Wii U will not support two GamePads at launch
Nintendo announced at E3 last week that the Wii U will support two GamePad tablet controllers, but what they failed to mention is that this feature won't be implemented until "well after launch".
While the option to play with two GamePad's comes as a relief to many gamers intrigued with the Wii U's innovative gameplay experience, the fact that it won't be available at launch might turn some off - at least at first.
Speaking to Gamasutra, Nintendo America boss Reggie Fil-Aime explained, "Games need to be built that can take advantage of the two GamePad controllers."
"It's going to be well after launch for those game experiences to come to life," he added.
Instead, Nintendo will focus on asymmetric gameplay at first.
"Asymmetric gameplay is going to be the next major step forward, just like active play was when we launched the Wii," he said.
The idea behind asymmetric gameplay with the Wii U is that the one player with the GamePad controller will be competing differently, maybe even winning in a different way, then those playing the same game with the Wiimotes. The player with the Wii U GamePad takes on a special role, playing in the same world as those with the Wiimotes, but have a different perspective on the same game being played, usually different information or a different role than the others.
For instance, in Just Dance 4, the player with the GamePad can select the dance moves that those with the Wiimotes will have to perform. They are all playing the same game, but there is a different role for the one with the GamePad.
"We think that's where developers will focus first, then there will be multiple experiences that have two GamePads," Film-Aime concluded.
This also means the Wii U will likely ship with just one GamePad when it is released later this year. Of course, if you prefer a more traditional gameplay experience, the Wii U Pro Controller will also be offered, probably separately.