We have all heard complaints about third party support in the Wii U console. Personally, I can understand the worry but don’t take much stock in the panic. Many of the third party games that were in development for other consoles, before the Wii U was announced, could not just simply port over to the Wii U console. In fact, some needed major work just to be playable. So, I am not surprised at the initial lack of third party presence. I guess you could say that Nintendo could have distributed Developer Kits to the third party developers earlier, but I think too much was at risk if information were to have been leaked. Needless to say, I am happy with what we have, and where are going.
Still, there are Nintendo fans that are upset with the lack of third party games. Steve Singer, NOA’s Vice President of licensing had the following to say about two developers that are on board:
“Disney, Ubisoft and our other third-party partners have a great lineup of exclusive games and unique experiences for fans of all ages. Their creativity spans every audience and genre, creating new ways to play that can only be experienced on Nintendo platforms.”
Disney and Ubisoft are both big names in the industry, and will surely make an impact on the console. I know that Ubisoft has made some…erm…bad decisions related to the Wii U, but I have faith that they have learned from their mistakes and fan backlash. Ubisoft has a few confirmed titles such as Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell Blacklist (Wii U -available on August 20th in North America) and, of course, Rayman Legends (demo available now through late April).
“Wii U gives both games a second-screen experience that fans will enjoy,” said Tony Key, senior vice president of Sales and Marketing, Ubisoft. “The genres are different, yet both games share fun game play and replayability.”
If Disney regroups the Star Wars sector of gaming, and releases a new array of titles, or some of the anticipated titles (1313 please), the Star Wars sales alone would be a huge success. Not to mention their confirmed titles such as Disney’s Planes (wii U, Wii, 3DS – available August 6th) and Disney Infinity (Wii U, Wii, and 3DS – available August 18th).
“Wii U offers our developers unique tools to showcase our fun franchises,” said Javier Ferriera, Senior Vice President, Publishing at Disney Interactive. “No matter which Nintendo system you own, every member of the family will have fun playing.”
Other Third Party games that will be available this Spring and/or summer are:
— Injustice: Gods Among Us from Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment launches April 16 with off-TV game-play functionality and an optional “Quick Moves List” lookup on the GamePad while the game plays on the television.
— Batman and Robin return in LEGO(R) Batman(TM) 2: DC Super Heroes this spring for Wii U from Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, with off-TV functionality and enhanced interactive map viewable on the GamePad.
— Resident Evil(R): Revelations from Capcom returns on May 21, redefined for Wii U with exclusive Miiverse features, including the ability to post a dying message on the Game Over screen for other players around the world to see, and the “Creatures Voice” function allowing players to personalize the thoughts of enemies in Raid Mode and taunt their friends.
— Fast & Furious(TM): Showdown from Activision launches May 21 with adrenaline-packed racing action for Fast & Furious fans.
— Sniper Elite V2 from 505 Games launches this May with new controls and a level of interactivity only possible with the Wii U GamePad touch screen.
— Coming soon to Wii U, DEUS EX: HUMAN REVOLUTION(R) – DIRECTOR’S CUT from Square Enix is packed with new features exclusive to the Wii U, including Miiverse integration and multiple game-play improvements leveraging the Wii U GamePad.
Games that will be available exclusively as digital downloads in the Nintendo eShop for Wii U include:
— DuckTales Remastered from Capcom: Releasing this summer, DuckTales Remastered is a hand-crafted, beautiful HD reimagining of one of the most iconic Disney 8-bit titles that follows the adventures of Scrooge McDuck as he explores differently themed worlds to collect their treasures and become the world’s richest duck.
— Dungeons & Dragons(R): Chronicles of Mystara(TM) from Capcom brings HD re-workings of two of Capcom’s classic arcade hits – Dungeons & Dragons: Tower of Doom and Dungeons & Dragons: Shadow over Mystara – together in one definitive digital package in June, complete with a wealth of enhancements and game-play options.
— Mutant Mudds Deluxe from Renegade Kid launches in Q2 with off-TV functionality and 20 new ghostly levels that are exclusive to Wii U.
— Spin the Bottle from Knapnock Games: Spin the Bottle is a party game where players look at each other rather than the TV, launching in early summer.
— Scram Kitty and his Buddy on Rails marks Dakko Dakko’s Nintendo eShop debut. A frenetic action platform game with unique controls and a striking visual style, Scram Kitty and his Buddy on Rails will be released for Wii U later in 2013.
Seeing Disney and Ubisoft pledge allegiance to Nintendo will hopefully calm some of the non-believers. Other Third Party developers that are scheduled to release games are Warner Bros., Electronic Arts, Square Enix, and Capcom. Let’s not forget some that have already released games on the Wii U such as, SEGA, Ubisoft, EA Sports, 2K Sports, Namco Bandai, and Frozenbyte Studios. Of course, there is also a rumor that Rockstar Games will bring Grand Theft Auto 5 to the Wii U. So, it looks to me that the Third Party support is definitely there. Sure, we may not have hundreds of games to choose from, but we cannot deny that there is support. I am okay that they aren’t dropping games like bird poop from a tree…I want my Wii U experience to be clean and fresh, not loaded with crap.
Despite the decent support discussed above, there are still some third party developers that are holding back. Deep Silver is one of those developers. When Game Informer asked Their COO about their Wii U Plans, he had this to say:
“Not Wii U. With other companies, I’ve been very successful with Nintendo. With Wii U, the Nintendo market right now and their audience is not who we reach best. It’s not something we’re entertaining in the near or foreseeable future.”
Some would say that he is outright hating on the Wii U, however his response to the company’s strategy for the next gen PS and Xbox was not all that optimistic:
“I would safely say that you’ll see us there, but not on the first day. It’s the same reason, the pioneer versus the settler…being there on the first day, that’s for the big boys.”
Maybe they aren’t one of the “Big Boys”, but I think as a company I would want to compete with them and join their ranks.
Regardless whether we see an influx of additional third party support, or not, over the next year, I can only hope that the games are not rushed. I hope that they take their time to create something great and memorable. The last thing this industry, as a whole, needs is a buggy, glitchy, horribly planned game, just for the sake of release. With two new next gen consoles hitting the market soon, I worry about the rush to be the first to release on those consoles. However, by holding back on key games, I believe that Nintendo has the edge here. When PS4 and 720 are finding their foothold, and ironing out the wrinkles, Nintendo can provide us with solid, fine tuned, and amazing games (such as Zelda, Mario Kart, etc…)
Are yous till feeling stiffed by the lack of current third party titles? Or, like me, do you feel that waiting patiently for the great games to arrive is quite alright?