Nintendo Slashes Wii U and 3DS Sales Forecasts

Projections for the company’s newest home console have been revised down from 9 million to 2.8 million.

By Kevin Knezevic. Posted 01/17/2014 15:00 2 Comments     ShareThis

Nintendo has announced it is revising its sales forecasts for Wii U and 3DS. Previously, the company had projected that Wii U and 3DS sales would hit 9 million and 18 million units, respectively, during the fiscal year, but after slower than anticipated growth in the US and Europe, those figures have now been downgraded to 2.8 million and 13.5 million.

In addition, Nintendo has announced that it expects to incur a loss of 35 billion yen for the fiscal year, as opposed to the 55 billion yen profit it had initially projected.

What the company plans to do to reverse this trend will be outlined in greater detail on January 30, during its corporate management policy briefing, but before then, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata had the following to say during a press conference:

“We cannot continue a business without winning. We must take a skeptical approach whether we can still simply make game players, offer them in the same way as in the past for 20,000 yen or 30,000 yen, and sell titles for a couple of thousand yen each.”

Iwata also stated that Nintendo is considering altering its business model to combat these losses:

“”We are thinking about a new business structure. Given the expansion of smart devices, we are naturally studying how smart devices can be used to grow the game-player business. It’s not as simple as enabling Mario to move on a smartphone.”

From a software standpoint, 2014 seems like it should be a good year for Wii U, with Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, Mario Kart 8, and the upcoming iteration of Smash Bros. all slated for release, though whether or not they’ll be able to turn console sales around remains to be seen. Do you think this software will be enough to reverse Wii U’s fortunes, or will Nintendo have to take more drastic measures? Share your thoughts in the comments.

Source: Nintendo, CVG

2 Responses to “Nintendo Slashes Wii U and 3DS Sales Forecasts”

  • 1288 points
    Robert Marrujo says...

    This whole debacle is just so damn frustrating. The Wii U is a wonderful system, and the games it has are really, really fun. 3DS has rebounded by virtue of its software alone, which is a good parallel to make when talking about Wii U’s future, but there’s one thing I think we forget when making that comparison; the software on Nintendo’s handhelds are traditionally pretty different/more diverse than on the home consoles. Just think of the absolutely outrageous glut of games in 2013 on 3DS (A Link Between Worlds, New Leaf, X & Y, Awakening, Luigi’s Mansion, Mario & Luigi Dream Team) versus what hit Wii U. Nintendo can only hope to create a similar renaissance with Wii U if they REALLY amp up the software releases, and I just don’t see it happening. I don’t know what it’s going to take to fix things…

  • 0 points

    The alarm bells are ringing, but as it often is with these things, the damage has already been done.

    I love it how Nintendojo believes that the release of a couple familiar titles will somehow launch them back into this game. To say something as absurd as that flies in the face of basic reality. It would be simple to suggest that any single one thing made this situation what it is, but really, it’s a collection of them.

    First off – the Wii was a hit. It was a hit because it showed people how awesome using that Wii-mote was. And it pulled it off in style with Wii Sports. The fact that a ton of people bought the system was great, and no doubt helped move a ton of extra Mario Kart and Super Smash Bros. copies as well. But, let’s be real here, the crowd didn’t buy this thing because it had Mario Kart or Smash on it. Just look at the GameCube for ample evidence of what the basic “Nintendo brand” can do on its own.

    Second off – the Wii U followed the same rubric as the Wii, with the exception of software. Within the first three months of the Wii, you had Wii Sports, Zelda: Twilight Princes, and Metroid Prime 3. All amazing examples of what can be accomplished using the new controller. The Wii U – with no real game to showcase the strength or the power of the system – with no real game that people just wanted to play non-stop and could sell the idea of the system to their friends on – it soon appeared as if Nintendo themselves didn’t believe the premise of the system they invested so much money in.

    Third off – Nintendo loves being “off-line.” Their on-line infrastructure is a joke. The Internet is something Nintendo obviously wished had never happened. Between getting “You Play” videos yanked off the net, to doing next to no promotions of their system on any major video distribution service, to making their initial online-infrastructure so cumbersome, that Internet games from 1996 were more straight-forward and a hundred times easier to join and participate in. While other companies are introducing the idea of being able to stream games with the click of a button, Nintendo still hasn’t caught up to what Microsoft and Sony implemented more than a decade ago. No Nintendo, it shouldn’t take seven steps to add a friend. Like, really.

    Fourth off – This borrows a bit from the third point – no advertising. In fact – they engage in anti-advertising. When not getting people to not watch their games on-line, they continuously tell the world that, “Nope. We’re not competing with Sony or Microsoft. We’re our own thing.” Well, congratulations Nintendo. You’re your own thing. You’re no longer in the discussion on “games.” But, what’s this? The same money that people were spending previously on your system they’re now spending on MS’s and Sony’s fare? Why is this? Could it be because . . . you’re part of the same market?

    Fifth off – not attending E3. This ties into the fourth point. When you’ve got a console that isn’t selling – and your competition is about to release their offering – that would be a great time to remind people you’re not only there – but the better option. It should have been Nintendo, creating viral youtube videos of Reggie and Miyamoto showing how you can trade and play games with one another. But no – they weren’t even there. Remember – Microsoft and Sony aren’t competition – and Nintendo doesn’t like the online world.

    Sixth off – The games! As beautiful as Super Mario 3D Land World, err . . . Super Mario 3D World land, no, Super Mario World 3 land, uhm . . . as beautiful as the latest Mario game was . . . it’s not enough to convince people to pick up a Wii. This may be essentially re-posting the first point – but it’s that valid. How distressing is it, truly, to see Nintendo, those who pioneered so many gaming greats out of thin air in the past, to have delivered a machine capable of outside-of-the-box, outside-of-the-ordinary feats – and then to deliver on absolutely zero of them. “Treat the screen like a horizontal Wii-mote and chuck ninja-stars off of it.” How ’bout all the games where the second screen will utilize an intrinsic and super-necessary game-play element? “How ’bout you play a combination of Super Mario World and Super Mario 64?” Yeah, that’s great, but that second screen is just lying there, welcoming all these great ideas we’ve never seen before! “You like Mario Kart? You can drive on the walls in this one. Or how about Smash Brothers? This time, you can be the Wii Fitness trainer. And Mega Man!”

    The absolute worst thing I read in this whole debacle is how they’re considering smart-phone options. More than likely, that’s short-hand for “different pricing methods.” Regardless of what it means, I don’t see Nintendo offering anything to that space, and I don’t see that space offering anything interesting to Nintendo.

    It’s funny – after having distanced themselves from the very market they created – confused people as to what their product does – completed next to no advertising – remove those who do free advertising – are now known to be behind both in software (online) and hardware (this Wii U is about as good as a machine that was released 9 years ago) – and use their one year head-start advantage to punish all the early adopters with a great big bin of no games – can we say we’re surprised with this?

    Are people really going to make a major investment in a company whose public image is all of these things at once? So they can play a somewhat updated version of a game they already made bought a previous machine to play (and which they still have)? I dunno. I have a much easier time imagining a really compelling multi-player game that capitalizes and crystallizes all the potential that second screen offers creating a genuine, “You’ve got to play it to believe it” vibe that really starts to push systems.

    Or, people can spend $350 to ride around 16 new Mario Kart tracks. Either or, I guess.

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