Most Of Early 2013's Biggest Games Seem To Be Skipping Wii U

After a Wii U launch that was full of ports of big games from big game companies, it appears that the first half of 2013 will see the Wii U missing out on most of the major games coming to its rival consoles.

Over the last couple of days, we've been checking in on the Wii U status of several major multiplatform games, all of which are slated for the first half of 2013. Nintendo has promised that the Wii U will have a broader array of games than the Wii did and won't neglect the hardcore gamer crowd. But very few of the top multiplatform games for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 are slated for Wii U.

Aliens: Colonial Marines

Release date: February 12 (PC, PS3, Xbox 360) Coming to Wii U? "Yes, ACM is coming to Wii U," a rep from Sega confirmed. We have not announced a specific date yet, just that it launches before the end of Nintendo's launch window (aka March 31, 2013)."

Army of Two: The Devil's Cartel

Release date: March 26, 2013 (PS3, Xbox 360) Coming to Wii U? "No plans," according to a rep for EA.

BioShock Infinite

Release date: March 26, 2013 (PC, PS3, Xbox 360) Coming to Wii U? The game's creative director just told Destructoid that "nothing is brewing right now," so highly unlikely.

Castlevania Lords of Shadow 2

Release date: 2013 (Not sure if early or late, to be honest) (PC, PS3, Xbox 360) Coming to Wii U? "We can't confirm any info on the Wii U at this time," says a rep for Konami. (Whatever that means.)


Release date: February 13, 2013 (PC, PS3, Xbox 360) Coming to Wii U? "No plans," according to a rep for EA.

Dead Island Riptide

Release date: April 23, 2013 (PC, PS3, Xbox 360) Coming to Wii U? "No plans," according to a rep for Deep Silver.

Dead Space 3

Release date: February 5, 2013 (PC, PS3, Xbox 360) Coming to Wii U? "No plans," according to a rep for EA.


Release date: January 15, 2013 (PC, PS3, Xbox 360) Coming to Wii U? All we could get was a rep for Capcom reiterating that the game is "confirmed" for the above platforms.


Release date: March 2013 (PS3, Xbox 360) Coming to Wii U? "No plans," according to a rep for EA.

Grand Theft Auto V

Release date: northern spring 2013 (PS3, Xbox 360) Coming to Wii U? Nothing announced. Seems unlikely, but here's a glimmer of hope, if you're the unusually optimistic sort.

Injustice: Gods Among Us

Release date: April 2013 (Xbox 360, PS3) Coming to Wii U? Yes!

Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance

Release date: February 19, 2013 (PS3, Xbox 360) Coming to Wii U? We asked the game's producer, Yuji Korekado, at an event in Los Angeles last week. Here's the transcript: Kotaku: Do you have plans to bring Revengeance to Wii U? The game's producer, Yuji Korekado: No. Kotaku: Why not? Korekado: We really developed the game based on these two consoles [PS3, 360] and the Wii U, we think, is unique in a way that the controller is innovative and the entire console's pretty much not hand-in-hand with the consoles that we're making it for now. So if we were going to make it for the Wii U we'd have to start from zero again and really design something for that console, so we could say 100 per cent that it was a good game for this console. Kotaku: Could Wii U run the Revengeance engine? Korekado: I haven't really tried it, so I'm not quite sure.

Metro Last Light

Release date: March 2013 (PC, PS3, Xbox 360) Coming to Wii U? Not bloody likely.

Remember Me

Release date: May 2013 (PC, PS3, Xbox 360) Coming to Wii U? In August, Capcom's US senior VP Christian Svensson said the idea of bringing it to the Wii U was "explored" but didn't sync up well with the developers' schedules.

South Park: The Stick of Truth

Release date: Early 2013 (PC, PS3, Xbox 360) Coming to Wii U? "THQ hasn't announced plans for a Wii U version of the game and is focusing attention on the current versions," a THQ rep told us.

Splinter Cell: Blacklist

Release date: Spring 2013 (PC, PS3, Xbox 360) Coming to Wii U? "The decision to bring a game to the Wii U will be made on a case-by-case basis," a Ubisoft rep told us. "We don't have any details to share at the moment."

Tomb Raider

Release date: March 5, 2013 (PC, PS3, Xbox 360) Coming to Wii U? A Square Enix rep says: "the announced platforms for Tomb Raider = X360, PS3, PC. No Wii U."


As you can see, the first half or 2013 will be pretty good seasons for big-budget games on Xbox 360, PS3 and PC. But on Wii U? Pickings will be slimmer.

It's not all bad news for Nintendo console owners. The Wii U is getting some promising exclusives — Rayman Legends, Lego City: Undercover, Pikmin 3 and Game & Wario, for starters. (Naturally, the other consoles are getting their own exclusives, with new Gears of War and God of War games coming to 360 and PS3 along with a few other big in-house productions).

What to make of this?

The Wii never had tons of big-name, big-game support from major third-party game publishers. But that's partially because the Wii couldn't even run the first Mass Effect or Grand Theft Auto IV. The Wii U can run the same games that run on other consoles. Tech isn't much of a barrier here. Timing and business are the key factors. Nintendo and the companies making these games have to want these games to be on the Wii U. They have to make the effort.

The Wii U launched with Mass Effect 3, Call of Duty: Black Ops II, Madden NFL 13, Assassin's Creed III and several other major games that also were released for PC, Xbox 360 and, in some cases, PC. It's been reasonable to think that such support for Wii U will continue, but in the next six months, it seems that it won't. One hopes that Nintendo and the world's major game-makers at EA, Ubisoft, Take Two and elsewhere will have a few more chats, maybe fund some ports. Otherwise, if you only own a Wii U, you'll be missing out on some very promising games.


    Leaving aside arguments on the true power and potential of the console it is clear Nintendo has left it way too late to court the big publishers for their big games, which could prove fatal for the console in the non casual market.

    It needed to get on the same level as current gen for games early to ensure take up before the rest of the next generation drops, which is unlikely if this trend continues.

    Leaving the wii u to paddle the same pool as it's predecessor, leaving it to compete with budget casual consoles on the horizon such as the ouya. It will probably find its legs somewhere but I doubt it will be the market they have stretched out to take a part of.

      Nintendo probably needed to give the publishers both time and subsidies to get the AAA games on Wii U. They have done it with a couple of games like Aliens Colonial Marines, but it would be an expensive exercise to pay for all the AAA titles.

      As we have seen with the Vita, unless there is a big install base, publishers are playing it safe and not sinking development funds into what will not translate into good sales numbers.

        The Vita's take up was mostly a price point issue but also a good example of not having a strong enough first 6-8months line up will prevent getting that install base.

        Nintendo thought it prudent enough to sink money in getting ports for 6month old releases but not the next 6 months of new releases? Seems unlikely

    Hopefully this is simply because these games started development before the Wii U dev kits were released and they don't feel they would benefit from spending development time building for a new console they don't really understand or have a game properly designed for.

      Seems like that was the response from the Metal Gear person. Fingers crossed.

      Seeing as for most of these titles it would have been up to the publisher rather than the developer that seems highly unlikely. Especially when it comes to EA, when have they ever been shy to force out crap in the name of a few extra bucks.

        Developing for a new platform costs money. It's really not that hard to imagine that publishers, including EA, simply looked at the titles in development and decided that it would cost too much to port them.

          Then that comes back to the big issue either way of if it is too costly to port too, if it is (potentially) not as powerful as made out to be, where are the games going to come from? This factor is not going to change any time soon, especially when the rest of the new gen drops in the next 12-18 months and they are also completely new hardware environments to work in.

          If its too expensive to make port of games on an equally to slightly higher performing platform, how is it going to be any better when they are (potentially) porting down compared to the rest of the next gen.

            I think the important thing to remember is that pretty much all of the games that aren't being ported were already in development when the Wii U was announced. So the cost to port them might have been more prohibitive than games that started development more recently.

              yes but the dev kits for the console have been out in the wild for quite some time, long enough to port AC3, a release more or less on par with the Wii U launch, so why is game that was in development for a Wii U release title able to be ported in time but not games released 6 months after the launch.

              Big engine heavy games like Crysis 3 maybe, but something like South Park? Like I said its very unlikely

              Last edited 13/12/12 11:09 am

                How about that its just launched and there is maybe close to a million user base (compared to the 70 million for ps3 and 360 each)? Thats not alot of potential sales in anyones book. I dont think at the moment its worth it for developers to come up with straight ports to the Wii U because people will bitch and whine that they havent done anything to use the gamepad. Also making games that take full advantage off the gamepad and use it wisely will take more time. After all the first year of any console launch will be slow, it will take time for things to pick up. Look at the 360, its first year was practically all ports, but in its second year things really took off and games started to take full advantage of the system and more exclusives. Lets not get ahead of ourselves and predict doom and gloom when there is still plenty of time for the Wii U to shine.

                Is it a shame we dont have these games on the Wii U. Absolutely but there is still a chance that towards the end of the year the third party games will start rolling in. All Nintendo has to do is grow the user base so it gives a higher potential to profit.

      The problem is that these games represent what is probably most of the last wave of major AAA titles for the current gen consoles. WIth new hardware coming in time for next xmas, most major developers are already working on games for the next generation consoles which are unlikely to get Wii U versions. Obviously there will still be some ongoing support for the PS3 / 360 for a while (especially from the likes of EA with their annual franchises) which will provide some support for the Wii U for a while, in the same way that ongoing PS2 support gave the Wii a few ports early in its life. But repeating the Wii's sorry tale of 3rd party support is not what the Wii U needs.

        Your dreaming if you think that Developers are going to make their AAA games exclusive for launches. Why would they? With so few consoles there will be low potential for sales. Look at the first year of the 360, practically all ports. Why? Not a large enough userbase. Took them till the second year before things started to improve.

        What is apparent is Nintendo need to work harder to secure Thirdparty support.

          The problem you describe here is one that's been interesting me, development costs are currently over the top, together PS3 and Xbox have about a 150 million install base, and graphics which really, I can't see future systems providing enough of a "leap" in graphics for the average person to be able to spot a significant difference.

          If I was a developer looking to get in on the next generation, I would still hedge my bets and bring out a version on the current gen; there was a lot of that going on in 2006 and 2007, and indeed yes, the Wii saw a lot of third party action because of Playstation Ports.

          The question I have is, Will the next Xbox and Playstation be a bridge too far for the Wii U to cross, or will WiiU games be like playing the PC on a lower spec rig (ie: the game can still run but with some of the boxes unticked)?

    I'd rather that developers released games that worked well on the Wii U, and took advantage of its unique capabilities, rather than just porting everything over. If I want those games, I'll probably get them on 360 anyway, because it's what I play most of my games on. I got the Wii U for the other games - the ones designed around the new controller that use it in innovative and fun ways, not the multiplatforms.

    As good as it would be if they did get games like this I'm not too sure if people buy Nintendos for these big games. Not Nintendos thing really and we all know this. Different market

    Since when has Nintendo ever needed third party multiplats?

      Since lightning didn't strike twice.

      They sold tons of Wiis just on Wii Fit/Wii Sport, which got them a big early install base and made up for the lack of other system-seller games. They're not getting that X-factor this time, the same way Sony has been unable to repeat the X-factor of people buying the PS2 for the DVD player.

    Wait, what? We have South Park and Castlevania 2 coming to pc? Ok South Park I half expected but Castlevania? That is awesome news.

    I have to wonder if this is just a case of stretching the talent too thin. It seems like a lot of developers struggle to resource ports for the PS3, 360 and PC as it is. Now they don't want to deal with the wii U because its the furthest removed from the other three. Will be interesting to watch.

    To be fair in reagards to MGS: Revengeance, the studio is working on two other exclusive Wii U titles, namely The Wonderful 101 and Bayonetta 2. So I doubt they'd have the resources to develop a third Wii U title.

    Honestly, I am not really that shocked because I personally don't feel that the Wii U is seen as a serious console for the core gamer. Sure they are heading in the right direction, but I don't think they are there just yet.

    And in a way, porting a game to the Wii U is also like on PC when a developer thinks that the game will get pirated a lot, so they put a half-ass job into porting it. However, the problem with the Wii U is that with stuff like the controller, a half-ass job isn't really the way to go..... It's basically a case of use the console's unique capabilities or don't bother.

      The problem there is, that at this point it is unlikely they will get another attempt. Which goes for all 3, nintendo sony and microsoft, a huge stuff up this gen may have them not see another.

    This is truly terrible. What will I do with all these consoles I already owned before the wii u... Oh wait.

    Meh. You don't buy a wii U to play those games anyway. It's a different market. I'm hanging out for mario kart! Hell yeah!

    Oooh, and Donkey Kong Country, that would be sweet too. I like mario, but I frequently wish it was Donkey Kong.

    Only Wii U has Rayman Legends. Nothing else matters.

    Can we come back to this post in a year's time with Metacritic data?

    I can't imagine Lords of Shadow 2 won't come to the Wii U, Castlevania has always been associated with Nintendo consoles.

    Although Symphony of the Night did take some of that association away, but it's been brought back heavily what with all the handheld Castlevanias.

    Last edited 13/12/12 12:27 pm

    ONOZ! Games that have been in development months and years before a console release didn't plan for the Wii U! ONOZ!

    I find this bitching kinda silly... mostly because its a loose/loose situation. You're "worried/complained" because games that were designed before Wii U came into being aren't gonna be on WIi U come release date..... and if they did shoe horn one to coincide w/ the release 2-3 months later they get bitched at for having "tacked on features"....

    I wonder if some people just think of the Wii U as a beefed up Wii U. It'll make your mother's yoga games look amazing on the big screen TV!

    As @zambayoshi said, Nintendo should have started giving companies incentive to develop on the new console. Tell 'em how big the Wii's market share was with the 18-25ers, tell them the Wii U is not your grandmother's bowling game console any more and show 'em how easy it is to port a game from one platform to another.

    As I've said 'afore, I want to love the Wii U, but the game reviews and the range doesn't seem to beckon for my hard earned yellows.

    Really bad sign for the Wii U.

    OK, it's going to get some belated ports of current-gen games. If it's not even automatically getting ports alongside the PS3 and X360 now, it's going to be up the creek without a paddle when the next-gen consoles from Sony and MS come out.

    Development cycle timing is no excuse. If they can have Mass Effect 3 for Wii U, they can certainly have arranged ports of games which haven't even come out yet. Either they didn't make the effort or these games won't run, and neither is attractive.

    The problem wouldn't be so bad if there were good first party games on the horizon.

    The WiiU will get Pikmin in March next year, Wario and Watch at some point..... and thats it.

    Any new Zelda, Mario, Metriod or even a new franchise is is at at least next Christmas away probably more, which is why you see them announcing a Wario-minigame collection and releasing a cookie-cutter Mario game that they can throw together at comparitivly short notice.

    I love Nintendo but the WiiU doesn't have much going for it at the moment. I was holding off to buy one in Febuary/ March next year but by then I might be looking at my old TV and thinking it's time to prepare for the next generation.

    I think Korekado's comment on MGR:R is bang on - and something which AAA developers are obviously needing to consider. Are all their games in development suitable across all systems? Is the effort of porting between technologies worth it?
    When the authors write "Tech isn’t much of a barrier here" shows a worrying disrespect for the time and costs involved in not only porting platform code, but also at dealing with multiple publishing pipelines.
    I think in the usual journalistic rush to mark Nintendos product as DOA or "struggling", the actual point of this next generation is lost. These titles that are "missing" are appearing on current-gen consoles that people interested in them already own consoles for. I liken Nintendo to Apple in this respect - tech writers hang out to pick them apart, yet they succeed in their markets anyway.
    I for one am heartened by this somewhat as I can see developers asking "what will work on what console/market". So I may see less ported games, but the Wii U should bring great Wii U experiences. :)

    So Nintendo is keeping their shitty third party relationships for 4 generations in a row now.

    Let's see if they can go for a 5th with their next console.

    This is clearly karma for their behaviour in the 80's.

    If Pachter is correct about PS4 launching in 2013 then Nintendo may find the core market has already moved on.

    Raiden's hair gets longer every time I see it. Starting to look like he's out of DBZ.

    doesn't worry me as I have a ps3 and wii u. i will say though all this talk of the ps4 and xbox 720? coming out next year is questionable in my opinion. there has been a serious lack of information about these two just rumours and dev kit whispers. both these companies love to hype new products (surface anyone?) and the lack of any pics of the consoles or games seems like they wont be out til 2014. At the earliest. Just my opinion feel free to shoot down my logic Kotakians!!!

    Seriously?? Half those games I wouldn't even call "biggest games!". But lets be frank too - most of those games have been in production for years now, 3+ and still aren't finished. Do you really expect them to rush out and port every single one to the Wii U right now?

    There will be more games coming to the Wii U this year, some ports, some unique titles. We still have all the exclusive Nintendo stuff which they are hinting at but not announcing, the updated MH3U, Bayonetta 2, Wonderful 101, the supposed best version of Aliens. There is potential here!

    This post is just about flaming and getting hits - nothing else. If PS4 and the next Xbox hit this year I would love to see them have as many games as the Wii U did on launch. I doubt they will be of any quality when compared to other games coming out on current gen/Wii U.

    That being said, I want quality experiences now and I want the ability to play my game on the gamepad when I move to bed (cause honestly, its just freaking awesome). The Wii U has sold me on its potential and its still got a fair bit of power to unleash yet.

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