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EA Sports Working Closely with Nintendo on Wii U's Online

Posted by Trevor Chan

Vice president happy with Nintendo's attitude

Nintendo has expressed its own dissatisfaction with its online efforts and it's clearly one area that will need to be tackled with the upcoming Wii U. When Nintendo of America's president Reggie Fils-Aime spoke to Forbes, he talked about implementing a more flexible online system that will appeal to developers and it now seems that EA Sports might be in a somewhat influential position with regard to the Wii U's online set-up.

EA Sports' vice president Andrew Wilson spoke with Eurogamer and he revealed that new development kits suggest the Wii U will be able to do anything that the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 can do:

As every new piece of hardware and every new development library comes through we get a greater understanding of the power. With our early research we had been very happy with the output of the box and we expect that that will only go up moving forward... There are added challenges for us as developers when you think about rendering on two screens and what that might mean, but we're looking forward to that challenge... It's still moving, but I think we'll be able to do anything that we can do on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 on the Wii U.

The Wii U's online functionality is certainly an interesting area that needs to be elaborated on by Nintendo, but Wilson has so far described Nintendo as being open and willing in cooperating with developers and publishers and revealed that EA Sports has been "working very closely" with Nintendo with the Wii U's online infrastructure:

[Online is] something that we're working very closely with Nintendo on... We are highlighting to them what we believe are the most important elements to that infrastructure to deliver a connected experience that we think is the future of gaming... They have demonstrated an openness and willingness to work with us and work with developers that I think will only land us in a positive place... We're working through the development with them now... We have a series of people who are under very strict NDAs as you can imagine, operating with them, building that system out.

EA Sports games have traditionally used EA servers for online play, examples include Grand Slam Tennis and the Tiger Woods PGA Tour and Madden NFL series, all of which use a dedicated EA online account that gamers must register before playing online is enabled.

[via eurogamer.net]

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User Comments (19)

C-195

#2

C-195 said:

EA is working with Nintendo's online developments? Great................

If Nintendo want's an awesome online, they should have asked Valve for help, their Steam network is the best!

komicturtle

#5

komicturtle said:

It's not just EA. Other parties are helping build the online network (in what it should have, what they want, etc.)

This is great news, really, to see that the network is based on what developers would like it to be. I'm hoping Valve is one of them- but that's just wishful thinking :3

NSBlueLighing

#6

NSBlueLighing said:

Id prefer Valve aswell but EA in my books is great, just their new planned annual subscription may play a roll in this unfortuantely, but its not like xbox live so...it shouldn't be worse or far greater than PSN.

Vinsanity

#8

Vinsanity said:

EA made some excellent online modes in their Wii games, so I'm hoping this turns out to be good. However, my gut instinct is just telling me, "Hey Nintendo;look at our Origin store. Now, let us do that on the Wii U".

I'm worried, but this could do either way to be honest. It wouldn't take a lot to improve the Wii's online..

miletich3

#11

miletich3 said:

Nintendo could sure use an online community like xbox live and psn. But expect some heavy traffic should this happen.

Gamer83

#12

Gamer83 said:

If Nintendo could match PSN I'd be satisfied. I'll believe it when I see it happen though. I still don't believe they'll pull it off, they can talk all they want about how they're trying to improve their online network but with the 3DS still using friend codes, I refuse to believe Nintendo really cares that much.

dizzy_boy

#13

dizzy_boy said:

this can only be good news. even if nintendo themselves aren`t very interested in online games, other dev`s are. so if nintendo are listening, hopafully they push the online capabilities of the wii u as far as they can.

erv

#14

erv said:

I sincerely hope nintendo will realize how important online is.

The latest shareholder meeting had them saying they want to focus on it. I hope the online service is going to be more than awesome.

JimLad

#15

JimLad said:

Yeah I wish they would just pay EA to handle all their online needs. There might be better companies out there but anything is better than what Nintendo are likely to do.

Blaze

#17

Blaze said:

EA??? Why not get Valve, when have EA done anything great or amazing?

JustanotherGamer

#19

JustanotherGamer said:

If EA can help Nintendo learn the ropes of on-line play. So be it. Nintendo needs help in this department. The gamecube and the Wii failed massively when it comes to on-line gaming. EA has a stake in seeing the Wii u succeed on-line.

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