Game developer: Wii has 'a lot of substandard software'

The Nintendo Wii might lead the video game industry, but its software sales just aren't cutting it for some developers.

Don Reisinger
Don Reisinger
Former CNET contributor Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.
2 min read
Nintendo Wii
Is the Wii a viable third-party platform? Nintendo

The Nintendo Wii might be leading the video game market, but at least one game developer is suspect of its software.

Lightning Fish Games CEO Simon Prytherch sat down with GamesIndustry.biz in a recent interview discussing his company and the state of the gaming industry. Lightning Fish Games develops "family-oriented" games for major consoles.

After discussing what he has learned about the industry, he shared his opinion on the state of the Wii and its market.

"Wii is a very casual, wide market," Prytherch said in the interview. "It's a market that doesn't care about flashy graphics--it cares more about the gameplay and experience, and potentially the characterization."

But Prytherch had much more to say. The developer told the site that he doesn't "think you can ever write Nintendo off," but the console's games market "from a third-party software developer and publisher perspective, is oversaturated with product."

Unfortunately, Prytherch asserts, consumers have suffered most. He said that they "have been damaged by a lot of substandard software," which has caused them to "only trust big Nintendo brands."

Those are some awfully strong words from a developer that has so far failed to attract the kind of market attention larger companies Ubisoft or Electronic Arts have. But he's not alone in his belief that Wii gamers aren't attracted to third-party games.

Speaking at a conference call last month, EA CEO John Riccitiello said that "the Wii platform has been a little weaker than we had certainly anticipated. And there is no lack of frustration (about this coming out) at precisely the time where we have the strongest third-party share."

Riccitiello went on to say that his company was trying to work with Nintendo "to push third-party software harder." He then echoed Prytherch's sentiments, saying "very, very few multiplatform titles are succeeding on the Wii so far, and collectively, Electronic Arts and Nintendo need to tackle that." Yikes.

We've heard from the developers, now let's hear from you. What do you think about the Wii's position in the gaming business? Is its game library weak? Do you buy third-party titles? Let us know in the comments below.