The new Apple TV expands the entertainment options available on the media player. It doesn’t just introduce a new App Store, but also brings with it this familiar looking remote control that does more than change the channel. It also doubles as a game controller; complete with Nintendo Wii-esque gestures.
Gaming appears to be a massive new focus for the recently announced Apple TV, and the remote completely embraces mobile gaming on the big screen. It features a touchpad prominently covering the upper third of the device, which is meant to simulate using a tablet or smartphone touchscreen. Apple also expects people to hold it sideways when playing games, to simulate holding a proper game controller.
In addition to this, the Siri remote has also been outfitted with an accelerometer; which is where the biggest comparison to the Wii controller happens to be. It can be used in the same way, and Apple demonstrated a Wii Sports style game which features a strange twisted version of baseball.
Interestingly, Apple is not limiting developers to using this remote for their games. An indie game designer noticed that the development document for the Apple TV allows third party controllers and provides directions on how to go about handling it. This simply means that the Apple TV support MFi based controllers; of which there are quite a few already designed to work with iPads and iPhones.
It should come as no surprise that the Apple TV is compatible with full size controllers, considering the lineup of announced games includes Rayman Legends and the brand new Disney Infinity 3.0. That being said, the biggest question lies with the announcement that a new Guitar Hero game will also be coming to the platform. We have no idea if this will mean that a guitar controller for the Apple TV is on the way.
Admittedly, it is more likely that Guitar Hero will require the use of an iPhone or iPad to act as he controller. Which would be less than exciting but make more sense logistically for Apple. On the other hand, the new 3D Touch feature on the iPhone 6S could make for a very, very interesting game controller with its ability to pressure sensitive interface.