How To Make Games for Wii

By Dan Chruscinski

Updated September 22, 2017

Items you will need

  • Computer

  • Wii Development Kit

  • Startup capital

Developing games for a console such as the Nintendo Wii requires more than just a game idea and a computer. With the increasing costs of game development, aspiring developers will need to create a relationship with Nintendo to fit the company's guidelines, as well as acquire the necessary hardware for Wii development. The game development process can cost a great deal of money and take years to complete. Use this guide to begin the process of creating and publishing a Wii game.

How to Make Games for the Nintendo Wii

Outline your game idea from beginning to end. Begin with an overall idea of what you hope to accomplish with your game. Break down the game into specific areas. Decide the genre of your game or whether it will combine multiple game types. Spend time developing your characters and plot; even if the game is action-oriented you will still need to take players from a start to an end. Create a document that can be easily read and understood by a third party. The creation of this document can be a long process, taking several months to complete; in some cases, more than a year of research will be required.

Explore how your game will make use of the unique Wii controllers. If motion control is an important portion of your game, research how other games use the technology and use this knowledge to adapt the controls into your own game. Remember that not all Wii games use motion control, but developers should make use of this feature.

Partner with professionals. The development of a game requires knowledge of game design and programming. If you lack knowledge of programming languages such as C++ or 3D modeling tools, you will need to collaborate with individuals who can aid you in these aspects of the development process.

Submit an application to become an authorized developer of Wii games. Being able to produce games for release on the Wii requires this authorization.

Gather the following information to provide in your application to Nintendo: Your company name, address, telephone number and main contact person Members of the company and their industry experience Names of published games Outside contractors who will work on development

Fill out and submit a confidentiality agreement. This will occur upon acceptance as a developer. You will be held accountable for any information that is leaked regarding development tools and processes.

Purchase a Wii Development Kit. In order to develop a game on the Wii, users will need more than a computer; this kit is designed to compile code, test games, and ensure programming stays within the limits of the console. These kits range from $2,000 to $10,000.

Take your game outline and build the product off that document. Using the development kit will help you learn which of your ideas can be effectively translated to a Wii game and which need to be altered to fit the console's limitations.

Perform quality assurance on your game. This is also commonly referred to as testing for bugs. Oftentimes games contain glitches that can be small, such as an incorrect texture, or large enough to prevent players from continuing past a certain point in the game. Bring on outside players who will be assigned specific sections of the game to play through several times, all while recording and reporting bugs and glitches to the programmers.

Investigate the possibility of acquiring a publisher for your game. Visit the websites of noted game publishers such as Ubisoft and Electronic Arts. Contact the company to see if it would be willing to publish and distribute your game.

Publish your game. If you do not have a publisher, you can submit your game for release of WiiWare, the console's downloadable games channel. If your game is approved for release by Nintendo, it will be added to its upcoming release schedule.


Begin with programming games on the PC. This is a less expensive route to take as an independent game developer and you will build a portfolio of work to show companies such as Nintendo.


Developing console games is an expensive endeavor. Without proper funding, it may be extremely difficult to gain authorization as a Wii developer.