GameInformer spoke with Nintendo legend and creative genius Shigeru Miyamoto during the course of E3. They actually asked him about one of the more interesting facets of gaming hardware design: color choice. Miyamoto commented on the fact that Nintendo used to produce relatively colorful gaming systems (especially the Japanese Super Famicom), but that they moved away from that once they considered the age barriers they were accidentally erecting.
“What we found over the years when we included a lot of different colors in our hardware is people would kind of point to that and use it to paint us as more kid-oriented. So really what we looked at is what are some ways from a design perspective that can make the system appeal to all ages One of the ways that we found to best do that is to minimize the use of color. In that process we asked if we’re going to do that, what’s the best way to go? We found that rather than going all black – all white seems to have a broader appeal to people.”
…really? Because I’ve also assumed that Nintendo made the Wii white because the design choice was working so well for Apple. In fact, I specifically remember seeing the machine for the first time right around when Mac was making waves with their white iPods and white MacBook. The white MacBook dropped in 2006, the same year as the Nintendo Wii.
Then again, that could all be summed up as coincidence. The global design of technology has always moved in patterns. Everything from every era has a certain distinctive look to it. Whether it was Apple that started us down the path of all white tech devices or not is debatable; however, I’m sure that people will look back on the mid-to-late 2000s and connect this era’s devices with that color scheme.
Have you been a fan of Nintendo’s color palette in recent years? Did you like the design of the Wii, and do you like the potential design of the Wii U?