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Wii Nintendo Games

Is There a Future For Mature Games On Wii? 186

Posted by Soulskill
from the grand-theft-mario-kart dept.
digitalfever writes "There are more than 50 million Wii systems worldwide. Logically, the audience for a wide range of games and interactive experiences should be rather big, but based on the evidence so far, either that's not true — or publishers have been hedging the wrong bets. No one has conclusively proved the case for (or against) the viability of mature games on Wii, but 2009 was a litmus test on a number of fronts, including the DS. The results aren't encouraging. "
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Is There a Future For Mature Games On Wii?

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  • No (Score:4, Insightful)

    by xtracto (837672) on Wednesday November 04, 2009 @03:27AM (#29975162) Journal

    No, the two Wii owners who expected mature games on the wii (I am one of them) have already given up.

    Next questions.

    • Re:No (Score:4, Funny)

      by JimboFBX (1097277) on Wednesday November 04, 2009 @03:33AM (#29975200)
      Oh hey, I must be the other guy! Nice to finally meet you!
    • I was thinking about getting a Wii. Are all the games really like the ones I see every once and a while on TV? Blocky, bright, childish looking? Or are there any decent games out there?
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by MichaelSmith (789609)

        My son plays Star Wars: The force unleashed on our (his) Wii. The graphics on that game are much more like PC games than the Wii Sport games. I am just not much into games myself.

        • by TheLink (130905)
          OK I see the mature title now - "Slut Wars, the force unleashed on your Wii".
        • I am just not much into games myself.

          I don't understand...

          • I am just not much into games myself.

            I don't understand...

            I'm just not. Even in high school (~30 years ago) we had games on the Apple ][. I would watch other people play them, write my own or patch them for people. Never had an interest in playing.

      • Re:No (Score:5, Informative)

        by Toonol (1057698) on Wednesday November 04, 2009 @04:30AM (#29975558)
        Yeah, there's a lot. And, keep in mind that some 'childish looking' games are absolutely very appropriate for adults. "A Little Kings Story" looks like a cross between Pokemon and a Fairy Tale, but has very sophisticated gameplay and humor.

        Some of the games for the Wii you could consider 'mature' in the gritty/violent sense are: No More Heroes. The Conduit. Madworld. Resident Evil 4. House of the Dead: Maximum Overkill. Dead Space: Extraction. Left for Dead. Onechanbara: Bikini Zombie Slayers (I LIKE that one!).

        Games that are good, but not packed with sex/violence, are: Fire Emblem. Phantom Brave. A Little Kings Story. Murumasa. A Boy and his Blob. Super Mario Galaxies. Metroid Prime 3. Tales of Symphonia: A New World. Okami.

        Upcoming games that look to be good: Silent Hill: Shattered Memories. Final Fantasy:Crystal Chronicles:The Crystal Bearers (two colons in that one). Metroid: Other M. No More Heroes 2. Red Steel 2. Monster Hunter 3. Dragon Quest X.

        I kind of went overboard responding to you, because experience tells me that there will be all sorts of posts saying that the Wii has no games, and probably complaining about the inch of dust that's accumulated. If you look, there are plenty of decent games.
        • Thanks, I've got some google fodder now :D
        • "A Little Kings Story" looks like a cross between Pokemon and a Fairy Tale, but has very sophisticated gameplay and humor.

          Ha. I was about to mention the same thing. I'm playing it now. It starts out so sweet and happy, with the world's most adorable cows, and next thing you know you're carrying out genocide against the neighboring kingdom. Good times. :-)

          I like how some folks hold up MadWorld's tepid response as an example of lack of demand for "adult" games. No, MadWorld was just a clunky, repetitive borefest whose admittedly neat looking graphics turned out to be headache inducing after a short while.

          • Wait. Adorable cows and genocide? They don't tell you this important shit on reviews! I'm gonna pick this up. Adorable genocide is awesome!

        • by Clovis42 (1229086)

          Some of the games for the Wii you could consider 'mature' in the gritty/violent sense are: No More Heroes. The Conduit. Madworld. Resident Evil 4. House of the Dead: Maximum Overkill. Dead Space: Extraction. Left for Dead. Onechanbara: Bikini Zombie Slayers

          Did you mean Left 4 Dead? Because that has definitely not been released on the Wii.

          • by mathx314 (1365325)
            I'm guessing he meant to say Dead Rising, since there's a Wii version of that.
            • by Toonol (1057698)
              That is what I meant, thanks. Too many games with "Dead" in the title... for some reason, there's a LOT of zombie killing games on the Wii.
        • "A Little Kings Story" looks like a cross between Pokemon and a Fairy Tale

          From the Wikipedia article, it's called "Osama Monogatari" in Japanese. Since when was Osama bin Laden crowned king?

          But seriously, there are TV shows for adults that look cartoonish too, like The Simpsons and Family Guy.

          Metroid: Other M

          Will it really be Other M, or just Other T? A lot of people who prefer gritty games definitely won't buy it if it ends up Other E10+.

      • Most Wii games are shit. But there's a few gems amidst the rough. Mario Galaxy might be the best game this generation. Metroid Prime 3 is worth a play, and if you haven't played Resident Evil 4 yet, the Wii version is the definitive version of the game. There's also Zack and Wiki, Mario Kart, and Super Smash Bros. Brawl. I hear that they are all good, but I haven't spent a lot of time with them yet.
        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by scot4875 (542869)

          Most games in general are shit. This has been true of all consoles in all generations. The Wii is not special in that regard. Has everyone already forgotten the huge amount of shovelware that the PS2 had?

          The same can be said for pretty much any medium: most music, movies, books and TV is shit.

          --Jeremy

  • by Trepidity (597) <delirium-slashdot AT hackish DOT org> on Wednesday November 04, 2009 @03:40AM (#29975262)

    The Wii has plenty of games for "mature audiences", like your grandmother.

    • by IBBoard (1128019)

      And given the twisted minds of some people even changing "mature market" for "hardcore market" wouldn't end up with the right audience!

    • by hedgemage (934558)
      The folks at the retirement home where I work love Wii bowling.
      Really. This is 100% true.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by snuf23 (182335)

        Why shouldn't they? They can't lift the real balls anymore without putting their backs out.

    • by tsotha (720379) on Wednesday November 04, 2009 @08:37AM (#29977112)

      I know this has been modded "funny", but it's absolutely true. My 70 year old parents went out and bought a Wii because they had so much fun playing it at a family gathering.

      Calling a game "mature" because it's loaded with violence is just stupid. The main audience for that kind of game is adolescent boys not, in general, considered the most mature segment of society.

  • When is "International Mapouka Challenge" going to be released?
  • Why and why (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Jeeeb (1141117) on Wednesday November 04, 2009 @03:51AM (#29975328)
    Firstly, why does the content have to be M rated to be for a mature audience?

    Secondly, why would they want to target that market? PS3 and xbox 360 are in tight competition for that market. It seems the cost and risk of competing in that market is high, while the potential pay off is low (How much money is MS making from the 360 again?). For Nintendo targeting children, families, casual gamers .etc. makes great sense and is proving very successful.
  • I'd guess there is a large correlation between the people that like "hyper-violent" games and those that like fancy graphics, the Wii is not a platform they are likely to own. If you release games with mature content, that is needed for the atmosphere and not just for the sake of making a "hyper-violent" game, you run into other problems on the wii, but it sounds like the article is going on about a bunch of games that were mature for the sake of being mature. The only thing that surprised me is that a resi

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by cgenman (325138)

      I believe they mean "mature" in the ESRB rating sense, rather than "non-purile" sense.

      You'll notice most of the mature games on the wii aren't just crappy games, they're crappy versions of games that are better on other consoles. Dead Space suddenly became an on-rails shooter, while House of the Dead took a graphical hit. Mad World was "Exxxxxtreme!" but probably would have been written off as a boring brawler on any other system. Dead Rising was a near launch title on the 360 years ago, yet it was *much

    • by RogueyWon (735973) *

      Plenty of games which are genuinely mature, as opposed to "hyper-violent" don't make it to the Wii at all. There's a great example out there this week; Dragon Age: Origins. Spiritual successor to Baldur's Gate, fantasy-themed RPG, contains "adult" content, but not "hyper violence". It's on the PS3. It's on the Xbox360. It's on the PC. But not on the Wii. Why? Chances are because the Wii's hardware just can't handle a genuinely ambitious game like this. There are plenty of other examples around; Batman: Arkh

  • Mature? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by papabob (1211684) on Wednesday November 04, 2009 @03:57AM (#29975358)
    So, if we have to believe TFA, "mature games" are those with dark ambient light, based on killing everything that moves and splashing blood in the walls... yeah, very mature. Maybe they haven't realized yet that Wii is a console for real "mature" people, you know, those who bring their mates to home after work and play simple games with beers and snacks, only looking for some laughs.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by OrangeTide (124937)

      Mature games == games for teenagers. Rather than games that an adult might enjoy.

      • Re:Mature? (Score:5, Funny)

        by cjfs (1253208) on Wednesday November 04, 2009 @04:49AM (#29975668) Homepage Journal

        Mature games == games for teenagers. Rather than games that an adult might enjoy.

        I completely agree. As an adult I'd never play play a fps. I'd definitely not equip incendiary weapons and light my enemies on fire. I'd also not employ electrical weapons to shock them to death. Using the corrosive shotgun to disintegrate people is right out. I find absolutely no joy in any of this. Especially explosives, who needs them when you can play wii bowling.

        • by Rogerborg (306625)
          I've never played an fps either, and so I have absolutely no desire to camp in a dark corner outside your house and blow your head off with a sniper rifle. Repeatedly.
        • by daveime (1253762)

          The are times when the BFG would come in handy ... supermarket queues where everyone in front of you insists on paying by Credit Card, ATM machines where everyone *has* to check their balance first and then withdraw their cash, drivethroughs where no one can decide what they want until they reach the window etc.

        • Well the kiddies don't understand than an fps on a game console is not a real fps.
          As an adult I understand that you need a mouse and keyboard for a real fps.
          Wii's aren't for lame violent kiddie games, they are for playing party games with adult friends while drinking and chatting.

        • I find absolutely no joy in any of this. Especially explosives, who needs them when you can play wii bowling.

          I dunno - I could see a Wii bowling game where the bowling ball explodes...

        • There is no problem that can't be solved with Military explosives. ;)

    • You know, the penultimate paragraph where the author states exactly that: "mature" is being used equivocally: on the one hand, in the ratings sense, where it refers to a requirement on the player, and on the other hand, in the content sense, where it refers to the presentation and experiences given. Paradoxically, when we say "mature content", we mean mature in the first sense: "We deem this (puerile) content suitable only for those above a certain age", and not "We deem this content interesting to those pa
      • I would say that Mature in this sense also deals with a deeper degree of complexity in themes and gameplay.

        Halo or Call of Duty have violence and gore and whatnot.. but they also have much more complicated controls and a deeper learning curve, and to a large degree a deeper gameplay than, say, Mario Galaxy. Mario is a great game - don't get me wrong - but the difference in what you can accomplish in it five minutes after you pick up a controller versus 20 hours later is not particularly great. It is a simpl

  • I mean come on, the Wiimote makes a perfect virtual penis, why haven't developers taken advantage of this yet?
  • by Max Romantschuk (132276) <max@romantschuk.fi> on Wednesday November 04, 2009 @04:22AM (#29975502) Homepage

    Our Wii sees the most action with games that entertain the largest possible number of people. I think a lot of people have bought the Wii due to a lot of great games to play in groups. The same people are unlikely to buy games that focus on a single- or two player experience.

    I'm probably going to get House of the Dead: Maximum Overkill at some time. But I have a lot less time to game for myself compare to the time I can put into trying to beat my brother-in-law in (pick your favorite) in Wii Sports Resort, playing Mario Kart with the kids, or rediscovering social adventure gaming (everyone on the couch tries to solve the puzzles) with Monkey Island.

    The Wii has a huge adult audience, but for a game to be successful it has to be more than just rated for adults. Most adult rated games forget that the key thing that made the Wii a success was not motion controlled stuff, it was social gaming. Factor in that a lot of Wiis get much of their use by women as well as men, and you have to design for a whole new target group.

    I'm sure there is a future for mature games on the Wii, but traditional mature games aimed at the solo-gaming male? Much more limited...

  • As far as I remember, Nintendo has been trying to build up the corporate image of a "family friendly" entertainment company. The elderly people on slashdot might remember the ridiculous censorship that Nintendo forced on "Maniac Mansion" before they backed its release for the NES (link: http://www.crockford.com/wrrrld/maniac.html [crockford.com]). Nintendo financially relies on embracing new target audiences for their products to evade direct competition with Sony and Microsoft. Just recall the introduction of the Gameboy,
    • by ookaze (227977)

      As far as I remember, Nintendo has been trying to build up the corporate image of a "family friendly" entertainment company.

      You remember wrong then. Or it's just semantic, I don't know.
      Nintendo actually built up a corporate image of a "for every member of the family" entertainment company.
      And strong evidence of this are their handheld consoles, which can't be played by all the family at once, but every member of the family can play games on them.
      Perhaps that's what you meant.
      Apart from that, Nintendo is just selling entertainment devices, and as for their home consoles, they're still selling a true home console. Home consoles al

  • Their business model, now enthusiastically adopted by all the other console makers, Apple on the iPhone, etc. has always been to have an iron grip over who and what gets the privilege of running on "their" devices. So whatever market there could be for non-kid games on the Wii, it doesn't matter, because Nintendo have developers' arms twisted behind their backs in order to preserve the Wii's "image".

  • Sold my Wii (Score:3, Interesting)

    by muffen (321442) on Wednesday November 04, 2009 @04:30AM (#29975560)
    Too little too late.
    I bought a Wii a few months after release, hooked it up, played Wii sports and thought "this is cool".
    A month later I sold the Wii because of the following.
    1) Horrible Graphics compared to the XBOX 360 I had at the time (got a PS3 now).
    2) Games were fun to play with others but for some reason I couldn't find that many people to play with at 1 AM.
    3) No good singleplayer titles that I could play online.

    To be honest, the XBOX 360 was better then the Wii in every aspect except social gaming, and although my girlfriend would play sometimes, in the month I had the Wii, after the first week, I hardly ever turned it on.

    Finally, the majority of people I know who like console gaming who have a Wii, also have either the XBOX 360 or a PS3.
    Nintendo did find a nice segment and are not competing with the other consoles as much as MSoft and Sony are competing with eachother, but I have to agree with TFA, that segment does not include many single-player online gamers.

    Now back to COD 4 on the PS3, feel the wrath of my P90!
    • by yanyan (302849) on Wednesday November 04, 2009 @04:45AM (#29975648)

      To be honest, the XBOX 360 was better then the Wii in every aspect except social gaming, and although my girlfriend would play sometimes, in the month I had the Wii, after the first week, I hardly ever turned it on.

      Which one, your girlfriend, the Xbox, or the Wii?

    • by dissy (172727)

      3) No good singleplayer titles that I could play online.

      Ok, I haven't been a console gamer since the Dreamcast/PS1 generation of consoles, so I admit to being way out of touch here. But I've played multiplayer games online at friends houses on their 360's and such, as well as plenty of single player games and one or two multiplayer PC games.

      But I have to ask

      Both 'single player' and 'online' at the same time? That just sounds.. not quite right :)
      What games are single player and require being online to play, but not involving other players?

      The only two things t

      • by muffen (321442)
        Probably not the best description as you correctly pointed out, when I wrote that I was thinking of Demons souls [gamespot.com] on the PS3, basically you play by yourself but while playing people can join your game and help or hurt you.
    • by mattack2 (1165421)

      I bought a Wii a few months after release, hooked it up, played Wii sports and thought "this is cool".
      A month later I sold the Wii because of the following.
      1) Horrible Graphics compared to the XBOX 360 I had at the time (got a PS3 now).

      Obviously you're entitled to your own opinion, but isn't the fun-ness of a game completely separate from the graphics quality? (I and many others definitely say yes, you apparently say no.)

      Does that mean that I'm never impressed by graphic quality? No, but for me it's compl

  • Hardcore (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Grey Ninja (739021) on Wednesday November 04, 2009 @04:33AM (#29975576) Homepage Journal
    Resident Evil 4 was one of the best selling Wii games. Just because The Conduit and Mad World didn't sell well, does not mean that there's not a market for M rated games. Fact of the matter is that they just weren't very good games, regardless of what the media said.

    http://kotaku.com/5395956/the-10-most-avidly+played-wii-games-in-america-as-of-nov-1 [kotaku.com]

    Honestly, look at that chart. I'm seeing a shitload of hardcore games there (no, I don't judge whether a game is for the hardcore or not by the rating, any more than I judge movies that way). What I'm not seeing a lot of is deca sports and catz, regardless of what the media tells you. The Wii market is starving for hardcore games, and the 3rd parties just simply have not delivered. Nintendo sat this one out and made casual games, because the 3rd parties have been bitching bitterly for years that they can't compete with Nintendo. And what do they do? They follow in Nintendo's footsteps again. Pathetic.

    Nintendo just needs to come back and rule the roost again. Metroid: Other M is a good start. New Super Mario Bros Wii, Mario Galaxy 2, and the rumoured new Zelda [1up.com] should do the trick. Hardcore gamers still own their Wiis. They just aren't buying anything because there's fuck all to play.
    • by Trepidity (597)

      Although I don't disagree entirely, measuring it by hours played per gamer is of course going to show hardcore games near the top. I think a list of top-10 Wii games by copies sold would be considerably different.

      • Although I don't disagree entirely, measuring it by hours played per gamer is of course going to show hardcore games near the top.

        Why would it? Anyone playing those games that isn't hardcore will quickly quit, dragging the statistics way down.

        It'll show good and fun games at the top.

  • Endless ocean (Score:2, Insightful)

    I can't think of any game more mature than Endless Ocean. You go there, sit down and relax a little bit after a hard day of work with some fine wine. Not always I want to get into some teenage carnage.

    • by RKThoadan (89437)

      I always wanted to grab that one. It's gotten expensive new ($99.94 at amazon), I guess because they didn't make that many. Still, it sold well enough that they're making a sequel.

      • by snuf23 (182335)

        Holy crap! Almost $100 now for Endless Ocean? I'm glad I picked it up for $25. It is actually one of my favorite games for the Wii. I do have to say that it's not for everyone as there is no danger involved. It is a relaxing little undersea adventure though and I'm looking forward to the sequel.

  • I've always had a Nintendo system, but one the XBox first came out I started maintaining the Nintendo and Microsoft console line in my house. New system? I bought it and upgraded. In this current generation of consoles especially, the graphics look much better on the 360, so if a more 'mature' game came out for multiple systems I don't think it's hard to see that I'm going to stick with the better looking system rather than buy it for the Wii. Any game I buy for the Wii falls more into the traditional N
  • if not, it won't.

    There should also be a bit more to ``mature'' than splashing blood, gore and violence onto the game and ``decorating'' it w/ T&A.

    - Make games which aren't on-rails, and have large, interesting environments to explore --- while exploration should be challenging, it needs to _not_ be frustrating and moving up / down ladders shouldn't require a perfect alignment of the character, the remote and the stars

    - Provide a compelling story-line and universe which makes me want to e

  • My wife and I are still waiting for a version of Wii Golf, simple fun gameplay, that alows you to play on any of the world famous courses.
    • by crashnbur (127738)

      Due to licensing issues, this may never happen for a Wii Sports title. However, you might be interested in the Tiger Woods Golf series. It's probably a bit more pricey than you'd like and a bit more difficult than Wii Golf, but it features a few well known courses.

  • I just got a wii. I also have the balance board thing.

    I was hoping there would some really good golf, and skiing, games. The potential is certainly there. The fitness stuff is okay, but it seems to me that it could be so much better.

    My nephew has some WWII combat game. That seems fairly mature - unless you really get off on seeing gore.

  • The real problem is one of marketing. It's not just a complete failure to market -though frankly many third parties are failing to market their Wii games at all- but also that the few who do market are going about it the wrong way.

    The Wii's market is largely driven by the blue ocean: new gamers who have not been subjected to the marketer-conditioning that makes veteran gamers believe graphics matter. It also contains veteran gamers who have recovered from such conditioning or who never succumbed to it. This

  • The article also mentions that the DS Game - Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars sold poorly, selling only 89,000 copies, way under expectations. This bums me out, since I bought it, bought copies as gifts, and loved it - the DS touch-screen interface is something I find very enjoyable to use. With such low sales, a sequel seems unlikely, in spite of the fact that it received the all-time high score for the DS at metacritic - http://www.metacritic.com/games/ds/ [metacritic.com]

    I have a strong suspicion that the easy availabili

  • by seebs (15766) on Wednesday November 04, 2009 @02:34PM (#29983774) Homepage

    Sales are not the measure of a game's financial success.

    Profits are.

    Game development costs on the Wii are between 1/4 and 1/2 those of development costs on the HD consoles. Prices, by contrast, are about 20% lower. What that means is that you don't need to sell NEARLY as many copies of a game to make money -- and that means more successful games that target "niche" audiences.

    People talk about how "badly" No More Heroes sold -- but it sold several times more copies than Killer 7 did on the Gamecube and PS2 put together, even though it came out in a much smaller market (the number of Wii systems out when NMH was released was a fraction of the number of PS2 systems out when K7 was released). By most accounts, it was profitable enough that they plan to do a sequel.

    This is exactly the stuff we saw people saying about the DS, and here we are, with DS games being hugely profitable for people who put real time and effort into them. There have certainly been profitable third-party Wii games; RE4 was one, Mario & Sonic Olympics (Sega) was one... And there have probably been others. The big problem is still the casual fallacy; the notion that people who want an approachable game don't care about quality. I care a ton about quality, just not very much about graphics resolution. People who make fun games are selling them to me quite effectively. People who make more flavor-of-the-month shooters aren't. (That said, I did get The Conduit, because it looked really polished.)

  • Too many games are retarded, and a lot of people who play them are probably retarded too. It's like any other form of mass entertainment. Supposedly "mature" games are mostly mindless violence. I think "mature" means "appeals to 13 year olds instead of 10 year olds" here. It's one or two steps up from "My Pony Party". Do you want a good game for the Wii? Try Muramasa. It has a good story, incredible art, and it's a lot of fun to play. Is that a mature game? I would say so. It's a lot more mature t
  • Just looking at Nintendo and the Wii rationally, Nintendo couldn't have painted a cleared picture of what the Wii was supposed to be to consumers: A family and/or group oriented gaming console. It just couldn't have been clearer. They sold *a lot* of consoles on this basis! The games that the article cite as not doing well all made me say to myself (as a Wii owner, and near middle-aged gamer): Little wonder. They do not look interesting.

    My opinion may have been different 25 years ago, but honestl

  • Goldeneye and Perfect Dark are fun to this day, and their graphics by today's standards are terrible. The graphics don't have to be next-gen or hyper-realistic. There is only one crucial element: gameplay. If it's done well -- if it's fun to play the first time and gamers have a reason to keep coming back -- then yes, there is a future for mature gaming on the Wii.

    Unfortunately, I think it's going to take a babysteps approach, because Nintendo's current fanbase seems to be mostly casual gamers and the f

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