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Here’s Why Retro City Rampage Won’t Be Coming To Wii U

Vblank Entertainment has explained in a lengthy blog post that they keep getting requests to port Retro City Rampage to the Wii U. However, the developer says there’s a number of reasons why this won’t happen. Vblank Entertainment says that bringing the game to the platform would be a lot of hard work and since the Wii U has a small install base it wouldn’t have been popular anyway.

“Unfortunately, Wii U is a completely different system from Wii. Wii code cannot be simply put on Wii U with the push of a button. It’s different architecture, a different SDK/API, with different platform requirements. Developers must deal with game ratings (PEGI, ESRB, etc.), business/paperwork/production, e-manuals, icons, store assets, localization, testing, certification, a new round of marketing, etc. — it wouldn’t be trivial and would take months from start to finish. In the end, it would be 95% identical to the WiiWare version.”
“Further more, the Wii version still hasn’t made me a cent due to the threshold requirement. I get more requests for a Wii U version each week than actual WiiWare sales. I really would hope more of you would show your support and purchase it via Wii mode. It would be win-win.”

“Not only that, but during the Wii U launch period and small installbase, Wii U eShop games weren’t actually doing gangbusters either. It wouldn’t have been a huge success on there either at the time. I can’t stress this enough. Both options were poor options at the time!”

41 thoughts on “Here’s Why Retro City Rampage Won’t Be Coming To Wii U”

  1. The dude went out of his way to bring the game to the Wii due to requests and because he wanted to bring it to more people. Nobody supported him. I don’t blame him for not doing a “Wii U” version.

      1. Exactly. He could get 1,000 emails and even if all 1,000 people purchased the game, he wouldn’t be breaking even.

        Reality is that he probably has received a couple dozen emails and even all those people probably wouldn’t purchase it if he released it.

    1. They’re not just “small.” It’s literally one guy who has sat in his room for 9 years making this game for various platforms. He has spent countless hours of his life and tons of his own money (going into debt actually) just to bring out this game.

      He’s not being whiny. Instead of replying to each request, he’s explaining why it’s not going to happen. With all of the expenses and time that goes into it and the fact that he will just be hurting himself, there’s no point for to do it. The game *is* available on the Wii U through the WiiWare on Wii mode.

      1. Not all, but most people do not use the Wii menu on the Wii U, the Wii U has been slow enough to boot up as is, let alone wait for the Wii menu to load.

        This game was released on WiiWare February 28, 2013. The Wii U came out November 18, 2012.

        The way I look at it, the game should have come out for the newer system first…

    1. Working hard for little to no return in investment is just dumb.

      If you really think this way though, then you’re basically an employers wet dream, this is the equivalent to an employer asking someone to put in overtime with no guarantee of getting compensated for such and he’s already getting underpaid for the work he put in already. But no, you’re implication of him being whiny/lazy is right, because you would be totally cool with working hard, getting no money in return for the hard work you put in, then asked to work even more!!

  2. I respect this guy. At his own expense he made this game for almost every platform, spent nearly a decade making it, and barely made any money from the games. He even brought it to platforms where he got no support.

    Instead of becoming bitter, he still continues to do what he’s passionate about. Too often, indie developers are hit hard with reality and it makes them bitter about the whole industry. Glad he can keep his head up.

  3. Says eShop indies don’t sell gangbusters, yet a lot of indie devs state otherwise… I’m more inclined to believe the indie devs who have games on the eShop…

        1. Renegade Kid said that while it was profitable because it was just a 3DS port, their games sold “OK” on the Wii U.

          Shovel Knight devs, Yacht Club, did say they were happy with sales but that took into consideration their kickstarter, 3DS, and PC sales. Out of the three, Wii U sold the least amount and Nintendo gamers gave the least amount of overall support.

          The game did reach the number 2 spot on the Wii U charts, but they didn’t have anything to compare it to really, they said. Here’s a good breakdown from them:

          In the end, even if those two games were million sellers, that’s just two out of hundreds if not thousands. They don’t speak for the majority.

  4. “Wii code cannot be simply put on Wii U with the push of a button. It’s different architecture, a different SDK/API, with different platform requirements. Developers must deal with game ratings (PEGI, ESRB, etc.), business/paperwork/production, e-manuals, icons, store assets, localization, testing, certification, a new round of marketing, etc.”

    -I don’t believe in this crap. I’m sorry but ANY Developer for any PLATFORM have to do this, like it or not; so it’s not something you could whine about.

    -His other statement about the Wii version is not being sold as expected, that’s a valid argument and i understand why he don’t want to risk more on a WiiU version. But nothing else.

    I think if there’s enough players asking about it, there could be a WiiU version. If he do a survey or a vote system, he at least could have a glimpse of how many people will buy a WiiU version.

    There’s more room for Indie games on WiiU than in Wii. Plurs, there’s more than 7.9 million WiiU users out there; there’s plenty of room to see money return. If it’s a good game, he could sold between 200.000 to 400.000 copies; that’s not bad. And if it’s excellent game he could dream about 1 million.

    1. The Wii had an install base of over 100 million. A few months ago the dev had asked people on Facebook and Twitter to purchase the game on Wii because it still hasn’t met the sales threshold to get his $$ back. Emphasis on 100 million install base. the sales threshold for WiiWare devs to get their money back is 6,000.

  5. Eh, bought it on PC, some of the missions started to feel like chores and the novelty of it all wore off pretty fast. Plus I saw a few things that came across as racist/offensive. Decent game if you played it in small bursts and didn’t spend too much time with it at once I suppose but making the jump from WiiWare to Wii U eShop isn’t really necessary imo.

    As far as good eShop games go, since PS Shovel Knight is getting Kratos it’d be cool if the Nintendo versions got Bowser or someone like that. It sold pretty well on Nintendo platforms…

  6. I don’t blame the guy at all I suppose. However I do believe he has fallen victim to what most other people have when it comes to the Wii U. They compare it to the Original Wii.

    No offence to this guy, but just becouse the game didn’t sell on the Wii, does not have any impact on how it will sell on the Wii U. WiiWare was clunky, user unfriendly, and really not that popular. I had a Wii for years and never once did I buy an online game.

    The Wii U is different. Correct me if I’m wrong here, but I don’t believe the Wii U has a sales “threshold”. Plus the interface is much more user friendly, and is just more popular in general. I believe he could make a profit on the Wii U. There is a reason that Capcom, and all these other Indie companies keep putting thier games on the Eshop. Becouse they are selling.

  7. Even though he may make sense about the Wii U early situation and the game’s flop on Wii platform which is a surprising revelation considering how big Wii was back then. But on the other hand, I have never even heard of this game period so you have to take the amount of advertising into account.

    At least he isn’t talking dumbshit of why he isn’t porting the game to Wii U by calling it “weak or crap” like EA after their butthurt reaction from Origin rejection. He explained professionally of why he just doesn’t have the time to make it happen and why that is not only from past launches but also Wii U being a different system to code all over again.

  8. Now here’s my personal beef with this game…
    I was one of the many looking forward to this when it was first ever mentioned. I was a fan of the 2D GTA games, have been since the first ones on the Playstation… and I was a big fan of retro-inspired-upgraded games, the concepts at least (since during this game’s first mention, not too many games jumped on this train yet)… When this game was first mentioned, it was hinted to be a WiiWare exclusive. It seemed like a perfect fit. Virtual Console? Retro-esque WiiWare? Sitting side by side on the Wii Menu? Awesome.

    The first problem was… long long after the first mention of this game, it was then said it would be releasing on multiple consoles. Uh… okay… that’s not a big problem. That’s actually pretty good so that everyone can play it… though with the console wars going on it’s going to get less sales if someone has access to this game on another console they prefer it on, in theory at least…
    The second problem was even more of a bother… as predicted, releasing on multiple consoles meant… delayed release date. Argh. I had been looking forward to it, and there it was, pushed back even further…
    The third problem was serious… it released on other consoles FIRST. BEFORE the initially planned WiiWare release. It wouldn’t be that big of a problem if it weren’t for the fact that this occurred during a horrible game drought for the Wii.
    The fourth problem was what made sure I wouldn’t purchase it… So they say the WiiWare version is still planned for release, but is lacking? The other versions have more to offer? Some say it’s size restrictions, but when you see games like My Life as a King running fine and dandy, you tend to get a little skeptical over that statement… What’s the point of even getting this game now? For the WiiWare, that is…
    And the fifth problem… well, I can’t really respect the guy’s words about sales after the 5th problem came in: It released in 2013 for the WiiWare. We were already upgraded to a Wii U at this point. Why in the world would we get it on the WiiWare service? A gimped version of a game, released years after hype and care for it had died down significantly, on a service that’s just a “hey, you can play the games you already bought” feature known as the Wii Mode. Now, around this time, I don’t think the Wii Mode had GamePad Mode yet, so the idea of getting a retro game back on the big screen with the annoyances of navigating through the Wii Mode with the Wiimote+Sensor Bar again (when you deal with glares on a daily basis, this is a bother and a half), without the convenience of just starting it up on the GamePad and playing it while your loved ones are using the TV…? Not so appealing.
    And now? After getting used to the GamePad’s control scheme and its convenience of playing things without additional controllers on the bed? Why in the world would one care to get this game on WiiWare?

    I respect the guy and all he has to do. But one can’t just look at it from the creator’s point of view, one also has to look at it from the consumer’s point of view. If the creator’s perspective was all that mattered then thousands of horrible movies would be considered amazing.
    Consumer-view, wise? This game used to be worth purchasing on the WiiWare service… but after being juggled around like that…? Nope. There are other games out there that need support, and are here right now.
    It would be different if the WiiWare version was just as good as the other versions, and it would be completely different if the WiiWare version was better than the other versions (like Rayman: Origins being better on the Wii U so the wait was worth it)… but since it isn’t, it isn’t worth it.

    So sorry. I’d love to… years ago.
    But this is on the “too little too late” category of things.

  9. I understand his reasoning, but any developer who has released games on both the Wii and Wii U can attest that indie games are performing 10x better on the Wii U than on the Wii. Like it or not, most Wii consumers ignored WiiWare. The virtual console got love, but the WiiWare stuff was hardly ever touched. I enjoy indie games and even I barely went to the wiiware channel. Yet on my Wii U, I see indie games every single time I open that shop channel. They are heavily advertised there, and most of them, at least the good ones, have really high ratings front and center that entice me to give them a try. I have yet to regret an indie purchase on my Wii U.

    I know I can get this game through the Wii Shop Channel, but that is, above all else, a big HASSLE for Wii U consumers, because we love playing these indie games on our gamepad and in HD, something we can’t do in Wii mode, which is why very few people who own a Wii U buy anything off the Wii Shop channel. It requires rebooting the system and losing access to miiverse, the internet browser. multitasking, and our entire Wii U library until we reboot the system.

    This may seem like “minor” things compared to a few months of development, but at the consumer level, just one of these annoyances can prevent sales. Add them all together and no one is going to bother.

    Even as he references “indie games at launch didn’t do gangbusters” – he ignores that all of those indie games were profitable… profitable enough for those same developers to release more games on the platform. There are some devs making more money with the game on the WIi U than the 3DS.

    Say what folks want, and this developer, but outside of Nintendo releases, indie games are the lifeblood of the console.

    Now, I respect that he is burned but he old Wii policies (which don’t exist currently) and investing into a Wii U project may not seem like a smart move, but he can talk to other indie devs if they want – they are turning profits on the Wii U. Might be worth a shot really. We know the game made money on the 3DS.

    But hey, his choice. Pretty lengthy post by him to essentially say “we were burned by the Wii and the Wii U has a low install base”. Even if that statement is ironic, ebcause indie games sell better on the Wii U than the Wii, with less than 1/10th of the Wii’s audience.

  10. Everyone is using the “small install base” as an excuse not to develop for Wii U. Sakurai puts all of these developers to shame.

  11. He took the risk to give the fans what they wanted, sadly he didn’t earn from it, so his decision not to risk more for the Wii U is understandable, I still bought it for the 3DS to show support, like most indies on the Wii U.

  12. It may not be similar to the Wii but it is similar to the 360, did he not make a version of that, that could be ported?

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