revolution is being built with a variety of gamers’ needs in mind, such as quick start-up time, high power, and ease of use for development and play. It’s also compact and sleek, and has beautiful graphics in which to enjoy innovative games,” Kaplan said. “Nintendo doesn’t plan for the system to be HD compatible as with that comes a higher price for both the consumer and also the developer creating the game. Will it make the game better to play? With the technology being built into the Revolution, we believe the games will look brilliant and play brilliantly. This can all be done without HD.”

Sources indicate that Nintendo is internally split on the issue of high-definition. This is an option that is still being considered within the company. Both IBM and ATI, the makers of Revolution’s CPU and GPU respectively, have allegedly been asked to try and find a work-around the lack of HD support.

Q: Will Revolution be backward compatible?

A: Yes. At the March 2005 Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata confirmed that Revolution would be backward compatible.

“Contrary to much speculation, I can announce today that Revolution will be backward compatible. The best of the Nintendo GameCube library will still be enjoyed by players years from now,” Iwata revealed.

The announcement was a surprise because analysts and media, IGN included, figured that Revolution’s radically different new input device would make backward compatibility a near impossibility. Evidently Nintendo has found a way around this hurdle.

Q: How are discs inserted into Revolution?

A: The unit features a slot-loading drive that accepts both GameCube optical discs ands proprietary 12cm discs. Users simply insert the disc into the front of the unit and the drive does the rest.

Q: Does Revolution have a hard drive?

A: No.

Q: How will games be saved on Revolution?

A: It depends on the game. The machine plays Revolution and GameCube titles out of the box. A GameCube docking station located on one side of the unit features four GCN controller inputs as well as two Memory Pak slots. Data for GameCube titles will be saved to standard Memory Paks. Meanwhile, Revolution software data will be stored on 512MB flash memory, according to Nintendo.

  
Q: Who are Nintendo’s hardware partners on Revolution?

A: During the course of the last two years, several major hardware companies have been linked to Revolution including IBM, ATI, MoSys and NEC.

In December 2002 Bloomberg reported that Nintendo had agreed to collaborate with NEC on a system LSI that would serve as the core for the new console.

Just a few months later GameCube graphics chip maker ATI announced a vague “technology development agreement” for use in future “Nintendo products.” Unconfirmed reports from insiders alleged that ATI had been in development with the graphics chip for Revolution well before that announcement.

In March 2005, Nintendo confirmed that both IBM and ATI would supply the CPU and GPU respectively for the Revolution console.

“We’re excited to be developing the graphics chip set for Revolution, which continues our longstanding relationship with Nintendo,” explained Dave Orton, ATI Technologies’ president and chief executive officer. “As the leading graphics provider, ATI is committed to delivering exceptional visual performance that enables consumers to interact with new and visually compelling digital worlds. ATI is proud to support Nintendo’s innovative contributions to gaming.”

 
Click for more images of Revolution
 
Q: What does Revolution look like?

A: Click here for official pictures of the console.

Q: Has IGN gone hands-on with Revolution?

A: Yes. Click here for our impressions.

Q: What are Revolution’s CPU and GPU called, and why?

A:: The IBM-created CPU is called Broadway. The ATI-developed GPU is called Hollywood. At the March 2005 Game Developers Conference, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata explained the reasoning behind the titles.

“With IBM, we are creating Revolution’s core processor, which we have codenamed Broadway because Broadway is the capital of live entertainment,” he said. “With ATI, we are developing the graphics chipset, codenamed Hollywood because Hollywood is the capital of movie entertainment. With Revolution, we are determined to create the new capital of interactive entertainment.”

Q: Has Nintendo sent out Revolution development kits to software houses yet?

A: We’re not sure.

In March 2005, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata was asked bout Revolution development kits. “Development kits are already out there, depending on which stage you’re talking about,” he responded. “All I can say right now is ‘in the near-future’ for the base platform information they will need to get started on games.”

When asked about whether kits had gone out at E3 2005, however, Shigeru Miyamoto said no. “We have not sent out development kits to developers yet,” he confirmed. “However, development kits for the Nintendo Revolution are very similar to the ones for the GameCube. So we feel that the environments are so similar that they will be able to start development very quickly upon receiving the development kits for Revolution.”

Q: When will Revolution be released?

A: “If you’re asking for a specific date for our next system — we don’t have one. Nintendo is going to remain competitive and will launch around the same time as competitors — not later than,” said Nintendo of America’s vice president of corporate affairs in a May 2004 interview. This used to be the company line. But at E3 2005, Nintendo sang a different tune. No longer concerned about beating Sony to market, Nintendo executives said simply that Revolution would “launch in 2006.”

During a conference call discussing its financial status, Revolution memory maker MoSys said that the console would launch in mid-2006.

Microsoft will debut Xbox 360 this November in America. Sony said at E3 2005 that it would like to launch PlayStation 3 by March 2006. Given these plans, Revolution will likely be the last system to hit the market.

Q: How much will Revolution cost?

A:: An exact price is unknown. But Nintendo is aggressively seeking to deliver a small, quiet and affordable console. It seems likely that the unit will debut at the sub-0 mark and possibly cheaper if all goes as planned.

Q: When will Nintendo reveal more about Revolution?

A: At the Tokyo Game Show 2005. Nintendo president Satoru Iwata will talk about Revolution in his keynote speech. Nintendo fans must not miss this event for it is here that Iwata is expected to unveil the Revolution’s mysterious controller. The keynote will take place in mid-September and IGN will be on hand with details and photos.

source: IGN
Nintendo-revolution-faq-20050525023041926-000

Q: Will Revolution feature screens on the console or the controller?

A: No. At a June 2004 analyst briefing in Japan, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata said, “We have no intention of making a two-screen console akin to the [Nintendo] DS.”

Q: What makes the controller so revolutionary then?

A: At E3 2005, Nintendo’s executive of vice president of sales and marketing, Reginald Fils-Aime, offered a hint.

“We announced the ability to download and play the best NES games, S-NES games, N64 games, in addition to Revolution games and GameCube games,” he said in an IGN/G4 interview. “If you put those controllers all lined up together, they’re all very different. So think about what kind of device is going to allow you to play all those different types of games. It’s pretty interesting.”

This, of course, suggests that Revolution’s controller may enable gamers to configure their own layouts in order to best suit their different gameplay experiences.

Further, Revolution’s controller will very likely make use of motion-sensing technology. Leaked documentation shows that players may be able to twist and turn the device in order to twist and turn objects and characters in Revolution games. Nintendo has dabbled in this type of technology in the handheld sector with such games as Kirby Tilt ‘N Tumble.

Q: Will Revolution hook up to a television?

A: Yes. It will also be able to interface with a computer monitor. In June 2004 Nintendo engineer Genyo Takeda said: “You’ll be able to play [Revolution] not just by linking up to a television but to a computer monitor as well.”

Q: Will Revolution go online?

A: Yes. The Revolution console will feature online play out of the box. Nintendo at the March 15, 2005 Game Developers Conference in San Francisco announced an aggressive new Wi-Fi strategy for both DS and Revolution. Wi-Fi enables wireless, high-speed connections to the Internet using such popular standards as 802.11b and 802.11g. Company executives made strong statements about Nintendo’s belief that gamers should be able to wirelessly go online and play against each other.

“We intend to incorporate wireless technology in all we do,” Iwata announced at the event. “Therefore, Nintendo Revolution will be Wi-Fi enabled, built into every system.”

Q: Will Revolution owners be able to connect online and download classic Nintendo games?

A: Yes. Nintendo announced at E3 2005 that Revolution would be able to go online wirelessly and download classic Nintendo games. Nintendo has not yet announced what titles will be available for download. However, it has confirmed that Revolution owners could theoretically download every NES, Super-NES and Nintendo 64 game ever made. The publisher is reportedly already working with third party publisher to ensure that popular third party games are also available to download.

At E3 2005, Shigeru Miyamoto said: “We have not set a price or determined a list of software for the Nintendo Revolution download service. But, we’re looking at this as a consumer service and not so much from the business end. What we want to do is provide the product that is going to make the Revolution the console that people want in their homes. So it actually might be driven from the consumer end rather than from us. You know, the games that they most want might be the ones that we do. From a technological point, we can do any of them. It’s just, we haven’t determined which ones we’ll do yet.”

Q: Will Revolution support high-definition?

A: No. Nintendo is more focused on making Revolution small, quiet and affordable, according to company executives. As a result, it will not be able to output in the accepted 720p, 1080i and 1080p high-definition formats. It will, however, support 480p (progressive-scan), which means that it will once again be able to use component outputs.

“It is accurate that at this time we will not support high-definition [on Revolution],” confirmed Nintendo of America’s vice president of corporate affairs, Perrin Kaplan, in early 2005.

“Nintendo’s Revolution is being built with a variety of gamers’ needs in mind, such as quick start-up time, high power, and ease of use for development and play. It’s also compact and sleek, and has beautiful graphics in which to enjoy innovative games,” Kaplan said. “Nintendo doesn’t plan for the system to be HD compatible as with that comes a higher price for both the consumer and also the developer creating the game. Will it make the game better to play? With the technology being built into the Revolution, we believe the games will look brilliant and play brilliantly. This can all be done without HD.”

Sources indicate that Nintendo is internally split on the issue of high-definition. This is an option that is still being considered within the company. Both IBM and ATI, the makers of Revolution’s CPU and GPU respectively, have allegedly been asked to try and find a work-around the lack of HD support.

Q: Will Revolution be backward compatible?

A: Yes. At the March 2005 Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata confirmed that Revolution would be backward compatible.

“Contrary to much speculation, I can announce today that Revolution will be backward compatible. The best of the Nintendo GameCube library will still be enjoyed by players years from now,” Iwata revealed.

The announcement was a surprise because analysts and media, IGN included, figured that Revolution’s radically different new input device would make backward compatibility a near impossibility. Evidently Nintendo has found a way around this hurdle.

Q: How are discs inserted into Revolution?

A: The unit features a slot-loading drive that accepts both GameCube optical discs ands proprietary 12cm discs. Users simply insert the disc into the front of the unit and the drive does the rest.

Q: Does Revolution have a hard drive?

A: No.

Q: How will games be saved on Revolution?

A: It depends on the game. The machine plays Revolution and GameCube titles out of the box. A GameCube docking station located on one side of the unit features four GCN controller inputs as well as two Memory Pak slots. Data for GameCube titles will be saved to standard Memory Paks. Meanwhile, Revolution software data will be stored on 512MB flash memory, according to Nintendo.

  
Q: Who are Nintendo’s hardware partners on Revolution?

A: During the course of the last two years, several major hardware companies have been linked to Revolution including IBM, ATI, MoSys and NEC.

In December 2002 Bloomberg reported that Nintendo had agreed to collaborate with NEC on a system LSI that would serve as the core for the new console.

Just a few months later GameCube graphics chip maker ATI announced a vague “technology development agreement” for use in future “Nintendo products.” Unconfirmed reports from insiders alleged that ATI had been in development with the graphics chip for Revolution well before that announcement.

In March 2005, Nintendo confirmed that both IBM and ATI would supply the CPU and GPU respectively for the Revolution console.

“We’re excited to be developing the graphics chip set for Revolution, which continues our longstanding relationship with Nintendo,” explained Dave Orton, ATI Technologies’ president and chief executive officer. “As the leading graphics provider, ATI is committed to delivering exceptional visual performance that enables consumers to interact with new and visually compelling digital worlds. ATI is proud to support Nintendo’s innovative contributions to gaming.”

 
Click for more images of Revolution
 
Q: What does Revolution look like?

A: Click here for official pictures of the console.

Q: Has IGN gone hands-on with Revolution?

A: Yes. Click here for our impressions.

Q: What are Revolution’s CPU and GPU called, and why?

A:: The IBM-created CPU is called Broadway. The ATI-developed GPU is called Hollywood. At the March 2005 Game Developers Conference, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata explained the reasoning behind the titles.

“With IBM, we are creating Revolution’s core processor, which we have codenamed Broadway because Broadway is the capital of live entertainment,” he said. “With ATI, we are developing the graphics chipset, codenamed Hollywood because Hollywood is the capital of movie entertainment. With Revolution, we are determined to create the new capital of interactive entertainment.”

Q: Has Nintendo sent out Revolution development kits to software houses yet?

A: We’re not sure.

In March 2005, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata was asked bout Revolution development kits. “Development kits are already out there, depending on which stage you’re talking about,” he responded. “All I can say right now is ‘in the near-future’ for the base platform information they will need to get started on games.”

When asked about whether kits had gone out at E3 2005, however, Shigeru Miyamoto said no. “We have not sent out development kits to developers yet,” he confirmed. “However, development kits for the Nintendo Revolution are very similar to the ones for the GameCube. So we feel that the environments are so similar that they will be able to start development very quickly upon receiving the development kits for Revolution.”

Q: When will Revolution be released?

A: “If you’re asking for a specific date for our next system — we don’t have one. Nintendo is going to remain competitive and will launch around the same time as competitors — not later than,” said Nintendo of America’s vice president of corporate affairs in a May 2004 interview. This used to be the company line. But at E3 2005, Nintendo sang a different tune. No longer concerned about beating Sony to market, Nintendo executives said simply that Revolution would “launch in 2006.”

During a conference call discussing its financial status, Revolution memory maker MoSys said that the console would launch in mid-2006.

Microsoft will debut Xbox 360 this November in America. Sony said at E3 2005 that it would like to launch PlayStation 3 by March 2006. Given these plans, Revolution will likely be the last system to hit the market.

Q: How much will Revolution cost?

A:: An exact price is unknown. But Nintendo is aggressively seeking to deliver a small, quiet and affordable console. It seems likely that the unit will debut at the sub-0 mark and possibly cheaper if all goes as planned.

Q: When will Nintendo reveal more about Revolution?

A: At the Tokyo Game Show 2005. Nintendo president Satoru Iwata will talk about Revolution in his keynote speech. Nintendo fans must not miss this event for it is here that Iwata is expected to unveil the Revolution’s mysterious controller. The keynote will take place in mid-September and IGN will be on hand with details and photos.

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