Despite being one of the best launch titles available for the Wii U, ZombiU will go down in history as a financial flop.
Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot recently spoke to GamesIndustry for a piece examining the dire straits Nintendo's Wii U console appears mired in. The whole article is a litany of reasons why Nintendo's latest console isn't doing so hot, but among the doom and gloom one piece of negative information stands above all else: Word that ZombiU, a title enjoyed by both fans and critics, was "not even close" to being profitable.
Sadly, as a result of its fiscal failure, Ubisoft has "no desire" to create a ZombiU sequel. Further, the company's decision to bring Rayman Legends to platforms other than the Wii U was directly influenced by the downfall of ZombiU. The Wii U, it seems, just doesn't attract enough players to ensure suitable profitability for Ubisoft's tastes.
"We must find a way to ensure the creativity of [Ubisoft] games could have a big enough audience," Guillemot states, before turning his attention to the status of the Wii U in general, "We hope it will take off. At the moment, we've said 'let's do through Christmas and see where we are from there.'"
That's ... *math* ... roughly five months until Ubisoft reevaluates its position on the Wii U. Nintendo's console has improved its ability to attract players since launch, but is still far from an industry leader's position. Will Nintendo be able to turn things around quickly enough to keep publishers satisfied?
More crucially, what does the failure of ZombiU mean for the Wii U? If you'll recall, prior to its release ZombiU was touted as prime evidence that Nintendo's new console would cater to the "hardcore gamer" set. If it couldn't succeed with this aim (and being a pretty entertaining, novel game), will future developers shy away from bringing their darker, more violent titles to Nintendo's machine? And if so, can the Wii U survive on first-party Nintendo titles and whatever family-friendly fare other companies might bring to market?
Publicly Nintendo may not want to repeat the history of the Wii with its successor, but the company did make a ton of cash from its last console. Of course, that still leaves Nintendo fans hoping for proper violence on their console out in the cold, but with enough money it's very easy to just not care.