Nicalis cancels U.S. release of 'La-Mulana' due to 'almost non-existent' WiiWare sales

Publisher Nicalis has scrapped plans to release the throwback 2D platformer La-Mulana on the North American and European WiiWare platforms.

Publisher Nicalis has scrapped plans to release the throwback 2D platformer La-Mulana on the North American and European WiiWare platforms.

La-Mulana originally shipped on PCs in 2005 before being picked up by Nicalis and developer Nigoro for a WiiWare port, which launched in Japan last summer. Nicalis has had its ups and downs with the WiiWare platform — it released Cave Story on the service in 2010, but its long-in-development port of NightSky is nowhere to be seen. Now, a statement from Nicalis founder Tyrone Rodriguez makes it sound like the company's done with WiiWare for good.

"The WiiWare market has a fraction of the players from 2008," Rodriguez told GoNintendo. "The window for release and success of software on the platform ended in 2009 and took a very steep decline. Players have moved onto other digital download platforms."

Rodriguez explained that developer Nigoro "got a bit ahead of themselves," spending two years getting DLC for La-Mulana on Japan's WiiWare. He added that the game and its DLC "never passed Nintendo's submission process" in North America or Europe.

"With the Wii U in the not too distant future and WiiWare sales almost non-existent, I had to make a call today," Rodriguez added. "I wish them the best. They're good game developers and good guys."

Nicalis's announcement comes just five days after Nintendo promised to place more of an emphasis on its digital game sales. We've reached out to Nintendo for comment.

Update: A Nintendo of America spokesperson responded, saying, "While we do not disclose information about our internal business dealings, many developers are very pleased with how their games have performed on WiiWare."

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