Nintendo denied “Bob’s Game” because it was not “compelling”

Sunday, 5th April 2009 20:35 GMT By Stephany Nunneley


NoA’s Reggie Fils-Aime told MTV this week that despite assumptions to the contrary, Nintendo encourages indie-developers to submit ideas to it’s licensing organization.

What caused Nintendo to look like a snob, you ask?

Two months ago, Robert Pelloni submitted a 2D RPG game that he’d been developing over the past five years to Nintendo, seeking license to publish it on DS.

“Bob’s Game” as it’s known, was denied a DS development kit by the gaming giant, which has caused Pelloni to go on a verbal rampage on blogs, saying Nintendo was hard to work with.

Nintendo just didn’t think his game was all that hot. No offense, Bob.

“He did submit to be a licensed developer. We have an evaluation process. We evaluated the opportunity. We decided at this point in time that he did not meet the requirements to be a licensed developer,” said Reggie.

Reggie does not want Pelloni’s story to discourage anyone though.

“My hope is that any developer who has a compelling idea will reach out to our licensing organization and share their idea and go through the process of becoming a licensed developer for the Nintendo platform,” he said.

“We have a legacy of supporting that type of development.”



  1. absolutezero

    ‘sup Imagine Babiez. Horsez. Kitchenz.

    #1 6 years ago
  2. Syrok


    #2 6 years ago
  3. lelik

    if nintendo turned a dev down i can only imagine how bad this game is.

    #3 6 years ago
  4. Hero of Canton

    His subsequent reaction all but proved Nintendo made the right choice. And Nintendo isn’t responsible for any shite established publishers churn out. It can’t just tell Ubisoft to stop making DS and Wii games, can it?

    #4 6 years ago
  5. Shatner

    No it can’t. But it can deny them licensing rights to have them sold as legitimate Wii and DS titles and therefore prevent them from reaching the market.

    Every console manufacturer sees detailed documentation on every game for their systems at the start of the development cycle in order for the publisher to obtain their product code. Normally this is at design doc stage and, typically, a console manufacturer will expect to see USPs in the game that show of their platform’s unique abilities. The product code is integral to the game running on the system. Things like DLC and save data are identified by product-code in the software. If you don’t get a product code, there’s little point going forward with your project as it will simply not run as a commercial product in a commercial unit. Nintendo in particular take this very seriously as Codemaster’s 8-bit NES history will attest.

    As such, it’s absolutely within Nintendo’s power to prevent Ubisoft from churning out their ‘z’ games should they wish to. Nintendo’s definition of ‘compelling’ may differ from yours. Or mine.

    #5 6 years ago
  6. Hero of Canton

    Even so, I wouldn’t have thought it’s in any format holder’s best interests to turn down content from major publishers. Particularly as Nintendo has historically struggled for third-party support.

    People forget just how much shovelware the PSone had. The nature of the HD consoles makes knocking out any old tat on the cheap much more difficult than on Wii, which is why it has a lot of rubbish.

    #6 6 years ago
  7. Shatner

    Yes, *every* market leader tends to get a lot of content and a LOT of shit.

    But not all of them are harping on about their ‘compelling’ standards in the face of piles of shit software on their current machines (“Dream Day Wedding Destinations” is coming out any day now for DS and, thank heavens, Calvin Tucker’s Redneck Jamboree has just recieved it’s European release. Who wants Mother 3 anyway?!!)

    And, whilst we’re at it, “We have a legacy of supporting that type of development.” is absolute bullshit. I can’t recall a single instance where Nintendo has supported independent developers or encouraged their platforms to be adopted by that community – this is underlined that Nintendo’s licence fees are the highest of any platform holder. In the face of the decade old Yaroze incentive from Sony and the more recent XNA one by Microsoft it’s complete bullshit to suggest that Nintendo have this ‘legacy’ of nurturing enthusiast development. If WiiWare is meant to be their answer then I don’t see how games from SquareEnix, Hudson or Frontier could be argued as coming from smaller, independent developers.

    This statement is PR waffle going out to feed all the fans that know nothing of the development and licencing process a new mantra to preach to their equally vacant audience.

    And, on a final note of how the artice is written, it should be made clear that Nintendo didn’t deny the game, they denied the developer a license (which he has to pay for anyway). They’re quite significantly different things.

    #7 6 years ago
  8. Hero of Canton

    I agree that Nintendo certainly doesn’t have a ‘legacy of supporting that kind of development’. Internally, it’ll support its own esoteric ideas, and that of the developers it has control of (Skip etc.) but it’s never really supported independent development in any kind of meaningful way.

    #8 6 years ago
  9. Prof Power Glove

    Maybe he’d have more luck getting it released on DSi download instead. :P

    Or he needs to pitch the game to a publisher in order to get a devkit. I don’t see what the fuss is about tbh; he made a game that probably isn’t up to scratch and starting ranting about it. Wiiware and DSiware sound like channels he should be pursuing, as that’s been set up by Nintendo for “garage” developers. See, they do care really. ;)

    #9 6 years ago
  10. ecu

    Man, this game must have been bad for Nintendo to turn it down. They’ll take any old shite on their consoles.

    #10 6 years ago
  11. lelik

    is there like an echo in here?

    #11 6 years ago
  12. trav

    He more than likely didn’t meet the criteria needed to be a DS developer as well as having a shit game. It’s not as easy as saying, “I want to be a developer” to Nintendo and they just give you access to everything.

    #12 6 years ago
  13. Shatner

    That’s true. You have to give them money too.

    #13 6 years ago
  14. OrphanageExplosion

    Awesome – does this mean that Noel’s Telly Addicts on Wii has been deemed ‘compelling’ by Reggie and that I should buy it next time I’m in GAME?

    I want to buy it because of the Edmonds factor, and the only reason thus far that I haven’t is that I’ve been concerned that it is not compelling enough.

    #14 6 years ago
  15. Hero of Canton

    Incidentally, the headline’s pretty misleading. He wasn’t rejected because his idea wasn’t ‘compelling’. He just didn’t fit the criteria for a developer’s license.

    #15 6 years ago
  16. Prof Power Glove

    Anything Noel Edmonds related is oddly compelling – like looking at road gore.

    Sure there are shit games, but then there are “shit” games that aren’t suitable for the specific demographic they are aiming for. Even Noel’s House Party Games is probably just good enough to keep the family entertained over Easter. I trust you understand.

    #16 6 years ago
  17. tont

    I imagine it had nothing to do with the quality of his game or his approach/criteria for developer status.

    More to do with Bob being BATSHIT MENTAL and that his application was probably along the lines of “I am a FUCKING GENIUS, therefore you MUST support me, as my games are so awesome they take five years each to develop”, rather than the “I love you guys so much and I’ll make you four games a year, pay for the localisation, manufacturing and publishing myself and will happily accept any margins you care to dictate to me” that might have got him in.

    #17 6 years ago

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