After learning there would be no Madden NFL 25 or Battlefield 4 on the Wii U, the prospects for EA's future on Nintendo's console looked bleak. On Friday, those same prospects became non-existent, as EA revealed it is not developing any games whatsoever for the Wii U right now.
When the Wii U launched, Nintendo was full of promises for better third-party support. At first, it looked like things were on the up-and-up. EA brought games like Mass Effect 3, Need for Speed: Most Wanted, Madden, and FIFA to the console. While none of those games were particularly new, the launch support for the Wii U was there. Now, just six months after the Wii U arrived, EA's plans for the console have vanished into thin air.
"We have no games in development for the Wii U currently," EA spokesperson Jeff Brown told Kotaku. That's a pretty big blow from one the biggest third-party developers in the console game industry. Though Ubisoft is still supporting the Wii U with upcoming titles like Rayman Legends, Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag, and Splinter Cell: Blacklist, we also haven't heard much from the likes of Activision in regards to Wii U games in 2013. Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 was ported to the console, but there's been no word on Call of Duty: Ghosts getting the same treatment.
Nintendo has survived just fine without major third-party support in the past, but the Wii U was supposed to be different. The company stressed how many outside developers and publishers would be creating games for the Wii U during its unveiling in 2011. Those promises just don't seem to be fulfilled though, as outside of Nintendo's major properties, the landscape of releases for the Wii U is looking very thin. Perhaps that will turn around over the course of the next few weeks with E3 and a few Nintendo Direct events scheduled.
The Wii U is already floundering at retail in the U.S. After dominating the last generation so handily, it will be interesting to see how Nintendo responds over the course of the rest of the year.