Electronic Arts developing Wii U games after all

Contrary to earlier comments, the company is creating new titles for the console.

By Benzinga May 22, 2013 4:42PM

© Michal Czerwonka/Getty ImagesBy Louis Bedigian


Electronic Arts (EA) CFO Blake Jorgensen has confirmed that, contrary to previous comments from company spokesperson Jeff Brown (and a barrage of negative tweets from an EA engineer), the company is developing games for Nintendo's (NTDOY) Wii U console after all.


According to IGN, Jorgensen made the announcement at the Stifel Nicolaus 2013 Internet, Media and Communications Conference.


"You know, I think Nintendo's business was more [an] extension of their last console," said Jorgensen, as quoted by IGN. "I think what the consumer will find is a lot more powerful gameplay with the new boxes that are coming out, and a lot of excitement, but it'll remain to be seen as to the services associated with those as to how consumers decide which direction they might want to go."


This announcement comes after Nintendo -- and most of all its newest console -- endured a week of negative press. Wii U sales declined by more than 85% last quarter, painting a very bleak picture for the console's future (see Benzinga).


Jorgensen did not say which games would be developed for Nintendo's ailing machine, but he reportedly confirmed that EA is developing more games for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. This was evident during Microsoft's (MSFT) press conference Tuesday when EA announced that a special version of FIFA 14 would come exclusively to the third-generation Xbox. (Microsoft owns and publishes Top Stocks, an MSN Money site.)


While EA has pledged its support for Sony's (SNE) new console, the company was mysteriously absent from the first PlayStation 4 event last February (see Benzinga). This indicated that the company would be a big part of the Xbox One event, mirroring the company's strategy in promoting Xbox 360.


In addition to EA's game development news, the company is also making headlines this week for getting in trouble with former Rutgers University quarterback Ryan Hart. EA reportedly used Hart's likeness in the NCAA Football series without his permission.


According to The Wall Street Journal, a federal appeals court has ruled that Hart can attempt to collect some of the profits that EA made from 2004 through 2006 for using his likeness.


Hart's lawyer, Michael Rubin, told The Wall Street Journal that he is going to ask a federal judge to certify the suit as a class action.


"We know now where to draw the line between expression protected by the First Amendment and the commercial exploitation of an individual's marketable image," he said.


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