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Wed 1st Apr 2009

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Ninomojo commented on Curve Officially Announces Explodemon!:


Here are two reasons why World of Goo is not a good case study, in my opinion:

1) It's one of the most successful WiiWare games. So you can't really generalize its data, it's not representative of the average game. Granted, it's so successful because it's actually, for once, a very good game, not question about that, I think you will agree.

2) 60 % of their sales might come from the Wii, but it's a known fact that they suffer a 90% piracy rate ( It's obvious that most of these pirated copies run on the PC. So there are a lot more people playing World of Goo on the PC than there are on the Wii, but the sales are on the Wii.

I can assure you that most multiplatform independent or developer-funded games aren't developed in a parallel manner, because that would be even harder and more expensive (but with good technology, a port quick and easy).

About sales in general, this has been reported to me by several developers. WiiWare sales are poor, period. There are many logical reasons to that, the main one being that Nintendo hasn't made any effort in promoting the service (even the PSN outsells WiiWare by a mile). Nintendo even apologized behind the curtain to developers, and said they were going to promote WiiWare decently in 2009, as long as with DSiWare.

However, your main point remains a valid and I agree. The Wii is seen by too many people as the dump for shovelware, because they have a culture of fear of taking risks (but can we blame them when they're small developers that can put the key under the door if ONE project fails?).

It seems rather obvious that among all the shovelware, a good WiiWare title WILL sell (and DOES sell), but it's just a lot more financially safe and interesting at this point for most developers to go PSN or XBLA (but it's harder to access development and release titles, so most of the "good" developers don't really do WiiWare yet. Didn't say all of them, I just said "most").

I personally believe a lot in WiiWare, it's a wonderfully accessible platform (which is also probably the reason why all the shovelware gets here so easily), Nintendo has made things relatively cheap and easy for developers, and I have no doubt that when they finally market the service to a wide audience, numbers will go way up. I also hope, that "real" games will make their way to this platform.



Ninomojo commented on Curve Officially Announces Explodemon!:


It's not that developers don't get something that you do get. From good sources:

  • Wii Ware sales are horrible compared to XBLA or Steam for example
  • Only a small percentage of Wii owners actually use the shop channel (for now, until Nintendo decides to finally market the service)
  • When you develop a game for several platforms, Wii has to come last because it's a lot easier to downgrade from HD textures and shaders than to upgrade to those from a Wii version.