Metroid Prime Dev: Wii U is a Powerhouse, We're Making a New Game For it

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Metroid Prime Dev: Wii U is a Powerhouse, We're Making a New Game For it

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Retro Studios says the perception that the Wii U is not a powerful console is "just not true."

While the constant bickering of framerates and resolution is a hot point of contention between the Xbox One and PS4, a lot of people seem to be neglecting that other next-gen console when discussing the next-gen console's computing power. Retro Studios, the developers behind Metroid Prime and Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, says that the Wii U is an underestimated powerhouse that can easily hold its own with its next-gen brothers.

"Unfortunately, the perception is that [the Wii U is] not a very powerful machine," said Retro Studios president and CEO Michael Kelbaugh. "That's just not true. It's a powerhouse. It's more than adequate to make great games on." He added that his team had to overcome a steep learning curve that came with transitioning from Wii to Wii U, but, was happy to see his artists become "uncorked" and free from the "traditional limitations" they'd been under for so long with the original Wii.

Furthermore, Kelbaugh said that his studio is hard at work developing a new game for the system, now that they are finished with Tropical Freeze. Although he neglected to give any more information on the nature of the new game, last year, Nintendo designer Shigeru Miyamoto singled out Retro as a "high-priority" studio to make a new Metroid game. He also claimed that it "could be possible" for Retro to make a new Zelda title.

"We love working with Donkey Kong. It's a great character. It's a lot of fun. We love working with Metroid Prime, with Mario Kart; those are fun, fun games to work on. So, you know, you can't lose," added Kelbaugh. "Every one of those IPs have been a lot of fun to play with and work on and [we'd] love to come back to them sometime."

Source: Gamespot

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"more then adequate to make great games on"

What console or PC in the last 20 years hasn't been? If current gen hardware were required to make a great game, the entire industry would have died off long ago. We would never have gotten to this point.

Actually, ARE there any great games on the Wii U so far? Shit that will be talked about in ten years time.

It seems like Nintendo is finally ready to open the floodgates and start pumping out the first party games.

Its about damn time!

AntiChri5:
"more then adequate to make great games on"

What console or PC in the last 20 years hasn't been? If current gen hardware were required to make a great game, the entire industry would have died off long ago. We would never have gotten to this point.

Actually, ARE there any great games on the Wii U so far? Shit that will be talked about in ten years time.

Depends. I enjoy Mario 3D World, but it's more like a Mario Sunshine than 64 or Galaxies. A lot of fun, but not quite the same nostalgia trip. That said, it's only just over a year old, so I'm gonna give them more time before expecting a classic that will last throughout the ages. Hopefully the next Zelda will be, as that is my true love in gaming.

Brian Tams:
It seems like Nintendo is finally ready to open the floodgates and start pumping out the first party games.

Its about damn time!

The question becomes whether or not it'll be enough to help right the ship.

It's already too late to keep pace with their competition, but they could probably still pull a profit if they play their cards well. If they don't....

Oh come on. Of course you can make great games with it. You could (and did) make great games on the SNES. And you can make great games on the Wii U. But it is in no way a 'powerhouse' and it is not a powerful console unless you compare it to a Gamecube. That's the wrong tack to take in defending it.

It would certainly be good for Retro to take the reins of Metroid again, especially after Other M, eh? As for Wii U, I doubt it's a powerhouse, but I one could certainly make great games for it. Performance and graphical fidelity never made games great on their own and many of the greatest games suuucked graphically.

Well I imagine it is quite mind blowing processing power for a Wii dev, but on the general market they are yet again far behind.

It might help if they made games targeted at a demographic besides the 6 to 12 year olds.

Well, considering that all game devs have managed to do so far with the new generation hardware is make whatever they've already been making last generation just with prettier particle effects, I guess I can't argue...

Yes!!
A new Metroid. This is great news :)
I really enjoyed the Prime trilogy, and didn't actually think OtherM was that bad... *activate flameshield*
So yes, waiting for this one!

Well I suppose it may well seem like a powerhouse when the only hardware you've worked on before is other previous Nintendo consoles.

So yeah, excuse me if I don't take the "Nintendo-owned company compliments Nintendo hardware" seriously. Still, I'd love a new Metroid if that's what they are working on. They've been wasted on Donkey Kong, in my opinion.

Of course great games will be made on the Wii U. Question is, will they follow the formula of previous Nintendo IPs and change very little?

Well Retro possibly making the next Metroid game is definitely news that could nudge me towards a WiiU purchase.

If only they could stop talking about the WiiU and make a new Metroid game that doesn't suck seven ways to sunday. Preferably while keeping the guy that ruined Metroid as far away from it as humanly possible. >_>

Power isn't everything and i think the Wii-U could be a good system... if it wasn't most likely already dead.

Oh wait. "His team had to overcome a steep learning curve that came with transitioning from Wii to Wii U" Well if they are comparing it to the Gamecu- i mean Wii, then a potato powered computer would offer more grunt. It's only 'a steep learning curve' if you have only ever worked on Nintendo consoles for the past decade and have missed every single graphical advancement since Half Life 2. Most studios had to make this transition back in 2005/6 so i have no idea how they could be unprepared to enter the HD generation.

Anything that keeps the system viable until 'X' arrives is good in my book, the fact that it might be a new Metroid game on the way makes it a win-win!

008Zulu:
It might help if they made games targeted at a demographic besides the 6 to 12 year olds.

This is definitely a problem on their part more than anything else. The younger generations of gamers are playing games on smart phones and tablet computers more than on the 3ds despite what Nintendo's statistics board wants people to think. The generation that really loved Nintendo is now probably in the teen demographic at the very youngest.

Also... really wishing nintendo had an official trade up program for going from a 3ds to a 3ds XL.

'More than adequate to make games on' is something that could be said for any console post-Playstation 2 era. It really goes to show that constant strives to big up graphics with each passing console generation (and the concurrent increase in system requirements in PC games) have been more trouble than they're worth. Props to these guys for giving the less powerful but by no means useless console a go.

Nintendo thinks Nintendo is awesome! News at 11!

Hopefully they wont be forced to include the pad in some weird way. Metroid Prime 3 really suffered by including as much waggle as it did.

I've yet to see anyone major talk about the wii u being weak in terms of its tech. It's absolutely ignorant to assume so, and blatantly more ignorant and idiotic to claim others have said it. No, the problem is Nintendo themselves. They killed off the Wii-U's market before it ever came out with the Wii and their giant fricken boner for the "casual" crowd that the other systems weren't aimed for. Good job Nintendo, you sold my grandpa a wii, but then you expected him to pay for a Wii-U. And when every game but maybe 3-4 a year were serious releases, don't be surprised when almost no one buys them when stores are much more willing to stock a hundred copies of "Imaginze! Store Clerk Cashier!" Instead.

So no Retro, don't be an ignorant arse. No one cares about the tech, but they do care about how the Wii-U is selling like stale, moldy crap. Nobody but a Nintendo owned studio wants to develop for a system that will cost them money, not make it. Maybe Nintendo should of reconsidered their market strategy with the Wii before it was released. Or, better yet! Nintendo should of taken its head out of its ass and talk to developers. The Wii motion+ had (and still has) no real worthwhile titles for it, and it didn't help that next to no one knew about it before it was announced. And why? Because Nintendo was worried someone might talk about it before they announced it. Talk about shooting your foot to keep yourself quiet.

Nintendo does great gimmicks. But the DS was the last time their "gimmick" worked in their favor. Sales have gone downhill for them, they had to bribe people just to buy the 3DS, and eventually dropped the worthless 3D effect all together with the 2DS, though that's an ugly mess anyways still.

Announced a year too late, I'm afraid.

Scrumpmonkey:
Power isn't everything and i think the Wii-U could be a good system... if it wasn't most likely already dead.

Oh wait. "His team had to overcome a steep learning curve that came with transitioning from Wii to Wii U" Well if they are comparing it to the Gamecu- i mean Wii, then a potato powered computer would offer more grunt. It's only 'a steep learning curve' if you have only ever worked on Nintendo consoles for the past decade and have missed every single graphical advancement since Half Life 2. Most studios had to make this transition back in 2005/6 so i have no idea how they could be unprepared to enter the HD generation.

There's more to it than that, sadly.
From what I've read, that tablet controller is intimately tied to the main processing handlers as part of the system's streaming function, and not just a peripheral output thing like the Gamecube to GBA connectors.

And that's a big part of why developers don't like the WiiU in the first place: Nintendo mandates that they program around the stupid gimmick instead of doing what they want, and it necessitates additional training because the tablet programming is just bizarre compared to anything else on the market.

Well it's not like they were gonna develop Metroid game for the Xbone or Piss4. Dev that works for Nintendo says that WiiU is awesome....

In all fairness the WiiU isn't terrible but that bloody controler....Nintendo.. stop chasing gimmicks. We don't want to have to learn a new controll scheme every time to release a console... no I'm serious.. have you noticed that every Nintendo console has a dramatically different controller shape and layout to the previous?

Now to be fair the upgrade from the Nintendo to Snes controller was a plus, and the GC wwas nice but the others...

Sean951:

Depends. I enjoy Mario 3D World, but it's more like a Mario Sunshine than 64 or Galaxies. A lot of fun, but not quite the same nostalgia trip.

I think you're mistaken. With its odd new enemies and more-realistic-than-ever locales, Sunshine was not nearly a nostalgia trip. 64 and Galaxies were over twice as based on nostalgia than Sunshine was.
3D World is a nostalgia trip through and through, with almost every enemy (the fish in Plessie's way and vine-like piranha plants being the few exceptions) and some mechanics/themes plucked from every single Mario game before it, except for Sunshine.

Atmos Duality:
Announced a year too late, I'm afraid.

Scrumpmonkey:
Power isn't everything and i think the Wii-U could be a good system... if it wasn't most likely already dead.

Oh wait. "His team had to overcome a steep learning curve that came with transitioning from Wii to Wii U" Well if they are comparing it to the Gamecu- i mean Wii, then a potato powered computer would offer more grunt. It's only 'a steep learning curve' if you have only ever worked on Nintendo consoles for the past decade and have missed every single graphical advancement since Half Life 2. Most studios had to make this transition back in 2005/6 so i have no idea how they could be unprepared to enter the HD generation.

There's more to it than that, sadly.
From what I've read, that tablet controller is intimately tied to the main processing handlers as part of the system's streaming function, and not just a peripheral output thing like the Gamecube to GBA connectors.

And that's a big part of why developers don't like the WiiU in the first place: Nintendo mandates that they program around the stupid gimmick instead of doing what they want, and it necessitates additional training because the tablet programming is just bizarre compared to anything else on the market.

Well yes i didn't even touch on that. Having the second screen not be an autonomous device is also a drain on core resources i imagine. I'm not familiar with the architecture but i would assume that the tablet would need at least it's own thread if not logical core.

There has also been grumblings about Nintendo's online systems being developed effectively in a vacuum and therefore being a struggle to utilize. In terms of online play Nintendo has only just left the dark ages.

Xman490:

Sean951:

Depends. I enjoy Mario 3D World, but it's more like a Mario Sunshine than 64 or Galaxies. A lot of fun, but not quite the same nostalgia trip.

I think you're mistaken. With its odd new enemies and more-realistic-than-ever locales, Sunshine was not nearly a nostalgia trip. 64 and Galaxies were over twice as based on nostalgia than Sunshine was.
3D World is a nostalgia trip through and through, with almost every enemy (the fish in Plessie's way and vine-like piranha plants being the few exceptions) and some mechanics/themes plucked from every single Mario game before it, except for Sunshine.

I meant that playing it in the future won't be a nostalgia trip. I play Mario 64 and I'm transported back to getting the N64 and plugging it in for the first time. I play Sunshine and I have fun, because the GC was a pretty solid little machine, but it isn't nearly the same. I also feel that Galaxy will do the same thing in 10 years, but 3D World will not.

Scrumpmonkey:

Well yes i didn't even touch on that. Having the second screen not be an autonomous device is also a drain on core resources i imagine. I'm not familiar with the architecture but i would assume that the tablet would need at least it's own thread if not logical core.

There has also been grumblings about Nintendo's online systems being developed effectively in a vacuum and therefore being a struggle to utilize. In terms of online play Nintendo has only just left the dark ages.

Based on what I've seen, that would be very, very accurate.
("Friend Codes" were an outdated concept when they were new. And their online matchmaking system was archaic even by 2005 standards.)

We don't want to have to learn a new controll scheme every time to release a console

My arms are slighty more outstretched with the WiiU controller! My brain can't handle the change!

Atmos Duality:

Based on what I've seen, that would be very, very accurate.
("Friend Codes" were an outdated concept when they were new. And their online matchmaking system was archaic even by 2005 standards.)

Nintendo is kind of like that freind you have who can't see to get things started, we've got to the "Look Nintendo, we love you but You're a mess" stage.

There is so much wrong with the gaming industry right now, we are downing in a see of buggy 55 AAA release with 'freemium' DLC policies, belligerent gaming executives raping their beloved franchises and giant corporations attempting to stamp out consumer rights. Nintendo does not suffer from these new evils and it has made them look better of late but they do so much else wrong that i am starting to wonder if they don't so these things simply because they are so irreverent and outmoded they can't adapt at all; good or bad.

One thing is crystal clear though; the Wii was a fluke. As many long time gamers predicted Nintendo's new audience was fickle, software too sparse and the offerings too reminiscent of what Nintendo has been doing for decades.

Andy Shandy:

So yeah, excuse me if I don't take the "Nintendo-owned company compliments Nintendo hardware" seriously. Still, I'd love a new Metroid if that's what they are working on. They've been wasted on Donkey Kong, in my opinion.

Just to note, Retro isn't actually owned by Nintendo, but they pretty much should be at this point, and them saying positive things about Nintendo consoles is like Naughty Dog saying positive things about Playstation systems. Heck, all of Retro's games have only been on Nintendo's consoles, they've never done a game for another system or company. I think it's more worrying how they note how there was a "steep learning curve from the Wii to Wii U" which shows that Nintendo really didn't bother to do any research on making an HD game despite HD games being a thing for about 6 or 7 years.

Honestly I like my Wii U, but Nintendo has screwed themselves so much because of how they didn't pay any attention to their competition or how tech was advancing, and they hoped that the same audience that bought the Wii would buy the Wii U and that's obviously not the case now.

I get incredibly annoyed when people think "game has colourful graphics, therefore is not good graphics"
There is a difference between graphical style and graphical quality, if the former is excellent, then the latter does not matter.
People don't appreciate that the same amount of work goes into the graphics of a colourful game like DKCTF and the graphics of the latest CoD game, except DKC actually has imagination in its graphical design rather than just trying to make a massive muddy brown-greyish battlefield.

Neronium:

Andy Shandy:

So yeah, excuse me if I don't take the "Nintendo-owned company compliments Nintendo hardware" seriously. Still, I'd love a new Metroid if that's what they are working on. They've been wasted on Donkey Kong, in my opinion.

Just to note, Retro isn't actually owned by Nintendo, but they pretty much should be at this point, and them saying positive things about Nintendo consoles is like Naughty Dog saying positive things about Playstation systems. Heck, all of Retro's games have only been on Nintendo's consoles, they've never done a game for another system or company. I think it's more worrying how they note how there was a "steep learning curve from the Wii to Wii U" which shows that Nintendo really didn't bother to do any research on making an HD game despite HD games being a thing for about 6 or 7 years.

Honestly I like my Wii U, but Nintendo has screwed themselves so much because of how they didn't pay any attention to their competition or how tech was advancing, and they hoped that the same audience that bought the Wii would buy the Wii U and that's obviously not the case now.

Huh, I'd always assumed Nintendo owned them. Probably in part due to all their games coming from big(ish, depending on people's personal views) Nintendo franchises. Learn something new every day =P

And I agree on everything after too. I do really want to like the Wii U, but some of Nintendo's decisions can make it difficult.

Andy Shandy:

Huh, I'd always assumed Nintendo owned them. Probably in part due to all their games coming from big(ish, depending on people's personal views) Nintendo franchises. Learn something new every day =P

And I agree on everything after too. I do really want to like the Wii U, but some of Nintendo's decisions can make it difficult.

The last company Nintendo fully bought was Monolith Soft back in I think 2007 or so, everything else is second party that they've just not bought. That includes Hal Laboratories, as they are actually not first party at all, but are second party like Retro Studios.

And for Nintendo's decisions, they honestly needed this humility more than anything. It's the same thing that happened with the PS2 going to the PS3. Sony got so big for their britches that they made very bad mistakes that ruined a lot of their image and good will, and now Nintendo has done the same thing since the Wii and DS were huge successes. Heck this isn't the first time Nintendo has made bad decisions because of getting a huge head. The N64, as Yamauchi said, was purposely made difficult to develop for because after the success of the SNES he only wanted "talented" 3rd parties to develop for it. The results, a system that many 3rd parties ignore because of it's price, difficulty to develop for, and not very good storage space when compared to the PS1. It also resulted in a lot of bad games being developed for the N64 as well because while something may be difficult to develop for, doesn't mean that it's impossible to develop for it.

Neronium:

Andy Shandy:

Huh, I'd always assumed Nintendo owned them. Probably in part due to all their games coming from big(ish, depending on people's personal views) Nintendo franchises. Learn something new every day =P

And I agree on everything after too. I do really want to like the Wii U, but some of Nintendo's decisions can make it difficult.

The last company Nintendo fully bought was Monolith Soft back in I think 2007 or so, everything else is second party that they've just not bought. That includes Hal Laboratories, as they are actually not first party at all, but are second party like Retro Studios.

And for Nintendo's decisions, they honestly needed this humility more than anything. It's the same thing that happened with the PS2 going to the PS3. Sony got so big for their britches that they made very bad mistakes that ruined a lot of their image and good will, and now Nintendo has done the same thing since the Wii and DS were huge successes. Heck this isn't the first time Nintendo has made bad decisions because of getting a huge head. The N64, as Yamauchi said, was purposely made difficult to develop for because after the success of the SNES he only wanted "talented" 3rd parties to develop for it. The results, a system that many 3rd parties ignore because of it's price, difficulty to develop for, and not very good storage space when compared to the PS1. It also resulted in a lot of bad games being developed for the N64 as well because while something may be difficult to develop for, doesn't mean that it's impossible to develop for it.

That's actually a very apt, and well thought out comparison. Especially since the PS3 didn't "bomb" so much as have a rather poor showing the first year, then playing catch-up once they got some good solid games. Hopefully, the Wii U will do the same. Even if you aren't a fan of Nintendo, they have enough of a name and franchises to have a serious impact if they step out of the console race.

thebobmaster:

That's actually a very apt, and well thought out comparison. Especially since the PS3 didn't "bomb" so much as have a rather poor showing the first year, then playing catch-up once they got some good solid games. Hopefully, the Wii U will do the same. Even if you aren't a fan of Nintendo, they have enough of a name and franchises to have a serious impact if they step out of the console race.

While the PS3 didn't bomb per say, one cannot say that it didn't have very bad consequences for Sony. It helped put them in a financial hole since the actual development costs were lied about by Ken Kutaragi (the 20GB model cost $900 to make, and only sold for $499 and the 60GB model cost $1100 to make and sold for only $600) and when Sony found out about that they weren't too happy. But after that was revealed, Sony suddenly went out on a huge marketing and ad campaign, started dropping the price of the PS3 (that's why the backwards compatibility was taken out, because launch PS3's had an actual PS2 inside them), and suddenly a lot of games started coming out. Sony didn't really start selling more units until around 2009, and by 2010 they had finally started profiting on the PS3 in general.

The Wii U is currently facing similar problems, but while Nintendo has acknowledged many problems, they still aren't really doing anything out it. Advertisement wise, they aren't even trying. I keep my TV on Cartoon Network and Nickelodeon for white noise all day, and as of now I've only seen 2 Donkey Kong Tropical Freeze ads. This is sad, especially since last generation Nintendo had the Wii Would Like to Play ads which were amazing. The Wii U ads on the other hand almost never show the actual Wii U, as they just show the tablet controller which has lead to many believing that the Wii U is just an expensive add-on for the Nintendo Wii.

Then there is the Wii Mini, otherwise known as the most useless device to ever exist. Nintendo is still selling the Wii Mini's and I've seen them in stores everywhere, and given how many consumers are confused that the Wii U is a new console what would look better when a mother was gonna buy a new system for their kids: a Wii Mini that is only $99 (terrible price for that considering the Wii Mini can't connect online nor use component cables) or the $299 Wii U in which the other thinks it's just an expensive tablet.

Then there is another fault they have, the fact that the Nintendo Directs generally have more content about the 3DS than the Wii U, and that not everyone knows when the next Nintendo Directs are. Some people I've seen claim that "oh Nintendo doesn't need to advertise as word of mouth is good enough" (I wish I was joking, there are some on this site that have said that) and that sentiment is completely false. Word of mouth only is good if the consumers actually know what the product is, and even then word of mouth didn't save the Wonderful 101 which flopped hard in the market.

I've seen Nintendo and know that they can do better, but from how they constantly still promote the 3DS and 2DS more than their home console, you get the feeling that they honestly don't care and don't wanna try. It's like seeing someone who has a doctorate in psychology working at a McDonalds not wanting to leave that McDonalds at all. We all know Nintendo can do better, we've seen it, but as of now it seems like they don't really care.

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