News Article

Talking Point: The Wii U's Third-Party Concerns Are Brushed Off By 3DS

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Support for the handheld is modest, yet doom-and-gloom is minimal

The 3DS is hot right now, with positive vibes bouncing around the web as its major releases have enjoyed an impressive record of critical and commercial success. Simply mentioning games like Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon, Fire Emblem: Awakening and Animal Crossing: New Leaf justifiably leads to a broadly universal reaction; that the 3DS is on a roll. In addition, sales figures and charts in Western territories have often shown the strong line-up paying off at retail, and upcoming titles such as Pokémon X & Y and The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds are both expected to be commercial blockbusters later this year.

Yet there's a common thread in those titles — they're all first-party. There have been third-party releases so far this year, including examples such as LEGO City Undercover: The Chase Begins and Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate, Project X Zone is filling current schedules, while later in the year we'll have games such as Scribblenauts Unmasked: A DC Comics Adventure, Sonic Lost World, Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate and eShop-only retail download Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Dual Destinies. These aren't all of the games coming, of course, with Atlus in particular delivering content and a number of hoped-for localisations are also a possibility, but almost all of those titles above have a version or franchise equivalent coming to Wii U. Yet the narrative seems so different between the 3DS and Wii U. The handheld is being widely praised for a fairly limited but top-notch release schedule, while Wii U is a system under pressure, with an emphasis on its challenges maintaining third-party parity with its rivals, and whether the first-party lineup will cut it.

Naturally there are plenty of differences not only between the systems and their prospective audiences, but also their current positions in the games market. That goes without saying, but is nevertheless worth outlining. From the handheld's perspective, it's benefited with sales growth from late 2011, when an attractive price point and heavy hitting Mario titles helped to drive it beyond a poor start, with a steady stream of quality content then seeing it progress and gain momentum. This year, despite the modest third-party contributions that we've already outlined, we've seen something resembling a perfect storm for the platform. Major releases have been critically acclaimed, marketing appears to have been clever and effective, and a notable buzz has developed about the system and these headline experiences. Combine that 2013 hype with a solid back-catalogue and an affordable price, and it's proving to be a popular device on the high street.

The Wii U is in some respects, though not all, in the same position as the 3DS before its Holiday 2011 revival. It's started poorly — which is beyond reasonable doubt — and is now preparing a comeback based on a raft of big-name and familiar first-party brands; at this stage Nintendo is stating that a price cut isn't on the agenda, but we won't definitively know its intentions until the Holiday season has come and gone. Some are sensibly holding off before deciding whether the system is in long-term trouble, while others are making "Wii U is doomed" noises similar to the "3DS is doomed" commentary from mid-2011; the only thing that's certain is that it's all uncertain. With that said, Nintendo has staged plenty of comebacks in its time, while over two decades of near-constant profits mean that financial disaster is a distant prospect.

Naturally there are clear differences between the markets in which the 3DS and Wii U are operating. The home console, for its part, is competing with the still-popular PS3 and Xbox 360, while by the end of the year we'll be able to add the PS4 and Xbox One to the equation; if you want to push it further, the raft of Android TV console units also chip away, arguably in a small way, at the home console market. The 3DS was naturally competing against the DS, PSP, Vita and a host of smartphone / tablet devices, yet has seemingly carved a niche for itself primarily as a dedicated gaming portable; other features are included in the hardware, but it truly seems to be almost exclusively about the games. The Wii U is fighting over the living room space, in contrast, and seems unclear in purpose — is it going to be seen mainly as a gaming console alone, or will it legitimately be treated as a broader multimedia entertainment device?

These differences, and the missed multi-platform games gracing Sony and Microsoft systems, have made third-parties a tough issue for the home console, while the 3DS merrily moves along with modest support and positive press coverage. There are good multi-platform games coming to Wii U, but question marks exist over whether that support will continue into 2014 and whether, more tellingly, owners of the system will actually buy these titles. If a perfectly good version of Watch_Dogs arrives but sells a pitiful number of copies, companies like Ubisoft will be further scared away. Nintendo will have the unenviable position not only of shifting millions of units to boost the userbase — a feat it'll surely still be confident of achieving — but persuading partners to continue investment in the off-chance that those gamers will buy more than Mario Kart 8 and Super Smash Bros. as 2014 progresses. With studios on "wait-and-see" holding patterns, it all resembles the most precarious of balancing acts for the big N.

The 3DS is, perhaps unsurprisingly, becoming a Nintendo showcase handheld with occasional extras and localised Japanese titles to flesh out its library, and that seems to be just fine. There's a school of thought that the Wii U will become the same thing, a Nintendo-exclusive machine that dabbles with the occasional third-party commercial success. For some consumers that'd be more than enough, and in other households it may be an "other" system, sitting next to a beefier box that delivers the latest blockbusters from publishers such as EA, Activision and Ubisoft. Perhaps that will happen, and perhaps — like Wii — that'll deliver commercial success for Nintendo and allow it to continue delivering its own unique content to happy consumers. Speculation, yes, but not the least likely scenario to be pitched.

The third-party conundrum was one that, last year, some Nintendo fans may have hoped would be solved by the Wii U. Then releases passed it by, question marks about raw processing power were raised, and we went through E3 2013 with a majority of new announcements skipping the platform. It certainly feels like deja-vu.

It's possible that the Wii U will ultimately set off on the same path as the 3DS and, before that, Wii, standing out from the crowd and enjoying a mixture of mostly first-party successes either developer or published by the company. For Nintendo gamers two things are already clear; we won't be playing all of the biggest PS3 / PS4 / Xbox 360 / Xbox One multi-platform releases on Wii U, and it's tough to predict whether the console will fly, flop or something in between. Based on recent memory, a flop doesn't seem likely to us, even if Nintendo has to ultimately build the platform in in its own inimitable style, somewhat apart from rivals.

There's not much heavyweight third-party support coming to 3DS, yet few seem to care; perhaps the Wii U will have to work towards the same end result.

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User Comments (102)

Emblem

#2

Emblem said:

@MrWalkieTalkie lol

Great games sell systems thats why. 3DS was untested at launch and the price was too high, now it's affordable with a great recognized library. The Wii U is quite expensive for its target demographic and has a very small library. Once the 1st party titles roll out and PS4 and Xbone are released as well as the inevitable price cut then the doom and gloom will decrease but not before.

I own both but the lack of great games on the WII U means i play my 3DS and PC more. With great games planned every month starting with Pikmin then W101 i suspect we will see more praise and sales for the Wii U in coming months.

shinobi88

#4

shinobi88 said:

The 3DS hasn't lived up to its full potential. Which is kinda amazing considering it's far and away the top selling system in the world. If you'll recall, when 3DS was 1st shown at E3, there were a TON of hardcore 3rd party games announced, including Saints Row, Assassin's Creed, and Contra.

BUT, when the 3DS got off to a slow start, and possibly due to the fact that the people who were buying near launch skewed way towards the younger crowd, all those hardcore games got canceled. And you know how many hardcore games have been announced since that first 3DS reveal? A whopping ZERO. Resident Evil Revelations was already in development before the reveal and Capcom's other hardcore game, E.X. Troopers, never made it West.

If 3DS had more appeal to the hardcore crowd, like a Call of Duty or an Assassin's Creed fer instance, its sale numbers would be record breaking. Hopefully, a solid 3rd party dev realizes there's a GIANT hole in the hardcore 1st-person shooter & 3rd-person action genres on 3DS and jumps at the opportunity to bring us a big IP. Heck, I'd just be happy if Nintendo realized this and gave us Metroid Prime Hunters 3D

Brian1010

#6

Brian1010 said:

Indeed. I've noted the same thing recently...the 3DS is proof that a platform can do well on the strength of first party titles alone, after it was left for dead (remember all the talk about dedicated portable gaming going the way of the Dodo). Third party offerings have been meager, especially compared to the support the DS received.

AceSpadeS

#8

AceSpadeS said:

@MrWalkieTalkie

Owning both a Vita and a 3DS myself, and playing both considerably, I really don't get all the hate people are heaping on it. Yes, its library isn't as large as that of the 3DS, and yes the upcoming titles are slim at best, but it packs in a lot of amazing game experiences that the 3DS doesn't have as well. Many of the Vita's problems are the same as the problems the 3DS has/had. In my opinion it seems most publishers have abandoned the idea of handheld gaming in favor of phones and tablets almost wholesale, and that's the reason why the massive boom that the DS and PSP had in terms of support hasn't appeared. The gaming landscape has changed, and the dedicated handhled market just doesn't put out the money anymore.

Edit:

@shinobi88

Fire Emblem, Shin Megami Tensei IV, and Project X Zone aren't hardcore enough games for you? Unless by hardcore you exclusively mean AAA shooters and action games, which never were going to work well on the DS family to begin with.

Yorumi

#9

Yorumi said:

Perhaps the handful of nearly bankrupt 3rd parties arn't as important as everyone suggest? Perhaps their games arn't as great as everyone suggests?

The one thing though I think this article kind of misses though is the indie scene. I know I've been promoting this like crazy, I just like to see real creativity and fun gameplay rewarded instead of just flashy graphics. Nintendo is really getting them on board and a lot of them have projects in development. I really think come about this time next year you'll be seeing a lot of those games appearing on the eshop. Remember it's about every week we see a new kickstarter for some wiiU or potential wiiU game.

It's possible we're witnessing a paradigm shift in the gaming industry but only time will tell.

zeldazero

#10

zeldazero said:

We need to accept the one undeniable fact that is hurting Nintendo period!! It is the fact that developers are at a point where the cost of game development is so high that they want one of the big 3 to fail. Three main consoles is too much and 1 company has to call it quits and they are trying to push Nintendo to be that one by not supporting it. Too bad for them Nintendo isn't going to fold, they have way more top notch IP's than all other consoles combined. They have a better chance of getting Microsoft to abandon ship. If Nintendo would start to release some of the 3DS big games on the Wii U things would start looking up.

rjejr

#13

rjejr said:

You left out the upcoming Dream Team. That game looks awesome. I don't care if it's not a "true" Mario game, if that game doesn't sell something is truly wrong w/ gamers. Looks different than anything upcoming on the WiiU

And you also left out Kid Icarus Uprising. Don't know how many systems that game might have sold on it's own but my kids loved it and keep playing it. More action and voice acting than anything I'm looking forward to on the WiiU (w/ a release date - X and Bayonetta 2 are a step above.)

And yes, I think the difference in competition between the 3DS - Vita and phones/tablets, vs. the WiiU - Wii, PS3, Xbox360, PS4 and XB1 - is a major concern for the WiiU that seems to get overlooked.

I'm hoping for the best for WiiU - 1 month to Pikmin 3 - but I don't see it taking off like the 3DS until it gets what the 3DS got - the 1 - 2 punch of a 25% price cut and good games. I know the good games are coming, but will they be in time?

rjejr

#14

rjejr said:

@AceSpadeS - "Many of the Vita's problems are the same as the problems the 3DS has/had."

One of the Vita's biggest problems was Sony self-inflicted= really expensive proprietary cards. If it used SD like the 3DS, and dropped in price to $179 like the 3DS, sales would be much better regardless of games. The price may be fair for the superior hardware, but fair doesn't get them sold.

Rafie

#15

Rafie said:

@AceSpadeS Agreed! I own both the 3DS and Vita as well and honestly the 3DS dominates. While the Vita is more powerful, there's no games for it. It's still a good handheld. Once games start coming in, then it will sell more. I love my Vita as much as my 3DS.

@rjer True words about the price of the Vita. It needs to drop to compete with the 3DS and bring some great game to the handheld.

LUIGITORNADO

#16

LUIGITORNADO said:

@The_Joker
You don't know that. Why would Nintendo say it is going to have a price cut? That would undermine any sales at the higher price point, so of course they are going to deny, deny and deny.

Andrew_Cook

#17

Andrew_Cook said:

@Yorumi Great point, nobody mentions the fact that these third-party publishers are falling apart, making games that are increasingly over-budgeted, focus-tested crap, and hurting the industry with their Gilded Age mindset and anti-consumer practices.

Caryslan

#18

Caryslan said:

@Brian1010 Third=party support has not really been that bad on the 3DS. It might be less then what the DS and GBA had, but its not like Nintendo alone is keeping the 3DS afloat. Square Enix, Konami, Capcom, Sega, and several other companies have put out major titles like Monster Hunter, Resident Evil, and Castlevania on the 3DS.

The reason why third-party support is is meager right now is because third-parties moved away from the 3DS when it looked like it might fail. Now that the 3DS has proven a success, companies are coming to develop games in droves for the system.

At the very least, the third-party support is still better on the 3DS then on Nintendo's recent home consoles.

MasterGraveheart

#19

MasterGraveheart said:

I think a part of it is that a lot of third parties today don't really /want/ to make handheld games, and even then, more then that can't really make an uber-high quality handheld game. The biggest and best at it are the companies who have a tie to the golden age of gaming, i.e. Nintendo, Sega, Capcom, Konami, etc. Oh, sure, there's unheard of exceptions like the awesomeness that is WayForward or the like, but companies like Bethesda, Insomniac, Activision, EA, they've either ever only made or ever only cared about the console experience, none of which translates well to a mobile handheld game. However, companies like those seem to get more mainstream attention and since they don't make a serious effort into the handheld domain, concerns for third party support there are substantially minimal in comparison to the home console market.

sinalefa

#20

sinalefa said:

Watch Dogs will not be a good game to measure Wii U's success. Since Ubisoft will put it on any console under the sun, then the sales will be shared by all of the systems.

Hopefully the holiday games will help it in the long run.

Chris720

#22

Chris720 said:

The Wii U will eventually start moving. It's just had a very dodgy start, just as the 3DS had a dodgy start.

Ren

#23

Ren said:

Its True WiiU could succeed with only some top notch 1st party games but it hasn't happened. They just missed the mark on what the step up to HD means. Clearly no one at Nintendo gets what it means to step up their designs to utilize the power of a great console, character models need to be updated, but they aren't and it all looks old and bland and there is nothing that shows how cool that gamepad can be.
The 3DS had some awesome 3D and touchscreen showcases from the start and more important it shows lately that 3d isn't the priority but fantastic games are. The DS market was so huge already and at the right price point was an easy sell, now that the library is big (AND DS games play right out of it).
The console competition is massive and hi tech. For that much money and hooked to an HD tv consumers just expect more bang for the buck and Nintendo has yet to deliver even with the things they have coming, it just looks bland. With a home HD console there HAS to be a wider range of games besides old kids games and slower ports, the Wiisports bowling craze is over. 3DS and WiiU, not the same situation, but they could be if WiiU makes a big price cut, that would fix it fast.

russellohh

#24

russellohh said:

@shinobi88 I really don't consider shooters "Hardcore" gaming. Call of Duty in particular, and RE6 especially, has so much "FOLLOW THE ARROW IF YOU WANT TO LIVE" and "RAPIDLY PRESS A TO FIGHT BACK", that they've become nothing but interactive, casual movies. I barely blink when playing Fire Emblem, Contra, XCOM, or the original Doom, but most modern shooters are waaaaaay too casual. I'd be rather sad if the 3DS got loaded down with 100 Call of WarFighter SoldierMan 5000 or whatever the kids are calling it these days. Honestly, in two play throughs of the last few call of duty's, on normal and hard, I think I died once.

Gunnerholic

#25

Gunnerholic said:

Again, what does a Handheld gaming system have to do with a home console system?? Apples and oranges imo.

Yomerodes

#26

Yomerodes said:

The different perception is thanks to the relativity of both systems (home and portable). No one notices the 3DS shortcomings in support and game library because the direct competitor, the Vita, is receiving even less support.
Instead, on home consoles, with games like MGS, Kingdom Hearts, Final Fantasy, Destiny, Call of Duty, Battlefield and others coming for the other consoles but not for Nintendo, the shortcomings on the Wii U are more "visible".

Doma

#28

Doma said:

I think those people who like to fully equate the WiiU's situation to the 3ds are insane, somewhat.

One thing they also fail to understand is - that without 3rd party support the WiiU is basically Nintendo's second 3ds, with less (or even the same) games and no portability. What's the point in own owning both when you'll (more or less) get the same experience by owning one or the other, huh? People's choice would be to buy the cheaper one actually capable of being used anywhere, and reject the WiiU.... I feel Nintendo should just port existing WiiU games to the 3ds and cut their losses really. It's VERY rare to see any console defining games from them (with the way they are presently) anyway.

As a gamer, you'd be much better served buying a Ps4 as your home system. Not only for third-party support, but the fact it's a company not infatuated with making remakes, mini-games and casual focused BS. Just my thoughts, don't hate me.

DualWielding

#29

DualWielding said:

@zeldazero

The problem is not 3 consoles, the problem is 2 consoles that are basically the same architecture one and one that's totally different, Microsoft and Sony are no problem to developers because porting to each other and from either to the pc is easy and relatively inexpensive...... Nintendo is just paying for doing its own things without having sufficient market share to justify developers making games for it that can not be easily ported to anything else....

GamerJunkie

#30

GamerJunkie said:

3DS..... who cares!!!!

Its a new generation of consoles, Nintendo should be worried about the Wii-U more, not a handheld for 12 year olds(and even they use smartphones more nowadays).

DualWielding

#31

DualWielding said:

One thing that the article fails to mention, is that 3DS has great third party support in Japan with many hit titles there that have not been localized... That's not the case of the Wii U, Wii U doesn't have third party support at all Japan, West or anywhere

Gunnerholic

#32

Gunnerholic said:

@Yorumi And what of the PS Vita is that indicative of Sony's fortunes or shall we dissect the performances of each product on the market it is placed? We all know Nintendo is the market leader in handhelds and the goodwill from developers is much better. Nintendo have been cast adrift from third parties in the home console division for years.

DualWielding

#33

DualWielding said:

@MasterGraveheart

Western developers (and many western gamers) have never cared much about handhelds, Japanese developers are the ones that care about handheld gaming, and those are indeed supporting the 3DS

Yorumi

#34

Yorumi said:

@Gunnerholic well considering the vita was hailed as the death of nintendo's handhelds because it was so much more powerful, nintendo had no chance with the weaker 3ds. It was going to be totally crushed by the vita, it got all the gaming press, and the same prophets of doom were declaring the 3ds dead. Hmm that worked out. And to be honest we can draw parallels to the ps3, it's power was so amazing it was going to crush the competition and that sure had a great start didn't it. It picked up in the end sure just saying there a parallels.

The 3ds was declared dead just like the wiiU by the same doom prophets saying the exact same things they said about the 3ds. And as pointed out in this article the 3ds doesn't exactly have a lot of 3rd party support either. It's kind of a double standard, the doom prophets get to say the same things about both systems but when you point out the 3ds is doing well all the sudden they become completely different. It's like we're going to proclaim doom on nintendo no matter what and when we're proven wrong, well it'll be different this time.

Brian1010

#35

Brian1010 said:

@Doma
Coming to a Nintendo article to pimp the PS4 is questionable, especially since it doesn't sound like you appreciate Nintendo games in the first place (dismissing them as mere remakes and casual bs), but the Wii U and 3DS offer distinct experiences that make owning both worthwhile. Nintendo has far more IPs that have been around for far longer than anything Sony has in their stable, so naturally there will be a lot more iterations of those franchises around (especially since there've been two hardware pieces to supply for a couple decades now). Of course, they're not the only ones to milk their franchises, either.

GearsOfWarU

#36

GearsOfWarU said:

I love Nintendo Games for the most part and I like good 3rd Party Games and hope to enjoy both for the next 5 years on my Wii U . How that will happen is Nintendo Fans need to buy both Nintendo & Good 3rd Party Games... I plan on getting plenty 1st & 2nd Party Games for Wii U this Holiday Pikmin 3 , Wonderful 101, Wii Party U, Donkey Kong Tropical Freeze and Super Mario 3D World .... But I also plan to Support 3rd Parties that show support to Wii U with Good Games I wish they continue to make... like Rayman Legends, Sonic Lost World, Batman Arkham Origins, Assassins Creed 4 Black Flag & COD Ghosts ... Thats 10 Games 5 from Nintendo & 5 from 3rd Parties I plan to Purchase by the end of 2013!!!! if all Nintendo fans do something similar the Wii U will Sky Rocket and so will 3rd Party Support except EA & Konami who can Suck It : ) I want Castlevania for Wii U errrr ... O by the way Rafie ... Just remember Sony Sucks :P !!!!!!!!!! Let's Go Nintendo & Wii U

Gunnerholic

#37

Gunnerholic said:

@Yorumi I see what your saying but I still don't think its truly a fair comparison as they are both different products, the 3DS is not an extension of the Wii U. Not everyone who likes console gaming likes handheld gaming and vice versa. I myself am not a fan of handheld gaming as it doesn't offer the same experiences that I crave.

Macarony64

#38

Macarony64 said:

Ps3 was doomed for 3 years whit no games but Nintendo can't have a break for 1 year with out big games?

Yorumi

#39

Yorumi said:

@Gunnerholic yes but the point is not so much that it was achieve the same absolute sales, it's the overall trends and doom and gloom. I don't expect the wiiU to take the exact same path it's just pointing out that you know there's this other system out there that everyone was preaching doom and gloom about.

Caryslan

#41

Caryslan said:

@GamerJunkie They should care, since their handhelds have been a major part of their business and even carried the company during the sixth generation with the GBA.

And the 3DS has games that are for more then 12-year olds. And I would never say a system that has sold 25 million so far is some something that people don't care about.

While both sides should be taken care of, the 3DS is a major system and is not something where people ask "who cares."

For a little handheld that was supposed to slaughtered by tablets & smartphones, it is doing really well.

Gunnerholic

#42

Gunnerholic said:

@Yorumi fair enough, I can appreciate that the media is getting carried away with the whole Wii U is dying a death story. Although we have to be realistic, I'd be very surprised if the Wii U became the market leader...unlike the 3DS did in its market.

shinobi88

#43

shinobi88 said:

@Macarony64, it's pretty self-explanatory. I didn't say "3DS doesn't have enough games that Macarony64 wants". I said it doesn't have ANY hardcore games in development. See the difference? I'm talking the typical American, testocerone-filled teenage/college-age guy kinda hardcore, like where you shoot stuff, blow stuff, or assassinate people in the 3rd dimension. It doesn't even have a SINGLE 1st person shooter, fer cryin out loud. Even the DS had over 10 of those. You think the N64 would be so fondly remembered by all ages without Perfect Dark and Goldeneye? I'm not talking nerd hardcore, like turn-based RPGs and Pokemon collecting. There's plenty of that.

The 3DS has an xcellent collection of games in the genres it does represent. But it doesn't represent every genre. It could achieve even higher sales (which you probably don't even see as necessary since they're #1 in the world, but money is money), if it diversified its library. The end

Caryslan

#44

Caryslan said:

@GearsOfWarU Honestly, why does everyone pick on Konami? I know they are not supporting the Wii U, but it not like they gave Nintendo fans the middle finger and told them to go shove off. The 3DS is getting good support from Konami, and both Castlevania and Metal Gear appeared on there.

Also, Mercury Stream has been very open as to why Lords of Shadow 2 is not coming to the Wii U. Simply put, their team is not large enough to handle a Wii U port alongside the PS3, Xbox 360, and PC versions. And that was also counting Mirror of Fate.

I just don't understand why people are picking on Konami so much. It is their right to hold off on the Wii U until they see sales pick up. They aren't insulting Nitnendo fans, and they have supported the 3DS.

EA I can understand the hate, but I wish people would stop picking on Konami.

Yorumi

#45

Yorumi said:

@Gunnerholic well that kind of depends on a lot of factors. However, even if it isn't the best selling console this generation I doubt it's going to be a commercial failure. The question of it being the best selling console though, well it is positioned in a similar place power wise to where ever other best selling console was. It's still got all nintendo's first party games, and they're picking up the indie scene a lot. There's also the question of just how important are these 3rd parties when most of them have gone or are going bankrupt.

Doma

#46

Doma said:

@Brian1010 Fine, pay no attention to my Ps4 comment. But could you tell me more about these “distinct experiences” only available on the WiiU atm? For any game you list there's probably a 3ds equivalent to be found somewhere.

@GearsOfWarU Come on.. be honest. You won't be buying all those games (heck, not many would be able to afford it for starters) but mostly every Nintendo one. Such is the way of a Nintendo fan.

Windy

#47

Windy said:

How about bringing out games like Dragon Quest X to north America? They might sell a few more Wii-U's if they did. It's like they ignore titles like this for North America

Wowfunhappy

#48

Wowfunhappy said:

This past generation, the only console I owned was a Wii. However, I used my desktop PC to play non-Nintendo multiplatform titles, such as Portal 2 and Mirror's Edge.

This all changed now that I"m in college. My desktop would take up too much space in my small dorm room. My only computer is a Macbook Air which isn't very good for gaming. I own a Wii U, but with 3rd party support the way it is, it would seem I would need to buy another console...

...except...

Out of all the games shown off at this year's E3, there are 13 that I'm excited for. They are:

Bayonetta II
Assassins' Creed IV
Super Smash Brothers
Watch_Dogs
Mario Kart 8
Batman: Arkham Origins
Wind Waker HD
Rayman Legends
Mirror's Edge 2
Donkey Kong: Tropical Freeze
The Wonderful 101
Final Fantasy XV
Mario 3D World

Out of those 13 games, only two are not coming to Wii U: Final Fantasy XV and Mirror's Edge 2. That's it.

While Final Fantasy XV looks good, I can definitely live without it if it means not having to buy a $400 console.

Mirror's Edge 2 I CAN'T live without. I loved the first game and have been waiting for a sequel for forever. However, there's going to be a PC version, and even though I can't bring my PC to college, I'll be able to use it when I come home from school breaks. So I'll just play it then. I'll have more than enough other Wii U games to play during the school year. I can't imagine playing that game on a console anyway. It needs a mouse, it's too fast paced for a joystick.

So as of right now, I'm not really worried. If Ubisoft and Warner Brothers abandon the Wii U, that could become an issue, but as of right now it's looking just fine.

kkslider5552000

#49

kkslider5552000 said:

I think this article undervalues the 3rd party 3DS games being released (though so do most people, so fair enough). A lot of the more interesting japanese games in recent memory are coming to 3DS and Nintendo has said they are actively trying to publish games like Bravely Default and the like, not to mention the somewhat underrated eShop. One of the reasons the 3DS is so dominating in Japan in particular is because of 3rd parties. Between AA, MH, SMT, and lots of others, it is basically unstoppable there. Nintendo will honestly earn (re-earn I suppose) my undying loyalty if they can bring that success to America.

StraTTtheRipper

#50

StraTTtheRipper said:

@shinobi88

I do agree with you on a certain level about hard core 3rd party games for the 3DS...the first party are all pretty much great games, but it does lack hard core 3rd party games....but, they did release a Call Of Duty game for the PS Vita, which turned out to be a disaster for the gamers and activision, so maybe that's another reason why nothing else has been done in that genre for the 3DS.

Gunnerholic

#51

Gunnerholic said:

@Yorumi I guess we'll just have to wait and see what happens next, I do agree that the Wii U won't be a commercial flop and in no way a Sega.

JaxonH

#52

JaxonH said:

@Rafie
Couldn't agree more! I own a 3DS and Vita with almost every decent game ever released on either system. 3DS play time dominates, however, the Vita has potential, but needs more games and here's the key, more TOP NOTCH games to compete. Rayman Origins on the Vita is a breathtaking experience, as is Sonic Transformed... if multiplats can look and play so good as to best their console counterparts, imagine how great some AAA exclusives would be! And no, CoD, Resistance, even AC3 and Uncharted just weren't up to par. Well, Uncharted was actually pretty decent. But yeah, I'm STILL waiting to buy a 32gb memory card for Vita. I refuse to pay $100, that's just ludicrous! Sony's shooting themselves in the foot. I have money on my PSN account, $10 of which Sony sent me for free as a promotion, and I still haven't spent a dime of it. Why? My 8gb card is full, and I'm not into the delete/install juggling act because I have more PSN games than my card can hold. Until they lower price of mem cards, I'm not spending any more money on PSN, which means they're losing money on a monthly basis.

R_Champ

#53

R_Champ said:

@Doma
"As a gamer, you'd be much better served buying a Ps4 as your home system. Not only for third-party support, but the fact it's a company not infatuated with making remakes, mini-games and casual focused BS. Just my thoughts, don't hate me."

Persona 4 Golden, Muramasa Rebirth, Tales of Remakes, Kingdom Hearts 1.5 HD, Zone of the Enders HD Collection, Final Fantasy X/X-2, MGS HD Collection, MGS Lecacy Collection, Dragon Ball Z Budokai HD Collection, ICO/SoC HD Collection, Devil May Cry HD Collection, God of War HD Collection, Ratchet and Clank Collection, Silent Hill HD Collection, Prince of Persia HD Collection, Jak and Daxter Collection, InFamous Collection, every Disgaea released multiple times...soooooo it's "cool" and being a "gamer" when third parties re-release, port, and remake in rushed, crappy fashion (along with EVERY FPS they can muster up/re-hash) on Sony systems, but when a first party like Nintendo wants to release WW HD to try and save sales then all of a sudden it's a horrible thing...some people's infatuation with Sony baffles me...heck look at E3, they had the crappiest exclusive showing and yet everyone is saying they "won", if they won, then I definitely don't fit into this "gamer" category.

Pachterkid

#54

Pachterkid said:

I love all things Mario, and every version of Mario Kart has always ended up being one of my favourite games on that respective system, but I lately have I just become completely fed-up with the total lack of third-party support for Nintendo home consoles. I have been a Nintendo-only gamer my entire life, but I am honestly thinking of saying “the hell with this” and picking up a PS3

Super Mario 3D World and DKC: Tropical Freeze are going to be great games, but I also love racing games and third person action/adventure games, and I’m sick of there being next to no options in these genres available to me on the Wii U. I’ve played and enjoyed Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor’s Edge and Need for Speed: Most Wanted (enjoyed minus the f’ing freezes), but those are literally the only choices available to me for the system with nothing else on the horizon (real racing games, not Sonic All-Stars). And yes I know Bayonetta 2 is coming, but that was announced in 2012 and I am getting sick of waiting. Plus, Nintendo will probably make us play that with the Gamepad controller, which I do not want to do. That controller is not suited to that type of game. There is a $299 PS3 bundle with Gran Turismo 5 that I have my eye on. That would open myself up to gaming experiences that I will never be able to have on the Wii U: God of War III, DmC: Devil May Cry, the original Bayonetta that doesn’t control with a stupid tablet, and so on. The Gamepad is not a selling point. Nintendo has no idea what to do with it besides to make it a map and allow you to access things that are easier done by pressing ‘pause’ on another system.

Mario Kart 8 and Super Mario 3D World are going to be amazing, but I want to have different gaming experiences as well, and Nintendo just doesn’t offer them to me. I’ve been a gamer for 22 years and I’m rooting for Nintendo, but you’re all kidding yourselves if you don’t think that Nintendo is in trouble.

GearsOfWarU

#56

GearsOfWarU said:

@Doma ... I actually plan on buying most of those games .... save my money since nothing really coming out in June, July & August ( getting Pikmin as a B-Day gift ) and if im not spending $600 Buying a PS4 or Xbox One ( everyone will spend that much if they buy 1 to 2 games + console ) I will be able to buy 8 Wii U games this Fall

timp29

#57

timp29 said:

Lets not forget, part of the 3DS turnaround was a price cut and loyalty program. I'm sure Nintendo is aware of this, but they probably don't want to establish the opinion that their consoles will always have price 1 year into launch.

Doma

#58

Doma said:

@R_Champ You know what, though? Generally, i think it's more acceptable when remakes are provided as a collection rather than standalone full-priced entries, like Nintendo does always (it reeks of desperation). Otherwise, i'd want some notable new content in those re-releases.

Nobody could call me infatuated with Sony because i'm no fan to any company, that's foolish. I go to whichever system offers the best line-up and wide variety. Here i'm simply saying Nintendo doesn't offer that with their consoles anymore and there's barely any reason to own a WiiU if you own a 3ds already (which i do), let alone other consoles.

GearsOfWarU

#59

GearsOfWarU said:

@Caryslan ... I dont own a 3DS ... i havent had a portable game player since my Gameboy & Atari Lynx 20years ago : ) .... So it startles me How Konami completely disregards the Wii U .... when I grew Up on the NES & SNES days Konami were one of Nintendo's biggest supporters and I loved there games... Castlevania, Contra & Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles where must haves for all Nintendo Fans.... now I get a New Nintendo system and Konami has 0 support... even EA released Need For Speed U this year.... Konami could release Castlevania Lords of Shadow 2 & I would buy it... even if not for a new release how about Super Castlevania 4 or Contra 3 The Alien Wars for the Virtual Console .... if they cant do that then Konami Sucks!!!!!!!

TromboneGamer

#60

TromboneGamer said:

I think your idea of little 3rd party support for 3ds is odd. In the first place the original DS had plenty of great first party titles and many obscure titles as well as was a driving force for the JRPG genre. I believe the 3DS is floating the same boat. Plenty of third party support from many of the same who supported the DS. The Wii really didn't have a support structure like that, not that it wasn't successful anyway. The problem with Wii U in my eye is that it has very few games coming in the next 3- maybe 4 months and the install base may not be large enough for software to reach sales numbers 3rd parties such as Ubisoft that are currently supporting it at the moment are hoping for. The kinds of games that a home console supports are different; however slight, than the experiences on handhelds. I just don't think it'll be so easy for Wii U to gain traction given it's circumstances. I don't own one yet though so it's hard for me to imagine just exactly what it would mean to support the system. (Honestly I think my thoughts are all over the place so hopefully I got my point across)

jacksayspurple

#61

jacksayspurple said:

Genuinely starting to believe that the media is trying to create this impression that Wii U is a massive failure in order to force Nintendo to start publishing games on other systems. I mean, most of these people grew up with Nintendo games, but now as adults, to be a Nintendo fan, is seen by a lot of people as something of a joke. So pushing Nintendo to release their games on Xbox and Playstation seems to be the best of both worlds. Definite conspiracy theory right here.

DerpSandwich

#62

DerpSandwich said:

I'm going to offer an opposing perspective here. Does anyone remember how the Gamecube did badly despite sitting on an enormous pile of top-notch exclusive games? Is it possible that the "games sell systems" argument only can be applied to smaller, cheaper, more accessible handheld systems?

Just a thought.

rxchrisg

#63

rxchrisg said:

@shinobi88 Name a more hardcore game than Fire Emblem. It's an SRPG,heavily anime influenced,and has a steep difficulty AND WHEN YOUR UNITS DIE THEY ARE LOST FOREVER. How is that LESS hardcore than beer n' pretzels Bro of Duty or Assasin's Creed?

Again,Fire Emblem is the most hardcore you could reasonably expect a major release to be. The games you mentioned are for casual gaming high school kids.

jacksayspurple

#65

jacksayspurple said:

@rxchrisg I would suggest that the 'majority' of adults don't actually play video games, and the majority of the video games market is made up of kids 13-19 though. Just sayin'.

SetupDisk

#66

SetupDisk said:

Maybe I missed it in all the post but the price drop was not the main turn around for the 3DS, it's when all the games came out that turned the tide.

JavierYHL

#67

JavierYHL said:

will have vita and 3ds to tide me over before the wii u games come...using my vita more now but that could change with project x zone and upcoming SMT4...

Brotagonist

#68

Brotagonist said:

I haven't really had much of an issue with the supposed lack of third party titles for the 3DS. KH DDD, RE Revelations, SMT IV, Project X Zone, Bravely Default... The first party titles definitely outweigh them, but that's been happening with Nintendo's systems for awhile now.

shinobi88

#70

shinobi88 said:

I have to clarify something:

Hardcore does not equal "a hard game". A hard game is called "a hard game". Hardcore = a game that pushes your adrenaline to the max by putting you in constant kill or be killed situations with no time to think. A game where you take off your shirt, tie on a headband, and blast aliens into lil pieces with a spread machine gun.

RPGs with turn-based battles, no matter how difficult, are not hardcore. You ever been in a fight? (That ain't the same as being picked on, which I'm sure most of you people have experience with). In a fight, the other kid, alien, or terrorist doesn't wait for you to take your turn attacking. There is no adrenaline rush from hitting a button and watchin someone else attack a stationary target. That's a mental exercise.

But hardcore experiences don't exist on 3DS. There's some REALLY good experiences in all the softcore genres. But hardcore games, even hardcore sports like football and basketball, don't exist on 3DS. We have golf. That's not gonna draw the attention of the hardcore gamers on PS3 & Xbox 360 who spent $500 million on Call of Duty Black Ops 2 in ONE DAY. Most of those same users grew up with Nintendo and a Game Boy and they got nothing against owning a Nintendo handheld, but it's not worth the investment if there's no hardcore experiences for em. So when one of the dudes in the comments above said somethin like "the 3DS only has games for 12 year olds", that was an exaggerated way of expressin the point I'm making. Only nerds and little kids get appeased with Pokemon. We hardcore gamers come to kick and chew bubblegum. And we're all out of bubblegum so we need some games that let us kick.

unrandomsam

#71

unrandomsam said:

@Andrew_Cook The big publishers are doing well. (Capcom / EA / Ubisoft anyway). Using a maximum annoyance strategy for DLC. (Last year Capcom / Ubisoft increased revenue by at least 50% one is closer to 75% but I forget which).

They just want everything for no cost or risk (Like a spoilt child who won't share his toys.)

Oscarsome

#74

Oscarsome said:

It'll be kind of sad to see the Wii U and 3DS survive on mostly first party support. I was really hoping the Wii U would get a lot of third party and indie support. It doesn't seem that way, yet. Yet is the key word! I hope it is....

XFsWorld

#77

XFsWorld said:

@AceSpadeS I'm not interested in none of those games

@Shinobi I agree with you. If Assassin's Creed, Call of Duty, and Saints Row released on 3DS I believe 3DS would have atleast 45million sales by now.

The only bad boy games 3DS really have is Resident Evil: Revelations and Monster Hunter 3: Ultimate. [Thank U Capcom!]

k8sMum

#78

k8sMum said:

@shinobi88
you need to rein in the testosterone, lad. you talk about taking off your shirt and tying on a head band to play a freakin' video game? yet you call others names like 'nerd'? lol.

you are too insulting of others and too inclined to put down what others enjoy just because you need the rush of fake adrenaline. you ask if anyone has ever been in a fight. that has nothing to do with you playing on your console in the safety of your home. because that is all you are doing when you play CoD, Battlefield, Halo or any other in that genre. it's pretend. yeah, that is real hardcore.

living vicariously thru a video game doesn't make you anything other than a gamer. if it makes you feel better to call yourself 'hardcore', then go for it. just don't tell others what to call themselves.

i suggest you get yourself some more bubblegum, play what you want, and don't disparage others for doing the same.

shinobi88

#79

shinobi88 said:

@k8sMum, I am hardcore in real life. I fight. I play hardcore sports like football. I like my games to match my style.

k8sMum

#80

k8sMum said:

i suggest you stop calling people names with the intent to insult. thanks.

bizcuthammer

#81

bizcuthammer said:

I'm tired of saying it but first of all: very few people who buy nintendo consoles care about 3rd party games in general, outside of a few "special" IPs like Sonic, Mega Man, and stuff that resemble Nintendo IPs. And thats fine I guess. It just means 3rd parties will always view Nintendo systems as financially risky when it comes to releasing games. But really, its not all consumers' faults that Nintendo is almost a joke in core gaming circles, its their own fault. They make hardware that they personally want to make great games with, but no other developers care about at all. Nintendo makes games differently than any other company in the world, and when they design their hardware, they refuse to take into account the preferences of third party developers. I'm not saying they have to abandon what makes them unique, but they need to make their systems' quirkiness optional instead of integral, like the PS3 does with Move: its there if gamers/devs want to use it, but its not the core selling point of the console. Also nintendo needs to quit making consoles that are so much weaker than its competition. That does nothing to help its image as a kiddie company, and makes third parties even less likely to care about the system. I mean, we can hope all we want that when WiiU sells more units, third parties will crawl back to it, but i doubt that happens on a significant level simply because WiiU is too quirky and weak compared to the other consoles. After all, Wii sold 100 million units... And third party devs didnt care about it anyway. Where were the good EA, Ubisoft, Bethesda and Square games on Wii? There werent any, because of the reasons i mentioned above.

If nintendo is going to save the WiiU, its going to have to do it all on its own for yet another generation. I only hope that this time they learn their lessons and make a system next gen that gamers really want rather than one they feel obligated to buy just so they can play the new Zelda or Smash Bros.

BossBattles

#82

BossBattles said:

I always knew the 3DS would catch on.

The Wii U, not so sure. They need to aggressively seem like they give a crap, which it seems like they don't yet. Price cut, new colors, announced games, a good marketing campaign that is actually interesting, as well as allowing 3DS games to be played on the gamepad/tv...which would instantly make tons of people happy.

oh well. be lazy i guess.

turtle69

#83

turtle69 said:

Nintendo is for sure my favorite game company. . . Probably always will be. Nintendo is just about always the odd system out - atleast at first. Competitors always seem to follow suit or "copy" there innovations. I love all of there first party titles like everyone always says. I think they should change nothing with the greatness they already achieve and expand even further. . . Why not make an amazing

turtle69

#84

turtle69 said:

First person shooter with a nintendo twist to it? If anyone could make an awesome that wouldn't to boring in my opinion compared to other popular third party franchises. . . That would be nintendo ky friends. They would make it the most innovative one yet. Yeah everyone else has em. . . But hey it would sell and nintendo could take

turtle69

#85

turtle69 said:

The opportunity and revolutionize the genre. . . Cutting down on other systems first person shooters. . . Selling out? I dontnthink so just being creative and competitive in current cultural way. . . Besides it wouldnt have negative effect on there other arsenal of creative ideas. . .

shinobi88

#86

shinobi88 said:

I don't bash anyone for their gaming preferences. It's cool if you're a Pokemon or Power Rangers nerd. I don't exclusively like hardcore games. I play games that I'd consider softcore. But I do like my hardcore experiences. A perfect world, not the 3DS world biased towards non-hardcore games, would see a near equal representation in all gaming categories. I'm not even ask for equal representation, but at least a COUPLE hardcore games. It makes no sense that there are no hardcore 3DS games honestly. But very little in the gaming world makes sense. Like why Capcom never makes new Mega Man games

JaxonH

#88

JaxonH said:

3rd party support is nice, but not needed. Never was. Even if Nintendo had full 3rd party support, it still wouldn't drive that many more sales, because folks who buy a system for THOSE games will almost always buy a Sony or MS console, because they're more powerful.

ecco6t9

#89

ecco6t9 said:

North American AAA games would not sell on the 3DS, most of the Microsoft/Sony does not overlap with the 3DS.

There would be some sales from kids wanting a handheld Call of Duty like on the DS but not much.

shinobi88

#90

shinobi88 said:

Does anyone know why they made FIVE Call of Duty games for DS? Take a big guess. I'll give ya a second...You ready? Because they SOLD. One of em even sold over a million copies. So when I say a hardcore 3DS shooter or action game would be good for the system and the developer, I'm stating facts. If you think it wouldn't, you're just using your imagination. And Neverland is a great place for that, I'll tell ya how to get there

EvisceratorX

#91

EvisceratorX said:

While I do agree with some of the points this article makes, I think comparing Nintendo's consoles is sort of a case of apples and oranges. 3DS has mostly first party games only because there aren't really any major projects by third party companies on portables. The industry as a whole is mostly focused on the home consoles and PC with the portables acting as a sort of complimentary addition. The Wii U does not have the same excuses as the 3DS. There are titles being developed in its own market that are skipping it, which is much more worrisome.

AtomicToaster

#92

AtomicToaster said:

Why does getting all the third party content really matter for Nintendo? Their job is to make affotrdable consoles that serve up Nintendo exclusives that's it what's the big damn deal lol! All the drama surrounding Nintendo is neither here nor there.

AtomicToaster

#93

AtomicToaster said:

I know thats your point its mine too. As long as they create a consistent release schedule the console will do fine. They seem to be fairly prolificse days and don't need toely othird parties. We were going to get to a point where it couldn't handle the many multiplats anywauy.

Moshugan

#95

Moshugan said:

I'm kinda expecting a Gamecube-like generation for Nintendo with the Wii U.
It'll be a great console with excellent Nintendo titles to be remembered and cherished, with the occasional odd Third Party exclusive that will have it's fans, and some nice but ultimately inferior ports from the ''bigger'' platforms.
It will sell modestly by global standards, but will bring Nintendo solid profit and will be held fondly by fans forever.

World

#96

World said:

I'm selfishly happy with the 3DS. As a rule, I just buy whatever system gets all the quirky oddballs and right now that's the cute little system that makes my eyes hurt when it goes 3D. But part of me knows that catering to me isn't a way to build a solid business strategy. I'm still waiting for that 3DS Princess Debut sequel.
So maybe variety is good too.

ThomasBW84Admin

#97

ThomasBW84 said:

@EvisceratorX Yeah, I'm aware of that, I emphasised the difference throughout. I guess my takeaway point is that the Wii U may end up following a similar path to 3DS, which was also the case (arguably) with Wii.

Sceptic

#98

Sceptic said:

How can you deduct anything from a low-cost 'anybody' toy like the 3ds for the high-overhead, years in the making living-room tech appliance like the WiiU?

It's about what it costs to make it and what it costs to make games for it. People are fine with a few run and jumps on their handheld. But if that's all their Console offers, they'll be looking around for a more versatile way to utilize that shelf space.

element187

#99

element187 said:

I'm already in the mode that I really do not care whether 3rd party support is there... I'm enjoying Wii U and my PC. I don't feel the need to purchase anymore consoles.... I can get my third party fix on my PC if necessary and still play the very best games ever made by holding onto a Wii U.

If third parties release a game on Wii U, I would consider it over the PC if its doing something unique.. So as long as Ubisoft does something interesting with the hardware on Wii U's version of Watch_Dogs, I'll most likely just pick up that version.... if not, I can fall back on the PC version.

ivanmata

#100

ivanmata said:

I agree, I don't think the wii U will get third party support, just look at the major developers, they're already making games for the next consoles and the wii U has been out for about 7 months now.

GreatPlayer

#101

GreatPlayer said:

Uhh... I only care about Rayman Legends and Sonic the Lost World. The Big N keeps saying the game content is important but so far I do not see any of the Big N games with great content on Wii U.

eviLaTtenDant

#102

eviLaTtenDant said:

The Wii U is games only for me. At least atm since there's no TVii and no streaming of films and shows here yet.

And i've got to admit, i see non-exclusive games having a hard time appealing to me. If the Wii U version is in some way worse than the others even if it's just the graphics it has to bring something substantial to the table i can't get on the other consoles.

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