Iwata explains the lack of a second Circle Pad on Nintendo 3DS XL

Whilst most were delighted at the arrival of the Nintendo 3DS XL, some concern as to why a second Circle Pad wasn’t included.

Nintendo’s global president Satoru Iwata has said that it’s inclusion would have made the handheld even larger, perhaps forgetting how colossal it would become anyway with the confirmed 3DS XL Circle Pad Pro.

“When we looked at the design of the 3DS XL we had to look at various factors, one was battery life, one was the overall size of the unit, and we had to make some trade-offs,” Iwata began, during an interview with The Independent. “The choice, if we were going to include the second analogue stick, was to reduce the size of the battery or make the unit much bigger.

“What we wanted to do was have a bigger screen in comparison with the overall size of the system, so had various discussions and had to make trade-offs and this is the outcome.


He continued, “Attaching a second analogue stick is possible but it would have made the system even bigger and, though it perhaps puts a burden on people that really want that second stick, it’s a call we had to make and these people will have to live with it.

“This [the lack of a second stick] isn’t my main focus when I look at the 3DS XL, it’s one point we had to cover, but for me personally I’m quite happy with the product we’re able to offer.

Written by
After starting out with a Yellow Game Boy and a copy of Donkey Kong Land, Alex once hid in his room to play The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time one Christmas. Now he shares his thoughts on Nintendo Insider, keeping track of everything to do with Nintendo.

1 Comment

  1. Another one in the series of unbelievably stupid business decisions by that Iwata-dude.


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