id Boss: Third-party Wii Development "Not Really Justified"

Illustration for article titled id Boss: Third-party Wii Development "Not Really Justified"

id CEO Todd Hollenshead remains unconvinced that there's a good reason for "independent, Wii-centric" development. He's willing to hear someone out, he just hasn't heard a good argument for it yet.

Advertisement

Hollenshead, in an interview with GameSpot, was asked if the Wii's meteoric sales and success inevitably meant a shift in resources toward third-party development more suited for that platform. Putting it gently, Hollenshead said no.

If you look at the data, the Wii is Nintendo—and then everybody else. And then among everybody else, it's licensed properties - and then stuff that people lose money on. So, for a really original, game-centric IP, if you're a third-party developer, I would say, "Show me what makes such a compelling case for the Wii.

That's not to say he ridicules Nintendo or the platform. Actually, he brings up a point I think we'd all do well to keep in mind: "Sometimes people lose sight of the fact that almost every company doesn't try to be all things to all people. Nintendo isn't trying to be all things to all people either.

Of course, this will be the year The Conduit finally releases, published by Sega. But Madworld (also Sega) despite a generous run-up of hype and reasonably good reviews, hasn't made the kind of splash on Wii analagous to a typical multiplatform drop on the 360 and PS3. That underlines another point Hollenshead made:

Even if we make an awesome game, there's still a question as to whether we're going to justify our investment. And also, I mean, if you look at the market, the type of games we traditionally make, those games are selling record numbers on non-Wii platforms.

Would Madworld have done so on PS3 and/or 360?

Hollenshead Rages About PC Gaming, E3 Surprises [Gamestop via Play.tm

Advertisement

DISCUSSION

I don't get the id hate in these comments. For any gamer with a sense of history, I mean come on. The company was almost exclusively PC for the longest time in the first place, and built their brand during what a lot of people would consider the golden age of the PC FPS, alongside Valve and Epic. It was like a three-man arms race to see which studio would one-up the other.

id has faded in recent years, and who knows if Rage will produce nearly the splash that Quake and Doom did in their day (doubting it, given the impending COD juggernaut dropping this year), but FPS is their bread and butter. The Wii's limited online and graphical capabilities, not to mention userbase, make developing a losing bet. Hollenshead is just stating the obvious.