Xbox 360's Wiimote Accessory Is Already In Development, Coming This Generation

Illustration for article titled Xbox 360's Wiimote Accessory Is Already In Development, Coming This Generation

Microsoft's been working on a Wiimote-esque controller due to come out late this year—development started on it all the way back in Summer '07—but the whole process has been "a colossal clusterfuck." Here's what MTV news knows courtesy of their exclusive source, who sketched out what it looks like above.

The 360 Wiimote shaped very much like the Nintendo Wii's Wiimote and has a speaker, microphone, four LED lights, A/B/X/Y face buttons, an analog stick and an underside trigger. The Wiimote, on the other hand, doesn't have a Microphone and has a D-pad instead of an analog stick. It's being worked on by Rare, who are trying to come up with a "unified interface and look for the controller." The current problem Microsoft's having is between marketers and designers. The former wants it just about exactly like the Wiimote so they can match them on spec sheets and lure game developers into porting over Wii games onto the 360. The designers want it to be even more feature-rich than just the Wii, and describe it as Halo, Gears and Forza "in waggle form."

Microsoft is also working on their equivalent of the Nintendo Mii avatars to go along with this accessory, and will be ported into every game that uses the controller. The problem with Microsoft porting characters around is that each one "standard look" and be somewhat generic. On the other hand, Rare's having much difficulty meeting their deadlines, which means that target date of end of 2008 could be hard to hit.


Hit up MTV Multiplayer for a bigger view of the sketch. [MTV - Thanks Ravi!]

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Let's assume, for the sake of argument, that Microsoft really does release this Wiimote360 .. Isn't it too late? A game developer is not going to be interested in releasing a game for a platform that only a small percentage of owners have the controller for, right? Microsoft would really need to send this add-on to every current 360 owner to make it truly exciting to software developers, and even then we are still talking about a much smaller installed base than the Wii anyway.

I think Microsoft had the right idea from the beginning, which is to call the Wiimote a fad (true or not) and waiting to bring something similar for the Xbox1080.