Iwata explains the lack of second circle pad on 3DS XL

I know I'm not the only person who looked at the recently confirmed Circle Pad Pro accessory for the Nintendo 3DS XL and wondered why exactly Nintendo didn't just add a second circle pad by default to the larger portable console. Nintendo President Satoru Iwata is now offering an explanation for why Nintendo didn't just add that second circle pad from the factory. Iwata admits that adding the second circle pad would've been possible.

He goes as far as to say Nintendo even considered it. However, Iwata says that the second circle pad was never a focus during the design and development of the console; screen size and extended battery life were the priorities. Iwata says that to include a second analog stick Nintendo would've had to reduce the size of the battery or make the unit "much bigger."

He notes that Nintendo also wanted to have a bigger screen in comparison to the overall size of the system. To make that happen the trade-off was that the portable device didn't get its second analog stick. The upside for Nintendo is that gamers who really want a second circle pad get to spend money on the Circle Pad Pro accessory, helping ailing Nintendo's bottom line.

Iwata said, "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. The choice, if we were going to include the second analog stick, was to reduce the size of the batteries 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 we had various discussions and had to make trade-offs, and this is the outcome."

[via Nintendo Life]