The latest Nintendo Direct Mini showcased a number of Wii U games being ported to the Switch. However, it’s not just Wii U games. With the (almost) surprise announcement of Dark Souls and the very surprising announcement of The World Ends With You, there are a lot of games being reimagined or upgraded on the Switch. Source Gaming members are here to provide their own opinions on whether the number of ports on the Switch is a good or a bad thing for the short term and long term success of the system.
I think it makes perfect sense for Nintendo to port a lot of the games on the Switch, and it’s something a lot of fans want — even if they are bashing Nintendo for it. The sales of Mario Kart 8: Deluxe prove this. Mario Kart 8: Deluxe sold a boatload on the Switch, and helped propel the Switch with a successful launch. Furthermore, porting a game and adding a couple of new things doesn’t require the same manpower as developing a new sequel. This means that Nintendo is probably having a small number of people working on these ports, adding additional content while working on new projects. So from a developer standpoint and business standpoint, it makes perfect sense. A lot of people are re-buying these games since the Switch is portable, which means these games can now be enjoyed on the go. The one issue is that it’s killing the Wii U legacy. There are less and less reasons to own a Wii U now. Most of the greatest hits are now on the 3DS and Switch. As a long-term Nintendo fan, I’m not as enticed to pick up the games that I’ve already bought for full price. I still haven’t double-dipped on Mario Kart 8: Deluxe as I already owned it on the Wii U. If Nintendo lowered the price by 20 USD, I’d buy it in a heartbeat. But 60 USD for what amounts to a few new characters or Funky Kong, just doesn’t seem worth it to me.
I am one hundred percent for more ports. As much as I love the Wii U, and feel bad how that legacy is starting to lose steam with the ports (it’ll be harder to remember that it and a 3DS were all you needed to play almost every Legend of Zelda game), it’s also tied to that of the Switch – the latter’s success probably could only have come from what they learned with their first eighth generation console. And more to the point, The Wii U era was one where Nintendo was terrible at advertising games and promoting games, but damned if they weren’t amazing at making them. More people should play Tropical Freeze, and Bayonetta 2, and Pikmin 3, and The Wonderful 101, and Captain Toad. They deserve another chance. I may not buy many of them – to be honest, I am a bit salty that two years after spending a lot of time and money on almost all the DLC for the original Hyrule Warriors, we’re getting a $60 version with even the 3DS Adventure maps I wanted to play – but I want them to be available.
When Nintendo announced they were bringing two more Wii U ports to the Switch during their Direct Mini, it did annoy me. While I understand it’s a good financial decision, it felt like it was a sign that they’re going to pad out their library with old games because they don’t have a lot of big new games ready to release this year. Fire Emblem, Yoshi, and Kirby Star Allies are the only ones confirmed for this year (in terms of staple franchises).
However, whether or not that’s an omen, it’s also irrelevant. Many Switch owners never owned a Wii U. So as long as the former eclipses the latter, it doesn’t matter how many Wii U games they port because they will still be new to them. If Wii U owners stop playing their Switch for a few months because they own those titles, Nintendo will still have come ahead in both sales and in player satisfaction. Even within Nintendo’s own hardcore audience, there are fans that never picked up a Wii U. So not even a majority of their fans will be bothered. That’s also not considering Wii U owners who don’t care and/or willing to double-dip.
Given there are no drawbacks, Nintendo has all the more reason to make as many Wii U ports for as long as they sell. Once the next game in a big franchise is revealed, fans will quickly lose interest in the matter altogether. While the amount of Wii U ports will determine how much I use my Switch, I’m in a very tiny minority that ultimately, will have no bearing on their decisions.
I love the Wii U and the ports aren’t for me because I own most of the games (although I will snap up a Tokyo Mirage Session #FE port if you’re listening Atlus) but there were a lot of great games on the system that I feel deserve a second chance. Tropical Freeze was one such game and another is Wonderful 101 however in a lot of cases like Captain Toad I think I would prefer a sequel. If Nintendo only does ports of Wii U games then for those of us who did buy the Wii U, we will be left with little to play. So a balance is needed.
That said, why should we limit this to Wii U? I think I’d be more keen to buy GameCube and Wii games again, maybe even 3DS games, just because of the HD factor and the potential new features. Games like Skyward Sword, Super Mario Galaxy (1+2), Metroid Prime Trilogy, Kirby Air Ride, Starfox Assault, F-Zero GX, Geist and The Legend of Zelda Collection could all look fantastic on the Switch, especially the latter if they swap out the N64 versions of Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask and replaced them with the superior 3DS versions. Come on Nintendo.
What do you think? Let us know in the comments below or on Twitter!