Images of a games controller designed by Nintendo have made their way to the US Patent Office - perhaps pointing towards what we can expect from the NX, Nintendo's next home console.
IGN has picked up on the details, which were originally found on NeoGaf. It appears that the design isn't wildly different from the WiiU's GamePad controller, which also has a built in screen. Curiously though, the gamepad pictured only has two face buttons versus four on the WiiU - and (perhaps most importantly) contains references to shoulder buttons that can rolled and clicked. Perhaps think something that you might get on a scrolling mouse.
The patent itself has been filed with the follow near impenetrable abstract:
"An example operation apparatus includes: a direction input operation section provided on a front surface of a housing of the operation apparatus and at such a position that, in a state where the operation apparatus is held with at least one hand of a user, the direction input operation section is allowed to be operated with a thumb of the hand; and a rotation operation section which is provided on a surface different from the front surface of the housing and at such a position that, in a state where the operation apparatus is held with the hand or the other hand of the user, the rotation operation section is allowed to be operated with an index finger of the hand or the other hand and which is an operation section capable of being rotationally operated."
The speculation is that scroll-wheel shoulder buttons could be used, for example, to scroll through weapons selection easily. This said, the controller could simply be a case of Nintendo patenting an idea for future use, even if it has no current plans to use them. [NeoGaf via IGN]