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Iwata apologizes for Wii U software drought

Nintendo president says new titles will start showing up in March, extra dev time needed to meet quality standards

Recent weeks have seen Nintendo's Wii U "launch window" releases thinned out by delays, with first-party titles Pikmin 3, Wii Fit U, The Wonderful 101, and Game & Wario no longer expected to make it out before April. In a Nintendo Direct presentation today, company president Satoru Iwata apologized for the lack of releases in January and February, but said the pace should pick up starting in March.

"Nintendo takes seriously its responsibility to offer a steady stream of new titles in the very early days of a new platform to establish a good lineup of software," Iwata said. "On the other hand, we also firmly believe we have to offer quality experiences when we release new titles. Based on our software development schedules at the end of last year, we concluded we should spend a little more time to satisfy our Nintendo standard of quality. I apologize to those supporting Wii U about the lack of titles in January and February."

In October, Iwata told investors that the company was limiting the number of first-party titles at the Wii U's debut specifically to avoid a post-launch software drought.

"Nintendo tends to release too many titles at the launch of a hardware system and as a result suffers a drop in new games for quite some time after launch, and for the Wii U launch, we are being very careful not to let it happen," Iwata said at the time.

Elsewhere in the Nintendo Direct presentation, Iwata reassured fans that Nintendo had plenty of first-party efforts on the way. He confirmed that new Mario 3D and Mario Kart games would be playable on Wii U at the Electronic Entertainment Expo, and announced a new Yoshi game with a Kirby Epic Yarn visual style. He also addressed Zelda, saying that the first original Wii U installment of the series is a ways off, but adding the company will release a Wii U version of the GameCube title Wind Waker in the meantime.

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Brendan Sinclair avatar
Brendan Sinclair: Brendan joined in 2012. Based in Toronto, Ontario, he was previously senior news editor at GameSpot.
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