According to multiple sources, the Nintendo NX is a secret Nintendo is still holding close to the chest.
For developers Moon Studios(Ori and the Blind Forest), and ColdWood Interactive(Unravel), getting their games onto the Nintendo NX has proven to be difficult.
Thomas Mahler(Ori and the Blind Forest) spoke up about the issue on NeoGAF not too long ago. His post is incredibly passionate towards getting software on the Nintendo NX, following a prediction of console failure without said support. Mahler went on record saying that Nintendo has sent out no dev kits, and that’ll make it impossible to get games on in the same year as release… Unless you want complete garbage.
Mahler had this argument against the secretive nature of the Nintendo NX. “The same is true for Engine Support – Get Unity and Epic to support these consoles WAAAAY ahead of release. By the time the console launches, it should be EASY for developers to develop games for these systems, things shouldn’t just only start at this point. I want the ******* devkits or at least proper hardware specs ideally 2 years before release – Keep all the developers updated, start a forum where devs can chat and figure out all the problems everyone’s having, instead of everyone just having to deal with it. None of that’s happening anywhere and it’s just braindamaged.”
Last year it was reported by Wall Street Journal that Nintendo began distributing packages in October 2015. (via EGMNOW) That still isn’t the two years that Thomas Mahler asked for, and it is possible that Nintendo is ignoring Indie developers at this point in time.
The ignorance would only continue to reflect Dan Adelman’s decision to leave the company in 2014. After he was asked to stop Tweeting in 2013, he let his Twitter remain in silence until he left the company.
Happy to announce I reached an arrangement w/ @NintendoAmerica whereby I can tweet again. Arrangement includes my not working there anymore.
— Dan Adelman (@Dan_Adelman) August 4, 2014
And by the sounds of multiple interviews, it wasn’t exactly on good terms.
GamingBolt recently interviewed Martin Sahlin, the developer behind Unravel. When discussing whether Unravel would make its way onto the NX, Sahlin said that he would have no problems porting over the game. “The more ways we have to reach the audience, the better,”
Sahlin went on to talk about his experience trying to get information on the Nintendo NX. Needless to say, it didn’t go very well. “So he wanted me to pitch something for the NX, and then he could tell me more about what it was. […] it’s kind of hard to pitch something when you don’t even know what it is! So if you manage to guess it right, we’ll tell you what it is.”
But Game Maker (what I use) doesn’t export to any Nintendo platforms. In most cases, the game would have to be reprogrammed from scratch.
— tobyfox (@tobyfox) February 4, 2016
Although it isn’t a promise of Undertale reaching the Wii U, it certainly is a start.
For Nintendo, the Wii U has only sold 12.60 million units. The only console to do worse in the company’s history was the Color TV Game, released back in 1977. The Color TV Game arguably did so bad because the home console wasn’t an established market yet. Even the GameCube, often considered a failure, has sold 21.74 million(for those keeping track, that’s almost twice as much as the Wii U).
Although the Indie market has only recently become established, large in part to Indie Game: The Movie(2012), Nintendo’s lack of support is a bit questionable. Both Microsoft and Sony has done their best to support the market recently, with PlayStation even signing on No Man’s Sky as an exclusive release.
The Wii U’s failure is large in part due to odd peripherals and a lack of titles. Although many will argue Nintendo is mainly apart first party titles, the release of ZombiU from Ubisoft shortly after console launch was realization for the unique opportunities to be had. With less clutter on the main screen, users could focus on a more realistic horror experience.
Unfortunately, that was never capitalized on in the extent that Nintendo wanted. Instead, Indie devs figure it wasn’t worth the hassle to port most of their content over to a console that Nintendo didn’t even support itself. Currently, the Wii U only has 51 titles published (or planned to be published) by Nintendo itself. (source)
That isn’t even taking into account the amount of retro titles that have been ported over.