The decision to port a popular, or potentially popular, title to the Wii U must be a tough one, as the inherent risk involved — hoping gamers will hold out while the PS3, PC, and Xbox 360 version are readily available — is rather high. But there’s also the justification of a Wii U port to consider as well — developing a port that makes decent use of the console’s new GamePad controller.
It is with that thinking in mind, or lack thereof, that Borderlands 2 developer Gearbox Software decided not to port their best-selling loot fest to the Wii U. According to Gearbox’s Randy Pitchford, they just couldn’t come up with a worthwhile way to use the controller.
Pitchford, who has been touting Borderlands 2 for the better part of a year now, acknowledges that, at one point, Gearbox was considering a port, but his company struggled to find that “natural, obvious, ‘OMG, I want that for what the Wii U brings to the table’ feature.”
Despite Pitchford’s claim, though, it’s hard not to see the game’s extensive inventory management and character customization/leveling as perfect fodder for the GamePad controller. Though many of the Wii U’s most highly touted launch titles incorporate the GamePad directly into the experience, and require specific interaction, that doesn’t mean a readily available menu system wouldn’t be useful.
Borderlands 2 is, after all, a game that is about comparing and contrasting various items at every turn, something that arguably isn’t executed flawlessly in the current versions of the game. Nevertheless, Borderlands 2 isn’t happening, but perhaps Gearbox can discover some worthwhile uses for the GamePad for the inevitable Borderlands 3.
Though there will not be a Wii U version of Borderlands 2, Gearbox is bringing their next title, Aliens: Colonial Marines, to the hot new console. More importantly, the game will feature some clever uses of the GamePad, namely as an interactive version of the motion scanner device. For Pitchford, that functionality seemed like a no-brainer.
“…with Aliens, the first thing we thought was ‘Holy shit, I can have a motion controller in my hands!’ When it’s there in my lap it feels like I’m part of the movie.”
While the extent of the motion scanner’s interactivity has yet to be detailed, we imagine it will be an important piece of tech if players want to survive, and a nice nod to James Cameron’s film. We should be hearing more about all versions of Colonial Marines in the coming months.
Would you have liked to see Borderlands 2 ported to the Wii U? Are you looking forward to Aliens: Colonial Marines?
Aliens: Colonial Marines releases February 12, 2013 for the PC, PS3, Xbox 360, OnLive, and Wii U.
Source: Nintendo Everything