News Article

It Doesn't Look Like We'll Be Seing Sega Games On The Wii U Virtual Console Any Time Soon

Posted by Damien McFerran

Sega of Japan's Yosuke Okunari delivers the bad news

Sega has done a fantastic job of servicing 3DS retro-lovers so far with its selection of Game Gear titles and the critically-acclaimed 3D Sega Classics range. However, the company has been curiously reluctant to bring any of its vintage titles to the Wii U eShop — despite the fact that it supported the original Virtual Console on the Wii quite heavily.

It would appear that the task of updating its past catalogue for Nintendo's latest domestic console isn't on Sega's mind right now. Yosuke Okunari — a producer at Sega who has been involved with M2's recent 3DS updates, such as 3D Outrun, 3D After Burner II and 3D Space Harrier — was asked the all-important question on Twitter, and the reply wasn't positive:

It's an understandable response; while the Wii U's install base remains relatively low, the financial cost of porting Mega Drive / Genesis and Master System games to the system probably doesn't make it worthwhile just yet. However, as Okunari-san says, if you let Sega of America know of your burning desire to play the likes of Golden Axe, Streets of Rage and Sonic the Hedgehog on your beloved GamePad, then perhaps the company's outlook will alter.

Thanks, Ryan Miller!


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User Comments (87)



CaviarMeths said:

I've brought this up to NoA on my Club Nintendo surveys, but I guess I should be directing comments to SEGA West as well. Would love to play some Genesis games on the U.

EDIT: Holy lag, Batman. Deleted those pesky double, triple, and quadruple posts...



LexKitteh said:

Same here! The Sonic Advance series was great and I think may have been overlooked by many. I hope it still has a chance on the GBA Virtual Console. Maybe we should find a way to contact them?



0utburst said:

Sonic games are on Android and iOS anyway. But I'd love to play Bare Knuckle again. I might get on Wii mode then.



0utburst said:

I think he was talking about Sega Megadrive/MasterSystem VC. You guys could still get Sega GBA games.



C-Olimar said:

Shame; SEGA tend to employ logical pricing strategies with their VC games.
They don't seem to be very interested in VC atm. Their support on 3DS is sporadic - they spend a few weeks with 2/3 games per week and then are silent for about a year.




I just want them to release the 3D OutRun. PLEEEEEEAAAAAASE! I love the 3D Sonic and Streets of Rage.



Ootfan98 said:

This is very disappointing. I was hoping to see Sega's Arcade Games from 80s & 90s, and perhaps VC Saturn / Dreamcast make it to Wii U. Nintendo should support Sega with funding. There is so much potential



Grumblevolcano said:

I'm not disappointed about this as most of the best SEGA games that aren't on Dreamcast are on Wii VC.

@C-Olimar To be fair, Nintendo's approach to VC hasn't been much better (several weeks of nothing for 3DS and generally a maximum of 1 game for Wii U).



Einherjar said:

@Ootfan98 Saturn VC will never happen, never
The console is almost impossible to emulate and Sega lost almost all sourcecodes to the most interesting games anyways

Sega is probably muffled about the fact, that they didnt sign the deal for Bayonetta 2 in hindsight
But you guys heard the man. Instead of being disappointed, tell the world how much a good VC lineup would be appreciated.
Wishes most often go a farther distance then threats and whining



TheWPCTraveler said:

Just give me the Shenmue 1 + 2 HD Collection.

And, let us fans draw a connection between it and the Mother series.



Ootfan98 said:

@Einherjar I'm sure M2 will be able to do it given time, or at least re make the classics like Panzer Dragoon Saga, Burning Rangers. I am most interesting in AM2 / AM3 Arcades on Wii U and 3DS. I live in hope



baba_944 said:

Don't bother of contacting SEGA West. Because he’s being sarcastic with “Sega West” because they have no resources to do so.



Drac_Mazoku said:

oh well, That was the sign I was waiting for. I should go buy all the Sega games on Wii VC before they pull them down too...



Anguspuss said:

cost to porting serious I bet it takes hardly any effort. (just look at all the free emulators for various devices).



Lord said:

No great loss sega's direction in the past 10 years has been so poor that I'm waiting for them to go under. The game that players want are never gonna be released under thier current governing body. Shinning force, panzer dragoon, skies of Arcadia, etc



Link506 said:

At least we can always buy them through the Wii VC, and play them on our Wii U by going into Wii mode. There's always a back door.



Drac_Mazoku said:

@Lord just because they don't release what you want, don't expect them to go down anytime soon. Together with Sammy, they have more secret money that we can ever imagined. Remember THQ going bankrupt? They bought some big PC company (which I don't remember the name like that, a Google search is needed) for a crap tons of money, to the point where everyone wondered where this money came from. Then not too long ago, they buy Atlus from Index out of the blue. Really, even if they close some office here and there, I'm pretty sure that it's only to make more money, and just cut the part of Sega that are dying without any remorse or regret to their employees, so they don't indeed repeat the mistakes of the past. While they might not give what we want, they just don't care about us, since they're making enough money with the decision they're making, even if we as gamer find them bad.

EDIT: Sega bought Relic for $26.6 million. I think it was the highest amount of money spent on a company from all THQ auctions.



FragRed said:

@Einherjar how the hell did Sega manage to lose the source codes to their own games? Isn't it standard practise to have multiple backups?



Technosphile said:

So where is After Burner 2 for the west after nearly a year? Where is OutRun? People talked of these being foregone conclusions for eShop release worldwide, but not a peep has been said about either. And all the while, new Sega 3D Classics continue to be announced for Japan.

Basically, bite me, "Sega".



Drac_Mazoku said:

@FragRed It's not only Sega. Back in the day, it was a common pratice in Japanese company. You were making a game, shipping it, then the team disbanded, leaving everything behind. It was just a product that they thought would be released once, back then, they didnt have any interrest in preserving it for future generations.

Things have changed now, but for most of the old games on any console, it's hard to track down any of the original source code that were used. Fortunately for most console, it's not really hard to just play a rom on an emulator (be it a commercial one or some "others" one). But the Saturn, this is really something else. The system is just too crazy, even today when I play some of my Saturn games on the best emulator available, half of them still have glitch or are unplayable. So we would need to rebuild them from scratch, and without the source code, it's difficult to do.



Caryslan said:

@Drac_Mazoku In many ways, it mirrors what happened to many old films and TV shows. Back when those were made, technology like VHS or modern streaming services did not exist, so many studios did not see any reason to keep old movies around, since they thought nobody would pay money to watch them again, years after their initial run in theathers. Plus, film was expensive back them, so it was cheaper to recycle and use it for a new movie or TV show.

With Video Games its the same thing, many older games were made in an era before emulation was widespread even on computers. To them, the game would be played on the platform that it came out on, and then would be discarded as gamers moved on to more powerful hardware. Now, the game roms were not reused like film was, but companies likely failed understand the need to properly protect their master copies.

Also, many games like Sega's and Bubble Bobble's master rom for the Arcade version were lost in various earthquakes that have struck Japan over the years.



mike_intv said:

First of all, as I noted in a Tweet, in my opinion, Sega is being short-sighted and missing a opportunity here because Nintendo owners are the audience for this.

BUt related to this, what is Sega doing with its classic/neo-classic games? Besides making 3D games (mainly for Japan) and releasing an occasional retail compilation, is it doing anything?



sinalefa said:

Yeah, Sega. Skip this and just keep giving us Sonic

And where is the Crazy Australian Dude now when we need him?



retro_player_22 said:

Well if Sega had no plan then that's up to them, doesn't really mean they won't bring anything to the Wii U though. I'm guessing they are still focus on releasing retail titles for Wii U now instead of digital. At least we can still play those awesome Sega Genesis and SMS games in Wii Mode. I just wish Nintendo would had an update to turn the GamePad into a Wii Classic Controller so we can play those games with the Wii U GamePad instead of waiting for them to come to the Wii U VC.



Yorumi said:

@Anguspuss I don't believe there's a working emulator for wiiU mastersystem/genesis so that's where a lot of the cost comes in. Beyond that as much as we all love vc games look at it from their perspective. Even with a working emulator they still need to spend time getting each game working, it's a small cost but it's there. Then they've got to talk to nintendo and get it put in the shop, that takes some time(and remember time is money for a business), when the game sells nintendo is going to take a cut.

Considering how big games sell chances are most VC games arn't seeing even 100k downloads. Even with 100k downloads by the time you pay everyone and nintendo gets their cut I'd be surprised if the company makes $30k. That seems like a lot to you and me but not really for a multimillion dollar company.

I want more VC games too but the reality is each individual game, save a few huge ones like mario 3 for example, doesn't make a lot of business sense.



bofis said:

The Sega 3D Classics games are some of the best Virtual Console titles available to date and we are STILL waiting for OutRun and a few others to even make it to the US. It would have been nice to have Sega games on WiiU, but at least bring over the ones they made for Japan 3DS!!!



bbliksteen8 said:

With all the Sonic collections out there, the Wii VC and the Ultimate Collection (which I own) there is little incentive to move the SMS/MD games over. If the GBA games sell well I can only imagine that the sonic advance games will get ported at some point. They were good games



Mega719 said:

Oh wow I just said yesterday we need Genesis especially from Sonic on Wii U VC yet this happened. Hopefully Sega is still going to support the Wii U even after their deal. It feels weird seeing Sonic on other platforms he's more fitting on Nintendo's



Mario-Man-Child said:

That's it, no sleep tonight with worry

Nintendo are Coke, Sega are Pepsi. The original and the copy. Couldn't care less



Beau_Skunk said:

Well, on the plus side, maybe this means they'll finally port one of those future supersized "Sega Genesis Collection" games that only the PS3 & 360 got to the WiiU... But I doubt it, as I doubt they'll make another new one anytime soon... Shame 'cause I really wanted that one... I really hate how third-party companies always tend to skip the Nintendo console when making a multi-console game.
(The Wii was kinda understandable as it was a bit underpowered, but sense the WiiU is HD, and more powerful, yet still not as much as it's competition, it's unlikely that trend will change anytime soon. All most third-party companies care about is what console is the most powerful. EA, especially Bob Summerwill's comments on the WiiU certainly proved that recently. Not that I miss EA's mediocre games, mind you.)

Looks like the only way I'll be able to get any Sega classics is if I buy that cheap officially-licensed Sega Genesis vintage console, (or whatever it was) that has games pre-installed on it. (Which admittedly at 60 bucks is cheaper then paying 8 bucks per game.)



Hy8ogen said:

Well people, time to start a petition. If we get enough signatures Sega might consider!



Hy8ogen said:

Well people, time to start a petition. If we get enough signatures Sega might consider!



BulbasaurusRex said:

Eh, not a big deal. They're already available on the Wii Shop, just without minor additions like restore points and Miiverse.



darklinkinfinite said:

@CaviarMeths I bring up the virtual console all the time on my surveys as well. I just hate Nintendo's short-sightedness in their handling of the Virtual Console. The fact that each and every game had to be updated specifically to work on the Wii and now again to work on the Wii U is asinine. I tend to cut Nintendo a lot of slack but given that the Wii U was starved for content and attention for a good long while, having the Wii's entire VC console library incorporated into the Wii U shop would've been quite the boon. Instead, we had Nintendo trying to make a big deal out of Wii VC titles being released on the Wii U. Super Mario Bros 3 should've been there at the Wii U VC's launch and all the time wasted on re-releasing the Wii's games could've been focused on getting new games on the system. Now Nintendo's focusing on GBA and DS games and I feel the updating of the existing back catalog will be lowered even further in priority.

The reason I'm so upset about the VC games being easily updatable and in the current shop as opposed to their availability in some legacy mode is in what that means when Nintendo releases their next system. Will it still have a Wii mode to allow access to the Wii's amazing library of VC games? Or will Nintendo spend another 6 years updating and rereleasing its VC library yet again?



SparkOfSpirit said:

Master System, Genesis, Sega CD, 32X, Saturn, Dreamcast...

A lot of potential money there, Sega. Don't know what you're thinking.



ogo79 said:

well heres my chance to jack up my prices on sega games via ebay.



NodesforNoids said:

After all the hate between Sega and Nintendo during the 'console wars' it's ironic to see Sonic on a PS system and people not think it's out of place. I mean, the PS2's backward compatibility was what truly shot them ahead of the Dreamcast, sending Sega's console division to an early grave.
No, Sega didn't help matters and yes, they shot themselves in the foot more than once. But it was Sony that performed the coup de grace, not Microsoft and not Nintendo.



nopedotbmp said:

Just a tiny nitpick, but it's a bit of a pet peeve of mine.

Both the article and most of the users in this comment section are using the term port to refer to emulation.
Porting is the process of adapting the actual code of the software to run natively on a different platform, virtual console releases do not do this.
Emulation utilizes software that attempts to virtually replicate the original hardware so that games might run on a different platform.

The virtual console service distinctly uses emulation.
While emulation has a superficially similar end result to porting, these are actually entirely different processes, and should not be confused.



NodesforNoids said:

I hardly ever use the restore points, to be honest. Never had them before, don't usually emulate (unless it's a weirdly unavailable game like DKC 3). The WII mode suspends play when I exit the title, so it brings me back to the days of the day long pause. You finish at night, but couldn't save, so you pause the game and come back to it the next night. This way, I achieve my desired result and still save energy. Or I can jump to another game entirely. Save states / restore points seem cheap to me.



Dankykong said:

Not surprised. The VC became not worth it once they decided to release comp disks for PS3 & 360 but sell each game for $5 or more on the Wii individually. The Virtual Console only works for Nintendo games, nearly the entire rest you can get cheap on a comp disk elsewhere or before the WiiU, there was an remake HD alternative to start with for a lot of these games. Sonic's Gensis Collection for PS3 & 360. That covered all the Wii VC and more.



CanisWolfred said:

Like I said, no Genesis support yet, so of course they don't have plans. Ninty's gotta get their act together first. Heck, I'm surprised we have TG-16 support before N64 support.



JaxonH said:

I have this weird love/hate relationship with the Wii U Virtual Console. It's been pretty disappointing in many respects thus far, while at the same time exceeding expectations in others. I'm STILL waiting on DKC trilogy (preferably SNES, but even GBA would be better than nothing at this point), since the games aren't sold on Wii, 3DS or Wii U Virtual Console. Major disappointment. They've barely scratched the surface bringing SNES games, and many weeks bring one crap game or skip the week entirely.

At the same time,they're bringing classic GBA games I've wanted for ten years now, and we're right on the verge of seeing DS games in the west. So in that respect I'm very happy with the service. Idk, in the end I'm sure all the good classics will be released. It's just watching them come so slowly that sucks. I own over 250 VC games on my Wii, so it's not like I can't play them. I just like using the gamepad over the Wii Classic Controller and I like the virtual saves. That stuff matters to me.



FilmerNgameR said:

Awww that sucks! Yesterday I checked out the ye olde Wii shop on my Wii U and boy everything in its VC is a lot more better than the Wii U's. Which is pretty sad. I just want to play all the Sonic classics in 3D for 3DS and get Sonic Advance and Sonic Rush on the VC for Wii U. SEGA ought better know what they're doing or they'll keep losing opportunity like this same with Nintendo.



R_Champ said:

Am I the only one who doesn't care at all about Sonic and really just wants Phantasy Star and Shining Force on my gamepad? Yes? OK....T_T



WaxxyOne said:

Cost? What cost? At the very least Nintendo could port the library from the Wii VC over, and I'm sure they would love to take any costs on themselves given that it can only help drive Wii U sales.



joey302 said:

Jeez that's just terrible! I'm such a huge fan of the SEGA catalog going Back to the master system/early arcades. If I was running SEGA right now I'd be on wii u no doubt and I'd make sure we see stuff like:
Outrun, after burner, power drift, all sonic games, jet set radio, nights into dreams, streets of rage 1-3,golden axe1-3, zaxxon, Congo bongo, fantasy zone 1&2, quartet, alien syndrome, columns, phantasy star 1-4, space harrier,crazy taxi 1-3, house of the dead 1-4, virtua fighter 1-5, virtua cop 1&2, virtua tennis, shining force series, vector man 1&2, space channel 5, 18 wheeler, daytona USA, SEGA rally, confidential mission, Ecco the dolphin, toe jam n earl games, all shinobi games, gunstar heroes, green dog, dynamite headdy, sports talk baseball, decapattack, bio hazard battle, Alex Kidd series, thunder blade, world championship soccer, wonder boy series, shenmue series, SEGA bass & marine fishing, clockwork knight 1&2, super hang on, turbo, bug, flicky, Ristar, comix zone, and probably a ton of others I just can't think of right now!! What a shame and yes this list here was off the top if my head!!! Lol



DarkEdi said:

Another reason for continue to download Master System, Genesis and Arcade games in the Wii VC.



FilmerNgameR said:

@joey302 Wow! Those games sound interesting I want to try them out on my Wii U but no because SEGA doesn't want to. I can always look for such titles on other platforms but I want to throw my money at Nintendo! :/



BulbasaurusRex said:

@unrandomsam Alright, I'll give you that, especially where the Sonic games are concerned. (Are they also 50 Hz in the European version of Sonic Mega Collection?) Although, it's still not a big deal to us Americans (as well as you Canadians).



joey302 said:

@FilmerNgameR Most of those games I listed here are some of the greatest video games ever created my friend! SEGA was pure gold! Not sure where their heads are now... I think they're losing a lot of money not being on wii u imo! But I blame Nintendo as much as I blame SEGA of Japan & SEGA of America!!



NodesforNoids said:

Dauntless.. When a game like Retro City Rampage, not a VC game, sells less than a thousand copies on a system with over 150 million units sold, how much faith should 3rd parties really put into a system that has sold less than 6% of that? Considering that Nintendo has to make the Wii U's emulation hack proof, Gamepad compatible and would get a sliver of 3rd party titles, why devote resources for Sega if they end up getting nothing in return?
HUNDREDS of PS1 games on the PS Store sell dozens of games per year. How is such a dividend worth the effort?
Nintendo's slow trickle is a direct result of spending on new games, which would be counterproductive to hire a bunch of new people to work on VC. Could it be better? Of course.
But with all the delays Nintendo's had in the last 5 years, money could also be better spent elsewhere.



NodesforNoids said:

Let's be honest, 3rd parties are still 10-15 million sales away from really caring the Wii U exists. Konami and Capcom are two more companies that have tested those waters. Prognosis, doctors? This patient is still on mandatory life support. And despite a strong recommendation by Kotaku and games coming, it's still not a system that is likely to ever flourish. Iwata's last console and Miyamoto's retirement party will both be the Wii U.
I had hope for Zelda, Xenoblade and Smash to change that future. They won't.
Nintendo will be handheld gaming only, maybe featuring a multiplayer verson of a Vita TV concept and using the handhelds as controllers, by summer 2017. And that's being generous by about 6-10 months. Mid 2016, Nintendo will announce the new device. Wii U projects will screech to a halt. Zelda could sell 10 million games but, like Mario Kart, won't be the salvation Nintendo's seeking.



speedyboris said:

Disappointing. So what remains to be released after Nintendo inevitably goes through the NES and SNES titles they already released on Wii?
-Genesis: Nope.
-SMS: Nope.
-C64: Highly doubtful, considering they delisted the games from the Wii Shop.
-VC arcade: Also highly doubtful, since they barely took advantage of that platform when it was on.
-Neo Geo: Possibly, but AFAIK Nintendo's made no public announcement that games for that system are coming. I'm not holding my breath.
-Turbo Grafx 16: See Neo Geo.

So what remains? N64 (if it ever gets going) and some more GBA titles are about it. I really don't see Nintendo releasing GC games on the Wii U, despite Reggie saying he'd like to see them.



FilmerNgameR said:

@joey302 What sucks even more is that I'm more interested in SEGA's games than Nintendo's. If only they were still in the console market we would be seeing more new games from them but their main IP is Sonic for now. :/



unrandomsam said:

@speedyboris Japan has already got PC Engine on both 3DS and Wii U so the work is already done. All of them were already rated so there is very little reason not to (And Konami is releasing stuff).

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