Oles Shishkovtsov, from Metro developers 4A Games, delivered a short-but-interesting verdict on Nintendo's new console recently when he said "[The] Wii U has a horrible, slow CPU."
4A & THQ PR man Huw Beynon (THQ being the publisher of 4A's Metro: Last Light) elaborated a little more at the time, but in the wake of reaction to Shishkovtsov's comments has come out and tried to elaborate a whole lot more.
"I think there was one comment made by Oles the programmer - the guy who built the engine," he told Eurogamer.
"It's a very CPU intensive game. I think it's been verified by plenty of other sources, including your own Digital Foundry guys, that the CPU on Wii U on the face of it isn't as fast as some of the other consoles out there. Lots of developers are finding ways to get around that because of other interesting parts of the platform."
"I think that what frustrates me about the way the story's been spun out is that there's been no opportunity to say, 'Well, yes, on that one individual piece maybe it's not as... maybe his opinion is that it's not as easy for the way that the 4A engine's been built as is the others."
Beynon then says the game could have been ported to iPad if Metro had wanted, but that every version stretches the small developer's resources, which are pushed pretty far as it is with three versions of Metro: Last Light planned.
In the wake of Shishkovtsov's comments, however, another developer—Gustav Halling, from Battlefield developers DICE—has come out and said he's been hearing much the same thing, writing on Twitter:
This is also what I been hearing within the industry, to bad since it will shorten its life a lot when new gen. starts. m.kotaku.com/5962354/the-wi…— Gustav Halling (@gustavhalling) November 21, 2012
@jayleemin GPU and ram is nice to have shaders/textures loaded. Physics and gameplay run on CPU mostly so player count is affected etc.— Gustav Halling (@gustavhalling) November 21, 2012
None of which is necessarily a problem for consumers. Halling himself later says what Wii U owners will already know, that the console will get plenty of great games from Nintendo, but as a third-party developer who's about to start making games for a new generation of consoles, you can perhaps understand his (and Shishkovtsov's) frustration.