News Article

Nintendo of America Highlights Strengths of eShop Platforms, and Plans to Embrace New Ideas

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Over 1000 developers have expressed interest in the Wii U

With much talk at the moment surrounding Nintendo's third-party prospects and its positioning to embrace new ideas and changes in the video game market, key figures within the company are taking every opportunity to highlight the positives of its approach. With that in mind, Nintendo of America's manager of business development Dan Adelman and senior marketing manager for licensing Damon Baker spoke to Gamespot at PAX Prime, to address questions about Nintendo's download content strategies.

As we've written about a great deal recently, Nintendo's eShop policies deserve praise and are in many ways much in line with other major platforms. The emphasis is clearly on communicating the message that these platforms are open, supportive environments, with vital tools such as Unity available for free.

Of course, the gaming landscape is constantly changing, with free-to-play and various models and ideas coming into play. Nintendo itself is working on free-to-play products, but is open to sitting down with developers to explore new ideas as they emerge, as Dan Adelman explained.

Oh, definitely open to ideas. And we've already got a long list of things we'd like to support and we're developing out the back-end to put those hooks in and make it more flexible. Nothing specific to announce right now. But there's a dedicated team in Japan right now that's working on building out the functionality, so as we hear about new ideas, new things that people want to do, we want to be able to respond very quickly to those opportunities.

It's not just about keeping up with new digital ideas, however, but also highlighting to developers what makes the eShop platforms different from others. As Adelman explained Miiverse is a big part of that difference on the Wii U, and no doubt will be when it eventually arrives on the 3DS, while easy access and the GamePad interface options are unique to Nintendo's home console.

Well really, first of all, [a] really low barrier to entry. Because of our deal with Unity, if they're making a game in Unity: easy. Also, the Wii U really has the best of both worlds in terms of traditional console and tablet gaming, so if you're making a game that requires a touch interface, we can do that. If you really would benefit from having dual thumbsticks, you can do that as well. There's also new avenues of gameplay even if you're really just taking a game and releasing it or releasing it on multiple platforms. Because of having two screens for example on the Wii U, there's a lot of ways you can just make the game better that you wouldn't be able to do on other system.

We were having dinner with Pwnee Studios, who did Cloudberry Kingdom the other day; one point that they mentioned that they didn't expect was how powerful the Miiverse community is. They found that by being able to engage their fans directly on the console, and enabling them to draw pictures and share screenshots, and just share their love of the game that has been really powerful in generating enthusiasm for the game. Gaijin Games has also done a really great job; they've done some drawing contests, they've done this build-a-story weird thing where they'll start one sentence and then everyone chimes in and adds; and then they read it on YouTube later and the story goes on for literally like an hour and I don't know who's watching that thing for an hour, but they're narrating it and the stories are just so incredibly [weird].

Finally, Adelman explained that a dedicated URL setup for prospective Wii U developers,, has attracted a huge amount of interest.

The URL is It's been overwhelming. We've gotten probably over 1,000, I don't know if we've hit 2,000, developers with really wide-ranging levels of experience. We've got some who have recently left their jobs in mainstream publishers and are starting a new company, or have been indies for a while. All the way to high school students who are thinking of getting into game development and want to know more about it. So one of the challenges is going through and it's ultimately a resource allocation issue at that point. We want to support everybody, so how do we do that in the most effective manner and how do we prioritize in just making sure that--our intent is to support everyone, really. The underlying philosophy is that if you can make a game on our systems, we want to find a way for you to be able to do that.

With Nintendo of Europe just recently joining its NoA compatriots in openly advertising and promoting these policies, here's hoping that more and more download developers are enticed to the system; the eShop could play a key role alongside key releases on the Wii U, specifically. Let us know what you think of these statements in the comments below.


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User Comments (36)



Blast said:

GOOOO NINTENDO!!!!!!!!!!!! Get some great Indie support!!! Then you find out which Indies make must buy games... then you turn them into first party developers...then you help them make exclusive games!!!



ScorpionMG said:

nearly 2000 D: At least some people want to create games for wii u, unlike Cough EA (Or Ubisoft for 2014 games) Cough



MrWalkieTalkie said:

So where the Wii U may fail in major 3rd party games, they'll make up for it with a ton of indie support.



Windy said:

I have an Idea. How about this. Get Square to Localize Dragon Quest X. I couldn't get to Gamestop Fast enough to buy a Wii-U if this happened. It is great to see they are open to Ideas in the near future. Personally I'm still waiting for my Niche on Wii-U



Windy said:

@MadAdam81 for myself Front mission wouldn't be a reason to buy a Wii-U I'm still waiting for my Niche to buy which is pretty much Japanese RPG's and it doesn't look good in the future on Wii-U. I might buy for Xenoblade when it's released.



Retroking1981 said:

eShop is and will forever be broke until they:

a) Implement an account system ala XBLA, PSN

b) Introduce cross buy over 3DS/Wii U or AT LEAST offer some sort of discount between the two like upgrading a Wii purchase to Wii U



Blast said:

@Retroking1981 Yeah, Nintendo has said before that they are working on both of those things... That oughta come in the huge Fall update...



Rafie said:

I hope they also implement an import tool to allow for in game DLC to happen on other titles that may have relevance to the game. Like Zen pinball 2 and Star Wars Pinball (oh 3 new tables are dropping this fall. Return Of The Jedi, Darth Vader table, and Star Wars: Starfront Assault).



Macarony64 said:

I'm actually more excited about what Indies are doing on all platforms than what third party's are doing.



LztheQuack said:

Cross play on 3DS probably won't happen. The two systems don't use the same software from what I understand.

The only likely scenario is cross-play on VC...



Spoony_Tech said:

The problem is this is all good for current Wii U owners but it doesn't attracknew people to buy the system. Never heard of anyone saying I want that system for that indie game. Its a nice thing to have but needs big games to attrack people!



WinterWarm said:


Give Ubisoft a break man, let's wait until after the holidays to comment on next year announcements.

Anyway, this is great, I was totally taken aback by the number of developers.



jayclayx said:

@ScorpionMG so, currently zombi u, rayman and splinter cell are what? watch dogs, assassins creed 4 and child of light? man no offense but you just talk nonsenses. Ubisoft are supporting the wii U even more than Nintendo itself LOL



ScorpionMG said:

@jayclayx Bro, i didnt say about this year's games, Yes they are great games, i agree, but in 2014 there will be hardly any support if those games dont sell good on wii u, and you know they wont because zombiu only managed 500k+ and it was exclusive. Child Of light looks brilliant, i wish they brought the other one on wii u too, but it's all good.
Now What about The division? The Crew? We also want games like that. But nope, we're probably gonna get just dance 2015 for next year. Ubisoft is Great, everyone knows they made a mistake for not releasing rayman ages ago, but the game is magnificent, so is splinter cell, definite versions on wii U. I just wish they would continue the support, but they are probably just gonna make their games on xbox one and ps4 until wii u sales boost (hopefully).



ScorpionMG said:

@WinterWarm Indeed I shall wait, I'm not giving up my hopes yet and i'm sorry if my comment was kinda rude. But all this bullpoopoodoodiedoggiepoop about the wii u doom and gloom has gotten on my nerves, i dont even get why gamestop and other rated rayman on wii u the lowest, which clearly is the definite version from all. And yet, they say the vita will be the best? They must be joking.



sleepinglion said:

Pssst, Nintendo, in regards to your eShop Virtual Console service, feel free to embrace ANY N64 or Gamecube releases. That'd be swell. Thanks.



unrandomsam said:

Still doesn't solve the problem that the best indie games either use XNA or use their own engine. MonoGame would be more useful than Unity. (Not found a single example of something using Unity that I find acceptable quality).



unrandomsam said:

@ScorpionMG Sucks I guess if you like Ubisoft's (Or EA's) games. Fortunately for me I don't. What I don't like is the precedent set by Ubisoft with ZombiU. People will think if they wait then they will get it for next to nothing in a few months time which will likely kill the ability of anything I do care about to make any money. (Coincidently people will think the same thing for newer Ubisoft games as well so it is bad for them also).



Senario said:

@jayclayx twitch* Sorry, I'm tired of gamers speaking like mini analysts and saying "AAA" games this, or "system seller" that. From personal experience these terms mean different things to different people. For the 3DS Fire Emblem Awakening was both of these words for me as I am a big fire emblem fan and have been since the first localized game (and melee). However, while it is a good game I don't think it could be considered a system seller when you look at it compared to things like Animal Crossing and Pokemon. Both of which really don't fit the system seller thing for me but I will be picking Pokemon up eventually if only to try and get back into it.



MadAdam81 said:

@Windy VC Is full of them, from Chrono Trigger to Earthbound and many in between. Of course, Dragon Quest is something I have yet to try and I do want to give it a go, and if they translated this & KOEI translated Romance of the 3 Kingdoms (even though the new one on Wii U is meant to be inferior to the ast ones), I would buy both of them.



Araknie said:

There's over 1000 interested developers, maybe near 2000.

I want to link this to everybody that says that there's no third party support on the Wii U.

In fact, if you look at eShop games only, there's almost 100 coming from now till the end of 2014.
Holy cow!



BlackStar9000 said:

@ScorpionMG I have the vita version, it's wonderful, but you can immediately tell that Murphys levels were made for the precision of the wii gamepad screen. My hands kept blocking my view and it was hard to keep up. I'm still getting the wii u version mostly for my kids. Whoever thinks the vita version is superior is freaking lame.



BlackStar9000 said:

@ScorpionMG I have the vita version, it's wonderful, but you can immediately tell that Murphys levels were made for the precision of the wii gamepad screen. My hands kept blocking my view and it was hard to keep up. I'm still getting the wii u version mostly for my kids. Whoever thinks the vita version is superior is freaking lame.

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