Even though Nintendo previously confirmed the Wii U will be able to support two GamePads at the same time, it appears they will not be offering the tablet-style controllers as a standalone purchase. The only ones gamers in the U.S. will be able to get are the ones that come packaged with the Wii U console.
Thankfully, it won't always be this way. Once there are games available that support the use of two GamePad controllers, Nintendo will start putting them on store shelves.
"Through the launch window, there are no games that leverage a second controller. And so, during the launch window here in NOA [Nintendo of America] territories, we will not be selling at retail a second gamepad," Nintendo of America CEO Reggie Fils-Aime told investors during a recent Q&A. "But certainly, when the games come out, we'll be making that accessory available."
Now the only question is when a game that supports two GamePad controllers will come out. The “launch window” that Nintendo reps keep referring to extends through March 2013 and if there isn't a single game in there supporting two GamePads, will there ever be?