Her Story dev discusses the challenges of Wii U development


Her Story received quite a bit of critical acclaim when it released in July of last year. The game is an interactive story that focuses on players attempting to solve a missing person case using police video clips and transcriptions. It’s an interesting approach to gaming and developer Sam Barlow recently made several comments about the possibility of the game appearing on the Wii U.

In a recent interview, Barlow was asked whether or not he felt the game would be a suitable fit for the Wii U and if he was considering development for the title. His answers were less than encouraging for those who want to play the unique full motion video game on Wii U.

I’m a big Nintendo fan, so it’d be nice but there’s the additional expense of ESRB submission/ certification/ etc. And I’d have to code up a special Wii U set of plugins, so it’s probably not worth the expense!

So probably not worth the expense is a pretty vague statement. The interviewer asked Barlow to lay out how much something like that would cost, which Barlow did.

Hmm, rough napkin math … I’d need a Wii U/ Unity person to code up the video plugin stuff and test and do anything Wii U specific (as far as I know, the Unity version of [Wii U] isn’t necessarily the latest version). So let’s say three to four months of a good coder … that’s about $15-20 thousand.

The certification is about $2 thousand. I’d need a developer’s kit … that’s about $5 thousand. So we’re looking at about $30-40 thousand and that doesn’t account for my time. Let’s say I make $2 per copy sold. I’d need to sell 15-20 thousand copies, which is definitely not guaranteed.

We’ve never seen a developer be so honest with the “napkin math” as he called it, but it’s a startling look at just what it costs to bring even an indie game to the Wii U. At this point it doesn’t seem very likely that Barlow will be bringing the game to the Wii U, but perhaps if there is enough fan interest it would be considered in the future.

What do you think? Would you be interested in playing the game on Wii U? Here’s a quick trailer that showcases what the game is about.

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