EA: Wii U Can Do Anything Xbox 360 and PS3 Can
Third parties seem to be in love with the Wii U. So far, developers like Irrational, Activision, Ubisoft, Bethesda, DICE, Crytek, Epic and Junction Point have all sung praises for the hardware. Notable in its support for Nintendo’s next console has been megapublisher EA, pledging ‘major support’ for the Wii U. Now, after having had the development kits for the system for some time, they are ready to shed some light on the console’s innards.
Speaking to Eurogamer, EA Sports vice president Andrew Wilson said, “The short answer is yes, we have a better idea of Wii U’s power; the longer answer is not quite.
“As every new piece of hardware and every new development library comes through we get a greater understanding of the power. With our early research we had been very happy with the output of the box and we expect that that will only go up moving forward.
“There are added challenges for us as developers when you think about rendering on two screens and what that might mean, but we’re looking forward to that challenge.
“It’s still moving,” he added, “but I think we’ll be able to do anything that we can do on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 on the Wii U.”
Of course, that last line may not appear quite so encouraging to many, who would reasonably expect a notable power jump with the Wii U, considering that the system is five years newer than those two. When quizzed about this, Wilson had this to say:
“I think that’s our hope… but again we’re still in the early stages.”
Whereas he was relatively forthcoming about the Wii U’s power, he was more evasive about the Wii U’s rumored online capabilities, which does not send out an encouraging message to those wondering why Nintendo has been mum on the subject. Apparently, EA Sports, like every other developer working on the Wii U, is under ‘extremely strict NDAs.’ However, he was willing to divulge some details, though nothing he said was conclusive either way.
“Online is something that we’re working very closely with Nintendo on,” said Wilson. “We are highlighting to them what we believe are the most important elements to that infrastructure to deliver a connected experience that we think is the future of gaming.
“They have demonstrated an openness and willingness to work with us and work with developers that I think will only land us in a positive place.
“We’re working through the development with them now,” he added. “We have a series of people who are under very strict NDAs as you can imagine, operating with them, building that system out.”
So, there you have it. Like everything else about the system, the Wii U’s capabilities and its online infrastructure remain shrouded in mystery. But by bit, however, the fog seems to be clearing. Will the Wii U be enough? We’ll see soon enough.