Iwata wants to re-establish Wii U first-party strength before targeting third-parties again

Friday, 21st June 2013 08:34 GMT By Dave Cook

Nintendo president Satoru Iwata has stressed that before the company can re-establish third-party support on Wii U, it needs to put the console back into a strong position with first-party support.

Speaking with IGN, Iwata said, “What we need to do is regain the momentum of the Wii U in the marketplace and establish successful examples of third-party Wii U software.

“Our focus is, first of all, to regain the momentum of the Wii U towards the end of this year, and then we’ll try to establish successful third-party Wii U software titles. I believe in the importance of third-party support for Nintendo platforms. I’m very willing to change the current situation.”

Iwata recently stated that Nintendo is solely to blame for poor Wii U sales, following a statement from Ubisoft that said it would not offer Nintendo any new exclusives until it sees the company selling more Wii U consoles.

Nintendo of America boss Reggie Fils-Aime added that third-party publishers are starting to recognise the quality of Nintendo’s recent software slate, and suggests that shift in the balance between publishers is starting to build. “I’ve had conversations with a number of the publishers. As they see what we’re doing and the commitment we have with Mario, Donkey Kong, Zelda.

“As we have behind-the-scenes conversations about what’s further in development and what’s coming down, the decisions around the next lineup of development and where they’re going to put their development dollars are starting to shift.”

What do you think of Nintendo’s line-up moving forward? Is it an improvement? Can third-party publishers be lured back to Wii U? Let us know below.



  1. Chris8bits

    Their announced line-up is absolutely an improvement. It will show in the sales of Wii U.. to what extent is the big question, but I’m confident Wii U’s fortunes will only improve starting at the end of the year and moving forward.

    #1 2 years ago
  2. DrDamn

    Headline should read … “Iwata wants to *establish* Wii U first-party strength…”.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. mistermogul

    @2 – Good point.

    Also they know that is their only option as if they went scouting for 3rd party content now they know full well they’d get shown the door…

    #3 2 years ago
  4. dreamcastnews

    I think the line-up this year for Wii U is very strong, there’s quite a few games I want for it but it certainly needs those 3rd parties.

    Nintendo can’t fill in the gaps themselves, Sega tried it when everyone dropped Saturn and ended up over-working their studios and R&D budgets.

    #4 2 years ago
  5. DrDamn

    I think Nintendo can fill the gap personally, but they need to be bolder than they currently are. This years line up isn’t strong enough by a long way in terms of attracting new customers. Too much which should be out this year is coming next year and they’ve effectively wasted the year head start they had.

    *If* they get it right then the problem then becomes whether they are too strong for third parties to compete with. It’s going to be a tricky couple of years for them. I’m becoming happier that I’m an owner but it’s taking far too long for a good diverse library of games.

    #5 2 years ago
  6. dreamcastnews

    That’s the key you’ve hit right on the head there, ‘diverse’. Nintendo seem to be getting different genre software out there which I’m happy about but they need the sports crowd too really, maybe it’s time to get NBA Courtside back since that was Nintendo’s franchise also Touch Golf would work on Wii U and maybe ask/fund Konami to make an exclusive ISS branded football game for the system.

    I’m certainly not into sports in general but I know the importance of having them in a library of software. Nintendo also need to look at some portable franchises they’ve created and see if they would fit in HD on Wii U.

    #6 2 years ago
  7. Lengendaryboss

    “Diverse” Lineup of games is the only thing stopping me from rebuying Nintendo Platforms.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. dreamcastnews


    #8 2 years ago
  9. Blue Oni

    They really need to start investing more in acquiring and opening more first party studios in the west and start creating some new IPs.
    Actually they should have already done this before launching the WiiU…

    #9 2 years ago
  10. Lengendaryboss

    Me? I meant games like GTA and MGS (and any “Rip-offs) the third party side and IPs Nintendo has only Pokemon i love, what i meant is i want more diverse games FPS, Racing games, Open World Games (I’m a very picky person) and when Nintendo has achieved that i will be able to look into their first party offerings besides Pokemon.

    @Blue Oni
    This, though i doubt it will happen.

    #10 2 years ago
  11. SplatteredHouse

    They’re in a worse state than I thought, if they say that they’ve got to put their own house in order, before handing out invites for their garden party – and, only then in the event of acceptance, they’ll have a competitive, compelling platform o.o
    How did you let things get to this point, Mr. Iwata. Poor stewardship, or, were you banking on third-parties to weather WiiU’s stormy opening months until the first-party titles could appear?

    #11 2 years ago
  12. DrDamn

    I think they already admitted dev cycles on more powerful hardware have been longer than they expected.

    #12 2 years ago
  13. Digital Bamboo

    I don’t think a great deal of momentum will be built by the end of this year for the U.

    Pikmin, 2.5D Mario, & a new DKC will be quality titles, but not the major system sellers Nintendo needs.

    They need a proper new Zelda, Metroid & X to attract the longtime Nintendo fans that are holding out, and they need Mario Kart, SSB and a true 3D Mario to attract the masses.

    The games releasing this year will produce a few sales spikes, particularly around Christmas, but I don’t see things really picking up until 2014. I believe Mario Kart will be the turning point, though they should really start packing NSMBU in the box to justify the near-PS4 price tag for the deluxe to get a head start. NintendoLand isn’t cutting it. If they did the pack-in, & pushed advertising hard, I think they could sell between 1-3 million U’s this Nov-Dec alone.

    Sell 20 million units & 3rd parties will come running back.

    #13 2 years ago
  14. Clupula

    In truth, I think that the first party titles will do nothing but give the system temporary boosts in sales that will only last a month or two before dropping back down.

    There’s a reason why the Wii U had a better start than the PS3 and 360, but then fell off the radar in embarrassing levels: the majority of the people to whom Nintendo’s first party franchises will sell bought one right away. My cousin bought one on launch day for her son. Why? Because he likes Mario Kart. But at the time, they hadn’t even shown a trailer for it, but people for whom those first party franchises would be important went out and got it right away.

    Mario and Zelda are not going to put them in a position of strength. They just aren’t. Nintendo are still running towards the dock, yelling, “Wait for me,” while Sony and Microsoft are already in the middle of the Atlantic.

    #14 2 years ago
  15. TrickyAudio

    The sad thing is I regularly forget the Wii U even exists. Thats the problem.

    #15 2 years ago
  16. Sini

    Having first party titles isn’t going to help third parties, they’ll always be second choice when going to buy games. The only way for third parties to make money on nintendo console is if the competition is dead(see handhelds).
    The best thing for nintendo is to co-publish exclusive games like they’re doing with beyonetta2, but they need alot more of these partnerships.

    #16 2 years ago
  17. dreamcastnews

    They need maybe 3-4 more studios like Retro and Monolith.

    #17 2 years ago
  18. silkvg247

    They need pokemon-U

    #18 2 years ago
  19. Cobra951

    He’s practically repeating what I said months ago. Killer Nintendo games, the kind Miyamoto used to spearhead, would make all the difference to this system.

    #19 2 years ago
  20. manamana

    Their studios were neither prepared for HD nor for the WiiU launch. They lacked interesting IPs around the launch window (Mario Kart anyone?) and by the end of this year they may have a couple of ‘interesting’ titles but by any stretch of my imagination nothing that makes me drop 300€. Especially not this year, the year of next-gen.

    Metroid, F-Zero HD, a *new* Zelda, and a fresh, new IP also wouldn’t hurt. Monolith Software might be the ones that saves their asses, really. It’s a long way this time for nintendo, imo.

    What’s upsetting is, they had so much time to prepare themselfes. They knew that this year is totally Sony and Microsoft. They wasn’t prepared properly, imo.

    Edit: and they could have also foreseen, that third party studios are full to the brim with next-gen projects. And because they also have limited numbers of developers, it was obvious to port to the much bigger install base of PS360 first.

    #20 2 years ago

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