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John Carmack Gives Thumbs Up for Wii U

In a recent interview with IndustryGamers, id Software technical director John Carmack seemingly gave a thumbs up for the Nintendo Wii U console. In fact, he said it should be a "slam dunk" in bringing the id Tech 5 engine to the upcoming platform. But don't get your hopes up just yet – Wii U support isn't exactly an official deal until Carmack gets his hands on an actual unit.

"We haven’t had that discussion yet as a company, but it seems technically like it’s a valid target, so I’m always happy to go ahead and get a new box in and see what it takes to bring it up and see the pros and cons of the choices they made," he said. "I think they probably made a fairly intelligent decision with the Wii U."

He also appeared to be more intrigued with the Wii U touch-screen controller than the current motion control solutions on the other platforms.

"I think there may be more good uses of that [Wii U tablet] than [there are for] the current generation with Kinect and Move... there’s clearly a subset of games for which things like that are appropriate for," he said. "We’ve been going on with how can we use those types of motion things with Rage and it’s hard to take a game that’s fundamentally designed around a controller and get value out of doing some of those other things, while adding extra touch interfaces there, that seems like something that almost every game could make some use of without it being just like, 'Oh, we have to do something like this.' Because if you remember, when the DS came out, there was a lot of talk about how, ‘Isn’t this going to be just a gimmick?’ But really it did turn out to be quite a good interface to build on."

Carmack indicated that id Software and Nintendo are more in tune with each other now than in previous years thanks to the Wii U. He admitted that id's relationship with the console company was "pretty negative" in the Super Nintendo days, that Nintendo was all about controlling what came across their hardware. Eventually Nintendo changed its tune and eased up on its controlling reins just a bit, but id was on a different technological level by then. The "missteps" became obvious when it came time to develop for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC simultaneously.

"If anything, I’m much more inclined to want to develop something for Nintendo now because I’ve got a 6-year-old son and we play Wii and DS games all the time," he admitted. "I’d be happy to do something there. It just hasn’t been the right fit for where id Software is with our projects and technologies."