The lights are on
Nintendo has released its first quarter 2014 earnings results, along with information on hardware units shipped worldwide. Financially, the report is good news, with a return to positive net and ordinary income, with ¥8.62 billion ($88.1 million) on the bottom line. The product-based information tells a mixed story, though.
First, the good news. The 3DS, which was the best selling hardware in the United States for the past two months, continues to show strong performance across the world. In the quarter ending June 30, 2013, 1.4 million handhelds were sold.
Unfortunately, the Wii U exists on the opposite end of the spectrum. Only 160,000 consoles were sold around the world over the three month period, bringing the total to 3.61 million. This quarter saw total first-party software sales for the console only amount to 1,030,000 units for the Wii U.
To put the software sales in perspective, Tomodachi Collection, a 3DS title released online in Japan in April has sold 1,390,000 alone. That's more than the entirety of Nintendo Wii U software. Nintendo has also reported that the 210,000 Wii units were sold worldwide this quarter, which has the legacy hardware outpacing its nine-month old Wii U.
Nintendo is holding steady its forecasting, which puts the company at ¥55 billion net income ($563.3 million) at the end of the current fiscal year. Additionally, sales projections remain unchanged, with Nintendo targeting sales of 900,000 Wii U units and 1.8 million 3DS handhelds.
Our TakeAs I mentioned when the June NPD report was released, the 3DS continues to be a powerhouse. Nintendo has every reason to celebrate the ubiquitousness of its handheld hardware. It's a great system and one that carry everywhere I go, especially with the new Street Pass games and relay system.
The Wii U is in trouble, though. 160,000 units in three months, with the Wii outpacing it still is a problem for Nintendo. The only way Wii U demand is going to pick up is with a steady flow of strong titles. That isn't going to come from third parties. Nintendo has admitted it underestimated the shift to HD, and the slow trickle of games needs to turn into a flood.
There have still been no announcements about a new Zelda game. Metroid, Star Fox, F-Zero, and Kid Icarus are absent. Super Smash Bros. and Mario Kart won't arrive until well into calendar 2014.
Pikmin 3 (which is selling very well in Japan), The Wonderful 101, third-party titles are going to motivate some, but not in the numbers that Nintendo needs. Is the company in trouble? No. But it's impossible to deny that the Wii U needs something big to jumpstart the engine. As time goes on, it's only going to get harder.
Email the author Mike Futter, or follow on Google+, Twitter, and Game Informer.
Nintendo, as usual, isn't releasing any games. People want to play Nintendo games. RELEASE SOME *** GAMES ALREADY!!!
With the games they put out onto the Wii and 3DS like the one pictured above people wonder why they aren't selling units....
not surprising at all. we hear it all the time. you need software to move hardware. up until now, there hasn't been any. starting in a few days with Pikmin 3, there's a steady stream of quality titles coming, so I expect it to pick up. But this news should surprise no one.
The holiday months are coming, and this is where we'll get a better feel for the system's future. if the games come and it's still not selling, then Nintendo is in trouble. But I won't jump to that conclusion yet, when they have yet to play their hand.
If the Ps4 and Xbox1 sells don't even come close to the WiiU I better hear plenty of reports by gameinformer. Nintendo is working on games so sales will pick up. it did better then the ps3 with less. so imagine when the big titles come out.
Nintendo, get your entire 1st party history available on wiiu and 3ds. Whether you keep the model of buying each titles seperately, or you go with a newtflix type subscription service, I don't care. If can do this I'll start buying your systems again.
Well, at least this balances out Nitnendo's profits and losses. Hope this will tide them over until 2014, when Smash Bros. and Mario Kart will make Sony and Microsoft rue the day they bragged about next-gen. Just wait until spring of next year Mike. We'll probably have our first Zelda trailer and will having a different conversation about where the Wii U's future is going. . .
i just bought a 3ds bundle...so...i tried nintendo. i tried. and i bought my wii-u back in january.
Still see no reason to get a Wii U, but I'm keeping my eyes open. I just need it to give me some third party titles that I care about, and that I can't already get on my 360 or ps3. Just Zelda and Smash Brothers aren't enough for me anymore.
The Wii U is a console that I'm never going to get. I'm fairly happy with my purchase of the 3ds thanks to animal crossing as resident evil, but the Wii U has no games that appeal to me. Sure I use to like Mario and donkey kong, but other than that, Zelda and the others never appealed to my taste. For the sake of the company I hope they do better.
wii u at its early stages. hope they give an awesome wii u game soon
I hope Nintendo becomes a little less stubborn in the near future. Just drop the extra $$$ for a more powerful and faster console! Remember N64? Technically it was stronger than the Saturn and the PSX, but they didn't want to go disk, so their games were limited for space. Gamecube? slightly weaker tech & smaller disk space... 3DS? One thumb pad... What the heck.
I appreciate the company's values and "gameplay first" principles, but stop shooting yourselves in the **** already!
I'm not sure if I'll get a Wii U. Maybe once there's a price drop and new Zelda and Metroid games, I might consider it.
Well i had to buy a 3ds in order to play the new animal crossing lol said a few million people
I hope they can turn the Wii U around!
hope wii u picks up
It will pick up. Nintendo's been busy securing the portable market. Full steam ahead for the Wii U 2014!