The executive vice president of Electronic Arts, Patrick Soderlund, says that EA will only develop games for the upcoming Nintendo NX system ‘if it makes sense.’
One of the rumors surrounding Nintendo’s upcoming Nintendo NX console is that the device will enjoy much greater third-party support than the Wii U. Since EA is one of the largest third-party publishers in the industry, having that company’s support in particular would be ideal for the NX, but recent comments by EA’s executive vice president Patrick Soderlund are non-committal in regards to Nintendo NX game development.
“I personally and the company are huge fans of Nintendo, they’re the reason why I started making games. We’re in constant communication with them and when they come to market something – and if it makes sense for us – we’ll be there.”
Nintendo fans hoping for the NX to have better third party support than the Wii U should be happy to hear that EA is in “constant communication” with Nintendo. Considering this, it seems likely that EA was one of the companies that received Nintendo NX dev kits, but it’s unclear by Soderlund’s comments if EA is actually developing any games for the new system at this time.
It’s hard to blame EA for being cautious about jumping headfirst into Nintendo NX game development. As some may recall, EA initially offered strong support for the Wii U, releasing games like 2012’s Need for Speed: Most Wanted and Mass Effect 3 on the system. Not long after its launch, however, the Wii U’s sales began to stagnate, and as a result, EA couldn’t have seen much of a return on its investment in developing games for the system.
Since we know so little about the Nintendo NX at this point, it’s hard to gauge whether or not it will be more successful than the Wii U. One would imagine that Nintendo is going to pull out all the stops to avoid another sales catastrophe on the level of the Wii U, but the company has made some head-scratching decisions in the past. Until we see the Nintendo NX hardware for ourselves, and learn the truth behind rumors like the Nintendo NX using cartridges or it being a console/handheld hybrid, it’s hard to say either way if EA’s trepidation is warranted.
As for what upcoming EA games could make a big splash on the Nintendo NX, two that spring to mind immediately are Mass Effect: Andromeda and Battlefield 1. Battlefield 1 has proven to be popular since its reveal, and is shaping up to be one of the biggest FPS games of the year. Mass Effect: Andromeda, meanwhile, is slated for an early 2017 release, which would make the timing right for it to be a launch title for the NX. With EA having such major titles like Mass Effect: Andromeda and Battlefield 1 on the horizon, it couldn’t hurt if Nintendo convinced the company to bring those games to its new console when it releases next year.
The Nintendo NX is scheduled to launch in March 2017.