Nintendo: 100 WiiWare Titles in Development

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Nintendo made it clear at GDC this week that they are heavily invested in having a successful online download service. Not content with the Virtual Console, by all accounts a huge success, Nintendo is branching out to support third party development of original downloads, such as those featured on Xbox Live Marketplace and the PlayStation Store.

So far the Virtual Console has only sold decades old games, featuring classic games from NES, SNES, Nintendo 64, Sega Master, Genesis and Game Gear, as well as NEC’s TurboGrafx-16 and SNK’s Neo Geo. The so-called WiiWare service will have games “that you are interested in downloading, use Wii points to buy it, and that will download just like a Virtual Console game to the consumer’s system,” says Tom Prata of Nintendo of America.

“There are about 100 projects that are under development which are coming to the North American market, and we’re going to spend time with them [the developers] to find out what their schedule is because, once again, we’re not requiring a particular type of product. It’s their decision to make that, and it’s also their decision to make based on the development schedule,” Mr. Prata told GameSpot in an interview.

“Likely what we’ll do is launch with a good breadth of titles that will cover a number of different genres, and perhaps some unprecedented game experiences using the Wii Remote. And what we’ll do is consistently release new content, like we do with Virtual Console,” he said. As for pricing, that will be largely left up to individual developers. “We do anticipate that consumers will be able to download content for a variety of different prices, similar to what you can experience with Virtual Console,” he remarked. WiiWare launches on May 12, 2008 in North America.