So, uh, the Wii U is selling roughly fifty thousand consoles a month. Worldwide. And that’s even worse than it may sound at first glance, because that number isn’t going to start rising any time soon.
Nintendo dropped an earnings report, which actually includes a fascinating chart breaking out how each Nintendo system has sold in each market over time. Among the data points, however, is the fact that in the time period between April 1 and June 30th, the Wii U moved 160,000 consoles. The 3DS moved nearly ten times that number.
Nintendo is at least selling games, but what should be worrying fans of Nintendo is the fact that Nintendo doesn’t have a damn game plan. Seriously, this is their “plan” to get Wii U systems selling again:
For the ‘Wii U’ system, we will attempt to concentrate on proactively releasing key first-party titles from the second half of this year through next year to regain momentum for the platform. Starting with Pikmin 3, which was released in Japan and Europe in July and will be released in the United States in August, we plan on releasing key titles such as The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD, Wii Party U, Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, Super Mario 3D World, and Wii Fit U.
Also, they plan to promote the Miiverse thing they just won’t let go of, and cut hardware manufacturing costs. In other words, Nintendo’s big plan to survive past 2014 is to hope that there’s no clear-cut winner in the Sony/Microsoft slapfight coming to a retailer near you this holiday season, and that people really, really like eShop titles and remakes.
What’s staggering about this is how savvy Nintendo has been to this point, before completely losing the plot with the Wii U. It’s amazing that they sincerely believed every Wii owner was just going to snap up a Wii U without question. And now they’re screwed.
It’s difficult to find a way for the Wii U to escape from the axe at this point. It’s got no software support. None of the titles on offer are particularly unique or compelling. And it’s soon going to be in a crowded and busy market.
It’s worth noting that every problem the Wii U has, the Xbox One and PS4 will also be facing, although it seems unlikely those won’t sell better numbers than this. But Nintendo needs to start demonstrating, in a hurry, just why we should care about the Wii U, or else hope 3DS sales and software can carry the entire company.