Nintendo touts how easy it is to develop for the Switch

During a recent call with investors, Nintendo’s creative director Shigeru Miyamoto stated that he believes the company’s various internal studios are quickly catching up with Western developers when it comes to their ability to develop with Unreal Engine 4.

Miyamoto claims that this is because developing for the Switch is a very open process, something that’s been an issue with past Nintendo systems, including the Wii U, Gamecube and arguably even the Wii, one of Nintendo’s most successful consoles.

An investor specifically inquired about third-party support for the Switch, asking Miyamoto to explain what the company has done to improve the system’s development environment.

“Developers in the U.S. and E.U. are often said to have superior skills to their Japanese counterparts when it comes to software development techniques.”

“Regarding our software development environment,” said Miyamoto. “Third-party developers who are making software for PC can now easily adapt that software to work on our platform. In the current development environment, Iʼd say that it would take less than a year for them to port a PC game to Nintendo Switch.”

Miyamoto goes on to say that this ease of development is felt by both Nintendo’s internal devs, as well as developers in North America and Europe.

“That ease of software development has also been felt by Nintendoʼs internal developers. Also, even though game software developers in the U.S. and E.U. are often said to have superior skills to their Japanese counterparts when it comes to software development techniques, Nintendoʼs software developers have mastered state-of-the-art technologies such as Unreal engine, and their skills can now be compared with those of Western developers. Our developers are more excited than ever to create software.”

Promoting the Switch’s support for Unreal Engine 4 is a smart move by Nintendo given how important third-party developers are to the console’s future. While the Wii U has a library of impressive games, after the console’s first six months on the market, support from outside developers rapidly dwindled. Unreal Engine 4, a toolkit that was first released in 2012, has powered a number of titles on competing consoles.


According to Polygon, it was actually possible to port Unreal Engine titles to the Wii U, though the process required a number of work arounds. Nintendo believes that this won’t be the case with the Switch.

Nintendo says that the Switch is also compatible with Unity, another popular engine that’s widely used by a number of developers. When asked about the company’s relationship with Nvidia regarding the Switch’s hardware development, Nintendo executive officer Shinya Takashi said the following:

“This time, in order to develop Nintendo Switch with high performance in spite of its low power consumption, I feel it was key that the two companies could work together as partners while also fully displaying our individual craftsmanship,” said Takashi.

We went hands-on with Nintendo’s upcoming Switch home console-handheld hybrid gaming system at a recent event in Toronto. The Nintendo Switch is set to be released in Canada on March 3rd for $399.

Via: Polygon