June 1st, 2008, 15:03 Posted By: wraggster
Nintendo of America debuted the WiiWare addition to its Shop Channel on May 19 and the service, which enables Wii owners to connect online and download original Wii games, has proven to be a success story ever since. Titles like LostWinds and Dr. Mario have provided players extra incentive to boot up their Wii consoles again and again, but Nintendo hasn't pulled back the curtain on its continuing plans for WiiWare just yet, and so a number of questions remain. How many games will launch each week? How many are in the queue? And are demos of WiiWare titles a possibility going forward? NOA's senior director of project development, Tom Prata, gives us some answers below.
IGN: We know a lot of developers have completed WiiWare games which haven't yet been released. Will new WiiWare titles be released every Monday? What is the limit you're putting on how many WiiWare games can be released every week?
Tom Prata: Our plan is to make new WiiWare games available on Mondays, as we do with Virtual Console titles. We have not set a limit to the number of games that will launch on any given Monday. Rather, we are working with developers and their production schedules to bring the products to consumers in a timely manner.
IGN: What is the most popular WiiWare download so far?
Tom Prata: We don't have sales information to share at this time, however we are pleased to see consumers enjoying the games made available by WiiWare developers.
IGN: We recently had to delete half the games and Channels on our systems to make room for two WiiWare titles. Lack of storage space has become a huge problem. What're your thoughts on this issue? Will Nintendo address it soon?
Tom Prata: Consumers have the option of either deleting the game and downloading it again for no additional Wii Points, or transferring the game from Wii to external SD memory card.
IGN: Can WiiWare developers use all of Wii's abilities? For instance -- connection between Wii and DS, WFC, online, etc. -- if they want? What about Miis?
Tom Prata: Developers have the ability to utilize the same Wii features for WiiWare games as they do for disc-based games, including Wi-Fi Connection, WiiConnect24 and variety of controllers and peripherals. What is important is providing developers the freedom to use the features that are most valuable to express the characteristics of their game. Regarding the use of Miis, Mii characters are included in games like TV Show King and Dr. Mario Rx .
IGN: WiiWare games need to weigh in under 43 megabytes, we've been told. Is this true? Are there any plans to increase the file size limit?
Tom Prata: Similar to the breadth of Virtual Console content, WiiWare games will also come in a variety of sizes and at different Wii Points. We want to encourage creators to focus development resources on areas that matter most to consumers: gameplay. Nintendo is not planning on requiring developers to fill large amounts of data and believe there is sufficient space to create compelling, new gameplay experiences.
IGN: Currently, there is no way to demo WiiWare games before you buy. Might this change?
Tom Prata: We do not intend to have a 'try-before-you-buy' model that requires developers to create demos. There are a variety of places to learn more about WiiWare games such as the Nintendo Channel where consumers can find game information for WiiWare together with retail Wii products, Virtual Console and DS games.
IGN: How many WiiWare games do you have the queue?
Tom Prata: Currently, there are about 100 games in development for WiiWare at various stages of completion.
IGN: For launch in America, Nintendo itself did not release any first-party WiiWare games. Why not?
Tom Prata: As we looked at the launch line up, we wanted to provide games that are widely appealing to all consumers -- something for everyone to enjoy. Equally diverse are the creators of these games representing companies of different sizes and cultures. These companies demonstrate the range of WiiWare developers from a large publisher like Square Enix, to established independent developers such as High Voltage and Frontier to small indie developers like XGen.
Nintendo, like other publishers, is working on some experimental projects we plan to make available in the future.
Recently we launched Dr. Mario Rx.
For more information and downloads, click here!
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