Indie studio Dahku Creations has announced its departure from games development on both Nintendo’s home console and mobile gaming devices. The developer – which brought games such as Chubbins
and Soon Shine to the Wii U eShop in North America – has decided it’s the end of the road for their efforts by sharing the news on the studio’s official blog
Despite the successes of both Chubbins and Soon Shine on the Wii U, compared to Dahku’s iOS development, it just wasn’t enough to propel the studio further in the games market, saying that the “window of opportunity has closed”.
By contrast, Soon Shine on Wii U was a success. Again we got great community coverage, reviews were generally more positive than they were for Chubbins, and the sales have been infinitely better than they were on iOS. And in fact, Soon Shine sold as many Wii U copies in four days as Chubbins did Wii U copies in four weeks. Of course that isn’t saying much, and sadly, it still isn’t enough. Nowhere near it, in fact.
So that’s it. The window of opportunity has closed. Our dev equipment has been returned to Nintendo. If our games turn out to be sleeper hits, or if we eventually have money to burn from some other source of income, maybe we’ll be back to take another stab at game development someday. For now, this chapter comes to an end.
Dahku Creations has said the level of support its games have received on the Wii U, coupled with the fantastic support from Nintendo, was more than the studio ever received on iOS. Whether Dahku will ever return to game development is unknown, but the studio remains humble and thankful for the experience shared. You can check out Dahku Creations’ blog post in full, here.
HullBreach Studios has announced it has two new games planned for the Wii U. The first will be named “Tomeling in Trouble” and is scheduled for a release on iOS and Android for the third or fourth quarter this year. According to the developer, it will combine elements from an action game but will present itself as a runner title.
Tomeling in Trouble will be packaged in with the exclusive Wii U title “Tomeling” – which is an RPG with both 2D and 3D aspects. HullBreach – the studio who were set to revive Sadness – has yet to pin a date for the latter game, however. Looking at the early screenshot above makes for odd – though welcome – cravings for ice-cream sandwiches, hopefully without the eyes and legs attached.
Pier Solar HD was originally scheduled to hit the Wii U last December, but was then pushed to a later release date in 2014. Now, indie developer WaterMelon has pinned down an April release date for the Sega Genesis RPG HD remake.
The JRPG-inspired title has over 50 hours of gameplay, with around 300 locations ready to explore and focuses on the adventures of three best friends. Pier Solar HD is set to come to a variety of other platforms, including PS3, PS4, Xbox One, PC, Mac, Linux, Android and Dreamcast, but WaterMelon CEO Tulio Goncalves says he’d like to extend the list by adding the Nintendo 3DS. Goncalves said the following in support of Nintendo’s consoles:
“On Wii U, we’re definitely putting the second screen to good use, a feature that will be exclusive of that platform — well, maybe not for long if we end up making it to the 3DS, but that’s for later. We planned a few functions for the second screen that will add to the gameplay; I’m sure the Wii U players will enjoy them. We’re hoping to release the game in April.”
Two Tribes has teased that ‘something pretty nice’ is coming soon to Wii U. Based on a tweet from the studio, several indie developers – including KnapNok Games, Gaijin Games, Black Forest Games and WayForward – have something cooking up for Nintendo’s console. Two Tribes will make its mysterious Wii U-related announcement later this week.
Update: Turns out the tease was for this Wii U eShop sale.
In a new interview, Dan Adelman, manager of business development licensing at Nintendo, has revealed that there has been some talk at the company of the implementation of “cross-buy”, but nothing definite has been decided upon as of yet.
Cross-buy is a policy utilized by Steam and Playstation Network, whereby gamers who purchase a title with one of those companies can then play that title across all platforms offered by that company. For instance, a game purchased on PS3 could also be played on Vita or PSP. Adelman stated that the incorporation of this feature at Nintendo would largely depend on developer demand. For now, we will have to see, but with the degree to which Nintendo is trying to increase the appeal of indie games on its consoles as of late, this move may very well be in the cards in the near future. Here is a quote from Adelman regarding cross-buy on Nintendo consoles:
“We don’t have anything new to announce on that, but I believe that the idea’s been talked about. So it’s something we’re definitely up to considering if there’s enough demand from developers, but nothing to announce for right now.”
Ed Valiente, Business Development Manager at Nintendo of Europe, has been making more waves at the Indie Games Collective event in London. In addition to the announcement of Miiverse on 3DS, Valiente has taken the time to outline several of the benefits of publishing on Nintendo eShops. Foremost on the list is Nintendo’s policy that publishers cannot pay for featured placement in their eShops, meaning that a small indie game will appear featured right next to more mainstream first-party titles like Mario or Zelda. Additionally, Valiente revealed that Nintendo is developing special promo codes that publishers can give to help distribute their games to the media before actually being launched.
These new announcements come at a time when Nintendo is working hard to bolster its appeal to indie developers. The company has caught flak in the past for having policies in place that were not conducive to small developers looking to bring their games to Nintendo consoles. With Wii U desperately in need of a boost in sales, equal feature placement in the eShop and promo codes that facilitate the ease of distribution should be two factors that help attract more developers to the system, and hopefully, more buyers as well.
In a new interview with Polygon, Nintendo’s manager of business development licensing, Dan Adelman, as well senior manager of licensing marketing, Damon Baker, discuss the company’s policies for finding and cultivating independent developers for Nintendo consoles. Adelman admits that certain policies from the WiiWare days, like the requirement to work out of an office rather than from home, stifled Nintendo’s ability to entice indies to bring games to Nintendo. Despite the company’s struggles on this front, he goes on to reveal that those old policies have been eradicated, and that being one of Nintendo’s indie developers now comes with “…a really low cost of entry and a really smooth process.”
One highlight of the interview is when Adelman discusses the fact that Nintendo’s restrictions blocked The Blinding of Isaac from release on Nintendo platforms, saying “…it kills me a little bit, because I love the game.”
Baker, who is responsible for the presence of Nintendo’s eShop titles at major gaming events, had this to say: “We need to be more proactive with … having presence at all the digital developer events, spreading the good word of Nintendo eShop and how to develop on our platforms.” He also revealed that Nintendo’s strong showcase at PAX Prime will be followed by an exhibit at Indiecade, the L.A.-based indie festival taking place next month.
The indie-focused interview comes shortly after Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime made some strong comments in support of indie developers. In addition to Nintendo’s business and marketing improvements on the indie front, the company has been making technological strides with its new web framework. As a slew of indie titles are scheduled to arrive for its low-selling Wii U console in late 2013/early 2014, Nintendo’s new indie focus leaves them poised to capitalize on this market in lieu of the current dearth of strong first-party material.