News Article

EA: Nintendo Needs to Drop Wii Price, Help Third Parties

Posted by Trevor Chan

Just a couple of suggestions from John Riccitiello

Whether it's the top priority or not, Nintendo is undoubtedly looking to pick up declining profits with the upcoming 3DS. However, in response to the Move and Kinect peripherals for the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 respectively, launching new hardware might not be the only answer if Nintendo is to hang on to its dominance in the industry. According to EA's CEO, that is.

John Riccitiello recently took part in an interview conducted by Industry Gamers and talking points included the Wii's position in the market and the course of action he thinks Nintendo should take:

I would say they did exceptionally well in ‘07 and ‘08, started tapering in ‘09 and ‘10, and... I think if they were to price down to $99, they would explode. I think they’ve now got competition, in the form of gesture-based gaming from Sony and Microsoft. If they were to find ways to promote third-party content better, as opposed to first-party content, and would hit pricing, I think the platform would see new life...

It's one thing to suggest another price-cut, but it's another to criticise the company's helping hand for third-parties. To rub salt further in the wound, Riccitiello praises a "third-party company" that Nintendo sees as its real enemy and their biggest threat:

I think it’s a frustration for all third-party publishers, when a platform holder does less to promote third-party content. A great third-party company is Apple, a company that’s all third-party content. There’s often tension in a company between first- and third-party content. Nintendo’s unique in the world. They’re a great company because of the blend of first- and third-party content. First-party hardware, first-party content is what makes them great, but it’s actually pretty tough. I can come up with a dozen titles in the last decade, but it’s really tough to come up with a dozen great titles that have been platform defining for them that weren’t their own. I don’t care whether it’s Mario or Twilight Princess or GoldenEye; it was their own content. I’m going back to N64, and I can go back to SNES if you want, but they’ve never really been a heavy third-party supporting system. It’s not lack of trying; they start the morning thinking what’s best for their own intellectual property.

Nintendo might be selective when supporting third-party releases beyond its usual remit, we only have to look at recent examples like Monster Hunter 3 (Tri~) from Capcom and Metroid: Other M from Team Ninja to know that even with Nintendo's support, sales don't always meet expectations. With the recent revival of the WiiWare demo service, that's at least another step in the right direction but surely it's a two-way street? EA is certainly a big player in the industry and can handle its own marketing quite adequately, so if the publishing giant encounters problems which it blames on the lack of support from Nintendo, could the reason indeed be that, or are there fundamental problems with their products? There's always the possibility that the issue is something else. What are your thoughts?


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User Comments (76)



y2josh said:

I'm going to go out on a limb here at the risk of sounding stupid, but in the SNES days there wasn't much competition and there were plenty of 3rd party games on the system.



invmat said:

EA is a bit jealous because their Wii-games aren't as succesful as Nintendo's. And now they're blaming Nintendo. EA just needs to make better games and have better advertising.



Hardy83 said:

But EAs games like EA Active sell like mad though, their games sell. Not all of them but they do have big sellers.

And Nintendo's 3rd party support does suck, they barely do anything to help third parties, and it doesn't just have to be money. I mean a simple way to promote games on the Wii would be nice, but any attempt at that has been half-arzed by Nintendo every time.



Sean_Aaron said:

EA's big problem from my perspective is when they make a genuine effort they still come up short somehow. Take Boom Blox Bash Party; I reckon if that was a budget release it would have done a lot better rather than banking on Stephen Spielberg's name to sell it.

Need for Speed Nitro was such a disappointment. I really wanted to like that game, but limited camera angles and that ridiculous "drift button" ruined it for me. I expect if it had online play it would have done a lot better despite the shortcomings indicated above.

Other than those games the only EA stuff that comes to mind are sports titles, so maybe EA needs to try releasing something else? I'm still waiting for that updated Archon game to come to WiiWare, where is it?

I still agree with him that 3rd party support from Nintendo - especially small developers who need it the most and who should be actively cultivated by Nintendo to help their download offerings thrive - seems a bit weak. From casual discussions with developers the profit-sharing is good and the tools and technical support are good, but the market access side is weak. I don't see why Nintendo cannot offer more assistance for indies who may not have the time/budget to do worldwide releases to have a better chance at a return on their product. Demos that aren't time-limited and weekly spam direct to the Wii would also be a good thing.



drdark said:

It's not like they've kept the same SKU out there at the same price. They added WiiSportsResort and a MotionPlus peripheral last year and newer ones will start shipping with a WiiRemotePlus. Meanwhile, there are bundles like the Black Wii MarioKart bundle or the Red Wii NSMB bundle which seem to be around the regular price (and there's a somewhat more expensive Black Wii WiiFit bundle). So it's not like they're just sitting back going "nah, we don't want to offer customers better value".

As for the 3rd party issue: he just sounds like he's whining again. EA can more than afford to do their own marketing and publicity. The Apple comparison is invalid. I keep saying you can't compare a purely digital marketplace with a physical-media or mixed one. And as for Apple's "support", what's he talking about? The fact their controls are so lax that they'll let anything onto the AppStore unless there's full frontal nudity involved?

P.S. Oh, and his argument fell apart when he brought up the SNES.



Ristar42 said:

When they output awful Wii games like the recent Need for Speed, they really cant expect anyone who has read a review to buy it. How about making a really good Wii racer, as its a bit lacking.

Also, this competition in the form of 'gesture based gaming', all of the games I really like on the Wii hardly use that function, the pointer yes, waggle, not so much. I was considering getting a 360 for some games, but not for kinect.



FonistofCruxis said:

Nintendo do need to support 3rd parties more but I think they should mainly support smaller, indie devs who need it the most or companies that make games that are less likely to sell more by advertising their games or publishing them if they can't find a publisher for their games but big companies like EA have enough money to advertise their games themselves and it's not like they're trying hard with many wii ports.



TrevorTheChan said:

As far as EA-specific sales performances go, they are definitely guilty of churning out some awful games and franchises that have anual releases that perhaps don't always measure up. However, they have released some decent games that probably weren't big-sellers but maybe should have been considering the size of the Wii userbase. Off the top of my head, I'm thinking The Godfather: Backhand Edition, Boom Blox Bash Party, and Dead Space: Extraction.

Third-parties in general? Nintendo definitely needs to step it up, because not every studio can reach their full potential on their own. It worries me that Nintendo might follow the same path with the upcoming 3DS. It's not going to be good enough to just say "Oh look, we have so-and-so bringing this-and-that to the 3DS for the hardcore/mature demographic..." because if people outside of the target market aren't in the loop, it's not going to matter. I say more coverage on third-party games within the Nintendo Channel, Nintendo website, and financial/networking assistance for marketing.

So much is pinned to the release of the 3DS because it marks a much-needed change in the way Nintendo approaches the industry, especially the online side of things. It needs to stop treading on eggshells and realise it's nearly 2011.

Another price-cut isn't out of the equation. What Nintendo will probably carry on doing is coming up with bundle packs, and if that is the case, then it needs to bundle more third-party games with the console and not just Mario titles. Failing that, we might see a slight price-cut during the Easter period to coincide with the launch of the 3DS.



JimLad said:

Don't forget NBA Jam.

You know what, I honestly think a lot of these third parties have forgotten how to make good games. If they're not copying each others ideas in the HD market, making the same old open world/shooter/realism/grey tones/violence/trying to be a movie trilogies...
then they're claiming to be a Wii supporter by making mock AAA games on a shoestring budget and having the audacity to blame Nintendo when people see through the charade.

This industry has become so pigeon holed it makes me sick.
The same genres are being worn into the ground every year. Nobody ever tries to fill the market gaps by making something that hasn't been done for a while.
Money is no excuse, developers were making astounding games 15 years ago on a fraction of the budget. The problem I think is that people feel graphics have to be up to a certain standard, but they DON'T. So long as the game is visually comprehendible and runs smoothly, the gameplay and content is all that matters. Focus on cramming as much content and fun stuff into your game as possible and it will be good.

Sorry for the slightly off topic rant, but when I see anything regarding the weakness of third parties on the Wii, the market leader with the largest install base by a clear mile, it just makes me think how incapable must these people be?
or maybe: how much do these people rely on adult themes, multiplatformism, shiney graphics and online modes?

Back on topic: You want exposure, then advertise, simple as. That's what your publishers are for, that's been their role for decades. If you can't afford it, then that's too bad, Nintendo's not going to give you a silver spoon. Just make a good game with real ambition and people will find it.



kevohki said:

Well, I support a price drop because at $99, I'll buy another Wii for sure.



spizzamarozzi said:

Weird, I kinda agree with the EA guy. Not sure if a price cut is a solution, but Nintendo surely needs to be more cooperative with third parties. I don't want them to sell out but sure a bit less stubborness and "totalitarism" from them would have given us the double of the games we have at the moment.



Radbot42 said:

i feel like its not Nintendo supporting 3rd parties enough, but third parties are not supporting Nintendo enough. If you can understand what I am saying.



XCWarrior said:

Nintendo is currently you giving you the Wii fro $200 and 14 flippin games, you can call them tech demos or not. EA produces for the most part, crap second-tier games on Nintendo and wonders why they don't sell.

360/PS3 gets Dead Space. Wii gets Dead Space Extraction.
360/PS3 gets NFS: Hot Pursuit that good. Wii gets NFS: Hot Pursuit that blows monkey chunks.
360/PS3 get tons of FPS (I hate them, but they sell) that Wii doesn't.
And don't get me started on the crap versions of Madden on Wii that have led me to continue playing my GCN Madden 2004 rather than buy a Wii stupid graphic looking one.

EA, grow up, shut up, and either make quality games for Wii or stop making them period.

And side note, i have Boom Blox Bash Party and EA Active 1 + 2. Great games, but still doesn't have near the production value of many EA 360/PS3 titles.



zionich said:

Somtimes I really wonder how much of it is Nintendo. It seems to me, that third parties were to busy shelling out shovelware when the Wii was new and "kiddie". Fast-forward, The Wii is selling of the charts, so now they make sub-par exclusives and a few great games, and there like, " the games arnt selling, why not ?"

I know CEO's are not that retarted, thought they have to look like complete idiots to make it Nintendo's fault. If ya dont come out with great games from day one, and put them on other consoles, where the hell do you think the core gamers will flock too? Now you contributed to the image that the Wii has a horrible reputation of being, and cry foul when ya smell the money that could have been.

Basically it comes down to this, risk = reward, and third parties want to see reward before they take a risk. Maybe theyll figure it out next console cycle.



SuperMarioFan96 said:

Advertise, advertise, advertise! C'mon EA, it's not like you're a small company with not a lot of money. You can do it! Also, similar to what XC Warrior said, don't give the Wii watered-down ports/not as good versions.

Also, a price cut (at the moment) will do nothing. The Wii was still HUGE in America in November and I have a feeling that December's sales will be completely insane. Besides, how would this help third parties? It might help Wii sales, but I'm doubtful of how it would help third parties.




EA have done some good work for the Wii.I love Boom Blox and its sequel Bash Party. Grand Slam Tennis, Sports Active 1 Nitro and the Fifas have ben good too (I only used have the 1st three) not to mention Playground. However, some of their games have been awful, lazy and almost broken. I'm sorry, but they only have themselves to blame. Ninty are not perfect, but c'mon EA.



Slapshot said:

This year VGA awards to me was absolutely stunning to watch. Nintendo had only one nomination in the entire awards ceremony, and that was Super Mario Galaxy 2, and it didn't win. Nintendo barely had a presence at the awards, and that is a big deal. The question I have is, why?

The two other consoles have now moved into the motion controlled genres, and the game that are being produced on those consoles graphically and game play wise are constantly raising the bar and pushing the consoles to their limits. This is bringing a new cinematic style of game play, and immerse control schemes to the games that are starting to pull gamers outside of the core gaming audience. Watching games like Gears of War , Halo Reach, Fable, Uncharted, Heavy Rain, Mass Effect or even Gran Turismo in action is literally amazing. Not only do the graphics in all these titles look absolutely amazing but the depth of the game play behind the games continue to find more depth, and prove that it's not the graphics that make the games stand out anymore with HD systems. There were a lot of female gamers at the VGAs and the internet has been abuzz of the last year that many wifes/girlfriends have started gaming because of these types of titles, because "they look real, and it's like playing a movie".

Nintendo has always been a core of my gaming for over 20yrs and they have been through insanely great times (Wii) and rough times. Nintendo needs to get a new home console on the market in the next 2 years in my opinion, or they need to drop the price of the games and the console. Goldeneye has been one of my favorite titles of 2010, but paying the same price for it as I did for Call of Duty: Black Ops for PS3 is just hard to do. Goldeneye is the better game to me, but when comparing the two games at the same price, it's not worth the money, as the game play is rougher the graphics are significantly worse and there is a lot less game in Goldeneye and not to mention the lack of future DLC as well. The HD consoles are now cheap to buy and the games can be found $50 and below at launch or a few weeks afterwards if looked for. First party Nintendo games never drop in price, and the WiiWare/DSiWare games don't either, while the other consoles and PC services are running weekly specials (I buy most my WiiWare titles on Steam for around 50-90% the price).

Nintendo needs to get with the times in the online market (Timed Demos?)! I think Motion Control is here to stay and I'm sure Nintendo will bring some new innovation to the market with there next console that will rock the gaming world, but I think it needs to happen sooner than later. Nintendo did indeed pave the way with Motion Control but just because they paved the road doesn't mean their extreme success will continue. Move and Kinect are showing they are here to stay with both already being literally sold-out around the world. Cinematic gaming is becoming a massive draw to non-gamers and many of these gamers I'm sure have gotten into gaming with Wii/DS. Do I think Nintendo needs to take Mario into a cinematic game style? NO! But I think Nintendo needs to innovate us once again with something new and pretty quickly or their financial success we have seen over the last year may continue to see a drop, with Sony and Microsofts systems taking off with their lower price ranges.

Nintendo has had a great year for games. Epic Mickey, Kirbys Epic Yarn, Galaxy 2, Goldeneye, etc but the games are getting little praise, other than a few previews and reviews around the gaming media sources. I know I've chosen to rent the majority of Nintendo titles myself, as the prices seem to high compared to what the same amount of money can buy on the other consoles. This is all just my opinion on this, and to say that I'm a little worried about the future of Nintendo in the home console market, unless they bring a new innovation to us once again.



salty1264 said:

i thiink the best thing for nintendo is the 3ds not the wii at 99$ so shut up and make ea games at the quality of ps3 and xbox360



TingLz said:

Yes, support third parties like EA to promote their half-*ssed crappy games (not all of them, just a majority)



Hokori said:

No EA needs to stop making bad games that only cater to the casual, because believe it or no theres a lot of Hardcore wii owners. Also its not Nintys fault that the games dont sell well, its EA's because EA should make more games like Dead space and not EA Active



thaantman said:

Nintendo could help 3rd parties more, but honestly what else are they suppose to do. Advertisements for 1st and 3rd party games are posted weekly on the nintendo channel, not to mention they have nintendo week. If EA would actually put more effort into their games, especially their main franchises maybe they would sell better. The reason EA don't advertise their wii games themselves is because majority of their games that come out on wii are multiplatform, and the wii version always get the short end of the stick. I never seen any commercials for madden 11 on wii, I never seen any commercials for need for speed hot pursuit on wii, I wonder why. Probably because they want gamers to think their getting the same game as the HD consoles, when their actually getting crap. This goes out to all third party publishers that complain "MAKE BET-TER WII GAMES!!!. No Ps2 ports, and no careless crap like nfs hot pursuit on wii that wasn't even made by the same developers that made the good version. The wii may not be a ps360 but it's loads more powerful than the gamecube which had decent looking games, If RE4 can look that good even by todays standards on a freakin gamecube, there's no excuse why games can't look that good on wii. Look @ the conduit, monster hunter, sonic colors, sin & punishment, Metriod prime trilogy, mario galaxy 1 & 2, and numerous games I haven't mentioned, all 1st and 3rd party games that look good and if were in HD could stand close to ps360. Sorry if I went off topic a bit with this rant, just tired of 3rd parties making the same excuses.



LuWiiGi said:

I agree that Nintendo needs to promote third parties more, because most of the Wii's best games are from Nintendo, and they can't do it all on their own. If you look at the best games that came out this year, the Wii had the least because third parties aren't choosing the Wii IMO. But they should only promote the GOOD third parties ie. not EA.



Hardy83 said:

Yup, let's just blame the third parties, because nothing can do no wrong, especially when it comes to third party relationships.

Yup...Totally third parties fault, not Nintendos.



zionich said:

Im going to have to agree with Nintendo Channel being a great way to promote third party games. I watch it and Nintendo Week damn near every monday. I do fail to see why its Nintendo's responsability to advertise third party games though.



argus said:

Isn't the Wii the cheapest of the 3 home consoles? Over the past month, I've seen Wiis on sale for $179 including Wii Sports and New Super Mario Bros. The bundle with Wii Sports Resort is also a good deal. Why should Nintendo lower the price when they're already the most affordable system? With all of the new colors and bundles Nintendo did this year for the Wii and DSi, I think Nintendo is probably doing great.



Sneaker13 said:

What I always find hard to get is why Nintendo needs to do everything. Why do they need to promote third party games. Those companies gotta have some money for advertisement too. Nintendo made the console but also makes games. Of course they advertise those more. It's the job of the third party developers to spread the word about their own games.



Slapshot said:

@zionich.... remember that Nintendo Channel is a great service, but only a small percentage of Wii owners even connect to the internet and it's seen by very few. Advertising to the mass media is what is needed.

EA has released some good Wii games despite what many seem to remember.

Tiger Woods Wii
Madden Wii
EA Active
Skate It
Boom Blox
Rock Ban 1-3
Dead Space Extraction



homerhomer said:

There's so much crappy shovel-ware, I think the a lot of are use to looking at reviews first. Cheaper would sell more consoles, but I think that Wii has pretty much saturated the market. How about making the Nintendo Seal of Quality really mean something? And the issues with EA is that last year's Madden game is going to be 9.99 and this year's is $49.99. I imagine that if I needed a football game I'd get last years.



MasterGraveheart said:

EA, you screwed Wii out of having NBA Jam as an exclusive after months of telling us that it would be. You are two-faced liars and, as far as I'm concerned, you embarassed Nintendo. Your game development for the Wii is a joke, your business practices are pathetic, and your spokesmen are tools.

Nintendo is still the #1 in the world, Sony has just BARELY scraped by Microsoft in terms of console sales (that'll change when Kinnect picks up steam, trust me), and Microsoft's Kinnect is becoming a big deal, even if it's causing more injuries then a glass building full of Wii original wrist straps.Apple is NOT A GAME COMPANY! It is a multimedia device that plays half-hearted games that are fine for a trip to the bathroom, but are vastly inferior to the likes ofthe consoles whose first priority is game design. Right Nintendo?

Nintendo: Right!

Right Microsoft?

Microsoft: Right!

Right Sony?

Sony: Blu-Ray!

...Oh, how unfortunate... well, two out of three ain't bad. ^^;



Linkuini said:

Ouch! I'm not even a fan of EA, but I don't think the reason they're losing money on Wii is because of universally poor quality. Would we all be saying the same thing if we heard something like this from Marvelous, the people responsible for games like Muramasa: The Demon Blade and Little King's Story? The latter of which was a critical darling made with involvement from Cing, which brought us some gems Nintendo published themselves and is now bankrupt? It's a harsh market, however you look at it.

In fact, I don't even know who to blame for all this. I know about dozens of third-party games I would like to buy; I've seen ads, read pages of sparkling critical praise, and played demos. Yet, given the price of steadily advancing technology and even the time it takes to play through one of today's games, I have to leave so many on the shelf no matter how lovingly crafted and aggressively marketed it is. And I don't think I'm alone.

Lowering prices for games and hardware would ease the pain a little, but it would also inevitably result in smaller development budgets. Inspired gameplay and imaginative presentation are historically good substitutes for astronomical production values and hours of content, but we can't count on every café-based one-man development studio to demonstrate this. Third-parties with potential for greatness are just as likely (if not more likely) to be lost in a crowd of mediocre app-makers as they are to be overshadowed by a celebrated developer like Nintendo. Besides, even if Apple's business model is working, that isn't the game industry's cue to abandon large-scale productions like the ones Nintendo is famous for in favor of condensed gameplay concepts that can fit into a tight budget and schedule. Alas, this takes us right back where we started: good third-party output going to waste because we just can't afford it most of the time.



Objection said:

A price cut to $99? Are you [insert insult and or ridiculous comparison to a monkey here] That's marking it down 50% off what it is right now. Sure,Ninty might go to 149 in the middle fo the year but they'll also probably stop including 2 games with the system like they are right now.
I understand why he said 99, to compete with Move, which is 99, but move is not a console. Its 2 peripherals and a game. And Kinect is 149, so matching that [insert comment about how huge it was and how disappoitning it was to play in that Wal-Mart with the smelly employees] is sufficient for Nintendo. If they even need to, they did quite well this season selling Wii's and DS's.



singie1 said:

if ea gave wii gamers 'proper' versions of its games, we might be sympathetic. i agree with 'invmat' too.



Gamer83 said:

I do agree with the idea that Nintendo should try and help out the smaller third party companies more, but ones like EA, Capcom, Square-Enix, Activsion, etc? EA has more than enough money to advertise its own games and if they want better sales how about actually trying to make GOOD games. I can't stand Activision, I think Bobby Kotick is an absolute a-hole and some of the stuff that company has pulled is despicable. But games like GoldenEye, Call of Duty Modern Warfare and Black Ops all have some real effort put into them, all have some pretty good advertising and have been received generally well. EA could afford to learn from Activision in that respect.



jbrodack said:

Nintendo needs more motionplus games. The regular wii remote now seems outdated. There's not that many motionplus games out there and pretty much around the same of move and kinect games already.

At least nintendo finally got around to wiiware demos. Really need to revamp online system though probably won't happen til next console.



motang said:

When you can get a 360 for lower than a Wii then it's time for Nintendo to drop the price.



brandonbwii said:

I'm sure Nintendo could do a lot more to help third parties. At the same time the way I read this is that "Nintendo needs to stop making great 1st party games so our (less fun) games can sell."

They put so much money into making games for Wii without knowing anything about quality. I do wish the Boom Blox franchise did well enough to warrent sequels.

Yes let's blame 3rd parties. Very few of them have done anything noteworthy. The big ones anyways. If it were Marvelous or Atlus or hell even Sega with the complaints I'd feel sympathy. All the talk of Nintendo quality from 3rd parties like EA and then delivering games with poor reviews make me sick.




Last time I heard, Nintendo was doing well enough. I dont see why they should have to pursue the making happy of 3rd parties. Nintendo is in an extremely difficult position atm. It has to compete against huge technology companies who can afford to invest much larger sums of cash into their business and not worry as much about profit. Granted, they have great popularity and great software quality. Honestly, the only reason for me to own Nintendo hardware is for Nintendo software. If 3rd parties dont think the Wii is selling their games enough, they honestly shouldnt expect Nintendo to fix their problems. They have their own struggles to deal with.



rjejr said:

I saw the old white pre-Sports Resort bundle for $149. Nintendo could sell a basic Wii for $99 with only Wii Sports games but why and who's going to buy it? I don't think the world needs any more Wii's, what the Wiis need are better games. End. Of. Story.



dizzy_boy said:

what makes me laugh is that i read in the credits for some games, these companies have people handling marketing and publicity.
i thought that was the whole idea to pay somebody to deal with getting games noticed. but it seems all most of them do is mail out a few screen shots and a youtube vid.
i`d love to see more games expo`s for consumers, so we can get to try out games. both up coming and currently available. that would help.



brainofj said:

When the best game for Wii you've done is Boom Blox Bash Party, and you've completely ignored the Virtual Console service, you don't have much of a leg to stand on, EA.



armoredghor said:

You know, I've been pissed at EA ever since Madden 2010 came out. I've never played the series but when you release your cover with cartoon graphics opposed to real players on other consoles, you're pretty much pissing on wii. Shut up and be more like capcom or ubisoft who've been giving great games and receiving great profits without one complaint.



iwiica said:

I think it is natural that their own IP has a higher priority than the 3rd party content. And I also think they are not in charge for advertising a specific game if they don't want. But what I expect from them is providing a good platform, and this is definitely not the case with they download games services.

Just look at the WiiWare... low awareness, poor implementation, impossible to make updates or adjust the prize, no special offers, no bundles, direct competition with virtual console games (porting a classic game and developing a completely new game. cmon.. there should exist two different prize segments for this), and lot of more... If this continues like this, I can imagine that lot of developers are going to jump off..

Btw... I believe even if all 3rd party jump off, they can continue with the business.
Most of the Wiis out there are anyway a WiiFit-Machine or a WiiSports-Machine. Virtual Console TOP20 is almost Nintendo-only.

So, why should they care about crybabies like EA and poor indie devs like us?



jobunker said:

Ubisoft has been selling a lot better than EA on Wii.
EA should simply know WHAT games to put out on Wii. Then they'll really sell. The problem isn't "who's" content is getting cash. For the gamers, it's WHAT, and how good is it.
Recommended 3rd party games on wii:
-Need for Speed: NITRO
-Shaun White Snowboarding: Road Trip



Themadmonk said:

@ gabegreens agreed. We seem to 4get nintendo's business has always been gaming so 1st party are goin to be better. 360 & ps3 hav the advantage of coming frm multimedias that thought gaming would be good to get into. At the end of the day (ea) if you make good games (tiger wii) & not crap (madden wii) it'll sell. @slapshot82 until the wii isnt viewed as 'kiddie' by so many industry experts there will be alot of wii games passed over.



Slapshot said:

@iwiica.... I do agree that Wii and it's online service with WiiWare/VC is poorly implemented, and for large companies not to go that route is understandable. With the low user-base for the service and higher development cost, creating solely for WiiWare is almost pointless when Live/PSN have a extremely large and growing user-bases, that buy loads of games off the services.

@Themadmonk.... Nintendo has always been about family gaming, and it's not surprising to me that games like Madworld/No More Heroes and their over-the-top violence didn't fare well with many Nintendo fans. I think a HD system with more games like Galaxy 2 (difficulty) and integrating the Mii system into a massive social/achievement system where the Mii is the center of the console. Achievement unlocks acquire exclusive Mii items and a social media center like PlayStation Home would be a massive success for the next Nintendo Home Console.



MeloMan said:

After reading the article, I just have to say this is knowledge that is already known about Nintendo. This is the double-edged sword that Nintendo has battled with itself on this issue every generation. They put their 1st party titles first, and when the company at the top lays the foundation for their image, hardware, and software, they inadvertently leave a message of "get in where you fit in, 3rd party developers, cause you will always be 2nd on our system even at your best". What do you expect a 3rd party to do? They have a few choices: 1) Try to put out s/w that imitates the 1st party s/w, limit your profits, and hope for the best 2) Put out your own type of s/w, limit your profits, and hope for the best 3) go to a platform where 3rd parties are first, or at least have a fairer shake, and let go with whatever you want whether good, bad, original, a "me too" title, etc. and you have "at least" a better "chance" at more profit, and possible a broader audience.

Bottom line: Whether the above is agreed to or not, the main point is Nintendo will woo 3rd parties, but they will never let them freely release games, will continue to charge royalties that don't net the 3rd parties the most profit, and Nintendo will always will always make sure their 1st party games are promoted the hardest. It's sad, but it's Nintendo blessing and curse, but the power of change is solely theirs, and they're not changing anytime soon.



Varoennauraa said:

Well @ ‘07 and ‘08, people started to associate EA's name with , the stuff, where they didn't want to stick their fingers for another time.



McGruber said:

The reason games don't sell on Wii is pretty obvious to me. Most Wii owners are families, and kids that are likely to only play those kinds of games, which there are so many of (so no 1 is going to sell well). Hardcore gamers for the most part opted for the HD systems. There really isn't much of a hardcore gamer userbase for Wii. That isn't going to change until Nintendo puts out another home console up to par with the others.



spizzamarozzi said:

Are we sure Wii is strictly a family system? I wouldn't bet my money on it. Of course it's undeniable that a good portion of its users are families and occasional players, but what happened to that giant bunch of people who grew up with Nintendo in the 80s and 90s? There's thousands and thousands of seasoned players who got a Wii for serious gaming because of the quality of Nintendo's historical products and its loyalty to the fans. Newbie gamers who turned "hardcore" in a day maybe, they opted for HD systems: I have seen kids the half of my age beating the s*** out of Call of Duty while I was waiting to play Donkey Kong. Or grown up kids who got into videogaming with the PS2, they opted for HD systems aswell. But there's so many hardcore gamers who grew up with Sega and Nintendo who opted for a Wii!! We kept the industry going for more than 15 years and these 3rd parties are now sh***ing on us as if we were second class gamers who started to play yesterday because of these War FPS (whose only use is to romanticize the Army to the people by the way). I don't care about EA (f*** cares about EA anyway)? I want historic houses like Sega and Capcom to put out great stuff for the Wii: they owe us more than a few good titles.



Gamesake said:

I can tell you where that giant bunch of people who grew up with Nintendo in the 80s and 90s went. After the Dreamcast tanked we all bought Xboxes.



kdognumba1 said:

There's a few reasons why Wii 3rd party games don't sell as well as 1st party games or even 3rd party games on the other systems.

Reason 1: Lack of demos and channel seperation
Sure Wiiware just now started having demo's for games again but the number of demos is still minimal in comparison to games available for download. Also the fact that demos are listed under their own name instead of the name of the game, there's minimal picture's available for games and they don't have the ability to expand when you click on them, and player data ranking trailers and extra info are all in a seperate channel make online shopping cumbersome for those that want to see what's out there. But there's more, to add to this problem, the lack of demo's of store bought games in magazines and available to download in the Wiishop hurts 3rd party and some smaller game 1st party sales. Lets be real, people want to try it before they buy it, these are features that drastically need to be offered especially at this point.

Reason 2: Lack of options in games
Sure Wii has its problems with demos but looking at a lot of games, they lack options. Gamers like games that don't end after 10 hours, more controller options, controller customization, multiplayer (local and online), using their own soundtracks (yes some do have SD cards with music on them), user generated content, even dlc. Why is it that so many games that are made for the "core" audience lack these things? It's a racing game? Why's there no local and online multiplayer? It's an action game? Where's the unlockables? Why does it last only 10 hours? No seriously though Mario Kart and Excite Bots both have online and local multiplayer and Excite Truck allowed you to use your own soundtrack in game (a feature that actually works well with racing games) but not too many other racing games have these features (seriously though EA NFS on Wii is lacking) and sure Madworld is great but it's short, the action is fun but we got LoZ and Mario over here that last a good 30, 40 hours without all the unlockables. Why is it only 1 shooting series on Wii is actually letting you for real costumize your controls and is consistently using Wii's hardware to enhance its experience (I'm looking at you Conduit - good job). Step up your game designers. Quit making half baked games.

Reason 3: Constant bashing from press and gamers.
Sure Wii has its problems but so does PS3 and 360, get over it. I'm tired of seeing really well rated games on sites get overlooked for goty awards or even nomination do to them being on Wii. I'm tired of hearing constant bashing of Wii's graphics and people trolling it. I'm tired of the sites finding every way to rip on the Wii or completely ignore its line up when it has good games out at the time they're writing and talking. If you are a REAL gamer, the system won't matter. Gamers like games, system shouldnt matter. Stop the bashing and hating and play what's good.

Reason 4: Friend Codes
I understand the reason for them, I understand why Nintendo wants to use them but they need to go. Why is it that every gamer who gets this system is locked down by friend codes but parental control is optional and the Opera Channel is free. Lets get real, that makes little to no sense. Thats like saying Timmy, you can't talk to your friends but here's your own interwebs in your room... /facepalm. Even if it was just 1 global friend code for every friends list, it wouldn't be that bad, but this whole system needs to be changed. This should be an optional feature for parental controls, not mandatory. It hampers on the online experience and drives away gamers and designers.



ecco6t9 said:

If EA sees zero market on the Wii it's time for them to move on and go 360/PS3 only. The market will tell them if they made a smart choice.



jangonov said:

@slapshot82 Not to disprove your point, but there are some flaws in your list.

Tiger Woods Wii - a great effort, and a great golf game, but diminished by the moves updated support on the ps3

Madden Wii- a terrible effort since 10. It looks horrid and plays worse

EA Active- a very good program, again diminished by it appearing on other consoles in (from what I hear) better versions

Skate It- a watered down version of skate that never quite captured the magic or audience the original did

Boom Blox- a sleeper hit. Great reviews, terrible sales.

Rock Band 1-3- 1 was terrible, 2 was pretty good, and 3 I was surprised by the amount of effort and care that went into it.

NBA Jam- again, diminished in value by being on ps3 and 360

Sims- from what I hear (have not played) the wii version at best

Dead Space Extraction- watered down on rails shooter from the original console version. It alienates the fans by taking out the gameplay it was known for and confuses new-comers by a storyline in progress

Spore- cool, but far better on pc.

save for rockband 3, every game on EA's heavy hitter list is "cool, BUT..." and even then rockband 3 gets complaints of "not HD" (which I find silly, since why would you be looking at your rockers long enough to complain?) I love the wii, but as far as 3rd parties go, they are limited by no support from nintendo, small advertising, and little to no online features of the other consoles. Combine that with the wii's hardware and unique control scheme (that few third parties seem to use correctly) and you can't win for trying sometimes.



armoredghor said:

@65 actually, I thought deadspace extraction was a pretty deep on rails shooter for what they gave us and you are right on the money about the plot. Still don't have much of a clue what was going on. @kdognumba1 I agree with every one of your points, thank you for your insight.



Sakura_Moonlight2421 said:

Isn't the majority of EA's games sports related? I think they explore different territories of gaming genera and not make another sports related game. It irks me every time I walk into a gaming store and a new Madden or something similar has just been released. T_T



Slapshot said:

@jangonov.... I agree with all your points as you are comparing the Wii to the HD conosles. Do remember that the Wii is nowhere near as powerful as them and comparing the systems isn't ever going to find Wii above them. The games I listed are games that I owned on Wii and very much enjoyed, even though some had flaws, they were still well made games that for Wii only gamers, will find enjoyment in.

This also brings me back to my point in pricing. Why buy Tiger Woods 2011 or Madden 2011 for $50 on Wii, when you can buy the far superior HD versions for the same price (most retailers have been running the games at $50 constantly)?



Jacobanshee said:

Really EA? You're just saying this because the company that owns Farmville is worth more than you and you're jealous.



CaPPa said:

Another price cut someone in the near future would obviously be a smart move and help keep the Wii on top until its successor is released.

As for EA, they only have their backward strategies to blame for their games not selling. Take Dead Space Extraction for example. It was a good game but they had totally alienated its intended audience by announcing it as a rail shooter and then it released with zero advertising in a genre that was already quite full. Only an idiot would have expected great sales, yet EA blame the Wii for it. Again with NBA Jam they had a franchise that could have made big waves, so they announced it as a Wii exclusive, which gets people interested in it. Then a short while later they reveal that it'll be a NBA Elite freebie on 360/PS3, which although lacked some game modes did have online play. Then they go and announce it as a full release with all the game modes of the Wii version but also online play. Why would any multi-console owner buy the Wii version after that? Tiger Woods was a great game this year, but it seems like some skipped it due to the annual release schedule. MOH didn't even get a Wii version (yet the COD games do fine on the Wii) and NFS Hot Pursuit was an insult. So most of their other games this year were poor and unless you have a huge marketing campaign they won't sell; as word of mouth won't help a bad game.

So if EA want to sell more games they should raise the quality, cut the annual releases down to every 2 years (so they get a full dev cycle rather than just a minor update) and actually advertise their Wii products. I also think that EA with a net worth of over 5 billion should be able to support their own products and not expect other companies to do it for them.



RowdyRodimus said:

(Hehehe, I'm baaaaaack!)
What good will putting even more consoles in people's homes if you aren't delivering the software they want to buy? The only EA game I've bought since I've had a Wii (going back to the original launch) was Boom Blox. A very fun game, just not worth $50, especially when I can take that same $50 and buy Metal Slug Anthology, Namco Museum Remix and a couple of NES VC games to get my arcade rocks off.

Nintendo does need to help out 3rd parties, but advertising for them or helping them with the actual workload of distributing the product (retail or raw data) isn't the answer. They need to actually be more hands off to be honest. Let the devs take chances, let the developers go wild-if they want to do a game about homosexual incest that doesn't explicitly show it and is rated M- let them put it on the system if they think it would sell. Nintendo needs to really separate their development side with the hardware side so they can honestly say "Games that are put on the Wii are not necessarily indicative of the values and opinions of Nintendo". By having the hardware and software houses combined it gives the appearance that anything by any publisher is a Nintendo game by the (and I hate this term) casuals or others who don't know the difference.

Also, let the publishers set the prices. Nintendo can still get their money and if EA is happy making $1.00 per unit, then fine. Seeing say Madden 2012 on Wii for 19.99 at release might make more casual football fans choose the Wii version than the PS3 or 360 version for 59.99. But when you can get the version with 10X the features for $10 more, most people even the casual fan will go with the one for the extra $10.



Gameday said:

Tired of console wars and bashing and overlooking of certain games for the wii console. 2 Thumbs up to "kdognumba1" A real gamer doesnt look at systems nor graphics to judge a game , thats like spitting on everything you've grown up playing (Goodbye to the wonder years). In the end a game is a game my friends. To me that's like comparing a board game to a card game... And kinda off topic friend codes need to go or be optional. Why is there a parental controls on here if they only work for certain things we arent all kids or teens anymore. Like the announcer in blitz series said "Bad Decision". Ive never really touched any of these EA games on the wii so i cant judge the games but their marketing skills need improvement and i dont understand why the nintendo channel(s) cant have a top spot for all new games , not just a select few before they're coming out , just for a week or two plus what ever the other companies are willing to do to promote their game through other media. Demos could stay a little longer or period wouldnt hurt right ?



Rogues said:

The biggest thing I am looking for from Nintendo in the future is a little more emphasis on the graphical power of their machine while still paying the same attention to all the other details the got right with the Wii.

I don't spend a lot of time reading gaming sites so maybe I am making incorrect assumptions but one would think if the power of the Wii had been on par with the xBox 360 we might have seen more parity with game releases of major franchises. I think the Wii and the controllers are perfect especially for FPS type games but that is one of the areas where the Wii has experienced it's greatest shortfall of games that compare to the HD consoles.

Now that the HD consoles are entering the motion control arena maybe Nintendo should enter the HD arena and give the support needed to encourage those game studios to develop for the Wii.



multieman2000 said:

The thing about ps3 move and xbox kinect is that there are limited games and not so fun games like table tennis bowling and archery unlike the nintendo wii there is famous and bestselling titles like mario kart and supersmash bros sonic colours wii sports resort and even games like call of duty black ops

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