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Hive Jump dev elaborates on decision to leave online co-op out of the Wii U version

Posted on March 19, 2016 by (@NE_Brian) in News, Wii U eShop

A few days ago, some news surfaced about Hive Jump not supporting online co-op in the Wii U version. Graphite Lab director Matt Raithel actually took some time to explain the decision further right here on the site.

Graphite Lab did look into the possibility of including online multiplayer in the Wii U version extensively. However, after careful consideration, the tough decision had to be made as the feature “was going to be beyond our scope for this release due to time and budget constraints placed on our team.”

Raithel explained:

Online play for Wii U has been an interest for Hive Jump, but not something we could guarantee at the onset. So, we listed that as one of the first FAQ we posted on our campaign site. We explored it thoroughly and deeply over the last year. We’ve refactored our code several times to optimize and improve – to explore this feature. We looked at other titles and we talked to fellow devs about their own struggles with online play. We evaluated other tools to provide any efficiency we could uncover. In the end we had to make a tough choice about a stark reality. Online MP for the Wii U was going to be beyond our scope for this release due to time and budget constraints placed on our team.

Sadly, all of the effort that went into this decision was shortened to a snippet which excluded the good stuff: our level generation system, the weapons, the aliens, the lore, GamePad support, the bosses, relics, and all of the other great systems we’re proud of on Wii U.

Rest assured, there will be a robust and worthwhile local co-op experience as well as single player mode on Wii U. We’ve also reserved focus for other features exclusive to the platform such as the gamepad controller, amiibo support and special relic rooms which you will only get on Wii U.

Those of you that have played the game at PAX Prime and Indiecade, who have jumped the early levels of the hive with your buddies nearby, we hope you agree that Hive Jump still has a lot to offer Wii U players.

Thanks for hearing me out!

Raithel also added the following after being asked about the possibility of adding online play via a future update:

And, thanks, everyone, sincerely, for your comments. We’re doing our best to communicate the reasons behind our decisions as clearly as we can – and you will see us online all day answering questions so people know our reasoning.

We know not everyone will agree with the decision, but hopefully they can get a better idea of what we’re facing in making it and understand in some part, that we have to make tough calls.

I can’t answer the ‘future chance’ question right now – we’re laser focused on the initial release and don’t want to give unfair consideration to that question just because were deep in development at the moment.

Hive Jump may not have online co-op on Wii U, but Graphite Lab will be looking to make the Wii U version special in its own way. The game is set to launch later this year.

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