Three Months After It Launched, The Wii U Is Irrelevant To Sports Gaming

Three Months After It Launched, The Wii U Is Irrelevant To Sports Gaming

For sports gaming, the Wii U wasn’t looking much better than its predecessor even a month after release, and there are no signs the console is going to be a full partner anytime soon. The signals sent by sports’ dominant publisher indicate it just has no interest in building for the console. It’s not just that the Wii U was left off the official announcement of Madden NFL 14 25. The bigger signal is that Tiger Woods PGA Tour will not have a presence on the platform when its next edition releases at the end of March.

From 2009 to 2011, the Wii version of Tiger Woods PGA Tour was the better reviewed and, by all rights, dominant platform in this series, for a couple of reasons. The Wii Remote was a natural and enjoyable method of control for a golf video game. And as the Tiger Woods user base diverges more from traditional gamer demographics than any sports title, it was a closer fit to the Wii’s installation base.

Developers at EA Tiburon understand the game has a broadly social appeal — it’s why they created a “Quick Tournaments” mode in this year’s game. “Golf lends itself still to being a party game,” producer Sean Wilson told me last week. And it’ll have no presence on the Wii U, a platform built on unique social features like the Miiverse, and the successor to the definitive party console.

Yet once Nintendo finally has a console that can deliver Augusta National in high definition, EA Sports bows and exits.

Whatever its reason is for this, EA Sports is not saying explicitly. I asked why they didn’t build Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14 for Wii U, and if they planned to build any future Tiger Woods PGA Tour games for the Wii U. Here’s the answer, not that it really explains much.

We’re currently focused on delivering a great Tiger Woods PGA TOUR experience for our fans on the Xbox 360 and PS3, where we have a great opportunity to connect fans to the real world of golf and each other. We don’t have any further platform announcements at this time.

The lack of golf on the Wii U — or any future plans for it — is in a way even worse than Madden leaving the console out of the next game’s announcement. Madden at least waved the flag at launch, and tried to redeem a series that was woefully underserved by cartoony “All Play” versions that seemed to exist only because a contract required it. If the Wii U can’t attract golf, the sport that made the preceding console a preferred option to high-definition competitors, then it really is irrelevant to sports video gaming. Three months after release.


  • My guess why the schedule for games, sport or otherwise, for the Wii U is due to its early release an assumed 1 year ahead of its competition. Any games currently in development wont get the cross platform on the Wii U because it just wont, devs won’t make the effort and the average development time frame means we probably wont see any new games making it to the Wii U until companies have finished production on whatever they are currently working on. The games we have to look forward to at the moment are games that have been in development for a fair stretch. When the next gen consoles get announced I would put some money on the Wii U games library getting an injection as whatever games are being developed for the next gen PS and XBox are likely going to make their way onto the Wii U.

    Also, my reasoning behind not getting a rayman exclusive is because Ubisoft think it would be a massive break with tradition to release a game on a nintendo console first then make ports for the other 2 consoles.

    • But they would have had Wii U dev kits well and truly in time to make it alongside the development of the PS3 / 360 versions. If anything, it should have been EASIER than doing a Wii version because being closer in capability to the PS3/360 means they could probably have used a lot of the same assets instead of having to create a completely separate set.

      I think you’ll find that the Wii U is getting its “injection” of 3rd party support right now while it’s on near-enough level footing with the PS3 / 360. When the new PS/XBox launch, the Wii U will get left behind again, just like the Wii did.

  • I think there was a bigger reason for why Tiger Woods may have been received better on the Wii. Due to the Wii having poor DLC options, the Wii version of Tiger Woods generally came with all the courses as standard, whereas the PS360 versions had those same courses stripped out for Course DLC packs.

  • The thing is after FIFA pulled that whole “cut and paste” job Nintendo fans don’t trust sports games anymore, but of course noone is gonna mention that! All people want to do is nay say and talk about how “kiddy” it is….news flash, video games are for EVERYONE!

  • Here we go again more unbiased reporting on the failure of Nintendo. I’ll make a judgement now. The new Xbox is going to drive you to work, while on the 20th of Feb Sony will announce they there new PS will also be a Nespresso machine. Oh that was sarcasm by the way. Thing is if you read my past comments they play a similar tune. I think there is way to much bad negativity towards Nintendo, and I really don’t understand why. The Wii U is three months old with over three million units sold. Yes we have hit a slump in games, but come the Nintendo king titles it will sell out.

    Also to the editor will you and your team publish this much poor and negativity towards the upcoming consoles from Microsoft and Sony, or Nvidia if they also fail to achieve high sales figures? thought I still think at million in three months is high.

    • I’m sorry to say this mate but you are in complete denial of everything this article says here.

      All you have managed to do is simply state multiple times; there is too much negativity towards Nintendo and that writer is supposedly biased. Did it ever even cross your mind to think that maybe there are valid reasons for what the writer is saying? How about you actually place forward a well thought out counter point to what the writer has given as to why you feel his points raised are so invalid, rather than simply run a rather hollow tirade? Can you do that? Are you even capable of that?

      Whether you like it or not, what the writer has said is the truth. These particular games are skipping the Wii U plain and simple. This is not Nintendo bashing, this is pointing out a very worrying trend among publishers in their treatment towards the Wii U. This is not being ‘biased’ towards Nintendo by pointing out some facts. Nor is it Nintendo bashing to state that one is worried by the fact that certain games are skipping out on the Wii U.

      Get your head out of the clouds and stop making such empty criticisms towards the writer here (ironic because its these kind of criticisms you accuse the writer of). The Wii U is simply not in a good place right now with regards to third party publishers plain and simple. I’m sure the writer just as much as you or I, wishes to see the treatment of these third partys change in regards to their support for Nintendo.

      • Actually, here’s some thoughts on the subject. The sports games are failing because EA had their panties up their tight asses because of the whole Origin deal.

        EA was the first 3rd party to get dev kits. That means they had plenty of time to actually put together a port of the physics engine that was included on the PS360 versions of the game, a golf game, and just to toss it in, a port of the Mass Effect Trilogy that even BioWare themselves were wanting to do. I can say the same with any other 3rd party that on any platform.

        Fact is EA is a company that can do great things, but piss-poor management and politics will end in results of low sales and blame games. Nintendo sold a million consoles a month. There is nothing wrong with that ratio at all. If the games are not selling, perhaps they should be looking what’s going on within the company, and not blame the console.

      • He’s not accusing Kotaku of bias because of any inaccuracy but because of their focus. You can be biased without being factually incorrect. Publishing nothing but negative articles about a topic, as Kotaku has been doing towards the Wii U of late, is a form of bias. Just click on the Wii U tag and look at the coverage over the last few weeks. Then have a look at all the hype articles about the upcoming Xbox and Playstation.

        A good example of gaming media bias against Nintendo is the 3DS and PS Vita. Both struggled after their launch, but the reporting during these periods was vastly different. Every article about the 3DS during that time went on about how 3D was a ‘useless gimmick’, how bad its graphics were, how totally screwed Nintendo was. Compare that to reporting on the Vita which was mostly raving about how good a console it was and how much of a shame it was that people weren’t buying it. Sure there were the occasional negative Vita articles, and positive 3DS articles but the vast majority painted the same picture.

        • Mronius, thank you. I knew I would get responses like this, and I was more my fault for slaming this one article when I was really slaming the last many articles on the Wii U, and Nintendo. I am no Nintendo fanboy as I do own a PS3 and 360 aswell. I was referring to the fact that this website like you said has been overly negative towards Nintendo, and a simple question as will they publish as much bad rep on the future PS and Xbox.

        • Not only that the funny thing is when there was positive Wii U news this site ignored it when Wii U sales took a nose dive suddenly it was important?? The Wii U launch in Japan, every other website i visited reported the sales of the Japanese launch except this website. The Wii U sales were solid but didnt beat Wii sales during its launch. I made mention of the sites lack of coverage once a week after launch, which by now i assumed they dont care about Japanese sales numbers (although they were very keen to mention the very impressive psp vita launch – then forget to mention its nose diving sales a month later). A month later all of the sudden this Website thinks Wii U sales numbers are important, Why? Because they took a nose dive. WTF

          So heres the FACTS (Japan Sales)

          psp vita Launch sales GOOD – Kotaku is all over it and how good it is
          psp vita Month later sales BAD – Kotaku barely makes mention of it

          Wii U Launch sales GOOD – Kotaku ignores it completely
          Wii U Month later sales BAD – Kotaku now decides to Mention Japanese Wii U sales

          You see that BIAS no matter how you spin it. I know there were people that tried to defend the website but you cannot defend the indefensible. Im not saying all the writers are but there are definitely some on this site that are.

          So yes there is an Anti Nintendo bias on this site.

  • This is most likely because EA is still pissed about Nintendo refusing to Adopt Origin as it’s primary eCom market.

    They can shove it. Sports games have just been the same crap repackaged for over a decade. Making it prettier doesn’t make it better.

    They are dumb for not releasing these games on the console that best suits they’re Gameplay though. Playbook, Tee and Club were big hits. But honestly, who didn’t expect EA to make bad decisions?

  • I have just read through all the comments on this site, and I am in now way a member or willing to become one.

    Sports games on consoles in my point of view is well crap, why not get of your couch and go out side and do the actual sport with your friends and/or family.

    EA is just another big company that wants the world to be ran the way they want it and no other. I mean I am in now way a fan of EA due to the way the run their company and ignore all feedback from the users of there games.

    Origin is not the best CMS by far there are a lot of better CMS out there and with the way the world is now selling games as downloads instead of physical disk is well just another way for these companies to make sure people do not steal there hard work.

    Nintendo have always been the little guy since the release of the N64 when the first PS and Xbox came out. The Wii U is my favorite console by far (not mentioning the fact that MS and Sony are just companies that think they are the best at every thing). Nintendo and sales don’t really go hand in had if you look at their history, Their consoles are more for playing games and having fun and with the launch of the Wii and then the Wii U made it possible to have more fun with friends and family by making it more about that.

    I have read a few articals on this site and must say I do agree with @terrak with the way that I have seen this site favor MS and Sony over Nintendo but this is not the only site. It does seam that sites like this one seam to think that what ever Nintendo do is not as good as what MS and Sony can do, but think of it this way.

    Nintendo started the console wars way back when there was an Atari and Sega consoles (sad to see these guys leave this market) and have managed to stay up with the MS or Sony by way of making different handhelds/consoles.

    Now I may be ranting a bit but I honestly think that people do need to take a chill pill because even though EA Sports may not come to the Wii U who really cares, most people these days have more then just 1 console, I mean at home I have the following consoles:

    – Sony PS
    – Sony PS2
    – Sony PS3
    – MS Xbox
    – Ms Xbox 360
    – Nintendo Gamecube
    – Nintendo Wii
    – Nintendo Wii U
    – PC

    and a lot of people will be the same as one console is not better then any other console its just the fact that different developers have there way of making games for these systems.

    The last thing I do want to say is that people are always saying Nintendo is dieing due to sales etc, but the one thing people seam to forget is that the PC has been a gaming console if you will for longer then most of the systems I have connected to my TV but you do not hear much about how games are selling on that system do you?

    So can we please leave Nintendo alone and just thank god we have a company out there that wants to get people of their couch and actually move around before MS Kinect or Sony Move came to be.

    So that was my two cents. Happy gaming

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