Nintendo has announced a joystick add-on to its popular 3D hand-held gaming platform, the Nintendo 3DS.
According to a Capcom employee that spoke to Nintendo World Report at New York Comic Con, the second joystick, known as a circle pad to Nintendo 3DS owners, will become available in North America during the release of Resident Evil: Revelations, which is slated for Feb. 7, 2012. Surprisingly, the release will not coincide with the holiday season, a time of year that Nintendo has historically performed well.
The right-hand circle pad extension to the Nintendo 3DS is set to hit the Japanese market alongside Monster Hunter 3G, which is a third-person action game set to be released Dec. 10 in Japan according to Gaming Union.
Both Monster Hunger 3G and Resident Evil: Revelations are games played in the third-person. It appears that the joystick will allow gamers to adjust the camera more easily than they were able to with the absence of a second joystick. Dual-joysticks have been popular among gamers for more than a decade because of its ability to make maps more viewable and characters easier to control.
One rumor suggests that add-on may contain a battery extension. Those rumors are likely surfacing because many Nintendo 3DS owners have been unhappy with the battery life, which currently lasts 3-5 hours.
Nintendo filed a trademark for Circle Pad Pro in Japan according to Siliconera, a popular gaming blog. Since the add-on is indeed a circle and also a pad, many believe that this will be the name used for the U.S. release of the product.
Nintendo will also release a steering wheel attachment to the Nintendo 3DS to coincide with the release of Mario Kart 7 on Dec. 1. For a company that's extended the life of their previous systems, namely the Wii, by releasing several add-ons for it, releasing add-ons for the Nintendo 3DS may be exactly what the system needs to capitalize on the recent spike in sales.