More Mature Wii Games from Sega Unlikely

By Chris Faylor, Jan 04, 2010 1:40pm PST

House of the Dead: Overkill
Having released a trio of so-called "mature" Wii games aimed at the during 2009, publisher Sega has now indicated that it's unlikely to bring any more "mature" titles to the platforms.

Though Sega previously pledged it would "still do mature games" despite disappointing sales, Sega of America studio director Constantine Hantzopoulos cast doubt on that commitment during the 4 Guys 1UP: 01/01/2010 podcast, pointing not just to the sales of its own titles, but those of Dead Space Extraction, an on-rails shooter published by rival EA.

Postulated Hantzopoulos: "That begs the question, are we going to do more mature titles for the Wii," answering his own inquiry with "and it's like, 'probably not.'"

MadWorld and The Conduit
"Look at Dead Space [on Wii]" Hantzopoulos explained, going by "We were stunned. That was my litmus test. Basically, it's like, okay, you got EA, who can put all the marketing muscle behind this, an established franchise that scored quite well on 360 and PS3. They should be able to actually hit this out of the park, right? We get numbers, real numbers aside from NPD, and I'm like, 'Woah'."

Though Hantzopoulos points to "numbers aside from NPD," that particular firm reported sales of 9,000 for Dead Space Extraction's first month at US retail (October 09). And despite Hantzopoulos' faith in EA's" marketing muscle", EEDAR analyst Jesse Divnich believes the tepid sales stemmed from a lack of marketing, explaining that "the success or failure of a Wii title usually correlates directly to marketing spend" and "Electronic Arts didn't market Dead Space Extraction as much as it does with other titles."

And while Sega's unlikely to bring us any more mature-oriented titles on the Wii, that doesn't mean the publisher considers its three "mature" games a wash.

Headstrong's on-rails shooter House of the Dead: Overkill (February 2009) and PlatinumGames' action game MadWorld (March 2009) were said to be "doing okay"--"at the end of the day we'll make our numbers," he specified-- while High Voltage's first-person shooter The Conduit (June 2009) was described as having "done quite well."

According to Hantzopoulos, sales of Wii and DS games are "a longer burn" than those of other platforms, which makes it hard to immediately label a particular title as a success or failure. "It's not necessarily first three weeks like most titles."

But what does this all mean? "At the end of the day, I just think that you're seeing kids are skewing much younger towards next-gen," Hantzopoulos concluded.

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16 Threads | 52 Comments

  • Ok, what is with this hate for on rails shooters? Why is it that people think we should somehow be past that phase? I'm not saying it's the new hotness, but we don't always have to ditch the old gameplay types just because technology become capable of something new. Look at side scrollers, especially Mega Man 9, making a huge come back because despite technology giving us huge 3d environments, side scrollers are still fun.

    The best example of how this "it's 20XX, why are we still making XXXXX games?" is the sonic series. Once sonic left 2d side scrolling, it was RUINED. Technology allowed them to make sonic 3d, so they did and it sucked. Instead of doing what works and is fun, Sega apparently thought it just wasn't 3d enough and went on to continue to make sub par, newer style 3d games. And they all suck, right up to the latest ones on the Wii.

    It's not always about fiddly bits and pixels and polygons, and I think it shows that anytime the gaming industry got focused on the technology, the games sucked. And that period of bad games always breaks when they start making games based on good gameplay