SEGA’s Darren Williams still skeptical about the Wii

It’s been nearly two years since the initial release of the Wii and, through all the arguments and claims of impending doom, Nintendo’s little white box has remained the leading console in sales so far this gen. Still, that isn’t stopping some from voicing their opinions on Nintendo’s money maker. Darren Williams, SEGA’s A&R head of content, sat down on a forum at the London Games Festival and talked about some issues in the industry. As you might have already guessed, the Wii was one of those topics.

First, Williams talked about Nintendo’s dominating hardware sales in relation to their console’s software sales saying, “For all the success of the Wii, you’re starting to see the trend emerging in Wii markets of software prices going lower and lower.” He continued, “Nintendo is obviously dominating, because it always does on its formats. We obviously had great success with Mario & Sonic, but for all the growth in the wider spread of Wii gaming – and to a certain extent DS – it’s hard to make a product stick on those.”

When asked if he thought that the success that the Wii has achieved will lead to an increase in ‘core’ gamers, Williams had this to say: “Your point about a gateway, an entry point to gaming – certainly I think the Wii needs to have more titles. We’ve got two at SEGA, but we’re backing to attract us to the slightly older thirty-somethings that might hit nostalgia,” adding, “So I think there’s a market on the Wii for different tastes of gaming. Whether people will then graduate upwards, that’s an open question. I’m skeptical about it, because I think what the Wii offers is a very physical, fun experience. Any degree of percentage from 10 to 30 to 40 per cent of the experience is the Wii remote – so I’m not so sure. ”

One can’t fault SEGA for their efforts on Wii, as they have been one of the better publishers in terms of ‘core’ games for the system. And, if you look at their early releases for 2009 of MadWorld and The Conduit, they are certainly one of Nintendo’s most valuable allies in the business as far as the Wii is concerned. It just remains to be seen whether their concerns will come to fruition.