There is still a lot of time before the Wii U sees release in 2012. Nintendo has plenty of time to hammer down the details of the console, specifically its hardware specs. One such hardware spec that’s currently up in the air is just how many Wii U tablet controllers a single system can use at a time. As of right now, only one Wii U controller is allowed.
While chatting with news.com.au, Nintendo’s Shigeru Miyamoto confirmed that only one Wii U controller is currently accepted on the console. Everyone else that steps up to play on the system will have to use either a Wii motion controller, a classic Wii controller or potentially a 3DS.
"Our basic premise is that you can use one with a system," said Miyamoto. "If we got to an idea of having multiple, it might be just more convenient for people to use their Nintendo 3DS and have a way to connect that. That being said, we are doing research about if someone brings their controller to their friend's house and they want to play together on Wii U to whether or not something like that would be possible."
A lot of the problem might stem from the fact that the Wii U’s tablet controller does not have its own processor for displaying images on its 6” screen. Instead, the Wii U console wirelessly transmits the game display to the controller. Therefore, the more Wii U controllers you add to the system, the greater the strain is on the base unit.
However, from what we saw during a special Nintendo/Ubisoft press conference at E3, the gameplay experience varies quite drastically from Wii U tablet user to regular Wii controller user. For instance, with a game called Killer Freaks from Outer Space, the regular controller user plays a run-of-the-mill FPS title, while the person manning the Wii U tablet gets a bird’s-eye view of the map and can deploy monsters, spawn points and traps to trip up the FPS player. So is this a good indicator to how all Wii U titles will be developed when factoring in the limit to how many Wii U controllers can be used? As of right now, your guess is as good as mine. Hopefully Nintendo can crack the case and figure out a way to get multiple Wii U tablets on a single system so everyone can share the same type of gameplay experience.