Sections

Wii U being outsold by original Wii

Pachter says Nintendo forecasts are too optimistic, says Wii U "is the wrong product for consumers"

It's been a year since Nintendo stopped making Wii games, but the system and its software continue to sell. In fact, Wii hardware and software are selling better than Wii U consoles and games through the first half of Nintendo's fiscal year.

In Nintendo's first-half earnings report (the six months ended September 30), the company today revealed that it sold 470,000 Wii systems worldwide since April, compared to 460,000 Wii U systems. The disparity on software sales was considerably greater, with 14.90 million Wii games sold worldwide for the period. With a much smaller installed base (3.91 million compared to the Wii's 100.3 million), the Wii U managed to sell 6.3 million games in the half-year.

In a note to investors today, Wedbush analyst Michael Pachter pointed to Wii U's struggles as one reason not to buy into Nintendo management's sales projections for the back half of the year. While Pachter acknowledged the second half has a more compelling lineup of Wii U games and potential system sellers, he was skeptical that they would be enough to achieve the 8.54 million Wii U sales (more than twice its existing installed base) Nintendo had projected. Those numbers are simply unattainable without another price cut for the system, Pachter said.

"We think that Nintendo has a very low probability of meeting its Wii U forecasts, as it expects the installed base to more than triple by year-end, with very bullish software guidance layered on top. We think the Wii U is the wrong product for consumers, and although we believe that Nintendo faithful will buy the console if it is the only way they can play beloved Nintendo software titles, we think that there are fewer of these faithful than management is counting on to hit its full-year guidance."

Related stories

Pokémon Sun and Moon sales hit 1.5m in Europe

368,000 games sold in the UK [UPDATE: 3.7m sold in the Americas in under two weeks]

By Christopher Dring

Nintendo coming to US-based Universal theme parks

Orlando and Hollywood parks will join Osaka location in featuring publisher's famous brands

By Brendan Sinclair

Latest comments (15)

Adam Campbell Producer, Hopster3 years ago
If they weren't so confused they could be buying the WiiU.
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Best example of how flawed their marketing message has been. Funny how the media has avoided reporting the number of returned Wii-U systems from buyers who thought it was a add on to their Wii!!
1Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Steve Goldman Journalist. 3 years ago
Who cares, ps3 was being outsold by ps2 for 3 years.

DS outsold 3ds for the first year. Nobody cares
2Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Show all comments (15)
Paul Jace Merchandiser 3 years ago
This isn't surprising at all. Now if the Wii is still outselling the Wii U a year from now(despite getting very little or no new software at all) then it will be a much more interesting story.
4Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Daniel Hughes Studying PhD Literary Modernism, Bangor University3 years ago
@ Paul

Given Nintendo are in the process of winding down Wii production, that would be a very interesting story!

@ Christian

While Pachter was obviously off the ball with his revenue prediction, at this point it's hard to see how Nintendo can hit their 9 million target with Wii U. They need to shift 8.54 million systems in six months, which would require an insane upswing from current sales levels. Don't get me wrong, I expect the situation to improve and Wii U to have a fairly strong Christmas quarter, but I can see them being several million units shy of their target. Unless Mario Kart 8 is coming in February or March, but even then, it's more of a long-burn success than an instant smash hit.
2Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.3 years ago
With the exception of the Wii over the Gamecube, I can't think of any new hardware that was not being outsold by its predecessor during the first year on the market. This is normal. It's expected. It should only be news when it doesn't happen.

Kevin, do you have any figures for the media to actually report regarding that subject? I sure don't. In fact, I don't know any media outlets that are sitting on those numbers. And I guarantee you that if they did have them, they'd run it as their main headline for the day.
5Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Thomas Dolby Project Manager / Lead Programmer, Ai Solve3 years ago
Well if Pachter is predicting bad things for Nintendo, now's the time to invest!
6Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Dave Herod Senior Programmer, Codemasters3 years ago
With the exception of the Wii over the Gamecube, I can't think of any new hardware that was not being outsold by its predecessor during the first year on the market.
Xbox 360 vs Xbox?
1Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.3 years ago
Dave, in the US, Xbox was still outselling the X360 for a good portion of the launch year. Not certain about Europe. Though in Japan the X360 did indeed overtake the Xbox rather easily.
1Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.3 years ago
I thought that might be the case. That sits among the exceptions then. Generally, the predecessor console outsells the successor console for at least the first year. Sometimes longer as the PS2 did over the PS3.
1Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Sanjay Jagmohan SQA Lead, Sumo Digital Ltd3 years ago
This is expected of all new platforms. Especially considering that the Wii has a price drop shortly after the release of the Wii U.
I think the general confusion between it and it's predecessor didn't help...
1Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Nick Parker Consultant 3 years ago
Yes, predecessors do outsell new gen for the first year (s). Xbox was an exception because Microsoft decided to kill off production of the Xbox (Nvidias last Xbox GPU was produced in the same month as launch of 360) more or less at the same time as the release of the 360. Sony has the longest lifecycle tail because of its success in PAL regions emerging markets (Eastern Europe, Middle East, Africa and India) which continue buying legacy consoles beyond the date that Western World regions go into decline. Microsoft has recently (in the last two years) invested in these emerging markets and is now enjoying the fruits of its labours in the twilight years of the 360. I would say that these fortunes are reversed in Central and South America where Microsoft invested locally earlier than Sony.
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Aleksi Ranta Product Manager - Hardware 3 years ago
At the end of the day, Nintendo has had a free run in the "nextgen" console space for a year now, it hasnt been selling well.
i think we can all agree on that. Now with the increased competition incoming, there isnt much on nintendos radar that will have a positive impact on sales, other than seasonality. I just dont know how anyone could even try to put a positive spin on this....
3Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Steve Goldman Journalist. 3 years ago
DS outsold 3ds. Argument done for why this doesnt matter
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Benjamin Kratsch Freelance Journalist, GLP Media3 years ago
Well, Nintendo can still cut the price down: 199 $ and they might have a chance if they finally deliver real sequels, not just HD remakes. But times will get much tougher for Nintendo, because my guess is that third party publishers are currently thinking about which platforms they want to support in the future. CoD sold next to nothing on WiiU and Nintendos own development teams can't deliver in time.
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply

Sign in to contribute

Need an account? Register now.