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“Wii is 6 GBAs duct-taped together!” — Epic Games

April 22, 2008

Mark Rein took a break from Wii chastising today. In his stead, we get Mike Capps, who boldly declared the above to IGN Xbox360 in an interview.

Ok, you got me. The obviously American-bred guys at Epic Games didn’t say that, no. But the company is once again dismissing Wii outright. Gears of War 2 is now cancelled for it. Not that it ever was headed to Wii, but Epic Games’ president wants to make it clear once more that the makers of the Unreal Engine will never, ever, ever produce Wii software.

From the interview:

IGN: What do you think of the Wii and Nintendo’s…

Capps: Pffffffffft…

IGN: (laughter) I know! I think the same thing! It’s like, “Come on, why are you buying this system?!”

Capps: I know. I’ve got one.

IGN: Everybody does! Bring it out at parties and everyone’s like, “Oh it’s a Wii!”

Capps: Part of it’s being cheap. I think it’s a, I mean, so two things: first of all, great credit to them. The first time I played a videogame with my parents – aging myself a bit – was on Atari 2600. The next time I played a videogame with my parents, 25 years later or whatever, was Wii Tennis. So it’s about bringing people together, families, Thanksgiving, all that. I think it’s kind of like a weird virus because I have not yet found a reason to play with my Wii since then.

IGN: Exactly. For a real gaming experience…

Frat boy bastard. As ambivalent (that’s a generous term) as i am towards Wii, i couldn’t give 1 and-a-half shits about Gears of War 1 2 or 3, on any given day. I understand why they say what they say about Wii, and i’m not being defensive here since i do agree with his sentiments — though the way he presents them is off, he’s spot on. But maybe this “guns, bloods, ‘splosions” attitude, as exhibited by the 25 y/o president of the company, is better suited to the Microsoft line of thinking anyway.

More sauciness below. Emphases all mine.

Capps: Right, Zelda I really didn’t enjoy on it. They back-fitted the control scheme on it, it was better on the GameCube. Mario, I wish there had been a button instead of wiggle and all that kind of ****. So I haven’t played anything that I really wished hadn’t been on another platform sadly enough. It’s a virus where you buy it and you play it with your friends and they’re like, “Oh my God that’s so cool, I’m gonna go buy it.” So you stop playing it after two months, but they buy it and they stop playing it after two months but they’ve showed it to someone else who then go out and buy it and so on. Everyone I know bought one and nobody turns it on. Obviously there’s a class of people who really love it and enjoy it and are getting into the games but I’m still waiting for that one game that makes me play it. Who knows, maybe Wii Fit will be it.

IGN: Wii Fit’s pretty fun.

Capps: Is it?

IGN: At last year’s E3 everyone was hatin’ on me for saying it was gonna be good. But sure enough, it is.

Capps: Well everything they do is good!

IGN: Yeah, oh yeah. And everyone hates it at first. “The Wii?! Motion-sensitive controllers? What the hell is that?”

Capps: I know, the name. We all say Wii now and never even think about the name anymore. They know what they’re doing and they make money better than anyone else does. As an investor you love ’em, but as a next-gen console technology maker, they don’t run UE3 and they can’t.

IGN: Is there any chance that Epic will ever, is there going to be a point where there are too many Wiis on the market for you guys to not make a game for it?

Capps: No, we go forward, not back. It makes more sense for us to invest in the next-generation tech. There have been shops that have done it. Red Steel was a launch title and that was on Unreal Engine. So it’s been done. How you take an engine that’s all based on shaders and materials and run it on hardware that doesn’t support shaders is just impossible. It’s about as easy as PSP for us. Maybe it would make sense, but it makes more sense to invest going forward.

One Comment leave one →
  1. April 23, 2008 1:18 pm

    Well, he’s absolutely right: it makes no sense trying to build an Unreal Engine for the Wii… It’s a graphics engine, and the Wii needs an exclusive engine that can do more with less.

    He’s also right about the viral nature of buying a Wii: I’m not sure if I would buy one now. Like, if my apartment burned, and I had a chance to buy one again with the insurance money, I probably would invest in a PS3 instead… but first I would definitely replace my 360 and my DS! Well, not my DS: it never leaves my side, so it wouldn’t perish in a fire! Unless I was in it… which means no more playing video games… oh, well… Existentialism sucks.

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