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Nintendo Wii Homebrew Contest 2007

CmdrTaco posted more than 6 years ago | from the gotta-keep-'em-emulated dept.

Emulation (Games) 140

Croakyvoice writes "DCEmu is hosting the worlds first Nintendo Wii and Nintendo Gamecube Homebrew Coding Contest with prizes of $500 on offer for Homebrew and Emulators for the Wii and Gamecube, The hope is that through this contest an exploit will be released that will allow full homebrew on the Nintendo Wii without a Modchip. Gamecube Homebrew is already on the Wii with a host of systems emulated such as Snes, Genesis, Gameboy and Neogeo."

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140 comments

Good (3)

bulio (884542) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458071)

This money would be a great incentive to get homebrew running on the Wii, (which is lacking due to the availability of modchips). The wii is an excellent console, and I'm looking forward to being able to do more with it.

Re:Good (1)

flimflammer (956759) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460947)

Perhaps I'm just thinking greedy here, but $500 does not seem all that appealing to me. I mean, sure it's great incentive and a good gesture for advancement, but I'm sure people probably wouldn't get all stoked to try with a mere $500 reward.

Personally, I can't wait till Wii homebrew gets more widespread. I really wish it were as easy as the old first generation Dreamcast days.

how long (0, Offtopic)

eneville (745111) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458109)

[obligatory]
How long did you have to wait for the wii to come out?
[/obligatory]

Re:how long (1)

Midnight Thunder (17205) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458153)

How long did you have to wait for the wii to come out?

Until you get lucky ;) Seriously, I have been going to various stores, every once in a while, asking them when their next batch is due. Most either don't know and tell you, that you have to call almost every day to find out and then they are usually sold in a couple of hours. The other day I went to buy a home phone, didn't find the one I wanted and asked on the off chance if they if they knew when the next batch of Wiis was due. Guy told me they actually happened to have two in stock, so I bought it in an instant, along with Rayman - now that's one crazy game.

So in my case about seven months, since release date.

Re:how long (3, Interesting)

hcpxvi (773888) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458289)

How long did you have to wait for the wii to come out?

Until you get lucky ;) Seriously, I have been going to various stores, every once in a while, asking them when their next batch is due.

If you are in the UK, then GAME make you do this. Those of us who have better things to do than hang around video game stores would be well-advised to try GameStation, who will take a deposit and phone you up when your name reaches the top of the list.

The Wii is a thoroughly well-designed and enjoyable toy. I'd certanly like to see it opened up a bit. How else will we get Wii change-ringing? [wikipedia.org]

Get one now! (1)

gilesjuk (604902) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458613)

Game and Gamestation have stocks, my local Asda has them. I ordered mine on Amazon UK or else I would have got one from Asda today.

Re:how long (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19459441)

The Wii is a thoroughly well-designed and enjoyable toy. I'd certanly like to see it opened up a bit.
here you go. [informit.com]

Re:how long (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19458597)

I used itrackr.com and got a Wii in January.

Re:how long (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 6 years ago | (#19459169)

I did the same thing. I didn't quite go to the store every day, but I made sure to check every time I was near a store (about once a week). I managed to pick one up a few weeks ago. It's definitely not something you can walk into a store and buy on any day, but they are out there, and believe me, it's worth it. The Wii is awesome.

Re:how long (1)

Gwd (820453) | more than 6 years ago | (#19459219)

I'm sorry, but where do you live? I'm in Alberta, Canada. I can walk into any store around here and they have at least 10 Nintendo Wiis all the time. They've had a good stock since the end of April. The fact that people are still having such a hard time finding them is really surprising. If you're in the UK I can understand a bit, but if we have so many here couldn't they improve stock over there very easily?

Re:how long (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 6 years ago | (#19459271)

I'm in Ottawa. There is still a major shortage of Wiis here. And Accessories too. When I got my Wii, I picked up Wiiplay with the controller (although they had just controllers in stock), but was unable to get a second nunchuck. The store clerks reaction was something like, "I swear we had them in stock 5 minutes ago". It was easy enough to find the second nunchuck at Walmart the next day. I completely believe you that there's 10+ machines sitting on the shelves though. I think that some places just have different demand for the products, and they don't really spread them around to where there is the most demand. For instance, if each store is allowed to order 10 per week, then they will only get 10, regardless of whether or not they will sell out of them in 10 minutes, or 5 days. I'm not sure if this is the way it is, but it might make sense as to why one store as 10 sitting on the shelf, and the other store is continually out of stock.

Re:how long (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19459481)

Sorry, no store in the world has "at least 10 Wiis all the time". So you're clearly a liar. But just to be sure, I checked. Not a single Best Buy in Alberta has a Wii in stock right now. The online stock locator showed zero, but I called the Edmonton North store to double check. He told me no one in the province had any either, and checked his own stock locator. I then checked Future Shop online, even though they're owned by Best Buy, and still nothing. Please give me a store in Edmonton that has a Wii in stock that I can call to verify.

Re:how long (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19461465)

Sorry, no store in the world has "at least 10 Wiis all the time".
 
Actually, I know of at least one store in Melbourne, Australia that has had around 10 units continuously for a while now. They're in a large shopping centre with a couple of other stores who usually have a few in stock and they're the most expensive place so people don't get them there.

Unless by "in the world" you meant "in North America". In which case maybe you're right.

Re:how long (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 6 years ago | (#19461527)

You said "most expensive place". What does that mean. Every shop I've seen in my city sells it for exactly the same price which is exactly the same as the MSRP. I didn't think there was much pricing competition on consoles, but maybe that's just the way things are in Canada.

Re:how long (1)

Wobble-U (1112077) | more than 6 years ago | (#19461053)

I didn't have to wait. Wiis are in stock in most places around where I live (I live in New Zealand) so I just walked in and asked for one :-D

Other solutions (5, Insightful)

Midnight Thunder (17205) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458123)

I recently managed to get myself a Wii and from playing around with it, I feel there is a lot of untapped potential. Much of this could be accelerated if they made it easier for individual developers to add new channels. Although the Wii does not have a huge amount of processing power, when compared to a home PC, some of the stuff that I could see being added to it:
    - MP3 Player, accessing music from SD card or a media server such as iTunes. Currently the only MP3 player is part of the slide show.
    - Ability to play MPEG and MPEG4 movies, using codecs other than Motion-JPEG, from SD or a media server
    - Support for Bonjour, for discovering services on you local home network.

I know that the Wii is meant to be a games machine, but once you have explored the weather, news and internet channels you realise it could be so much more. This price also makes it very attractive.

On the game front this kind of competition could foster more imagination, than some game companies are will to provide, especially when it comes to using the controller.

BTW you can play Flash based games with the help of Opera.
 

Flash games (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19458173)

Yup, you can. It's a bit difficult using the wii remote rather than the gun from the NES, but check out http://www.nintendo-hacks.com/duck_hunt.swf [nintendo-hacks.com]

Works on a computer too, using the mouse, if you're bored at work.

Cheaper Flash SDK? (2, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460053)

So how do I make Flash games without a $700 devkit? With the DS, I need $500 for a PC, $130 for a DS, and $50 for an R4 and a microSD card. I download the software [devkitpro.org] to CD or microSD at a public library, and then I take it home and install it on my PC. With the Wii, I need $500 for a PC, $250 for a Wii, and either $700 for an Adobe Flash license or $250 for an Adobe Flash Education Edition license and at least $450 for a semester of community college.

Re:Cheaper Flash SDK? (1)

Midnight Thunder (17205) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460521)

The Flash games are basically those available via web pages. If it can be displayed in a web page, then it can be displayed by Opera on the Wii. For example, the following will work anywhere Flash does.

  - http://www.albinoblacksheep.com/games/wii/ [albinoblacksheep.com]
  - http://www.wiiplayable.com/ [wiiplayable.com]

I have no idea how much it costs to develop flash content on Windows/Linux/MacOS X, etc, but it isn't anything Nintendo specific.

Re:Cheaper Flash SDK? (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460607)

If it can be displayed in a web page, then it can be displayed by Opera on the Wii.
But how does the JavaScript game running in the web page take Control Pad and button press events for itself, as opposed to Opera performing its default function for each button?

I have no idea how much it costs to develop flash content on Windows/Linux/MacOS X, etc, but it isn't anything Nintendo specific.
The hardware and software for developing native homebrew content on Windows for DS are cheaper than Adobe Flash software for developing SWF content on Windows for Windows.

Developers, developers, developers! (3, Insightful)

TodMinuit (1026042) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458207)

Allowing anyone to develop a Wii Channel -- even if it's only restricted access through something like RSS -- would only have a positive effect on the console.

Re:Developers, developers, developers! (1)

s13g3 (110658) | more than 6 years ago | (#19459541)

TodMinuit wrote:
Allowing anyone to develop a Wii Channel -- even if it's only restricted access through something like RSS -- would only have a positive effect on the console.


That is, until people start to find and exploit flaws in it, allowing them to bypass copy protections and/or distribute malicious code via said rss feeds, or cheats that work in multi-player games, for that matter.

Personally, I don't want to have to waste any of the rather finite amount of CPU cycles available on my Wii to anti-virus / anti-malware / anti-cheat software; the Wii is not a hard-disk driven console, much less a much more powerful modern PC, with the ability to easily update its core software and save large numbers of updates/patches, in addition to protective software.

Re:Other solutions (4, Interesting)

Excors (807434) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458609)

As well as Flash, you can do HTML and JavaScript and graphics in <canvas> – I experimented with an FPS engine [lazyilluminati.com] a while ago, and developed it just with desktop versions of Opera and Firefox, and reportedly it actually works on the Wii too. (Recent nightly builds of Safari also support it – it's nice when browser interoperability works.)

It's quite horrifically inefficient doing all this in a web browser rather than C++, but there's still a lot you can manage that's within the bounds of feasibility, if you use some imagination to simplify what you need the technology to do for you.

Incidentally, I like the idea of supporting open standards like <canvas> and <video> [w3.org] rather than proprietary platforms like Flash, particularly given that everyone using the Wii browser has to (indirectly) pay for licensing the Flash player from Adobe.

Re:Other solutions (0, Troll)

aldheorte (162967) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458827)

That is one of the most horrific things I have ever seen in modern technology. That's like goatse.cz for browsers. Impressive you got it to work, but what possessed you to do such a thing?

Re:Other solutions (3, Informative)

_xeno_ (155264) | more than 6 years ago | (#19459699)

As well as Flash, you can do HTML and JavaScript and graphics in <canvas> - I experimented with an FPS engine [lazyilluminati.com] a while ago, and developed it just with desktop versions of Opera and Firefox, and reportedly it actually works on the Wii too.

It doesn't work on the Wii - I just tried.

Even if it did, you wouldn't be able to play it because there's no way to generate keyboard events with the Wii. The only events you do get are mouse motion events and the left mouse button.

The Opera-powered Wii browser is still a very capable browser, but it doesn't quite work for things like that.

Re:Other solutions (1)

FleaPlus (6935) | more than 6 years ago | (#19459763)

Even if it did, you wouldn't be able to play it because there's no way to generate keyboard events with the Wii. The only events you do get are mouse motion events and the left mouse button.

Actually, all the buttons on the Wii remote are accessible:

http://www.wiicade.com/api.aspx [wiicade.com]

WiiCade API for testing? (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460073)

Actually, all the buttons on the Wii remote are accessible
The WiiCade API works only on SWF pages accessed through wiicade.com. It does not work on games made with JavaScript and <canvas>, so I'd need to get a second job to afford Flash ($700). Nor does it work on SWF pages being tested on a private server on the local domain.

Re:WiiCade API for testing? (1)

Dwedit (232252) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460325)

You can make flash games entirely in actionscript using open source SWF creation tools. Only need flash if you want to have any vector animation which is not part of the code.

Re:WiiCade API for testing? (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460651)

You can make flash games entirely in actionscript using open source SWF creation tools.
Which tools do you recommend? And how would one go about, say, making something like "He's Back, He's Here, He's Mario" (the U.S. Super Mario All-Stars commercial) or the similar "Miko Miko Nurse" animutation as a game's opening cut scene using these tools?

Only need flash if you want to have any vector animation which is not part of the code.
So are there any examples of making vector animation with code?

Re:Other solutions (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19458739)

Ability to play MPEG and MPEG4 movies, using codecs other than Motion-JPEG, from SD or a media server

Oh, if *only*. If the Wii only had this simple and obvious "XBox media center" feature, I'd be able to retire my media playback PC. I can look at web pages on the Wii - why can't I also watch videos hosted on my LAN? It's not a lack of CPU power or a lack of network connectivity.

I cannot understand why Nintendo has not already introduced an application to do this as a downloadable feature. I'd even pay for it (maybe up to around $10, more if it had support for unusual formats). XBox 360 has this feature now, and XBox has had it for many years thanks to the XBMC hackers. There is no lack of demand.

Hello Nintendo, are you awake? The customers want a feature and will pay for it!

Re:Other solutions (1)

gallwapa (909389) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460625)

Look up "WiiCR" on sourceforge or at wiicr.org

I have it running on my SLES10 file server. I serve all media out to my Wii through opera using WiiCR. Great little utility.
On a P4 2.6ghz w/ 1 gig of RAM it takes about 30 seconds of lead time to transcode a video into a FLV. Its not realtime, but, close enough. Also with the HQ resolution transcoding, there is nearly no noticeable loss of quality on my SD tv. (Use the wiipaper theme for a default 480 video, otherwise you may have to use the zoom feature)

Re:Other solutions (1)

Cheesey (70139) | more than 6 years ago | (#19461261)

Thanks for the suggestion of WiiCR, but I don't have the CPU power for transcoding, so using a Linux PC for media playback continues to be the best option. I could replace that machine if I had an XBox Media Centre-like program for the Wii, and I think that Nintendo are missing a golden opportunity by not supplying one. But thankyou for the suggestion anyway. WiiCR is certainly a clever hack - it demonstrates the lengths that people will go to in order to use the Wii as a media player.

This is a needed feature. This Saturday, I explained to a relative why I needed two computers connected to my TV. I said it was because the PC couldn't run the Wii games and because the Wii couldn't play video files and music. After a demo, she remarked that being able to access a digital music library on the TV was handy. I had to advise her that using an old PC would be the best way, because the Wii is missing this important feature. She could not be expected to set up WiiCR etc., so perhaps this counts as a "lost sale".

Re:Other solutions (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 6 years ago | (#19461555)

Check out Red Kawa [redkawa.com] for using your Wii as a media centre. It has an flv converter, so you can transcode things ahead of time if you don't have enough CPU power to do it in real time. Also, it can convert to motion JPEG so you can play movies in the photo channel off an SD card (although I haven't tried this functionality yet).

Re:Other solutions (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 6 years ago | (#19459137)

I just discovered Red Kawa [redkawa.com]. Which has a combination video/music/whatever server that you can access via the Wii Opera Browser. They also have video converter that converts the videos to flash (flv) so you can watch them in the browser. The video quality isn't that great, but it gets the job done. There's also converters for motion jpeg which I imagine would allow you to play videos from the SD slot, although I haven't had the time to try this out yet. I've tried orb [orb.com] which is another app that does the same thing, but goes through some third party server to view the media lists (I think the content is still direct stream). But I found that converting on the fly was too slow and the video produced was of much lower quality. Anyway, I also read that the Wii is getting a USB Mass Storage Driver. So if that's true, then I think that the media capabilities will be limitless. All it needs after that is H.264 support.

Skepticism over motive (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19459251)

DCEmu has been doing this for years, but the amount and quality of homebrew titles for the systems that get cracked do not seem to have made it worth the effort; however, it has opened doors to creating better emulators, which are of course not used for legal homebrew games the majority of the time, and for aiding game pirates in ripping game images which will run on cracked systems.

So, is this really about accelerating the Wii homebrew community or is it a cover story to get help in cracking the Wii so that pirated images of commercial games can be run on it sans modchip?

Re:Other solutions (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19459475)

Honestly what I'd like to see most is support for 720p (or even 1080p) over component in Opera. Browsing at 480p (or worse, 480i) is just not really worthwhile.

advertising ploy! (0, Flamebait)

greater (1111201) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458131)

though I wonder whether this just another advertising ploy...

Re:advertising ploy! (2, Informative)

TodMinuit (1026042) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458179)

By who? Nintendo isn't sponsoring the contest. It's unofficial.

Re:advertising ploy! (2, Informative)

Superken7 (893292) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458353)

By who?
From the article:

Prize Details

[--banner from gp2xstore.com--]

1st Prize) $300 to spend at GP2X Store

2nd Prize) $150 to spend at GP2X Store

3rd Prize) $50 to spend at GP2X Store

I give you 3 tries :-)

Hah, yeah right! (1)

gerf (532474) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458311)

I'm sure they're going to try to help people emulate Mario Kart on their Wii instead of buying it for $5.

Remember, they're still a for profit company.

Re:Hah, yeah right! (1)

KDR_11k (778916) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458539)

Few people can get a legal copy for such an emulator, though.

Of course Nintendo will issue a patch soon after no matter what and we'll see a PSP-style catch-up cycle

Re:Hah, yeah right! (1)

fyrewulff (702920) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460169)

But if it's available on Wii Shop, then everybody that has the console has a chance to get it legally.

Re:Hah, yeah right! (2, Insightful)

heinousjay (683506) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460315)

Come on, don't act naive. "Homebrew" is code for pirating and emulating old games, and "backups" is code for pirating new games. Now you have your education.

Re:Hah, yeah right! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19460599)

Just because *you* are not trustworthy, doesn't mean the whole world isn't. If you don't think playing around with your owned hardware is a good enough reason, what are you doing here on Slashdot anyway?

Re:advertising ploy! (1)

chaotixx (563211) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458315)

I bet you're right. With all those Wii consoles just sitting on the shelves, Nintendo really needs to step up it's advertising.

Wii homebrew without a modchip? read again. (5, Insightful)

Superken7 (893292) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458235)

From FTA:

This Coding Competition will hopefully ignite a mass of interest for creating homebrew and emulators on the Nintendo Wii and Nintendo Gamecube.


The article does not encourage homebrew developers to find a new way to run homebrew on the gamecube, far less on the wii itself (in wii-mode). As far as i can tell from the news post, it is just a GC homebrew competition which does not limit the loader to known methods.

It would be far more interesting if someone already 'known' to the homebrew scene would create a bounty for the first person who is able to run homebrew on the wii (in wii mode, that is).
Something similar to what StoneCypher did with the dswifi library, which was done by sgstair(thanks!).

Re:Wii homebrew without a modchip? read again. (2, Interesting)

BoUgS (1113739) | more than 6 years ago | (#19459117)

It would be far more interesting if someone already 'known' to the homebrew scene would create a bounty for the first person who is able to run homebrew on the wii (in wii mode, that is).
They already have that, and the bounty is currently running. http://www.wiili.org/index.php/Wii_Linux_bounty [wiili.org]

Re:Wii homebrew without a modchip? read again. (2, Insightful)

Superken7 (893292) | more than 6 years ago | (#19459489)

Unfortunately that is not exactly the kind of thing i was talking about.
That bounty is for getting linux to run (which requires homebrew running, yes, but that should be different goals/projects).

Note that wiili adds a LOT of requisites appart from running homebrew AND booting linux, such as 'Wiimote, keyboard, mouse, dvd drive, sd-card and network support.', (which is not to be taken lightly)
They even add the requisite of not voiding the warranty :P . I think they took a slightly different goal. That bounty will probably happen when homebrew is already a reality. Not before or at the same time.

IMHO, a more natural approach would be
1. get homebrew running.
2. get linux to boot.(This one will happen like, almost instantly? ;)
3. Improve 1. so that it does not void the warranty ..and/or.. add functionality to linux, but again, that will happen 'naturaly'
4. I was tempted to include a 'PROFIT!' step here ;-, woops, i already did!

Not even $500 cash (2, Interesting)

Joreallean (969424) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458319)

It's not even for real money. It's $300 store credit to some junk store that sells crappy handheld knock offs.

Re:Not even $500 cash (1, Informative)

the linux geek (799780) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458351)

I don't think anybody who actually has any experience with the GP2X would call it a "crappy knockoff handheld." It's a completely open Linux system with dual ARMs and emulators for many, many past consoles, plus native ports of Wolfenstein 3D, Doom, Quake, Quake 2, etc...

Re:Not even $500 cash (3, Insightful)

Sparr0 (451780) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458855)

Sadly, most people just ignore any console that doesnt have at least a 10% marketshare. Sometimes that is a good thing *cough*ngage*cough*, but other times you get imbeciles posting about great consoles like the GP2x (which i owned, and developed for, until mine was stolen).

Re:Not even $500 cash (0, Troll)

EggyToast (858951) | more than 6 years ago | (#19459017)

So it's not a knockoff handheld, but most everything you list involves it just playing old games originally created for other systems. I'm not knocking the hardware, but most of the interest in the system is from people who just want to play old ROMs on the go.

Re:Not even $500 cash (0, Troll)

Joreallean (969424) | more than 6 years ago | (#19459335)

Great so it can play all the old games that have already been rehashed a couple hundred times. The problem I see with the Linux community is they spend so much time and energy just trying to get already existing software and technology to run on their systems, that they have little or no time to truly create something new and innovative. Instead of trying to create an alternative system that does everything that your current system can do natively, create something new that your current system can't do. Then maybe you will see adoption of Linux as a viable alternative for the widespread public using mainstream hardware and software. Not speaking of the merits of Linux itself, simply the attitude of the community in general. Also just because something runs Linux doesn't make it any more or less crappy than any other system.

Re:Not even $500 cash (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19459545)

What a retarded rant.
Also, you're a 100% incorrect and that's not that easy to achieve so.. congrats, moron.

What GP2X titles? (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460105)

Joreallean wrote:

The problem I see with the Linux community is they spend so much time and energy just trying to get already existing software and technology to run on their systems, that they have little or no time to truly create something new and innovative.
AC wrote:

Also, you're a 100% incorrect
Your evidence? Which titles were created specifically for the GP2X that would make me want to buy a GP2X over a DS with the R4 card?

Why don't they PROMOTE home game creation? (5, Insightful)

Morgaine (4316) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458335)

The marketting divisions of Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony seem to be exceedingly blinkered when it comes to home games production on their consoles. It worked for the Amiga, which because of direct support from Commodore (docs and tools) saw the emergence of a huge and extremely buoyant community with legions of Amiga supporters worldwide. And that's only one example.

There is really no reason for NOT supporting private developers, because every console that is purchased will also lead to commercial games sales as well, it's totally inevitable. Some people have suggested that the manufacturers are afraid of competition from the amateur sector, but that is just totally unsubstantiated. After all, all those years of game development and millions spent in asset production cannot easily be rivalled at home.

While there will always be some people who simply cannot afford commercial games, in general the existence of a successful amateur sector would be *additional* to the success of commercial products, and it wouldn't replace them. The argument that the console manufacturers want their cut from licensing games doesn't stand up either, because they will continue to get their cut from those commercial games. If the sectors are additive, then that income is not reduced.

Of course, if the multi-million dollar games are so crap that people prefer the amateur products instead, then there would indeed be an effect, but that's not likely to happen in the general case. Even if the commercial investments are highly inefficient and tied to games with poor/boring gameplay, they still provide *gloss* at least, and so people will still buy them.

I put it down to the truism that "marketting is clueless", as always. Which is a big pity here.

Re:Why don't they PROMOTE home game creation? (1)

EvilGoodGuy (811015) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458427)

Read up on Microsoft's XNA. I put it down to the truism that "most people don't know what they're posting about," as always. Which is a big pity here.

Re:Why don't they PROMOTE home game creation? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19458507)

And how is Microsoft's XNA related to Sony and Nintendo?

I put it down to the truism that "some people have no clue how to link comments in a logical discussion", as always. Which is a big pity here.

Re:Why don't they PROMOTE home game creation? (1)

EvilGoodGuy (811015) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458783)

Too lazy to follow the truism format again, but seriously this is the worst troll ever. You didn't even read the first sentence of what I commented about.

Re:Why don't they PROMOTE home game creation? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19460821)

You didn't even read the first sentence of what I commented about.

If you have something serious to say that's worth reading, next time you might try saying it without adding a put-down designed only to make you appear clever. That just guarantees that any serious point is ignored.

Re:Why don't they PROMOTE home game creation? (1)

DrEldarion (114072) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458647)

Sony practically encourages homebrew apps on the PS3, what with being able to install Linux on it. Of course, half the things people would install homebrew apps for (media playing / streaming) are already part of the console...

You're restricted from using the graphics processor, which kind of sucks, but other than that you're pretty set. I want to see a PS3 Dwarf Fortress [bay12games.com]. Maybe then a world won't take 10 minutes to generate.

Devkits and licenses (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19459153)

Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft all want to sell development kits and licenses to use them. Officially allowing homebrew would mean commercial developers could make their own devkits, thus depriving the console makers of that revenue stream.

Re:Devkits and licenses (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19461921)

Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft all want to sell development kits and licenses to use them.

If so, then that just proves how utterly barmy and short-sighted they are.

They should be providing all dev kits and docs for free to games developers in order to encourage even the smallest outfits to develop games, because then they'd be reaping the game licensing fees from every game submitted, whether good or bad! And that's pure profit, whereas an expensive dev kit is pure disincentive.

If it's as you think, then this is typical backwards thinking from muddled companies who try to maximize profits from multiple streams, without realizing that in this case increasing the profit on one stream decreases it on another.

Re:Why don't they PROMOTE home game creation? (1)

gad_zuki! (70830) | more than 6 years ago | (#19459195)

XNA [wikipedia.org]

An Xbox 360 for $894 (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460135)

XNA
Congratulations. Now an Xbox 360 costs $894: $399 for the console and $99 per year for a five-year XNA Creators Club subscription. It'd be cheaper to buy a Mac Mini and connect it to the TV.

Because Lockjaw competes with Tetris (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460113)

The argument that the console manufacturers want their cut from licensing games doesn't stand up either, because they will continue to get their cut from those commercial games. If the sectors are additive, then that income is not reduced.
Unless each copy of Lockjaw [pineight.com] means that Microsoft doesn't get its cut from a copy of Tetris [tetris.com].

Re:Why don't they PROMOTE home game creation? (2, Insightful)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460489)

The marketting divisions of Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony seem to be exceedingly blinkered when it comes to home games production on their consoles. It worked for the Amiga, which because of direct support from Commodore (docs and tools) saw the emergence of a huge and extremely buoyant community with legions of Amiga supporters worldwide. And that's only one example.


There's a subtle difference between the Amiga and the game consoles. The Amiga itself was sold to make money, whereas game consoles sell games to make money. Sony and Microsoft, for example, take a loss on the systems. Nintendo, from what I've read, makes some profit on the Wii but very little. The money is recouped through publishing. That's the reason none of these companies are keen on home-brew games. It's sort of like how theaters don't want you bringing your own food and drink in. Interestingly enough, Nintendo survived and thrived when Commodore didn't.

Re:Why don't they PROMOTE home game creation? (1)

Zero Degrez (1039938) | more than 6 years ago | (#19461509)

Microsoft does support Home brewing 360 games. The XNA framework, and their game creator club has really opened up new doors for home brew developers. I mean, for a company to do more than releasing a thin wrapper on OpenGL is really cool. Yeah...they charge the creators a $100 yearly fee to use their service, but you get access to a huge amount of guides and art content for your games to go along with whatever you create. Which, being a hobbyist game developer is a real killer for a project. Because most programmers are not artists.

The only thing I wish MS would do differently is make it so people outside of the game creators club could play your games. If they did that, it would be very, very cool. (oh and hurried up and added XBox Live support to XNA for everyone and not just specially recognized games).

Bi7ch (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19458371)

guys are usually arogance was

Mythical Wii dev kits (2, Insightful)

Purity Of Essence (1007601) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458447)

Where are the inexpensive dev kits you promised last year, Nintendo? Sony and Microsoft are actually supporting homebrew, Nintendo is dragging their feet. I hope I can look forward to interesting and exciting news at E3 with regard to homebrew, dev kits, and VC originals ... but I'm not holding my breath. Please live up to your promises, Nintendo, don't turn this into another GameCube broadband adapter.

Re:Mythical Wii dev kits (2, Informative)

edwdig (47888) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458757)

Nintendo promised cheaper dev kits to licensed developers. They never said anything about the general public.

Re:Mythical Wii dev kits (1)

Sparr0 (451780) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458839)

I recall reading, and it was almost certainly pure rumor, that the entire process of licensing and acquiring a dev kit would cost as little as $2000. Right here on slashdot, actually, and I replied that I would go for that price in a heartbeat. It wasn't official, but it was a popular rumor.

Re:Mythical Wii dev kits (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19458943)

$2000 is about right*.

You also need to have an office somewhere (home office doesn't count) and quite a few other business things.

Basically, the cash isn't enough. Nintendo wants to make sure this is a BUSINESS venture.

* depending on your size, revenues, etc.

Re:Mythical Wii dev kits (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19459077)

Yup. It's something I've looked into myself. The $2k isn't a big deal but as an indy mobile game developer who just works out of a home office, it's kind of a no-go. The Wii shop channel would be an awesome platform for independant/small game devs to try their hand at a few small, $5 Wii games, nevermind the potential from purely hobbyist homebrew devs. Sure, there probably wouldn't be heaps of great new awesome content but a few gems are bound to turn up and many more "fun time wasters" or even the odd program that might inspire one of the larger established dev companies. It'd be a win-win-win all around.

Re:Mythical Wii dev kits (1)

yanos (633109) | more than 6 years ago | (#19458961)

The dev kits are about 2000$. It's just that they're not available to the general public.

Re:Mythical Wii dev kits (1)

EggyToast (858951) | more than 6 years ago | (#19459005)

The problem is that you would have to be a serious coder AND be serious about developing a game that people would want to pay for (even if it's cheap). The thing that always depresses me about homebrew is that it's literally overflowing with emulators and ROMs. If 5% of the homebrew population makes a stink about making it easier for people to load homebrew, and the other 95% is only interested in playing old SNES games, why would a company make the cost of entry any cheaper?

Most of the games I see for homebrew are more proof of concept than actual game, like an asteroids or breakout clone. While interesting, it seems that most gamers who want to code a game would rather just code it for a desktop OS.

Re:Mythical Wii dev kits (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460201)

While interesting, it seems that most gamers who want to code a game would rather just code it for a desktop OS.
Xbox 360, Wii, and PLAYSTATION 3, on the other hand, can support four gamepads per TV. Desktop PCs are limited to two gamepads per system due to the smaller physical size of the display. Set-top PCs appear to be so rare that no studio bothers customizing its games for them. So which system should an amateur code a four-player game for?

Re:Mythical Wii dev kits (1)

EggyToast (858951) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460823)

I think we're getting to the point where multiplayer games are more network-code with multiple-console support, rather than split screen. I personally love getting people together for a 4player game, since I have a large enough TV for it, and I've even gotten 8 people on it (4 player split screen with a vertical split-screen on the tv itself, with a pair of Xbox or GameCubes running it). A lot of fun, but I don't know how much focus there is for amateurs to code multiplayer games in general, let alone "party-style" games.

I mean, on Windows there's a surprising amount of small dev teams (or individuals) who craft mods or original games for FPS-style games and the entire game is based around multiplayer, but since the coders are relatively hardcore they're usually coding for an equally hardcore userbase. And most emulators cheat, by grafting netcode into the system to "emulate" having a 2nd player when it's really just another full system playing a copy of the game.

I'd love for coders to get interested in creating new original games that weren't just clones of old games, and I'd love it even more if they were coding multiplayer games (since paying $60 for a game you can only play when 3 people are over can be tough to stomach). But they're not doing it now, so it strikes me as a chicken/egg scenario. Are they not coding it because they're not interested, or because without the devkits it's too difficult? But if the devkits were free or easier to work with, would they suddenly start coding them (despite the focus being on emulators and classic game clones)?

I just think it's sad that most of the innovation for homebrew seems to be entirely unrelated to the gaming crowd. I mean, homebrew DS has MIDI over wifi and a handful of actual audio apps. That's impressive, to me, but I don't see much interest in original games.

Re:Mythical Wii dev kits (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19459637)

Your sig attracted me to that web host. The obnoxious shouting advertising (advertising what I was already looking at!) made me close the tab as quickly as I could.

Incorporation + office space (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460151)

I recall reading, and it was almost certainly pure rumor, that the entire process of licensing and acquiring a dev kit would cost as little as $2000.
Including the cost of forming an LLC and leasing office space? Warioworld.com states that Nintendo doesn't deal with sole proprietorships, nor does it deal with businesses run out of a home office.

Didn't you mean "Mythical Wii"? (0)

mad.frog (525085) | more than 6 years ago | (#19459177)

Not only have I never found a store with the Wii in stock, I've never even seen one with a demo unit.

I'm starting to suspect it's all just a giant myth...

Think about this logically... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19458767)

It's nice that they're having a contest for homebrew, but this contest and others of its ilk would never result in a Wii homebrew exploit being developed - unless the prize of said contest is in the 5 or 6-digit area. Modchips are big business. You can bet that the first person who comes up with the exploit will try and peddle it to the HK shops for a nice chunk of change. Whoever is working on homebrew exploits for the Wii is already doing it for the big payday and not for a $500 contest.

How about Wii Imports? (1)

djtachyon (975314) | more than 6 years ago | (#19459013)

The one thing that truly bugs me is the lack of support for Wii import games by both chips and loaders. Currently you have to buy a Japanese console to play them. I would love to give Naruto Shippuuden: Gekitou Ninja Taisen EX for the Wii a try. It is supposed to be the best Naruto game yet. The imported Naruto fighting games on the Gamecube are amazing. Japanese released Naruto: Gekitou Ninja Taisen! 3 and 4 (which are not available in the US) are much better than the previous versions. I am very glad that I am able to play them on a gamecube with a "Freeloader" disc.

Re:How about Wii Imports? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19459105)

It is supposed to be the best Naruto game yet.
If that's not damning with faint praise, I don't know what is.

Creating Wii Games (1)

enkafan (604078) | more than 6 years ago | (#19459385)

Microsoft has the semi-right idea with letting people use the XNA stuff to create games for the 360. Sure it is pretty locked down, but it is still is doable and well documented. The real hard part is that coming up with the idea for a 360 game is HARD, not to mention people expect "next-gen" graphics and sound for 360 games which is almost impossible without a large team. On the other hand, anyone who picks up a Wii controller immediately can come up with 10-50 ideas along the line of a Wii Sports or other mini games. And I think people are just fine with the quality of the graphics of the Wii. Throw in a standard "Mii" library for creating the characters and you are rolling right along.

Too bad I don't think Nintendo has their system set up for this. Oh well.

hacking? heck! where is the wii? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19459467)

i've been looking to buy one at $249 since the release and can't find one!

can anyone point me to a single source stocking the wii at its advertised price?

nope! didn't think so!

i'll wait for the next gen and then get mine for $20...

Sega CD Emulator? (1)

Aragorn DeLunar (311860) | more than 6 years ago | (#19459673)

I'd pay to be able to play Lunar: The Silver Star and Dark Wizard on my Wii. Anyone else?

Of course, that assumes that the drive is capable of reading standard CD-ROMs, which the Sega CD used.

Re:Sega CD Emulator? (1)

AdamWeeden (678591) | more than 6 years ago | (#19460609)

I would pay DEARLY to play (what I consider to be) the greatest console RPG of all time, L:TSS.

Disingenuous (1)

stonecypher (118140) | more than 6 years ago | (#19461007)

It'd be nice if they'd admit that it's actually a GameCube and emulator contest, since nobody can load homebrew Wii code yet. It'd be even nicer if they focussed their efforts on helping load homebrew onto the Wii, instead of getting emulators developed for a system that doesn't have homebrew at all; some people find that worrisome. DCEmu means well, I guess, but their priorities could sure use a reinvestigation.

Why homebrew? (2, Interesting)

falcon5768 (629591) | more than 6 years ago | (#19461263)

Full developer tools cost 2000 dollars for the Wii, same cost of a decent computer system.

Part of the whole homebrewing philosophy stems from the high cost of development of some of these systems (case in point PS3 dev box is 10,000 dollars)

But if you REALLY want to create some good games for the Wii, and maybe even sell them via the Virtual Console for 5-10 bucks, then 2k for a developer kit aint that bad at all.

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