Nintendo Ceasing Development of Wii Games

The Wii’s successor, the Wii U, has now hit store shelves and whipped fans into a frenzy of excitement. Unfortunately it seems that this transition means that the Wii is effectively old news in Nintendo’s books.

Nintendo confirmed they are no longer producing first-party games for the Wii, as their energy and focus is now being entirely directed towards supporting the Wii U as it begins to build momentum in the marketplace.

Despite Nintendo moving on, it’s a fair bet that considering the Wii’s colossal sales numbers, which well exceed both that of the Playstation 3 and the Xbox 360, the release of third-party games for the Wii will continue in earnest for the foreseeable future. In an interview with Gamespot, Nintendo Director of Product Marketing Bill Trinen looked to reaffirm the lucrative business opportunity which producing games for the Wii still presents to third-party developers when he said “Wii itself is really interesting because there are so many people who have that system and know what that system is that there’s still a lot of opportunity for software sales on Wii,” He needn’t have stated the obvious though, as there can be little doubt in anyone’s mind that third-party Wii developers simply aren’t going to leave money on the table, and considering the Wii’s widespread adoption, the prodigal son Wii may prove to have the same sort of extremely prolonged lifespan that the PS2 enjoyed.

Besides third-party support, what does Trinen think the Wii can offer the unconvinced buyer from this point on? Well, he says “A lot of that consumer [sic] is somebody who is looking for… good games. So whether it’s things like Nintendo Selects or a lot of the users also are still using their Wii to deliver Netflix content.” Ah, extras and services – exactly what people look for when buying a game console. Will many people be standing at the register asking themselves whether the Wii will make a good dedicated Netflix box?

As consumers weigh up the value of a Nintendo console without the ongoing prospect of first-party games, Trinen seems to indicate that the Wii may undergo further price drops in order to entice those who remain undecided, “I think there’s also the potential for a lot of people who still haven’t purchased Wii, believe it or not, who might be interested at the right price. So we’ll probably be looking at it more from that standpoint.”

Though Nintendo seems to be allowing the Wii U to leave the Wii in its dust on the games front, I highly doubt that the Wii will have much trouble surviving regardless.

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