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Sony: 3rd-Party Publishers Leaving Nintendo Wii

SCEA Senior Vice President of Publisher Relations Rob Dyer recently told Industry Gamers that 3rd-party developers are heading back to the PlayStation 3 (and presumably the Xbox 360).

In a sense, the honeymoon is over: hype surrounding the Nintendo Wii and its innovative motion controller has died down to a dull roar. Additionally, Microsoft and Sony are set to hit the console scene this year with motion controller technology as well, taking some of the spotlight away from Nintendo's former "hot" product.

But Dyer paints another picture, another reason why the Wii has lost its luster: Nintendo games. Third-party developers have struggled to make revenue on a console dominated by first-party products like Super Mario Galaxy, Wii Fit, and even the pack-in game Wii Sports. Publishers no longer want to pour resources into a platform that doesn't return revenue, thus leaving the door wide open for Microsoft and Sony to take them back in with open arms.

"In the past, it was 'Look how hot the Wii is,' or 'Look how hot the DS is,' and 'We should put resources there,'" Dyer said regarding 3rd-party publishers. "They did that and realized, 'You know what, third-party product just doesn't sell on that platform.' So now they're taking those resources, coming back to us and saying, 'Sony we're going to be able to provide you with that exclusive content,' or 'We're going to put more engineers on it and figure out to maximize the Blu-ray and get more out of PS3.' That's what we're seeing now."

Dyer added that he doesn't have to convince publishers to develop for the PlayStation 3 platform, saying that all he had to do was show them the TRST data, show how many 3rd-party titles are listed in the Wii's top 10 titles compared to 1st-party Nintendo titles. He does the same for the Nintendo DS.Needless to say, it's not pretty for 3rd-party titles.

"It's not a hard story to sell, and they get that," he said. "Unless they've got a particular franchise that's worked well on the Wii, you don't see a lot of innovative new IP coming out on that platform.”

Sounds like the honeymoon is indeed over for the Wii.