The Nintendo Wii U marked a bleak period in the history of Nintendo, as the mainstream gaming public didn't embrace the system. The casual audience who loved the Nintendo Wii didn't transition to the new console and Nintendo was left scrambling to try and hold onto its place in the market while Sony rose in dominance with the PlayStation 4.
The Nintendo Switch is a return to form for Nintendo consoles, as both the casual and hardcore market has taken to it for different reasons. The Nintendo Switch has become a port machine, with indie and third-party developers falling over themselves to put their games on Nintendo's hybrid system.
The company that is most obsessed with porting games to the Nintendo Switch is Nintendo itself, as the Nintendo Wii U's library has slowly made the transition to the latest system. The recent announcement of Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE Encore has taken another precious exclusive away from the Nintendo Wii U and it seems like only a matter of time until the other games follow suit.
The Wii U Is Losing One Of Its Biggest Remaining Exclusives
The recent Nintendo Direct revealed that one of the last great Nintendo Wii U exclusives is coming to the Nintendo Switch in 2020. Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE is a JRPG that was originally billed as combining the worlds of Fire Emblem and Shin Megami Tensei into one, but the final product was a unique title that featured some elements from both series.
Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE was an excellent game, but it was chained to the hardware of the Nintendo Wii U, which meant that the game had some annoying load times when it came to performing basic tasks, such as opening and closing the menu.
Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE Encore is a port of the original to the Nintendo Switch that promises to add new content to the game. The technical issues that plagued the original will likely be resolved as well.
The Majority Of The Wii U's Best Games Are Already On The Switch
The success of the Nintendo Switch in comparison to the Nintendo Wii U has led to Nintendo going on a porting spree, as all of those games that underperformed in the past now have a chance to reach a new audience.
The current best-selling game on the Nintendo Switch is Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, which is an upgraded port of Mario Kart 8 for the Nintendo Wii U. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe has sold over seventeen million units and it keeps popping up in the sales charts in 2019.
The Nintendo Switch has seen upgraded ports of Nintendo Wii U games that have also sold extremely well, including Bayonetta 2, Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker, Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, Hyrule Warriors, New Super Mario Bros. U, and Pokken Tournament.
Some Of The Best Wii U Games Already Have Sequels
There are several Nintendo Wii U games that have been made redundant by sequels that were released on the Nintendo Switch.
Masahiro Sakurai has confirmed that Super Smash Bros. Ultimate was built using many of the same assets as Super Smash Bros. 3DS/Wii U. There is little reason to return to those games, due to the superior roster and improved mechanics of the latest entry in the series.
The original Splatoon was one of the best games on the Nintendo Wii U and it helped to build a new first-party franchise for the company, but Splatoon 2 improved upon it in many ways, the least of which is making it far easier to play the game locally.
Super Mario Maker 2 is a less prominent example, as the game does include a lot of new content over the original, but is lacking in some areas, including the removal of the additional costumes. The loss of GamePad support has done little to diminish the success of Super Mario Maker 2, which has hit new audiences.
There Are Only A Few Wii U Exclusives Left
Life isn't over for the Nintendo Wii U just yet, though, as the system does still have a few exclusive titles left.
The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD and The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD are two of the main reasons to hang onto the Nintendo Wii U, as they are updated versions of two of the best Nintendo games of all time. The only problem here is that these games are practically guaranteed to be ported to the Nintendo Switch in the future. It's more a case of when and not if.
Pikmin 3 is another major hold-out and it's possible that it may remain a Nintendo Wii U exclusive, due to how much the GamePad was integrated into the gameplay. It's possible that Nintendo might release a Pikmin collection in the future alongside HD remasters of the original, but it seems likely that a Pikmin 4 would come first.
Star Fox Zero and Super Mario 3D World are also questionable prospects, due to how much they used the GamePad. It would take a bit of work to alter Super Mario 3D World in order to remove GamePad support, but Star Fox Zero would need to be remade from the ground up.
A Nintendo Switch port of The Wonderful 101 has been teased in the past, but nothing has come of it yet. The Wonderful 101 is another example of a game that would need to be reworked to remove the GamePad support.
Xenoblade Chronicles X seemed unlikely at first, but the recent announcement of an HD remake of Xenoblade Chronicles all but confirms that the other game in the series would make its way to the Nintendo Switch in the future.
The Nintendo Wii U had some great titles and it's good to see them finding a new audience on the Nintendo Switch, but it feels as if Nintendo is slowly eroding the Nintendo Wii U's place in history by porting all of its best games.