Indeed it was albeit I don't recall having claimed otherwise. It's rare that we get to hear what such people really think in this ever more corporate industry that is videogaming. I'd have hoped folk here would be more interested in discussing his words rather than caring about whether he it was professional of him to do so.
It didn't take long for the following prediction quoted from an earlier post to come to pass then,
DreamcastRIP wrote:...While he'll doubtlessly be the subject of personal ridicule from some quarters I suspect the message will get lost among all the internets histrionics.
That has always generally been how things are. if somebody words their comments in a meaningful, non-condescending manner, then people tend to take more notice and value their opinions more. If, however, they decide to act like a idiot, or unprofessionally, then that's exactly how they're regarded as for the most part....whatever truth might have been in what they said. 'The evil that men do....' as Shakespeare wrote.
Whatever EA's stance is, without an official statement to back it up, Summerwill as an employee has absolutely no place publicising it mixed in with his own personal views on Twitter. I really don't think I'm being overly melodramatic and don't appreciate the blatant implication that I am being, Nostradamus.
But if you'd rather 'discuss his words', then I will:
“The WiiU is crap. Less powerful than an XBOX360. Poor online/store. Weird tablet. Nintendo are walking dead at this point.”
Harsh perhaps but the guy's a senior engineer at one of the world's largest games publishers whose apparently been there since 1999 so one would presume he knows what he's talking about. As for his final statement then as a mere casual observer I'd have thought his words are perhaps overly pesismistic regarding Nintendo's future but as he's likely far better informed than any of us here I don't think his words can be reasonably dismissed out of hand.
Whether or not he's 'far better informed' than any of us here, I'd like to think that we can at least form our own conclusions based on common sense, research and evidence before letting somebody's personal opinion sway us. "The WiiU is crap" - debatable. "Less powerful than an Xbox 360" - debatable. "Weird tablet" - Mere personal opinion...many don't find it 'weird' at all. "Nintendo are walking dead at this point." - Nonsense. This is the same Nintendo who's last console was the massively successful Wii, who also have the massively successful DS Lite and who are currently doing well with the 3DS, as well as extremely healthy software sales. But! He's a senior software engineer for a rival publisher! That must add at least a little credibility to his personal opinions, right?
“Nintendo are still operating like it’s 1990. They should have “done a Sega” and offered Mario/Zelda as PS4/Durango exclusives.”
Hardly a controversial statement as many others having been saying the same for some time. It's interesting to hear that such a senior industry figure subscribes to this viewpoint too.
'Many' others? I know of Peter Molyneux saying that if it was up to him, he'd put Mario on the iPad and Cliffy B saying Nintendo 'might' throw in the towel and become a third party developer at some point.....but this tweet is possibly the only instance I've seen of someone who wasn't an anonymous keyboard warrior or a speculating journalist saying that Nintendo 'should' actually have 'done a Sega' already. So they should offer their most valuable IPs as exclusives to a competitor when they still have a healthy handheld business and the Wii U's future is nowhere near set in stone yet? Really?
“Instead they make this awful console, and this…nintendo.com/wii/udownloads…. Just stop it! Just make great games!”
I personally don't think Wii U is an 'awful console' but many Wii U owners have been very critical of the console hardware, its firmware and eShop including on this very forum. He appears to want more great games from Nintendo (a compliment by him) rather than them messing about with gimmicky hardware. I see numerous Nintendo fans, including on this very forum, stating that hardware, graphics, etc, don't matter because it's all about the games so by that logic (flawed logic imho, but I digress) surely the guy has a fair point?
He makes a fair point at the end of his tweet, but he's already automatically alienated a lot of people reading it by calling the Wii U an 'awful console' at the beginning of it. I don't suppose it would be too much to ask of a senior software engineer for a major games publisher to at least think
before he hits 'send' on his tweet, would it?
“It is an utterly intentional decision to focus our resource on markets which actually matter… like mobile, and Gen4.”
Perhaps he's talking in the present tense whereby with such a tiny userbase that's not expanding in size at all quickly the Wii U isn't commercially viable for a company the size of EA. Hedging his bets for now while leaving the door open to start porting games to Wii U at some future point if the console sells well. An entirely sensible business decision, imho.
First off, he's making a wild assumption that either the PS4 or Durango/Nextbox will be a 'market that matters' months in advance (if only we all had the same crystal ball Summerwill seems to have
....). Perhaps you're correct and he is talking in the present tense, but I still find it a little strange that after initially announcing they had an 'unprecedented partnership' with Nintendo back in 2011 and were rumoured to be helping them to create the Wii U's online network, EA then suddenly had next to no games in development for the Wii U that were due out on other formats right after the Wii U launched (ie Dead Space 3), and the only things the Wii U did get were a half assed FIFA game, a half assed Madden game, a port of Mass Effect 3 which had launched on Xbox 360 and PS3 months before, and a port of Need For Speed Most Wanted, which despite being the best console version was still launched way too late after the other versions to generate much interest.
“One more : -). Nintendo platforms have always been very poor revenue-wise for third parties. Only Mario and Zelda make money.”
Somewhat of an over-simplification as some third-party games sold well on the Wii but his point when taken more broadly does hold up to scrutiny. For instance, ato this source the top 14 best-selling Wii games of all-time were all published by Nintendo. The only non-Nintendo game to make the top 15 comes in at number 15.
That's an interesting tweet to me, given his earlier one. You've already pointed out that it's somewhat of an over-simplification anyway, but if we go back to what he said earlier about Nintendo making their IPs exclusive to another format....I can only imagine how much that would possibly devastate other third party software sales on that format then.
Some of these people want to be careful what they wish for in case it happens one day.
As for third party games that sold well on the Wii....EA certainly didn't do too badly. EA Sports Active did quite well for itself, boldly fighting off Mario Sports Mix, both Wii Kirby games, Metroid Prime 3 and Pokemon Battle Revolution.
Boom Blox also sold quite well for instance although the fact that it was an original, fun appealing IP that wasn't a half assed port or already available on a rival console might've been the catalyst for better sales (but I'm certainly no expert).