News Article

Bethesda Yet to Decide on Support for Wii U

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Clearly not in a hurry

Bethesda Game Studios is a big deal in the video game industry; the company is behind major titles such as The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, which it developed, and it handled publication of Fallout: New Vegas. Both are epic, open-world titles with enough content to devour dozens of hours, yet if your gaming has been restricted to Nintendo in recent years you won't have played either. The scale of the environments, especially with HD graphics to boot, put games such as these beyond the scope of Wii.

While Wii U has some large-scale HD games confirmed, it seems we'll need to wait longer to find out whether Bethesda's titles will be joining in. Speaking to MCV magazine, as reported by videogamer.com, Bethesda's PR and marketing VP Pete Hines rather bluntly stated that Wii U hasn't been ruled out or confirmed as a viable platform for the company.

[Our] approach has been to put our games out on all of the platforms that will support them. So far the Wii hasn't fitted into that. Whether Wii U does down the road is TBD.

Hines does go on to explain some of the reasoning behind Bethesda's platform decisions and argues that the existing HD platforms have much to give, while moving to new consoles can bring its own set of problems.

I don't think the current generation of consoles are holding us back. There is still plenty that we are able to do visually, technically and from a story-telling standpoint. And there's this huge built-in audience now.

For me the problems with new consoles are two-fold. The developers are trying to hit a moving technical target, because the platforms are being built. A new console doesn't just show up a year before launch and is exactly what it will be when it comes out.

It moves and iterates along the way. And introducing something like that to games that are in development is always a bit tricky. And that is obviously an element of risk.

The second point is that your install base always starts at zero. Then it comes out and suddenly a certain number of people buy it but it won't be the same number as the current gen. So you have divided your audience.

It's then a case of: are we just making it for the next gen? Or next gen and current gen? And how many people from the current gen that I'm targeting have moved over to the next gen? It does complicate things a little bit.

Obviously the changes they are going to make technologically, in terms of the things we will be able to do, are exciting. But it comes at a price.

It's clear that Bethesda's dilemma is influenced by the kind of games that it produces, with concerns about investing a large budget on a console with a new user base. It's a challenge that Nintendo and its competitors with face in the next couple of years, and is likely to lead to some bumps along the road for developers.

[via videogamer.com]

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User Comments (83)

zezhyrule

#1

zezhyrule said:

lol Fallout New Vegas.

Anyway, nintengamers aren't missing out on too much imo

Tsuchiya

#4

Tsuchiya said:

@Smitherenez

Bethesda are one of the few remaining masters of game development. The amount of work those guys and girls put in to their games is frankly mindblowing. For me, Bethesda being a part of Wii U is a key factor. No Bethesda, no Wii U. Simple.

They are in a league of their own and I for one absolutely love them. Oblivion makes OoT look like polygon vomit.

Bejeeta

#5

Bejeeta said:

Hines spoke about Wii U before. I'm a huge Bethesda fan, love Skyrim, Oblivion, Morrowind and Fallout games and I hope they will make something on a Nintendo machine, although I doubt it. And about the quality, Bethesda are one of the best game developers around, actually.

Smitherenez

#7

Smitherenez said:

@Tsuchiya I did not say that their games are not amazing, but they aren't that good as so many people claim. 'overhyped' is the word I am looking for here. Next to that I do think it is important to have big name developers working for the WiiU, so that it will sell better and we have more people to play with!

grimbldoo

#9

grimbldoo said:

@Hyperstar96 #2
You do know that his opinion is shared by Sony and Microsoft fanboys, right?

@Tsuchiya #4
That is an overexaggeration of extreme lengths. Nintendo has done quite well so far without Bethesda.
Are you really comparing those two games? That just takes all of the validity out of your statement.

Tsuchiya

#11

Tsuchiya said:

Bethesda are worlds better than Nintendo when it comes to game development (Imo), game scale and ambition and Bethesda know that. As much as I'd like to see Bethesda develop for Wii U, I just can't see the next Elder Scroll alongside ground breaking games such as NintendoLand...

grimbldoo

#12

grimbldoo said:

@Hyperstar96 #10
Oh, yeah. It would be nice to have Bethesda on Wii U and we probably would miss a little without Bethesda. I was talking about New Vegas.

triforcepower73

#14

triforcepower73 said:

I think that games like skyrim could be helped tremendously if they were on wii u. I'm thinking of that inventory setup. It's extremely painful and tedious but scrolling through your items with the touch screen could probably help a lot.

Tsuchiya

#15

Tsuchiya said:

@triforcepower73

I agree and the Pipboy 3000 on the Wii U pad would make so much sense.

Bethesda don't need Nintendo to shift numbers. If anything, it's the contrary. Especially with this new change in direction and by new, I mean the gamers that left Nintendo 10 years ago. Wii U needs AAA hardcore games. 7 year olds won't keep it aloft for long...

nfzeta007

#16

nfzeta007 said:

I think the person speaking here is stretching the truth as due to programming problems the PS3 is already not getting some of the newer Skyrim stuff, so as far as i'm concerned they could take that team and start a Wii U port as the Wii U has a similar setup to the Xbox360 which they have proven they know how to work with better, plus their sort of games suit the Wii U.

Also its sort of two faced to say current gen isn't holding them back and then say they aren't sure whether the Wii U will bring what they want in order to support their franchises, with how much they scaled Skyrim for the consoles graphically when compared to PC i doubt the Wii U will have any problems when the other next gen consoles arrive, especially the nextbox if it indeed comes out next year.

Hokori

#17

Hokori said:

For me the only thing they accomplished is being the first western company to get a perfect score in famitsu for ONE/20 odd games but it's still a good start, that means they are deffently the best western company, but that's about it and I couldn't care either way if they were on WiiU or not

steamhare

#18

steamhare said:

For me, the best thing about bethesda games is how modable they are. I'm sure I'm not the only person who'd rather pay less for a better version on PC.

atol

#19

atol said:

I would just like to point out Bethesda Game Studios did not develop Fallout: New Vegas, rather Obsidian Entertainment was the developer (Bethesda handled the publishing). Bethesda did develop Fallout 3 though.
Regardless Bethesda games have always been best on PC in my opinion, though I would like to see them available on as many consoles as possible for everyone to enjoy if they want. So I hope they decide to develop for WiiU in the future.

Bankai

#20

Bankai said:

Bethesda supported the Wii. There was that Mario Party clone, Medieval Games, that Bethesda published. I'm sure the Wii U can expect similar support, while the PS4 and XBox 720 will have to make do with Elder Scrolls and Fallout games.

Ryno

#26

Ryno said:

Wait, so you are telling me that I may not be able to be the ultimate video game nerd with a Wii U because I cannot sink 100+ hours into some fantasy RPG?

NMH-TRI

#27

NMH-TRI said:

As long as Wii U gets Monster Hunter in America, I'm fine. I'm still pouring hours into Tri. Might be more accurate to say days than hours.

NMH-TRI

#28

NMH-TRI said:

@Ryno, Guess that kind of makes me an ultimate video game nerd. So you play what, sports titles and are the ultimate video game jockey? Lol..

NightSmoke

#30

NightSmoke said:

I've been a fan of Fallout long before Bethsesda picked it up. They have been some of my most important gaming experinces. When I first saw the Wii U gamepad, the first thing I thought about was having a pipboy on it. I really, really want ports of Fallout 3 and New Vegas on Wii U. My wife wants Skyrim because our PC can't handle it.

rjejr

#31

rjejr said:

Hines answer basically boils down to - "we'll see". Nothing wrong with some simple smart business planning and honesty.

AcesHigh

#32

AcesHigh said:

1st... WiiU will most definitely be fine without Bethesda. To think otherwise is just absurd. They have led in console sales on all fronts without them up till now. Nintendo doesn't need them.

That said, I think everyone should relax. They are just taking a conservative wait and see approach. Afterall, this is really their first outing with their major franchises on a Nintendo platform. Remember, the WiiU is the first platform that is technologically comparable to Sony and MS's current platforms since Bethesda really broke through with their flagship IPs such as Fallout and Elderscrolls. Of course they aren't going to commit right now. They really don't have a relationship with Nintendo yet aside from a couple small releases on Wii. But we all know, and it's common knowledge, that the WiiU is a port-haven for titles on current gen systems and we also know that this console is going to sell like gang-busters once it comes out. It's just really a matter of time. Some companies are conservative in their approach to new consoles and some are agressive (like UBIsoft).

BTW, I totally agree with the other comments - the new control pad is almost MADE to be a Pipboy. It will happen!

hydeks

#35

hydeks said:

Yay, I don't own any of their games either, tried to play Fallout 3, but I really didn't care for it :S And I got a PS3, and use to own a 360 :P

LavaTwilight

#36

LavaTwilight said:

@Tsuchiya Your sarcasm is not welcome here.

Bethesda is a very talented company and the few games of theirs I have played are nothing short of amazing. I played Morrowind into the ground for example and designed many downloadable levels for it with unique scripts. I'm sorry but to compare them to Nintendo is like comparing an app with the phone, they're two completely different things. Nintendo are a massive company that produce scores of games every year whereas Bethesda release only one or two. To say the Wii U won't work without them is completely laughable in the most derisory sense. I'm not saying Bethesda need Nintendo either because quite frankly they don't, but imagine how good it will be for both companies for them to work hand-in-hand! I'd love to be able to play Skyrim or TES6 on the Wii U!

Magnet_Man018

#38

Magnet_Man018 said:

@zezhyrule Totally agree. I mean, Bethesda is a very good developer, but if it doesn't come to Wii U, the world isn't going to end y'know...
Besides, didn't these guys show some interest in Wii U in the past? I don't know why they changed their minds like this...

TruenoGT

#40

TruenoGT said:

Haven't actually played any of their games. I'm always interested, but it seems like you need to invest so many dozens and dozens of hours into one to really enjoy it... I'd miss out on playing several other games by investing that kind of time. Maybe someday I'll tackle one, but based on comments about bugs and such, they're probably better served by making a more robust title on one or two platforms rather than spreading themselves even thinner by supporting a 4th.

Mandoble

#41

Mandoble said:

I guess these fanboys that cannot play Bethesda are the first to say that they dont need Bethesda. For the vast majority of non-Wii users, it is number 1 dev and publisher, and Nitendo would certainly benefict of having number 1 giving them some support, even if it is just an already chewed bone.

@Malic, they release two real jewels per year, Nintendo releases scores of mini games per year, which, obviously, dont need patches. The "buggy" Syrim was GOTY, remember that.

TheChosen

#42

TheChosen said:

As a huge Fallout fan (you could guess that from the nickname), I freaking love that Pip-boy idea and cant imagine why I never thought of it before.

Varia01

#43

Varia01 said:

I played few minutes of Morrowind and Oblivion. Bored. The game has a boring control scheme and and overwhelming set of pause menus. This will be perfect with the Wii U's Gamepad touch screen capabilities! Though the one thing that I hate most is the Four- array buttons ability. Pull out weapon,activate, JOURNAL??? REALLY BETHESDA??? Why didn't they use the skill putting all menus into one large pause menu like Retro did with the legendary Metroid Prime 3 ( I know I said I hated the overwhelming pause menu, but what I mean is the large inventory is overwhelming). At least it could be refined a little by putting all of the inventory in the touch screen.....

Malic

#45

Malic said:

@Mandoble I dont care if it were game of the decade I have been playing the games they make since dagger fall,skyrim is the most overrated game I managed to spend my money on. A game I cant play out of the box is no better than the uno deck in my dresser not to mention any mini game nintendo puts out

SomeBitTripFan

#49

SomeBitTripFan said:

I do hope they will be on Wii U. I respect how much effort they put into their games, despite how buggy they can be.(that and maybe it would sober some MS fanboys)

Mandoble

#50

Mandoble said:

BTW, it was no buggy for me (PC and XBoX versions), if you have the PS3 one I understand your frustration. But it was not overrated at all for me, in any case even underrated. Most really overrated and overhyped game came from Ninty, SS, yep, the one that lost the GOTY award vs Skyrim. Skyrim is absolutely massive, no way to have something like that without small issues here and there, with the exception of the PS3 version.

Malic

#51

Malic said:

@The_Fox bugs are one thing many game breaking glitches are another, I've lost respect for them I guess. I hope they can change my mind in the future but I wont be looking at professional reviews thats for sure

kyuubikid213

#53

kyuubikid213 said:

I play Skyrim on my brother's 360 (my game, his system) and I would love for it to come to the Wii U. The world won't end if it doesn't port over, but if it did port to Wii U, I would practically give the 360 version away. I don't need Dawnguard or mounted combat. Just give me the bare-bones Skyrim and I'll be fine. Not to mention using the GamePad for quick menu access and being able to play Skyrim even when Dad wants to watch TV...miraculous.

Tsuchiya

#54

Tsuchiya said:

@Mandoble

Well said :)

My experience with the Oblivion, Skyrim, Fallout 3 and New Vegas were bug free. Bethesda are an incredible developer. Fact. Their presence on Wii U should it happen, would be incredible. Like them or not, Nintendo's change in direction requires such developers to be on board. Without them, Wii U is just a fatter Wii and will inevitably be full of the usual shovelware and minigame nonsense.

I'm tired of fat plumbers now. NintendoLand won't grab the attention of the long lost hardcore Nintendoid. Bethesda will but saying that, those people may well be happy with their jump to another console (like myself) and may not be the least bit interested in Wii U.

I'm undecided on Wii U but give us some games and I'll reconsider. :)

Ernest_The_Crab

#55

Ernest_The_Crab said:

I would love for them to develop some of their RPGs for the Wii U. Their buggy games on PC have made me wary though. Almost every time I play Fallout 3 the game never ends because I choose to quit out. The crashes are annoying to say the least.

I just hope Dishonoured isn't going to end up buggy as hell on PC too.

weirdproq

#56

weirdproq said:

I would like it if some of Bethesda's games came out on the Wii U. I think Valve should also put their games on the Wii U.

Chunky_Droid

#57

Chunky_Droid said:

Nintendo would do well to get a couple of Bethesda games on their consoles to increase their legitimacy toward the 'core' gamer (whatever your perception of that may be).

Personally, I generally wait a couple of years after an Elder Scrolls game comes out before I decide whether the hundreds of updates will actually make it worthwhile in the end (I have only just recently bought Oblivion for the PS3 after guaranteeing I won't have a terrible time with it). I'm not even going to bother with Skyrim.

Malic

#58

Malic said:

@Tsuchiya its apparent you love bethesda but compairing Oot and oblivion is ridiculous you do understand Oot came out for the N64? why dont you compair it to dagger fall that was a pixilated mess and morrowind didn't age very well either so whats your point? You've played oblivion,skyrim, New Vegas and fallout 3 bug free? give me a break

atol

#60

atol said:

@ThomasBW84 Thanks, I wasn't trying to be pedantic just noticed a lot of people don't seem to know it was a different developer. Great article btw, it has gotten quite a bit of intense discussion as well as my first comment after years of being a reader here

Mandoble

#61

Mandoble said:

Bethesda always go for massive games, to be frank it was a big surprise for me having Skyrim working fine on 360 (even with low detail level). But it is clear that current gen consoles are imposing limitations to what Bethesda can do for PCs, hopefully they will find an open door to escape from performance limitations with the next gen of consoles. Give enough raw power to these guys and lets see how massive and incredible might be Elder Scrolls VI or Fallout IV.

WolfRamHeart

#62

WolfRamHeart said:

As much as I love Skyrim I made the mistake of purchasing it on the PS3. I had my reservations and I wish that I would have gotten it on the 360 instead. Skyrim may have won numerous Game of the Year awards but most of us PS3 owners feel that we got a raw deal with the version that we got. It is playable but there has been numerous problems that I have had to deal with from day one. I am just tired of companies getting away with releasing unfinished products with the intent of patching them later. I am even hearing that the Dawnguard expansion that 360 owners got may not even come to the PS3 which is really disappointing. If Bethesda cannot handle developing for the PS3 then I am skeptical that they would be able to get their games running properly on the Wii U. I would like to see them try though. Despite what Bethesda seems to think, I do believe that there is indeed a market for their games with Nintendo fans.

Chunky_Droid

#63

Chunky_Droid said:

@WolfRamHeart: I know what you mean, Bethesda wouldn't even admit that they couldn't handle the save file system on the PS3 even when the evidence was there.

Knowing Nintendo consoles I would imagine it would be a friendlier console do develop for as usual, with that being the case I think Bethesda would be insane not to go for it.

Tsuchiya

#64

Tsuchiya said:

@triforcepower73

I know right. How dare Bethesda have so much vision and imagination when making their games... I mean, who wants a game that lasts months on end, has seemingly endless content, engaging stories and characters and has so many variables, it makes your head spin? O_O

Some people like minigames and games with plumbers. The rest tend to play real games. Bethesda are a behemoth and gaming would be a pretty stagnant place without such developers helping push the envelope.

Nintendo would do very well to have them on board whether you like it or not. Without developers like Bethesda on side, all we have is a slightly polished Wii albeit one with bells and whistles :)

Chuie

#66

Chuie said:

i dont care i wont buy it i wont be giving them there money for there stupid games but maybe the fans would

playlikemario

#67

playlikemario said:

they should not stir away from the Wii U cause the Wii U opens up other possibilities for gameplay that can change how the core gamer and the average gamer of this time interact with the gaming experience. having a game from Bethesda on the Wii U could help them sell their games that they make due to the popularity of the Nintendo fan and i may not have any games that i have played from Bethesda but if they did develop a game, i would love to be open to try it. so i say all that to say this, Bethesda or any developer should not stir away but try to get on board they never know. oh yea and by the way the Wii U is not a next gen console its a current gen console in a next gen environment that opens doors to new ways to play.

emiru69

#68

emiru69 said:

To be honest I'm tired of Bethesda and how people justify their buggy/broken games just because their games are "so ambitious". Well I got Fallout 3, insane quantity of bugs during the first weeks. Fallout New Vegas even worse, and with Skyrim they didn't learn their lesson either. I bought a product that took a year, a whole freaking year to get fixed with constant updates. I know that New Vegas was created by Obsidian Entertainment but still published by Bethesda Softwork. The same thing with the games published by Nintendo, Nintendo still responsible for games that have their signature. This is unacceptable. No other product can be release so broken and be justified by saying "well, it's because our product is really ambitious". I can't buy a Lamborghini and wait a year for the car to work because "it's really ambitious". I don't care about your ambition Bethesda, I care about buying a product that works properly. I understand minor bugs are normal during the first weeks but your bugs are insane. Any other company would be crucify by the press (especially if that company was Japanese) but for some reason Bethesda get away with murder. Well not in my book, you got 3 strikes Bethesday (Fallout 3, New Vegas and Skyrim), you are OUT!

NintendoLand

#69

NintendoLand said:

@Tsuchiya
lol you can't see Elder Scrolls next to ground breaking games like NintenoLand? Is that sarcasm or?...

I bet you can't see Street Fighter 4 next to Pokemon. God of War next to LBP. Batman Arkham City Armored Edition next to idk.. Nintendoland?

You're Seriously comparing Oblivion to OoT??? hahaha

Yeah Bethesda is the "masters" of development. Try Capcom or Nintendo.

Nintendo created everything from Mario to Zelda to Touchscreen gaming to Wii Sports to the fitness craze. Lets see Bethesda handle that,

Malic

#72

Malic said:

Bethesda < Bioware,Retro,Rockstar, Nintendo, Capcom, Chicken Chimichanga just saying

Edwrd

#73

Edwrd said:

Fallout 3 was one of the best games ever, I played that and New Vegas in 2010/11 so didn't notice the bugs, haven't played Skyrim yet, but thing with these games is they take a lot of time to complete and to discover the map, all side quests and replay with a different build, you'd be hogging the living room TV. And ... you will never get Steam sale prices on Wii U for it! To me games no longer make sense on any platform except Steam if Steam puts them on sale.

triforcepower73

#74

triforcepower73 said:

@Tsuchiya Umm... I didn't mean it that way. In fact I got extremely bored of skyrim after about 10 hours of playing it. The biggest problem with skyrim isn't the incredibly annoying glitches, but that it doesn't reward you for playing. Ya it has endless amounts of content(if you have nothing better to do). But talking to a person, then another person, then another person, then going into a dungeon(that's pretty much exactly like the past 100 dungeons that you've been through), then getting a weapon that's more powerful than your current weapon so that you can kill enemies easier and get even more powerful weapons isn't my idea of rewarding a player. Now yes, a lot of games reward you for just simply playing the game. Mario, for example, is just fun to play. Playing it IS the reward. But that's not the case with skyrim. You gain no joy from simply playing it. That's why I got bored with it so quickly. The fact that it won goty is laughable! There are plenty of other more deserving games. Some people like boring, broken, and uninspired games. The rest tend to stick with real games that actually try to achieve perfection(and reach it) like zelda and mario.

Malic

#76

Malic said:

@Tsuchiya yeah because walking through the snow for 100+ hrs killing the same troll over and over is so much fun while you're doing that we can move on to better things ;)

ToxieDogg

#77

ToxieDogg said:

To say that the Wii-U is nothing without developers like Bethesda is laughable at best, downright zealotry at worst. Nintendo could manage fine without them, just as Bethesda managed fine without Nintendo whilst the Wii was the world's best selling console. Just because a game offers more gameplay time than another, doesn't automatically make it better. Otherwise all 3 hour long movies would automatically be 'better' than 90 minute movies and so on. It's an ass backward way of thinking, that length should be more important than entertainment value. Some people enjoy the same sort of endless repetition for hours on end though, I suppose. And I say that as someone who owns Oblivion, Fallout 3 and Skyrim on Xbox 360 and has put a fair amount of time into all 3. After initially thinking those games were wonderful, boredom and apathy usually kicks in long before the quest's end. Meanwhile, a more concise, focused and varied game like Zelda will keep me engaged from start to finish. Not all gamers are the same, don't make the mistake of believing they are.

Tsuchiya

#78

Tsuchiya said:

@Malic

Not played Skyrim then, no?

Nowadays, I like my games minus the repetitive jumping and fruitless coin collecting. Haven't you got Peach to rescue again? Still, at least you're doing so in a "New" way :)

Long live Nintendo!

Malic

#79

Malic said:

Lol who said anything about mario and I forgot you play "real games" whatever that means I am no way near a fan boy of any game or system I've been playing games since atari and have or had every major gaming system. Betheseda is far from perfect as much as you like to think. More content is not always a good thing especially if it doesnt even work right.

DarkKirby

#80

DarkKirby said:

Bethesda games off PC without mods = =(

If you disagree you have obviously never tried it.

This essentially means players shouldn't care, although Nintendo does.

Gamer83

#81

Gamer83 said:

One of the most overrated developers in the industry and Elder Scrolls may possibly be the most overrated franchise though FF is highly overrated as well. However, it'd still be huge for Nintendo to get these guys on board assuming they don't just do lazy ports like on the Playstation systems. Hopefully Nintendo wouldn't tolerate that bs.

Hokori

#82

Hokori said:

@Tsuchiya NSMBU is more like SMW and still every Mario game in the 80's came out in a much quicker amount of time then the NEW series
84-88 four years, 89 one year 91 two years
NSMB 06 -wii 09 3 years 09-12 3 years but with 2 games, but let's not forget SML and SML 2 in between so yeah.... I HATE when people say the NEW games are coming out too quickly when they clearly did it in the past.

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