News: Current Wii U Titles Running On Outdated Developer Kits, Still “Trial And Error Phase”

Wii-U-YoshiAdding on from Nintendo’s Investors meeting earlier last week, Iwata has spoken on many topics, another was about the development cycle and dev kits that the Wii U is currently running. Nintendo have confirmed that all games currently available are running a pretty old dev kit and that they are still learning the prospects of this kind of high-end hardware.

“Nintendo’s in-house development teams are only now coming to terms with what it takes to create software in high-definition, and we can expect future release to be more visually advanced that what has already come”, president Satoru Iwata has told investors.

“I may add that each game console has its own unique qualities, and developers must go through a trial and error phase to acquire the knack of taking full advantage of them,” said Iwata. “This time does not come until a final version of the hardware and development tools for the version have been made available and then a base for software development has been established”.

“For Wii U, such a time finally came in the latter half of last year. In this sense, we could not avoid the trial and error stage to create games which take full advantage of the hardware. I think that this is true for third-party software developers as well as Nintendo’s. The home consoles of other companies are six or seven years old and software developers have sufficiently studied them and know how to take full advantage of them well. As Wii U is new to them, some developers have already acquired the knack and made good use of its features and others have not”.

You might see this gap among the games that are currently available. However, we are not much concerned about this problem because time will eventually solve it. Actually, we believe that our in-house development teams have almost reached the next stage.”

Iwata added that “It is not true that we are deadlocked with a lot of trouble in our development. Otherwise, we could not aim for 100 billion yen or more in operating profit for the next fiscal year”.

Shigeru Miyamoto added: “We already went through this initial learning phase and are now tackling how to take full advantage of high-definition graphics. In this sense, retraining our developers used to be a great hurdle”.

Miyamoto also revealed that Nintendo’s inexperience with high-definition development is one of the reasons the platform holder has chosen to partner with external studios more versed in the art.

“The other point is that many of our third-party software developers have been dedicated to technologies like shaders. As Wii U is designed to bring out their real strengths, there have recently been more cases where we develop something with their help,” said Miyamoto. “It has been more convenient for us to work together with them because they have been able to more smoothly utilize their know-how for development for Wii U”.

Not exactly a surprising statement but it’s always nice having a confirmation on such topics. Time is always a key concept during game development, Uncharted and Gears of War are prime examples.

Do you think Nintendo’s investors should be worried? What’s your take on Nintendo’s position this gen? Let us know in the comments section below.

About Chris

Hi! I'm Chris. It's not the name I would have given myself at birth, but it'll do... Playing games is my favourite pastime, whether it be on a console, a handheld, a phone or some simple snakes and ladders, I just love playing games!