News Article

Insomniac's CEO Is Open To Working On Wii U, Wants To See More Zelda, Mario And Metroid

Posted by Damien McFerran

That was quite a U-Turn

Last week, we reported that Insomniac CEO Ted Price had branded the Wii U "current gen" and stated that his studio wasn't working on any projects for the system.

He should probably have added a "at the moment" to the end of that comment, because only a few days later, Price has changed his tune slightly.

Speaking to Digitally Downloaded about Insomniac's debut multiformat title FUSE, Price admitted that while the Wii U isn't part of his company's plans for the immediate future, he's not ruling it out entirely:

We have to be selective because it’s easy to start to stretch yourself too thin. So we’re careful about where we go. One of the questions I got a lot of early on was 'why aren’t you developing for the Wii U?' and the answer was simply bandwidth. We had to focus on delivering a great game on multiple platforms, but there’s a point where we had to make hard choices, and for us we needed to limit the number of platforms for FUSE...but we’re not ruling out anything in the future. We are a content creator and we want to reach as large of an audience as we can.

Price added that he's actually a fan of Nintendo, and wants to see more of the company's famous IP on the Wii U:

As a player what I would love to see is more of those games that I grew up with. Zeldas, Marios, Metroid - those are the games I look for from Nintendo, and I hope more of them come out for the Wii U.

Given the remarkably negative reaction to Price's earlier comments, does this attempt to clarify his stance change your mind at all? Insomniac isn't the only third-party to snub the Wii U, and given that FUSE is a unique venture for the company, can it really be blamed for playing it safe and not producing a Nintendo version? Post a comment to tell us what you think about the situation.


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User Comments (57)



PopeReal said:

Make something good and we will buy it. How about an original game designed for the Wii U and not just a port? Just an idea.



PS4WiiU said:

and who would publish a developer unproved in multiplatform space, Nintendo?
They are tied to EA for multiplatform games and to Sony for Ratcher and Clank



Grubdog said:

They need some popular concepts to copy and paste before they can make a game



Peach64 said:

It's not a U turn at all, since its not contradicting anything he said originally. The problem is the way people over react and twist these dev comments. I'm pretty sure he said he loved the Wii U in his original comments, and he never said they wouldn't ever look at making a game for it. However, if anyone comes our and says they have no current plans for Wii U, 75% of commenters here label them fanboys that hate Nintendo.



Meaty-cheeky said:

I don't really care what this guy says, Insomniac will most likely never develop games for Nintendo, also the Wii U is next GEN Ted. The Wii U has 2GB of RAM and a GPU that out performs both the XBOX360 & PS3.



Zeldalover said:

More Mario, More Zelda and More Metroid. I mean... who doesn't? Funniest guy ever! : )



Kage_88 said:

"As a player what I would love to see is more of those games that I grew up with. Zeldas, Marios, Metroid - those are the games I look for from Nintendo, and I hope more of them come out for the Wii U." we want new IP, or not?



Hunter-D said:

Honestly, I had no issue with their original comment about the Wii U. It's their opinion and they're entitled to it.

At least we got a reason this time.



SanderEvers said:

@Kage_88 Actually not. New IPs can only disappoint when compared to the best IPs ever.

When people stop buying Mario, Zelda and Metroid games then, yes , you should start to look at new IPs.




I bet you when he said those first comments last week he thought about it and said to himself:

"Oh wait a minute what if the Wii U all of a sudden makes a huge turn around in sales like the 3DS and Nintendo again has the biggiest install base again like the Wii! Oh jeez if that happened now all the Nintendo fans aren't gonna buy my games then I'll be able to be RICH and famous like I always wanted "

"Oh I know what I'll do I'll set up another interview and say it was a misunderstanding not because WE WANT YOUR MONEY or anything like that :] That will fix everything I'm so smart."



PokeTune said:

@NINTENBOY More likely that Nintendo fanboys would try to boycott Insomniac for leaving their precious Wii U out of the next-gen.



V8_Ninja said:

This really isn't much of a U-turn, Damien. Maybe you should come up with a more accurate article tagline?



MrGawain said:

It makes you wonder with this lot U-turning and Activision saying the PS4 and the Nextbox might have teething trouble, if the Next Gen isn't as rosy as first thought?



Aviator said:

His comments from last week never completely ruled out the possibility of developing for the Wii U.

Hardly a U turn.



bunnyking said:

i'm glad they're seeing things my way now. All it took was one CEO to say, "the economy will be a problem for everyone in the industry."



8thGenConsoles said:

Developers these days are known to say things that Nintendo fans won't like and then few days later they say something more positive because they don't want Nintendo fans to boycott their games



Jaz007 said:

It's not a U-Turn at all. He said he wasn't developing for Wii U, nothing else. Nintendo fan(boy)s just don't understand that making games is a business. Developers don't avoid the Wii U because they are fanboys. They avoid it because it's not worth the time or effort, or as this case is, they just can't afford the resources it would take to develop for another console.



Daz-brum said:

Developers and game designers need to keep in mind who have bought this machine "True Gamers" design games for gamers thats not graphics or new spins just simple good to play games how hard can it be look at "That 80!s racing game" on Kickstarter meet it target in days then Nintendo go involved and now a big gun developers are on the case, I wonder why ???



GameLord08 said:

He hasn't made a reversal of his previous statement at all; you all just started jumping to conclusions over something with as little context as a single sentence from an interview.

Besides, Price still hasn't clarified whether or not his statement on the Wii U not being "next-gen" concerns the tech/hardware or other reasoning. Contrary to popular belief, people do have different interpretations of the label.



BraveBold5 said:

The problem wasnt him saing ti wont develop games for the Wii U
The problem is he saing Wii U is not next gen
N64 was same gen as PS and Saturn Wii was same gen as PS3 and Xbox
So why this now? He, as a "public" figure" on videogames should measure is words first
Wasn't enough to say, "we dont intend do develop WIi U games, at least for now"



Ren said:

not a U turn, just another rational measured comment that comes from the same place many of us are in regarding disappointment in what happened with WiiU. Weird how anything but falling over praise is pounced on at this site.



Peach64 said:

@BraveBold5 As I said in the original article, people have different definitions of the word generation. If a developer is working on games built ground up for the next Sony and MS consoles, it's not going to be easy to port to Wii U. I imagine a lot of development studios right now are trying to decide wether their next game should be a 'next gen' or current gen game. All they mean is shall we programme based on the high specs of the upcoming consoles, or the specs of consoles that are out now. They're not trying to put down the Wii U by not counting it as next gen, it's just a quick an easy term for games that are made for the next Sony and MS consoles.



Rafie said:

I agree with the vast majority of comments here. Insomniac never said they wouldn't work with Nintendo, yet we have those here that still take jabs at Insomniac and even Sony because they're butt-hurt about something the dev never even said....which is, "we don't wanna work with Nintendo"!



bezerker99 said:

I thought Nintendo made the Wii U so companies just like Insomniac could finally make games for a "next-gen" Nintendo console. Sucks to see so many of them ignoring the console altogether.



Aviator said:

@zerk If you actually took the time to read the interview at Digitally Downloaded, you would see that they're not ignoring the console.



BraveBold5 said:

@Peach64 No, sorry, cant agree
You have to be more polite in this cases
You have to say something like, Wii U is a wonderful console but we are not planing on releasing games on it
We all now there is plenty of fanboys on Nintendo/Sony/Xbox, so you have to take care on the thing you say to the public
I have never seeing someone mention that N64 is not same gen as the PS1 and the N64 is more powerful never the less
We did not hear this controversy on the Wii too, at least that i remember
We know there is not a definition to next-gen or current gen, for god sake for me Wii U even can be a zero gen, what i really care is to see if the games are good or not, yet it seems almost an intended atack on Nintendo (you dont hear this speech from Ubisoft, Activision, etc)



Aviator said:

@zerks Then you would've read this:
“But we’re not ruling out anything in the future. We are a content creator and we want to reach as large of an audience as we can.”

Insomniac aren't ignoring the Wii U.



bezerker99 said:

Yes, I read that. I'll see it when I believe it. Not saying it's not true but I'm a firm believe in actions speak louder than words.

EDIT: I actually took that sentence to mean, "We will consider making games for Wii U as soon as it becomes viable" aka "when more people begin to buy Wii U's." I don't think making games for the Wii U is even on their radar, tbh. But that's just my warped thinking, don't read too much into it.



Apollo_Justice said:

@BraveBold5 - I don't see why Peach64 has to "act polite". I've talked to a bunch of developers, and some just don't consider Wii U "next-gen" in terms of specs. There's nothing wrong with that. It's not trying to go next-gen specs. But on the same token, we can't be surprised when developers don't want to port/develop for the Wii U, especially since it won't hold a candle to the tech inside the next Xbox and Playstation systems.

All the Nintendo fans in the world can continue arguing that the Wii U is next gen, but I would rather listen to the people actually MAKING games for consoles, rather than the people who just play games on them.



UnseatingKDawg said:

See, this is why you should be more clear when you're making statements. Either that or it's a bunch of bunk he's passing off to cover his butt.



ikki5 said:

LOL, I can easily see this turning into , "yeah, we may releases Fuse on the Wii U". Then later down the road. "No, putting Fuse on the Wii U would be impossible because Nintendo is bad and sucks". Why would I say this? Insomniac has NEVER released anything on Nintendo in the 20 years it has been around. Not once, they are primarily exclusive to play station and occasionally release for MS and playstation. So I won't get my hopes up for this on the Wii U. Especially after the statements they made last week or so.



Zup said:

I suppose it makes sense from a business standpoint. Hope they start something soon though, 'cause Insomniac's games (that I've played) were freaking awesome.



Mizzah_Tee said:

@Peach64 Anyone twist his words when he said a platform he is not even developing anything for is "current gen." Sometimes your need to sound like the objective unbiased fan who is right down the middle on a Pro Nintendo site sometimes clouds your messaging.

The guy could no longer take the heat fro his comments and did a bit of damage control. Just like the the FEZ developer. "I'm a Nintendo fan guys... honest I am! Don't hit me!"

I'm just tired of hearing about every Tom, Dick, and Harry (many of which are just suits and not developers) that has never done anything with Nintendo before being tasked to tell us they still aren't doing anything with Nintendo. Why is this news? Making a game for Wii U or 3DS... that's news. Your Wii U development kit broke because it sucks... that's news. You're name is EA and Nintendo hurt your feelings so now you want to hurt theirs... that's news (I guess). But if you grew up as a little kid and Nintendo was your daddy and now you're angry because Nintendo never molested you (South Park reference)and you feel entitled that they should now come to you and kiss you on the forehead and tell you all the ways you are more special than other developers (Anchorman reference), that's not news...



P-Gamer-C said:

Man even developers are like pleading with nintendo to release games on the wii u



Tony_342 said:

I thought it was pretty common knowledge that Ted Price is a big fan of Nintendo. He plays every Mario game that comes out, and considers them a huge influence on the Ratchet and Clank games. He's a board member and former chairman of the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences, believes strongly in the First Amendment rights of videogames, and is a huge proponent of the sharing of technology and ideas. Good guy, Ted Price. I would love to see Insomniac bring some games to Wii U. It just sounds like they're spread too thin at the moment. Perhaps that will change once Wii U gets some more momentum going.



Slapshot said:

@Tony_342 Yes, Ted Price is indeed a great guy. Personally, I'm a big fan of the team's Ratchet and Clank titles and it is certainly clear that Super Mario Bros. is a large inspiration for the series.

Yes, it does seem that the team is spread too thin at the moment. The transition from an exclusive third party developer to a multiplatform third party developer isn't as simple as some might think it to be. Tackling the new Wii U and all of its features would be a time consuming ordeal for the team.

Seeing what all Insomniac Games has done in the past on Sony's consoles, it is extremely exciting to imagine the possibilities of what the team could do on Nintendo's hardware in the future.



ramstrong said:

This is just one person's opinion, but I don't think Ted Price will develop for Wii U because, you guessed it, it's not next gen technology. There are 2 paths here: (1) Develop bleeding edge technology for the hardcore (2) Develop common technology for the masses.

PS4 and Xbox 720 are next gen. Wii U is current gen. There's nothing wrong with that. Either you develop something extraordinary for small market for premium, or you develop something nice for everybody at commodity prices.

Ted Price Insomniac is developing for the premium market. If I remember correctly, they'd be releasing one game every 3 years. That's ultra premium. There may be porting involved if the premium product is a runaway best-seller, but that's only a possibility, not certainty one way or the other.

Regarding the reporting, I have to agree that there is no U-Turn involved. As much as Ted Price loves Nintendo, that's simply not his business plan.



FritzFrapp said:

While we all love the Zeldas, Marios and Metroids, it's the new experiences that I'm most interested in with Nintendo and their second-parties. Remember when Pikmin launched? Or how fresh Wii Sports felt against a sea of first-person brown on non-NIntendo machines? Or the early experimental DS games?
That said, I don't see anything revealing in his comments. Over the last 20 years I've seen the same comments from non-Nintendo platform developers a thousand times – they all claim to love the Nintendo IPs, they all claim to respect Nintendo hugely, and they all never start coding games for Nintendo platforms, irrespective of the popularity of said platforms. The only time you'll see Insomniac on a Nintendo is if Iwata buys the company.



Slapshot said:

@ramstrong I think you are quite far off base, to be perfectly honest. Insomniac Games is a third party developer that has been exclusively developing first party quality titles for Sony for nearly two decades. Now that the company has recently decided to release its titles on multiple platforms, it chose the platforms (PS3 and Xbox 360) with the highest install base, in the hopes of a maximum profit return. The Wii U only has 3 million consoles on the market, the chances for Insomniac Games to make a profit on the console with a title like FUSE is questionable, seeing how Call of Duty: Black Ops II didn't fare too well on the console.



ramstrong said:

I think they've been developing for PS3 from the beginning, so it's not about install base. It's about technology. Then again, I could be wrong.



strongest_link said:

I don't see the Wii U getting a ton of big name third party titles until Nintendo establishes the console with first party heavy hitters. Let's wait until after we get Mario, Mario Kart, Zelda, Pikmin, Wonderful 101 and anything else Nintendo has up its sleeves for 2013, Wii U sales go up, and then cry fowl when multiplatform games skip the Wii U. As it stands, it's hard to blame them.



odd69 said:

Mr. Price, if you read this, Bring the Resistance series back, my favorite franchise is dead, and the wii u would bring life back into it.



Slapshot said:

@ramstrong I think you should read our interview with Price.

@odd69 Sony owns the Resistance IP, so it will never see the light of day on any console that isn't owned by Sony.



ramstrong said:

I read the one on Digitally Downloaded above. Where's the link to yours?

The article mentioned about being stretched too thin and wanting to reach as broad audience as possible, so on the surface it looks like I'm wrong. But knowing that they've developed Facebook game, it's obvious that even if they cannot handle 2 different major project, they can at least handle 1 major and 1 minor.

The 3DS is an obvious consideration. Nobody argued about its success. Warren Spector even dabbled on it by commissioning project on it. So, the question that I have is: do they develop for 3DS at all? It's a rather curious omission (on the article).

Also, FUSE works on 360, right? Does that also work on 720? The one with no sales number whatsoever? PS4 and 720 are unproven. Wii has good numbers, and Wii U is tepid. The same could happen to Sony and Microsoft. In fact, I think it's likely. Runaway best sellers tend to have disappointing sequel.

So, if they're not adapting FUSE to PS4/720 then I'm wrong. But if they do, then I can't see where you think I'm wrong. The DD article does not say. Does your article say? Please give me the link if it does. Thanks.



Slapshot said:

@ramstrong The link to Digitally Downloaded is "my" link - I'm the editor for the website.

FUSE is releasing on the Xbox 360 and PS3 on May 28th. That is the only two systems that the game is currently releasing on. Yes, Insomniac Games did release Outernauts on Facebook, but that is only one part of the company. Outernauts looks to be coming to mobile platforms in the future, as well too, so that is most likely what that sector of the company is currently working on, as it has said that the Outernauts IP is not going anywhere any time soon and that the team is heavily invested into it.

To the best of my knowledge, FUSE does not look to be in development for the PS4 or Xbox 720.



ramstrong said:

Then I'm wrong. Thank you for clearing that up. BTW, any reason why you don't put DD editor on your sig/blurb/whatever? Kinda confused me there for a while.

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