“Retro City Rampage won’t be coming to Wii U. You can already purchase and play the WiiWare version in Wii mode, so if you’ve been holding out, please pick that up instead,” Provinciano begins.
He then goes on to say that the reasons the game isn’t coming to Wii U is, first and foremost, that it’s a lot of work that he doesn’t think will be compensated. He’d have to deal with the system’s new architecture, the different SDK/API, as well as sort out game ratings, e-manuals, icons, testing, localizations—the whole lot. And, in the end, Provinciano says that a Wii U version would be 95% the same as the current WiiWare one.
He also points out that as the game runs in 240p, playing it on the Wii in 480p is no different than playing it on Wii U in 1080p as it’s the same pixels being enlarged either way.
Provinciano then went on to say that he gets more requests for a Wii U version a week than he does WiiWare sales. “It accounts for just 1% of the game’s sales,” he revealed.
“Developers and publishers were attacked with virtual pitchforks for cancelling WiiWare games, but you can now see why they did it,” Provinciano wrote. “Retro City Rampage has been a massive success (Nintendo 3DS version included), selling 400K paid copies to date, but the WiiWare version was a massive failure. It’s clear that it’s not the game, not the audience, but rather, the platform.”
It’s worth pointing out that the 3DS version of the game has indeed been a great success. Retro City Rampage DX was released for the Nintendo 3DS a whole year after other platforms, and went on to outsell the Xbox 360 version’s worldwide sales in the U.S. alone.
Lastly, Provinciano answers some arguments that fans of the game often bring up saying that, yes, the Wii U eShop is a better platform, but the WiiWare version was almost finished when it first became an option. And he also said, once again, that Retro City Rampage was never a Wii-exclusive despite many people thinking it was due to misreporting and the timing of announcements.
Following his explanation, Provinciano clarified over Twitter that he purchased a Wii U development kit in 2012, and will “definitely consider” bringing future games to the platform, just not Retro City Rampage.