EA Throws Nintendo Wii U Off A Cliff: How Bad Is It?

On Friday morning, Nintendo revealed some new games for the Wii U as well as release dates for anticipated titles like Pikmin 3 and The Wonderful 101.

Here's what you didn't hear about: Electronic Arts games. And you're not going to for a while.

On Thursday evening, EA revealed that their Nintendo Wii U development landscape is as barren as a desert, and that they don't expect any rainfall in the near future.

"We have no games in development for the Wii U currently," EA spokesperson Jeff Brown said to Kotaku on Thursday.

Brown left the door open to EA resuming development in the future, but let's face the facts: This is a devastating blow to Nintendo's fledgling console and its mainstream prospects. The system is already starved for games, and the fact that a major publisher like EA is simply not developing for it anymore means that the road ahead keeps getting harder to traverse for the Wii U.

The last time the company decided to cut off support for a video game  system it was with Sega's Dreamcast, which ended up sputtering throughout the rest of its lifecycle. EA isn't as big as it was back then (in fact, it has ceded the number one publisher spot to Activision) but it's still yet another bad development for Nintendo to deal with.

The news is also a surprising turnaround, since E3 2011 saw EA's then-CEO John Riccitello declare "an unprecedented partnership" with Nintendo and the Wii U.

"What Nintendo's new console delivers speaks directly to the players of EA Sports and EA Games. Nintendo's new console will produce brilliant high-definition graphics and new gameplay opportunities. We look forward to seeing great EA content on this new platform."

Regardless, this news is still unprecedented in its own way. Even as the Nintendo 64 and GameCube struggled against rival consoles, EA supported the platforms with sports franchises and other titles. Nevermind big blockbusters like Mass Effect and Battlefield, the Wii U won't even be getting the basics.

Still, at the end of the day, most people purchase Nintendo consoles to play Nintendo games, so it's worth wondering just how many will be severely impacted by EA's decision.

What do you think? Obviously this news isn't good, but will it affect your Wii U purchasing decision? Let us know in the comments.

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