Grand Theft Auto V (lost build of cancelled Wii U port of open-world game; existence unconfirmed; 2013)
Grand Theft Auto V is a 2013 open-world action-adventure video game developed by Rockstar North and published by Rockstar Games. It is the seventh main installment and fifteenth overall installment in the massively popular Grand Theft Auto video game series.
The game was initially released onto the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 on September 17th, 2013, and has subsequently been rereleased onto many other systems, including the Xbox One, PlayStation 4 (Both November 18th, 2014), PC (April 14th, 2015). Xbox Series X|S, and PlayStation 5 (Both March 15th, 2022). However, there also allegedly exists a prototype for an unreleased Wii U port of the game.
On November 16th, 2012, video game website IGN held an interview with co-founder and former vice president of Rockstar Games Dan Houser, regarding the then-upcoming game, which was at the time set to be released in the Spring of 2013.
In the interview, Houser was asked why the game was only coming out on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, with no Wii U or PC release of the game. Houser responded by saying that "Everything else was up for consideration" regarding the game being released for other systems. Although the game would eventually be released onto other gaming systems (With the aforementioned PC version coming out in 2015), a Wii U port of the game would never be released.
A few days later, on November 19th, former Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime was interviewed by MTV Multiplayer regarding the then recently released Wii U. One of the questions asked was if it was possible for Grand Theft Auto V to be released on the Wii U. Fils-Aime responded saying that the people at Rockstar Games had said very positive things about the Wii U, and that it is Nintendo's responsibility to provide development tools for developers and publishers so that studios such as Rockstar could bring quality games to the Wii U.
On March 26th, 2015, Liam Robertson, former staff member of Unseen64, a website dedicated to providing information on unreleased video games, posted a tweet claiming that a reliable source told him that Grand Theft Auto V was briefly prototyped on the Wii U. The tweet provided no other information regarding the build, and currently stands as the only real proof that a prototype build of Grand Theft Auto V on the Wii U exists.
There is almost no information available regarding the Wii U version of Grand Theft Auto V. No footage or images of the prototype build have ever surfaced, and it is unknown if the prototype build even exists. None of Grand Theft Auto V's promotional material ever mentioned the game coming out for the Wii U, so the Wii U version either never existed to begin with, or was scrapped very early on.
Assuming the prototype build does exist, there are two possible reasons as to why it was scrapped. The first reason being that the game would've been too big to properly work on the Wii U (The fact that the Wii U port was allegedly prototyped very briefly supports this theory), and the second reason being the poor sales and mixed reception of the Wii U.
Several M-rated games, such as Call of Duty: Black Ops II, Watch Dogs, and Bayonetta 2 would be released on the Wii U, so it is highly unlikely that Grand Theft Auto V's Wii U port was cancelled because of the mature and violent nature of the game.
Because the development of the port was allegedly very short-lived and was likely scrapped before the release of the game, it is very likely that if the prototype build does exist, it would be a proof-of-concept tech demo, rather than something that resembles the final game.
As it stands, nothing is known about the Wii U version of Grand Theft Auto V, including the validity of its own existence. Despite being Rockstar's most popular and successful video game, and despite being rereleased onto many other gaming systems since its initial Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 release, Grand Theft Auto V has yet to be released on any Nintendo system.
- Grand Theft Auto (lost build of cancelled Sega Saturn port of action-adventure game; 1997)
- Grand Theft Auto 64 (lost build of cancelled Nintendo 64 port of action-adventure game; 1999)
- Grand Theft Auto III and Grand Theft Auto: Vice City (lost builds of cancelled GameCube ports of open-world games; existence unconfirmed; early 2000's)
- ZTA (lost build of cancelled PlayStation Portable zombie action-adventure open world game; mid-2000s)