GDC 13: Frostbite 3 and UE4 not supporting Wii U

GDC 13: Frostbite 3 and UE4 not supporting Wii U
Craig Chapple

By Craig Chapple

March 29th 2013 at 9:45PM

'We have Unreal Engine 3 for the Wii U,' says Mark Rein

Unreal Engine 4 and Frostbite 3 will not be supporting the Wii U.

As reported by Kotaku, despite having previously announced support of Unreal Engine 4 for PC and PS4, and today revealing it will also be scalable to mobile and HTML5, Wii U developers will have to continue working with Unreal Engine 3.

In a Q&A session at GDC, Rein explained that Unreal Engine 3 development would not just disappear because it had released UE4, and that its latest engine was designed for next-gen development as far as consoles were concerned.

"We're not… we have Unreal Engine 3 for the Wii U. Right?” said Rein.

“And Unreal Engine 3 is powering all kinds of amazing games, still lots of games are being made with Unreal Engine 3. We announced today about a new Unreal Engine 3 license. Unreal Engine 3 doesn't disappear because of Unreal Engine 4.

“But our goal for Unreal Engine 4 console-wise is next-gen consoles. That's really what our energies are focused on. If you want to make a Wii U game, we have Unreal Engine 3, and it's powering some of the best games on the Wii U already.”

EA DICE exec producer Patrick Bach meanwhile has told Eurogamer that, at least for now, EA's latest game engine Frostbite 3 will also not be supporting the Wii U.

This means that the likes of Battlefield 4 and the next Dragon Age and Mass Effect will likely not be coming to the console, unless EA has a change of tact in future.

Bach said the reason for the lack of Wii U support on the tech was because "it takes development time", with a current focus on PC and current-gen platforms such as the PS3 and Xbox 360.

The news will be a worry for Nintendo, which has so far struggled to gain third-party support and sales for the Wii U. 

Despite this however, Nintendo could yet find support from a wave of indies now that it has opened up the console to support game development using HTML5, JavaScript and CSS with its new development encironment, the Nintendo Web Framework.

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