Thursday, December 14, 2006

Third-Party Wii developers are mocking us to the bank

A while back some of you may remember an editorial I ran here about how we shouldn't worry about the graphics of the Wii since Gamecube had many beautiful games. This was very true since the GC had games like Resident Evil 4 , Rouge Squadron 3 and Star Fox Adventures as true stand out games for the Gamecube's graphic power.

Now enter the Wii, Nintendo's New-Generation console. Not focused on graphics, but gameplay to enhance your experience. However, Nintendo has said many times that the Wii is more powerful than the Gamecube and that they do know that graphics are important to enhance enjoyment in playing video games. So the question is: At the launch of the Wii why are we seeing games that look no better than Gamecube? Why are we seeing games that look worse than Gamecube in graphic presentation?

The Wii is easy to develop for and how you make a game on it is very similar to how you make a Gamecube game. It would seem that a developer can have a game up and running with Gamecube quality graphics in a matter of mere weeks with the power of the Wii. The Wii is not supposed to be a system that just makes Gamecube quality graphics in record time for developers. Of course if developers took their time to actually see what the Wii could do beyond the initial development, we would be seeing the actual potential of the Wii hardware. Sadly this is far from being a reality from just about all Third Party games thus far:

Far Cry, a series much beloved by gamers across the world has been completely and utterly butchered in terms of presentation and graphics on the Wii. Gamecube could and has done much better and with a better frame rate. What a waste.

Red Steel, a much hyped FPS game that has failed to live up the promise on a few levels. The game suffers from extreme anti-aliasing problems. Large jagged edges on almost all walls and objects make the game look cheap and ugly. Star Fox Adventures never had this problem, in fact that game also had fur on the animals bodies with beautiful real time lighting and textures all over the place.

Call of Duty 3 looks no different than the Xbox version, maybe a little worse even. Textures look blurry with little detail. Remember Timesplitters 2 on Gamecube? Remember the S3 texturing on the walls? The closer you got to them the more detailed they got. We know the Wii is capable of this effect if the Gamecube is. Why does the Wii version of Call of Duty 3 have smeary and blurry textures then? Pathetic.

A total lack of effort to make use of the Wii hardware by Third Parties. How much did it cost Ubisoft to make Far Cry? After seeing how horrible the presentation and graphics look, probably not much. However since the game is close to the launch of the Wii, they think they can make a lot of money from this game since people are dying to buy anything Wii related during this time of year. It could work to fool a lot people, but informed ones will know better than to buy this tripe. Of course a developer would never bad mouth their product just before it launches. IGN interviewed Ubisoft on Far Cry Vengeance a little while back and they said that the game would look at least as good as the Xbox version. Well, they lied. It looks much worse than the Xbox version of the game. Gameplay is the most important thing in a game true. Don't mock us with making a game look so bad that it shouldn't even be on Gamecube. Gamers can see a lack of effort in presentation and it takes away from the whole experience. Not putting forth effort to make each game on the Wii look the best it can be just because its "expected" to look worse anyway is not an excuse.

Third Parties:

Don't mock the educated gamer.

Don't mock the Wii with your half ass efforts you call games.


Anonymous said...


I've had every Nintendo console since the NES and I can honestly say with no bias that the games currently available for the Wii are scaring me. They're scaring me because they make it seem like the Wii is a step back from the Gamecube.

Yes I know that graphics do not make a game, but honestly I expect a lot more from developers. After playing games like Resident Evil 4, F-Zero X, Metroid Prime on the Cube, and then playing games like Red Steel, and Elebits I'm almost floored how bad it looks. Far Cry is a similar joke. A VERY BAD ONE.

Hopefully developers, Nintendo included, begin to exploit what the Wii has to offer, because so far I am not impressed. And this is coming from a die-hard Nintendo fan. THE WII NEEDS A KILLER APP SOON. It's a shame that Zelda is the only AAA title currently available, a game that runs just the same on Gamecube...

Anonymous said...

I think you're being a little too hard on the third-party developers, Metaldave. While I do share your frustration with the mediocre titles that's put out, the Wii's life-span is still early and we have yet to see more titles.

I was surprised by the amount of disappointing reviews for Red Steel, but not Far Cry: Vengeance because that game needed to be delayed badly.

Metaldave said...

I'm mainly talking about Ubisoft since they are the ones that have the most launch games for the Wii. Splinter Cell is another rushed one that could have been better.

Anonymous said...

Since the Wii has just begun its life-span, I think it's about time Ubisoft can finally take their time on their games.

Red Steel, Far Cry: Vengeance, and Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Double Agent isn't their best efforts, but let's give them a little support.

Metaldave said...

Sorry man but I must disagree. GoNintendo just announced that Ubisoft is releasing Prince of Persia: The Two Thrones for the Wii with added Wii remote controls next year. Didn't that game come out in 2003?

They could have gone the extra mile and make an entirely original Wii Prince of Persia, but no such luck. I have like Ubisoft for a long time, Beyond Good and Evil was a quality game but now Ubisoft is making mistake after mistake.

They need to get with the program on the Wii. By the way Far Cry Vengeance is a blasphemy to anyone who bought the Wii. It will be hard for me to forgive them for that sorry effort. Give them a chance you say? How about 7 chances this year? They have failed to deliver on just about each of those chances. Too bad

Anonymous said...

Have to agree, I just bought a used gamecube (very cheap) just so I can play Zelda. Becuase the Wii just doesn't look worthwhile at the moment and As improtant as gameplay is I'm not paying 400(AU) to play games that look worse than last gen. Seriously there are games on ps2 (the most underpowered of all last gen systems) that look much better most of the games on the wii so far. Sure its only early in the life of the wii but how long will people stick around if the only good titles they get are from nintendo (about two titles a year if that), it will be the cube all over again.

Metaldave said...

Well the third parties need to step it up thats all. I look for Capcom and Square Enix to really push the Wii's power. Cookie cutter games that do nothing to impress visually and look no better than Gamecube can only go as far as this launch window. It can only get better from here on out.

If Gamecube can do better (RE4, StarFox Adventures, Rebel Strike) the Wii can do 2-3 times better still. Its frustrating but developers will learn from this.

Anonymous said...

It's kind of sad, really. The whole point of the Wii is to help developers express their creativity, and it looks like they just don't have much ingenuity as we all hoped.

I know you can't rush innovation and creativity, but putting out half-assed ports just with a modified control scheme is about as pointless as having a half-assed port with better graphics.

That Prince of Persia news made me want to go to Ubisoft's offices and torch those motherfuckers down.

Metaldave said...

They will soon see that they can't get away with doing that forever. Make original games!

Anonymous said...

Uhm, that 'Gamecube port' might be game of the year (and looks like a front runner). MOST review sites have Zelda 0.1 points ahead of Gears of War (out of 10) and Resistance: Fall of Man behind by almost half a point.

Bluntly, if I looked at the titles right now, I'd say Nintendo looks strong for being JUST LAUNCHED, considering the best game on the PS3 will be forgotten the second a decent FPS comes out.

If the wii continues to get lame support, it will be BEHIND the 360 and may fall behind the PS3.

Wii Sports is a top 5 game on the Wii at the moment and although it's good for a package deal, it should be blown from the top with the Wii's real capability.

Anonymous said...

I have played beyond the first hour or so of Red Steel and I like it a hell of alot more than I do COD3. COD3 has severe control issues. Not to mention, it's not really that good on any system. The Wii buzz up until E3 was still not that great. I assume the effort to get these games finished was pretty half hearted. After E3, these initial games were rushed to market to capitalize on the enthusiasm of the Wii launch. The idiots don't realize that they are shooting themselves in the foot. Make good quality games, and people will continue to buy them. Make a tird, and people will see the manufacturer and not buy it. Not to mention they get POED at Nintendo for licensing garbage. I almost bought Far Cry and would have been very upset. So far with the exception of COD3, I have gotten my moneys worth. Red Steel, NFS Carbon, Wii Sports, Zelda, while nowhere near the bleeding edge of the Wii, are still solid launch titles.