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Lack of "OMG" Idea Explains Borderlands Wii U Absence

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Aliens: Colonial Marines pushed some buttons

Gearbox is the developer behind Aliens: Colonial Marines, a title coming to Wii U in 2013 that promises to make many film-buffs weep with joy at the first "beep" sound to emanate from the GamePad. The famous motion control sensor from Aliens will be recreated on the system's controller, and is likely to win prizes for being both incredibly simple and exciting.

The fan-boyish reaction that some have had to that concept is matched by Gearbox CEO Randy Pitchford, who's also spoken in glowing terms about Wii U and its controller on multiple occasions. In the latest issue of GamesMaster magazine, however, Pitchford was asked why one of his studio's best-known IPs, Borderlands, is yet to make any hint of an appearance on Nintendo's system; his emphasis on the GamePad concept provided the reasoning.

We get asked if there is going to be a Wii U version of Borderlands, and the reason why there’s not is because we couldn’t think of a natural, obvious, ‘OMG, I want that for what the Wii U brings to the table’ feature.

But with Aliens, the first thing we thought was ‘Holy sh*t, I can have a motion controller in my hands!’ When it’s there in my lap it feels like I’m part of the movie.

So there you have it, "holy sh*t" moments are apparently a major part of Gearbox decision making for Wii U development projects. Does the motion sensor of Aliens do that for you, or is there any aspect of the Borderlands games that you think would work particularly well on Wii U? Let us know in the comments below.


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User Comments (56)



Xilef said:

That kinda sucks. Would have loved to have Borderlands 2 on the Wii U. Oh well, might pick a GOTY editione sometime in the future. Hopefully not to many devs feel that they need a 'OMG' idea to bring a game to the Wii U.



MAB said:

Easy... Just don't do anything with the damn touch screen for cryin' out loud



Tsuchiya said:

This is the only thing that makes me worry about Wii U.
It has grunt and innovation in abundance but it's the idea that some AAA developers may see the gamepad as a turnoff that has me thinking about Wii U's 3rd party support. The Pro controller is there for games just like Borderlands etc. Use it

This isn't the Wii. You're not forced to bolt on gimmicky control schemes anymore. Once again, use the damn Pro controller and port it on over.



Xilef said:

@Tsuchiya I'm a bit worried about devs feeling forced about using the Gamepad in an innovative way to and they avoid making games for the Wii U because of it. Honestly, i'm OK with multiplat games just having a map and a inventory screen, i personally don't think devs have to think of innovative ways the same way Gearbox is doing with Alien.



Savino said:

The fact that we can use wiimote is more than enough reason to port it to WiiU.



Pikachupwnage said:

Sounds awesome. Nice to see cool usage of the Gamepad for ACM. Pity we don't get borderlands though.



WanderingPB said:

I understand ur concerns and reservations with the gamepad and to have access to some of these awesome 3rd party games on the Wii U in itself would also make me happy…BUT i believe i understand why they don't. Then it would pretty much be the same as the other consoles with only very little differences. I didnt understand at first but then after reading so many Nintendo interviews i see they are being very dedicated to creating a difference gaming experience as opposed to competing with just graphics. Its like playing a "angry birds" with a game controller instead of touch screen.…i didnt like the idea of motion controls when the Wii came out and it actually kept me from getting it in the beginning until finally i caved years later and couldnt help but truly appreciate the idea in most wii games(except mario kart i prefer the nunchuk though my son prefers the wheel and can actually beat me, so maybe i need more practice). The Wii was mostly 1st party games b/c only they were really committed to the motion controls while 3rd parties were doubting them all the way until later when they saw the potential. Resident evil 4 amongst a few others took the idea and in the end improved the gaming experience for that game instead of it just bein another port. And now with the Wii U we have more games truly using the gamepad Nintendoland, ZombiU, Rayman legends, and Aliens colonial marines( just to name a few) to change the overall gaming experience. I wouldnt worry though i believe that the 3rd party developers will see the potential again get some creative uses for their games with the gamepad(nothing forced though, of course). But like with most games i guess it comes down to personal preference but also remember most of these new games also give u the option of using controller but then again isnt using the gamepad a piece of why we all want the Wii U? I personally hope they allow free demos for all their games so we could decide for ourselves b4 purchasing them now that would be off the hook!!!!



JayceJa said:


its also the problem with the 3ds i feel too, so many games are focusing so much on 3d that they put all the action on the top screen, meaning we are getting much less amazing touch controlled games than on the ds, and less games that utilize both screens in great ways



AbeVigoda said:

After playing ZombiU and finding out how cool it is to have that games radar system make a "ping" when zombies are nearby, I can't wait to hear it in the Aliens game.



Tate24 said:

Am worry about the overall Wii U experience all am hearing is bad things. Am really on the fence at moment for wii u dont know if just buy 360 :/



Tsuchiya said:

If you are on the fence as was I until very recently (I only pre ordered mine 11 days ago) I'd get yourself an affordable 360. Until you decide on Wii U.

The 360 is a fantastic system



Nintomdo said:

One of the ideas that initially drew me to the Wii U was gamepad play without the need for a TV. This seems like a good enough use for the gamepad without the need for gimmicks. The main reason I want black ops 2 for Wii U and not PS3 is gamepad play. My wife doesn't like watching shooters so I don't get a chance to play them very often. That all changes now with Wii U. Just port Borderlands and allow people to choose how they want to play.



rippedwhiteguy said:

They should just bendle 1 and 2 together with all the expansions. A lot of nintendo fanboys haven't had the chance to play either when really borderlands is one of the best games out there IMO



Monsti said:

This worries me as well. Why do they need an Omg-reason? developers port from xbox to ps3 all the time without any reason...well, e reason is so people can buy it!!



Nintenjoe64 said:

Holy sh*t moments are what make the greatest games memorable.

I still think my biggest shock ever was the first T-Rex encounter in the first Tomb Raider. Better than any twist in a Halo game!



Popyman said:

It would have been amazing to be able to play co-op on the same system and both have a full screen (or even 3-4 player offline co-op, three on the TV, one on the tablet)--THAT is totally worth making a Wii U port, IMO.



Tsuchiya said:

For some games that would be great but games like Borderlands don't need gimmicky control set ups. The Pro pad exists for such titles.

Port it over using 360 controls and move on to the next game.



ueI said:

Well, Borderlands is out for other consoles, and I wasn't under the impression that those have OMG ideas.



Dogpigfish said:

They probably don't have the budget and the game just went over the interest hump. Saw it for $25 brand new at Walmart, still in stock after Black Friday. Developing late is not good business. $60 won't fly to have remote play. Mr. developer, if its any consolation I would buy it to support your companies' genius.



Doma said:

I guess they and most other 3rd party devs feel the same way and don't see much of a point in late porting all their PS3/360 games for little benefit. It's obvious why they'd want a new feature/whatever; to encourage existing owners to want to buy it again, otherwise they're catering to a very low number of people (Nintendo only).

Meh, that's their own fault.



C7_ said:

While I'm not a big fan of Borderlands, this is hardly a reason not to do it. The best way for Nintendo to gain back credibility with the core gamer audience is not to show the gamepad as a defining feature for every game but rather a helpful tool for games that don't really need to rely on it.

I can easily see the gamepad being used for quicker inventory management, a constantly displayed map with important locations marked, or even something as simple as faster weapon swapping or stats. I'd even consider buying it if it supported off-screen play. There doesn't need to be an "oh sh*t" moment for a good reason to port.

Though this long after release it would have to release as a complete or special edition to get fans to repurchase or new people to get it on a new console.



Tasuki said:

2 cause I was hoping for a Wii U version. Guess I can stop waiting now.




I'd love to see this come out for the WiiU even if there was no innovative use for the gamepad. The trouble is that even if it was the exact same game, plenty of reviewers would take a few % of it's score because it doesn't do anything different, which is stupid!



thanos316 said:

just make a great game. thats all i ask. it don't have to have motion controls or have to use the tablet. just make a great game. if u wanna port borderlands to it then ok, just don't say it wasn't something that hit u. i swear devs piss me off. all u have to do is make a great game and hopefully it sells.



AyeHaley said:

DAMN! Well now I have to buy it for my dusty 360slim with Kinect. Which I don't (want to) use anymore cause Microsoft made playing games a chore by using that dreadful ad-filled Dashboard. Can't wait for Wii U, where gaming is still nr. 1!



krunchykhaos said:

I would keep current gen systems just for the games out now. The WiiU is without a doubt more powerful than the others but Seriously its been 8 days. You might as well get one. When march 2013 rolls around youll start seeing more games being announced.



krunchykhaos said:

Oh and the possibility of the next borderlands game for the wiiu is pretty high. Dont forget that.



Ren said:

I totally understand. and it does concern me too. If you're trying to release a AAA game it had to have the option of using the main packed in controller that people buy the WiiU for.

It's like trying to make a shooter for a system that you know comes with a guitar controller as it's main selling point; you know you have to use it in some way and if it means re-building huge parts of the game when you've already spent a couple years on it for the other consoles.... well just let it go. It's not worth the effort for the odd one out if it's already doing great on the others, why pay 6 more months of dev time to do something interesting with the lil screen.

I can bet all of you complaining that it should just use the pro controller would be the same people complaining if they did that like "why would you make a WiiU game that can't use the gamepad?!" as well as everyone else who just bought a Wii and that game to find it doesn't work with the fancy gamepad. Smart decision.

I agree, though that those guys should really consider doing those kinds of ports and just sticking a map on that screen if they don't want to bother with it.



ueI said:

@Ren The WiiU gamepad has all the same buttons as the pro controller, so they could have made the game work with both using the same control scheme.



ThreadShadow said:

How 'bout a "Wow! Look at all the money we got from Wii U players buying Borderlands 2 Wii U edition!" moment?



Urbanhispanic said:

I see the guy's point of view but it isn't a good enough reason to hold back a title that would sell on the Wii U.



machomuu said:

Makes sense, but I'm a little disappointed that so many developers feel obligated to use the Wii U Gamepad (similarly to how 3/DS developers feel obligated to shoehorn (in some cases) dual screen gameplay and the same story with Wii developers) and when they realize that they don't want to, they don't develop for it at all. I'd be perfectly fine with a game that simply used the Classic Controller/Pro Controller or simply used the gamepads buttons, the Gamepad is simply optional, they don't have to try to make a Gamepad experience when they simply want to make a game.



x-mas_mii said:

do it the easy way; use the touch screen to have as a display without tv ( like blops 2)



Steveovig said:

That's pretty stupid. What was the OMG reason for every other version? Just release a GOTY edition, how hard is that?



Tsuchiya said:

Have you played Borderlands?
The easiest way to get it on Wii U would be to just use the Pro controller set up exactly like the 360 version. There is no reason to use the Gamepad for such a game. He doesn't need an OMG moment, just use the other controller!
It's an Xbox 360 pad with Wii U written on it! C'mon! No excuses.

This is just a cop out.



Ren said:

not everyone will have the pro controller and no one is going to release a game that uses the pad with a blank screen. It's got to do something, and who wants to work on that after all the work was already done in tandem for the other consoles?



BXXL said:

I've just finished Borderlands 2 on PS3, a few weeks after playing the first Borderlands too, and ONE thing was always on my mind: too bad i can't play these games with the wiimote, with controls similar to the ones of the Metroid Prime Trilogy...

And that's my main issue with the Wii U: i read most of the comments here, and everybody's talking about what? The pro controller, which would provide the exact same experience as on PS360, and the Gamepad, which is nearly the same with a bonus screen...

I'm usually not a fan of FPS, Bioshock and Borderlands were the only "alternative" games in that genre that attracted me lately, but Nintendo had something truly great and unique with the wiimote, just ideal for FPS, and now, with the Wii U, it's like all the efforts will be made for the Gamepad, and the wiimote will be left behind and mostly forgotten, like it never even existed, and that's a real shame...

I still can't understand why Nintendo just hasn't released a "Wii HD", with even more power to be sure the best multiplatform games will be ported on it, now and in the years ahead... the Gamepad has increased the costs, but i'd have prefered a console which, for the exact same price, could rival the next Sony and Microsoft offerings, with the wiimote plus (and a pro controller) as the main control methods, simple as that...

Now, i'm sure i may have to buy (once again) two consoles in the next cycle, as the Wii U will miss tens of games i'd like to play as well... why can't a Nintendo console be the only console i need to play the best games out there? I still don't get it, after all these years, and now three generations in a row...



Magi said:

I absolutely positively ridiculously love love love the Aliens franchise and can't wait for this game to come out. The idea of the gamepad being the motion tracker is an obvious one, but nifty nonetheless. "Sadly", I'll be playing this on Xbox and won't be able to utilize the niftyness.

Edit: unless I can talk my friends into all buying Wii Us.



Araknie said:

@Tsuchiya And what's the point on innovating then.

I'm glad that Gearbox puts a lot of effort in think holy sh*t moments for the Wii U.



diim said:

Hmmmm, I smell BS. The equipment load out on the game pad would be perfect. That alone would make me purchase this game on WiiU.

What is going on with these developers already.



Tsuchiya said:

A game like Borderlands doesn't need gimmicky controls added just for the hell of it. It plays great on the other systems without a screen. Just because we now have a screen doesn't mean developers have to twiddle their thumbs waiting for ideas to use it.

The Pro controller makes more sense for such games. It not being used when it should be, worries me.



Iggy said:

There really isn't any reason to have Borderlands right now there should be games using the gamepad at launch. Borderlands would just feel gimmicky with the gamepad just like a lot of games that forced motion controls on Wii games. Considering the Wii U is upped in price because of the gamepad I want to make sure im using it.

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