Port justified: Need for Speed: Most Wanted on Wii U has offscreen play

Gaming is in its golden age, and big and small players alike are maneuvering like kings and queens in A Game of Thrones. Register now for our GamesBeat 2015 event, Oct. 12-Oct.13, where we'll explore strategies in the new world of gaming.

Need for Speed Most Wanted 3

Porting games to the Wii U that released months ago on other systems doesn’t make a lot of sense. If publishers are insistent, however, then they have to include one certain feature that’ll justify any game’s existence on the latest Nintendo console: offscreen play.

Today, Electronic Arts released a press release in Japan declaring that developer Criterion’s Need For Speed: Most Wanted racing game will include the best feature for anyone whose significant other hogs the television to watch hours of Sweet Genius. Offscreen play, for the unaware, enables the Wii U to display its video either on the television, on the GamePad’s screen, or both.

Once you try it, it’s difficult to live without it. Gamers can dive into major games like Batman: Arkham City, Trine 2, and Assassin’s Creed III without ever having to turn on the television.

I don’t want to admit that I don’t control the remote in my house, but let’s put it this way: I’ve watched every episode of Jersey Shore.

I need more games with offscreen play. I won’t even consider a Wii U port if it doesn’t support this feature, and I bet I’m not alone.

Need For Speed: Most Wanted will hit Japanese retailers on March 14. EA has not set a North American release date.