Mystery still surrounds Nintendo's 'NX' console: set to arrive as early as next year, Nintendo president Tatsumi Kimishima has assured gamers it won't be the "next version of Wii or Wii U. It’s something unique and different."
A hint as to what Kimishima and co. might have up their sleeve has arrived in the form of a patent for an elliptical controller built around an interactive touchscreen.
Patents are never a reliable window into exactly what a tech company will release in future, but they do act as clear indicator as to what they're interested in developing.
The designs depict a controller that has a touchscreen stereoscopic front display - the same tech that allows the handheld 3DS to give a sense of depth.
The controller wouldn't feature as many buttons as current PS4 or Xbox One models: there's space for two thumb sticks, two triggers and two shoulder buttons, but all interactive buttons could appear on the screen depending on where the game wanted to place them.
The controller also includes a speaker - similar to that of the current PS4 model. What's unclear is whether this is a controller for the new NX console, or a new standalone handled to replace the 3DS.
The patent details that the screen could show non-gaming features, such as a browser or display smartphone-like statuses.
Adding weight to this patent design is a story from December 2014 that linked Nintendo to a supply of Sharp's 'free-form' LCD screen technology.
Sharp's latest LCD tech allows designers to bend screens around curved structures, such as this newly revealed controller patent.
Until E3 rolls around in June next year, all we can do is sit in our speculation chairs and hope that Nintendo has something special up its sleeve.