What’s Going On with Nintendo’s Wii U?

Last night, as part of its monthly ritual, retail-tracker NPD Group released its estimates of February's video game hardware and software sales.

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Last night, as part of its time-honored monthly ritual, retail-tracker NPD Group released its estimates of February’s video game hardware and software sales. As usual, the company excluded specific console numbers. NPD backpedaled from showing us this data a few years ago, I’ve always assumed, because of pressure from the various players to frame their numbers in the best possible light. Recall all the years the Wii decimated the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 in monthly units sold, or more recently, the unbroken stretch Microsoft‘s Xbox 360 has been lapping everyone: blogs and message boards flock to make hay of this stuff, and “systems wars” wonks then complete the feedback loop.

These days you have to dig to find anything really construable as bad news about a specific company in NPD’s figures, with its analysts doing their best to give each player an attaboy. At worst, you’ll find bits of overall industry gloom — inescapable, really, since the recession finally caught up to the industry (albeit belatedly, and after years of unprecedented growth).

And so this month’s look back at February was another barrel of disappointment from a retail standpoint, with year-on-year declines in hardware sales (-36%), software (-27%) and accessories (-3%) for an overall 25% decline.

But wait, what about digital? NPD says that if you add $90 million for used game sales and rentals, plus digital sales (full games, add-ons, microtransactions, subscriptions, mobile apps and social network games) of $319 million, the total consumer spend for February would be just under $1.2 billion. NPD’s tracking of these newer markets has been incremental as it works with industry players to reveal this stuff, so you can’t really compare February 2013 with February 2012′s total consumer spend of $1.09 billion, but — assuming online transactions have only increased over the past 12 months — it seems reasonable to wonder, as we’ve been for years now, whether the downturn (if indeed it still is a downturn) is less than it seems. After all, NPD says its “new physical retail sales” figures only account for about 50% of total consumer spend at this point.

Where’s Nintendo’s Wii U in all this? We know Nintendo’s new console didn’t do so hot in January, moving just 57,000 units (well, unless you buy this theory involving holiday speculators, though it’d be only marginally better news numbers-wise). Putting a positive spin on Nintendo’s February numbers, NPD noted they increased 40% (on an average per week basis) over January, meaning Nintendo probably moved around 64,000 units (note that January was a five-week month). That’s still a paucity compared to the Wii’s extremely strong post-launch sales, and a fraction what Microsoft’s Xbox 360 and Sony‘s PlayStation 3 have been selling in their waning days.

Speaking of, Microsoft says it sold 302,000 units in February and that this marks the Xbox 360′s “26th consecutive month as the number-one selling console in the U.S.” (NPD says it’s actually the 19th straight month if you count the handheld systems as consoles, which seems more appropriate these days.)

When I spoke with Nintendo’s Shigeru Miyamoto last week, I didn’t bug him about Wii U sales — not because I couldn’t have, but because Miyamoto’s a designer, not a bean counter. And yet we’d be foolish to ignore the criticality of sales when it comes to questions like “Will X company develop Y game(s) for system Z?” You can’t ignore the bottom line. If a system fails to catch fire, well, I know a lot of people who loved Sega’s Dreamcast. Love and wonderful ideas alone won’t see you through.

Does that mean it’s time for a Wii U price cut? It’s the conventional wisdom when a console’s in trouble (or seems to be) — like Nintendo’s 3DS, which surged from the gate, then stumbled for months before Nintendo’s price cut put it back on track. After all, the Wii U’s target demographic isn’t the 300,000+ that bought Xbox 360s last month — the same group, I suspect, fond of bashing the system for not raising the computational bar as Sony’s forthcoming PlayStation 4 appears to be. In any case, $350 is asking a lot from that other, ostensibly broader demographic — the one that paid just $250 years ago for the Wii with Wii Sports, and that can nowadays pick up a Wii for as little as $130 (or significantly less still used).

Buying a game console early in its lifecycle is an investment, a sign of good faith, an indication that you believe in a company’s vision as well as its ability to deliver the kinds of games you want to play. But you have to move systems to stir developers. For all the Wii U’s promise — and I still see plenty — I can’t imagine the water cooler conversations at third-party game developers are exactly uplifting just now.

59 comments
woodwachris
woodwachris

gdfrisco,

I'm amazed that you can find the time to use your wii u, PS4, four tablets, your couple of ipad 3's. I too have just bought a wii u, there isn't a lot of games at the moment but there was a good price reduction to £179. I will wait for a new xenoblade chronicles (X Monolith) and a new proper Zelda. Have also got Super Mario 3D - very good.

JonnyLeighton
JonnyLeighton

why is a price cut going to make a differance ....it has no software ,if the games have the wow factor and theres loads of support it would sell at 599 pounds ,the wii u needs software NOW ...its like buying an ipod with no music....

gdfrisco
gdfrisco

It really worries me the fact I just spent $400 for a Wii U Deluxe edition, As a hardcore PC gamer just making the switch from PC to consoles, I just bought a PS3 system ($250) as well. So far my expenses have been a wii motion plus controller ($50) and pro controller($60), a screen protector($12), a cover for the tablet and(15) , and a couple of wii u games($130) for a whooping ($667) expense, only for the Wii U , a Now the fact of the lack of exclusive titles for the Wii U, it's simply disappointing. I love tablets(I have 4 at home from 10.1" and 8", android tablets and a couple of iPad 3), however the Wii U tablet is simply horrible, cheaply made and can't stand for playing, the screen is too small, no multitouch support and the tablet is to large to handle it with my left hand and using my right hand to shot(swipe), I can't imagine my 3 y/o son trying to do the same. The only reason why I'm keeping it is because I can afford some luxuries right now and will wait until the Wii U becomes a mature platform, if this ever happen, wait probably 1-2 years and then will have fun, hacking it, playing wii games on it and getting some visually stunning Wii U games for it, until then it will be just collecting dust. I'll be the first buying the PS4 for sure and simply wait for better wii U games for my console. Good Luck nintendo!

coregamer
coregamer

 Core gamer here. Let me explain the current predicament as if I was John Madden explaining football for those who are technologically inept.

First off, you need to understand that if you buy a Wii U, you'll be buying it strictly for Nintendo games. Third party publishers like EA and Activision will not be making future games for it since it has only sold around 4 million units as of March 2013 since November 2012. They cannot logically invest money into video game development when so few people own the platform. 

The problem is that this is a $300 -$350 console meaning that the device is targeted at core gamers instead of casual gamers who jumped on the original Wii console in hoards when it released at $250. The PS3/Xbox 360 which are both cheaper, have vast library of cheap games priced at $15-20 (or even less used), and come bundled with more games. For example, you could have gotten the PS3 bundled with 5 games and 160gb hard drive for $200. That completely decimates the WiiU's offering of 1game and 32gb of storage for $350. I won't even mention how if you get a 1year  $50 PS+ subscription you can get an instant game collection where you can download FREE games onto that hard drive.

The $300 price of a Wii U doesn't even include the HIDDEN COSTS of which there are even more this time around. You'll want to also buy: a silicon controller protector to protect the 2nd screen $15, a screen protector to protect the touchpad $5, an external hard drive to store your games $50-75 , games which are more expensive than PS3/Xbox games at $50 a piece, Wii motion controller $58 & conventional WiiU pro controller $35.) A core gamer is looking at around a $500-$550 investment for all the hardware.

What the WiiU does is make it so that you can play Nintendo games on HD televisions and gives you the new gimmick of having a second screen similar to a ipad that you can use separately while someone else watches TV. It cannot handle DirectX11 and therefore will not be competing with PS4 quality games meaning that third parties will not be focusing on making games for it in 2014. So you'll be depending on Nintendo for games for the WiiU.


Let me also point out that the average age of a gamer is now 35 years old. That’s the average meaning that there are people who are OLDER than their 30s playing video games. Now you look at Nintendos libarary and it's just scary. It's almost non-existent. If you go onto Wikipedia and look at their lineup of games for 2013 you'll find almost nothing outside of Bayonetta2, a remake of a Gamecube Zelda game that we already played and a Yoshi game for older gamers. That's right they released a new $500 investment and it only has 2 new exclusive games planned for those of us who aren't preteens and teenagers who might also be interested in games like Wonderful 101, Pikmin and Monster Hunter. 


I'm on the fence about purchasing a Wii U. I've been a core gamer for at least 20 years. I have every Nintendo system except for the Wii and Wii U. Nintendo failed to deliver games to age groups older than preteens and teenagers with the last 2 generations of their consoles. They chose to invest into another gimmick with the tablet controller which made the system more expensive instead of just beefing up the power of the console and supporting it with games. The tablet controller is another gimmick meant to attract the causual gamer like the motion control did before it.

I never bought a Wii because there is only a grand total of 4 Wii games that I want to play. I literally have 70 games on my Playstation 3. I actually even bought the Wii games when they came out. I'm just holding off on buying the console because frankly I don't think they deserve my money.


I will wait for E3 and if they do not have a solid lineup of 1st party titles for mature gamers then I will buy a $40-60 used Wii off Ebay or Amazon to play the Wii games I bought. I've lost faith in this company's ability to produce games for Everyone. The Wii focused on the gimmick of motion gaming to lure casuals. The Wii U focuses on the gimmick of tablets and social to again lure non-gamers instead of supporting us core gamers with what  we want. WE WANT GAMES. Anyone who owns a Wii or Wii U will tell you how much dust their system collects and how much their kids don't play it. That's sad.

At this point Nintendo needs to drop the price. They also need to make better bundles to make it more attractive. They have managed to sell a lot of 3DS systems after a pricecut and that's what they are going to have to do here. The Wii U does not look to have much longevity beyond 2014. This is going to be a very important E3 for Nintendo to win back core gamers. Casual gamers have shown that they will not pay $300 for a console.

dmillerzx
dmillerzx

The Wii U will be fine. Again before all the doom and gloom talk lets see how well the next offerings from Sony and MS sell with their $400+ price tags.

People have been claiming the demise of Nintendo for almost a decade. Nintendo has enough money in the bank (11 Billion worth of US dollars) for a rainy day that it could take losses like this for the next 20 years. And the Wii appealed to a larger audience than both the 360 and PS3. It all comes down to games. MS and Sony will find themselves in the same situation after launch; as in there will be a drought of new releases as there are now on the Wii U. While MS and Sony are dealing with the same problem Nintendo has now, Nintendo will be pumping out top notch software. Nintendo's days in hardware are by no means numbered! My main point is that people are making the Wii U out to be a hard sell at 300-350. People aren't going to be thrilled to dish out 400+ (likely 500) for MS and Sony's new systems... Especially how the economy is. And parents who recently bought their children PS3's and 360's due to the recent price drops will be hard pressed to dish out hundreds more this Holiday (especially with the PS4 not being backwards compatible... we'll see about the Next 360) This is one of the Wii U's strongest points. Right out of the box it works 100% with Wii games and accessories saving the customer A LOT of money in the long run. Everyone needs to wait and see what happens. It's FAR too early to say the Wii U is a failure. 

@blasterman1 your comments are a bit ignorant.  Comparing the Gamepad to the iPad is plain stupid.  The Wii U gamepad and iPad use different touch screen technologies... both have different purposes.  Just as comparing the Wii U to previous gen systems is again stupid.  
You've fallen into the false pretense that the Wii U is in the same league as the PS3 and 360. Let me assure you it is not. If you do some research you'll see. No one is interested in comparing the Wii U to the last gen system.  

Have you actually spent some time with a Wii U?  I'm not saying the Wii U doesn't have problems.  There is brand confusion, lack of analog triggers, and Nintendo should have launched with Software that really showed the system was more powerfull 'graphically' (since that's all people like you seem to care about) then what we're seeing from 360 ports.

I do have a Wii U along with most other systems.  The Gamepad is not a gimmick!  It's not trash as you claims.  It's actually quite innovative.

JesseMonroe
JesseMonroe

"'whats going on with Nintendo's Wii U'' same thing that went on with the 3DS, PSP VITA, atari, PS3 ans snes, and a few more consoles, slow starts on game console are not unheard of, just give the wii u some time, they will release a few killer apps, maybe a price drop and then thats that.

SheenaMcF
SheenaMcF

%s %s What's happening with the %s? Who cares? %s

cryengine1007
cryengine1007

@mattpeckham btw, i followed u cause of ur column once on how lack of power wouldnt hurt wii u. i knew it would fail, and i was right

KitsuneHazard
KitsuneHazard

So wait, you're saying selling over 3.2mil units in 3 months is bad? Seriously? That crushes the PS3/360 launches by a mile.

I'm so sick of the doom and gloom...

DaveCaulkins
DaveCaulkins

Perhaps Nintendo will take note and realize that individual consoles can cross demographics. Games are tired of Diddy Kong, Mario Kart nonsense. Give a gritty, suberb, violent Metroid or a Zelda without booger jokes and bobbleheads.

RoyanRannedos
RoyanRannedos

The videogame industry always has had console wars, and always will. It makes me wonder how much of a personal bias third-party developers have toward given systems. If these developers grew up believing that Nintendo is an inferior platform, will that translate into reluctance to develop for their system later, in spite of improved specs or innovative features?

And the other question - if third-party developers are made up from lifelong core gamers who have always thought Nintendo's features were gimmicks rather than innovations, is it a surprise that Nintendo can't win with them?

coregamer
coregamer

Peckman you're damn right it's not about the power of the console otherwise we'd all be playing on PCs and that would be the end of it. But it's not about the gimmicks either.

It's about value and it's about games! Software sells the hardware. I can go back in time to the NES, SNES, N64, Playstation, Dreamcast, Playstation 2, Xbox etc and I can tell you which games prompted me to buy the console. It has ALWAYS been about the games.

You look at the PS4 announcement. Did they show the console? Nope. What did they show? They showed support for indie developers. They had Blizzard up there. They had tons of amazing first party games. The PS4 is going to be a huge hit despite its price tag because it will have tons of games. The more games your console has the more value you get out of it.

Beat the dead horse all you want. This problem isn't getting fixed without more games or a better price. It has to create value somehow. 

You can even go onto deal forums and it's not a matter of IF the Wii U gets a price cut it is a matter of WHEN. Because if Nintendo won't do it, the retailers will when it doesn't sell. Both Costco and Best Buy already had it up for $250 each, but a lot of people on these boards are anticipating $200 by the summer or Black Friday.

blasterman1
blasterman1

@dmillerzx the Wii U is definitely going to be a failure unless you define success by playing a hndful of Nintendo's exclusives a year. Where's the critically acclaimed Bioshock Infinite? PS4 is going to have 8gb gddr5 and the gpu/CPU will be on an apu with the ram. Meanwhile the Wii u is roughly the same power as the other consoles from 2005/2006 and had only 2gb ddr3.

The Wii U is NOT a next gen machine.

You can argue all you want but EVERYONE knows (you included) that the Wii U is underpowered and will gamers that own it will miss out on everything other than a metric ton of Mario games.

BobJorganson
BobJorganson

@cryengine1007 @mattpeckham Where's your proof that its the power of the system that's holding the Wii U back? You are aware that the most powerful consoles, from a hardware standpoint, never come first in sales. And if you're concerned about power, don't even bother with a console, just stick to a PC. The the PS4 and next Xbox will still be blown out of the water by them.

coregamer
coregamer

@KitsuneHazard  THe Ps3 and 360 had the power to last until 2013. The Wii U will not support DirectX11 for the games that are going to come out in 2014. You're comparing apples to oranges. The PS3 and 360 had enough oomph behind them to last until now. The Wii U depends on a gimmick instead of raw power. Gimmicks get old fast.

blasterman1
blasterman1

@KitsuneHazard Xbox 360 was sold out genius.  Wii U was available the entire time.  That means THE WII U SATURATED THE MARKET ALREADY.  Everyone that wanted a Wii U already owns one since they were available the entire holiday season.  If you didn't buy one then why would you go buy one now?  The 360 was supply constrained. 

If I have 10 widget for sale and sell all of them and you have 1,000 widgets for sale and sell 400 of them, if you go out and say "OMG I OUTSOLD YOU!" then you have no common sense.  The Wii U outsold at launch because it had more supply than the 360 had at launch.  Now that everyone that wants one has one, look at the Eurogamer article.  Like it or not, the Wii U is in terrible shape right now and without a price cut they're not going to sell more than 5 or 6 million all year including the coming holidays.

 http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2013-03-15-north-american-wii-u-sales-show-dismal-start-to-2013

coregamer
coregamer

@DaveCaulkinsNo that is not what us core gamers want. Games do not have to be violent or gritty to appeal to adults. Just stop freaking putting yarn in all of them. 


Give us achievement and trophy support. And for the love of god release more than 2 of these exclusive games per year. 

Super Mario, Zelda, Star Fox, Donkey Kong, Kirby, Yoshi, Luigi, Fzero, Luigi's Mansion Darkmoon would have been a good game for the Wii U for cores. Then they can mix it up with new and innovative genres or they can mashup existing genres with these titles like RPGs. When was the last time they made an RPG like Super Mario RPG on the SNES on a console? The closest would be that sticker star game on the 3ds. They desperately need another Nintendo RPG title for older gamer as well as younger ones. 

THey also need to get back to making games more challenging instead of less challenging. Whatever happened to Nintendo Hard? Instead nowadays they waste their effort putting features into games that beat levels for you! Screw that.

They can make more mature 1st party games without havign to resort to blood and violence. There are plenty of options here. There's plenty of games they could be making for a more mature audience. But they keep pushing out this kiddie casual stuff that isn't selling the system.

DO NOT FALL BACK ON ADDING VIOLENCE TO NINTENDO GAMES. Nintendo games are supposed to be for Everyone. Kids and adults. Problem is they've completely neglected the older crowd for kids, moms who need to lose weight and old people. THose types of people aren't dropping $300 on a console.

BobJorganson
BobJorganson

@DaveCaulkins More "mature games for mature gamers such as myself" drivel. Yeah, let's turn Nintendo's most beloved franchises into gritty, brown and bloom FPS #870. So people are tired of games that come out only once per system, but not the ones that come out annually?

If you'd actually played some Metroid or Zelda games you'd realize they have more depth to them than you thought. Try saying MM isn't "mature". Sex and violence is an awfully shallow reason for considering something to be mature.

Twilord
Twilord

@DaveCaulkins Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess and Legend of Zelda: Majoras Mask were dark, and genuinely emotional too. Metroid games also have a great seriousness in them. 

The problem is that unless Nintendo released a video-game adaption of Brent Corrigan's Summit as part of a console package people aren't going to make themselves uncomfortable by challenging their comfy little pre-conceptions.

coregamer
coregamer

Also keep in mind that we're still not out of this recession either. Profits for corporations might be recovering, but take home salaries of your average worker have declined while prices of everything including food, gas, utilities, payroll taxes have gone up. We may be at 2008 levels of employment, but those jobs lost were middle income wage jobs. The jobs that they recovered were either low income or temp jobs which are less stable as you have seen in the recent increases in unemployment claims for March. 

People don't have $300 to go throwing around right now. I do actually, but that's because i'm smart with my money. I'm a core gamer and EVEN I don't want to buy their console. I don't see the value. I don't see the future of the Wii U.

blasterman1
blasterman1

@BobJorganson @mattpeckham It will be 2 years before PC's catch up.  You need to review your console history.  Games on consoles are optimized to a level impossible for PC's.  The Xbox 360 has 512 MB RAM.  Take your PC and strip all the RAM out of it, put in 512MB and try to run Skyrim.  How well is that going to do?

KitsuneHazard
KitsuneHazard

@coregamer @KitsuneHazard So a system that has a newer, more efficient and just as powerful process and has more RAM than both the PS3 and 360 doesn't have any oomph? Are you serious? 


Just saying...that statement sounds absurd when you realize the differences in specs. If you want to see how much more oomph the Wii U has over the 360 and PS3 just look at N4S: Most Wanted...they used the PC assets for it and it looks amazing compared to the 360/PS3 versions...

Yes, the Wii  U is underpowerd compared to the PS4...yet the PS4 won't be using DirectX 11 either. Why? That's owned fully by Microsoft. It's only for 360/Windows PC's. 

That said, the Wii U is a great middle system right now...but it is without a doubt more powerful than the 360/PS3 as it can do full 1080p gaming...the PS3 only has 1080p video out (just like the PS4 only has 4K video out, not for games). The 360 may be the same. However, in 4-5 years when the NextBox/PS4 are in the middle of their life cycles...Nintendo will have a new console out with all the bells and whistles...just wait...it probably will happen.

stretch90
stretch90

@blasterman1

The wii u saturated the market already?

And PCs need to catch up to consoles in terms of graphics? 


lol, I don't even know what to say to you...

KitsuneHazard
KitsuneHazard

@blasterman1 Um, you do realize that in the first 3 months the 360 sold what? 2.5mil? The first 3 months of the Wii U has sold 3.2mil. No matter how you slice it...more have bought the system in the first three months, over-saturation or not. The Wii U simply has sold better. 

Would the 360 have done better? Who knows, it isn't possible to answer to that question. So based on the actual figured on hand (not hypothetical numbers). The Wii U has done better by 700,000 units. Which is nothing to sneeze at. 

The PS3 was even worse. 

The Wii, you know...the system that "no one could get their hands on fast enough"? That sold 3.5mil in the first 90 days..with limited supply. So the Wii U is just behind that...and it's a failure?! 

Don't come at me with "what if" numbers...you have to take it at face value for what was sold. It's possible MS couldn't sold even more, but the fact is...they didn't. So the point is moot.

coregamer
coregamer

You people have no clue what core gamers want. They want value and games that are for gamers. They dont' want games that are for preteens. And the preteens want to be playing the games that adults are playing anwyays. SO just make some freaking games that are challenging, use diverse genres, use new and innovative generes, add trophy support.

I mean if they want to add one or two violent games that would be great. GTA V would be a killer game to have on the Wii U, but more than anything they need to just start making games for the types of people who spend $300 on a console if they want to sell a $300  console. #common sense

blasterman1
blasterman1

@Twilord @DaveCaulkins Those Zelds games are OLD.  Maybe they'll make some NEW GAMES.  Gears of War 4 is coming out and people are bitching that it's too many of the same thing.  How many Marios have they made?????

coregamer
coregamer

@KitsuneHazard @coregamer

Honestly it's not hard. Read.

"The $300 price of a Wii U doesn't even include the HIDDEN COSTS of which there are even more this time around. You'll want to also buy: a silicon controller protector to protect the 2nd screen $15, a screen protector to protect the touchpad $5, an external hard drive to store your games $50-75 , games which are more expensive than PS3/Xbox games at $50 a piece, Wii motion controller $58 & conventional WiiU pro controller $35.) A core gamer is looking at around a $500-$550 investment for all the hardware."

If you already have the Wii motion controls then you're spending around $410 minimum before taxes. That's still ALOT of money. That still screams CORE GAMER is your focus.NOT casual gamer who has their iphone games which cost $1. Get real dood. It's about the money honey.

You absolutely DO want the screen protectors. It's a touchscreen controller. You will have scratches on your screen otherwise. You absolutely do want a nerf protecting on the controller especially if you have kids who will be handling it. 

The controller is a huge part of the cost of the system which is why they do not sell them individually yet because they have not figured out how to reduce the cost of producing them yet. The console itself is not that powerful.

The entire Wii U console only costs $160 to make. You can bet your butt that they're going to cut that price down to $250 minimum and that retailers will give some nice bundles ontop of that.

KitsuneHazard
KitsuneHazard

@coregamer @KitsuneHazard What "true cost' are you talking about? So I guess the charging stands for the PS3/360 are also hidden costs? How about the fact that you can't use the DS3's with the PS4 either? You have to buy all new controllers...how's that for a hidden cost? 

You don't have to buy a protector or anything...those are 100% optional and frankly quite cheap...if you spend the $350 for the premium console you get a charging stand for the game pad, etc....you don't get that with the PS3 or PS4...they're 100% extras...try again.

coregamer
coregamer

@KitsuneHazard @coregamer PLease scroll up and read my full post outlining the hidden costs of the WiiU. $300 does not reflect the true price you will be paying in the long run for the hardware. I'm from Illinois and it's freaking cold outside.

KitsuneHazard
KitsuneHazard

@coregamer @KitsuneHazard $500? Where are you from? You get a Wii U for $350...if you include a couple games you're still not at $500, even with the Pro Controller...where is $500 coming from?!

Will the PS4 at launch justify spending mostly like over $500-$650? Probably not...until well after a few months.

coregamer
coregamer

@KitsuneHazard @coregamer 

Exactly my point. We're already talking about replacing the Wii U in 4-5 years and they haven't even provided us with information on more than 2 games that will come out that core gamers who are older than 18 years old will be interested in by 2014. 

At this rate how many games am I going to buy for a $500 investment in the hardware?? 2 games per year? 8 games? Are you serious? I'm going to spend $500 to play 8 games?? This is 2013. We're still recovering slow as hell with a obstructionist Congress. 

Nobody has that kind of money to throw around except for core gamers. People who do gaming as a hobby with 90% of their free time. As I said earlier. I have this kind of money to throw around, but EVEN I don't want to invest that much because Nintendo hasn't supported the console with enough games.

I literally don't even have time for all my PS3 games. Why would I spent $500 on something that isn't even concerned with me?

mprimak
mprimak

@blasterman1 @stretch90 

Your comparison is ridiculous since you're comparing a PC with 2GB to an xbox 360 with 512mb.  Not to mention your pricing is fictional.  My computer from 2007 which I built and still use is an AMD X2 6000+, 4 GB, 8800GT and it cost me around $400.  I just swapped the video card out for GTX560 and still have no reason to get a new computer.

blasterman1
blasterman1

@stretch90You clearly either didn't read my post in it's entirety, don't have good reading comprehension, or have absolutely no experience with console cycles.  If you think PC's that were available in 2005 were capable of putting out the graphics that the Xbox 360 did at that time then you weren't around then.  Here's the specs on a top of the line PC in 2006 the year AFTER the Xbox 360 came out compared to a 360 and the prices for both.  AND the PC was struggling to keep up since the Xbox 360 is a dedicated gaming machine and a PC is as Steve Jobs famously said, "a truck".

PC price:
RAM : 2x1GB ~ 250$
8800GTX ~ 650$
QuadCore ~ 1700$
Total ~ 2600$ (just for 3 components, PC needs also mobo, optical drive, hdd etc.)

X360 price:
399$
Total:399$
 

This doesn't even include the cost of the mobo, the case, the PSU, keyboard, mouse, the Windows OS, etc.  So if you plan on having ANY CHANCE to compete with the Xbox 720, I hope you're willing to spend, including the additional components, 3-4 thousand dollars.  It will be at LEAST 2 more years before the "normal" people are able to do anything near what the 720 can do.

wadeisdk
wadeisdk

@KitsuneHazard @blasterman1 

The WII U did well INITIALLY. CURRENTLY it's selling WORSE than even the PS3 did back when it was $600 with no games. The PS3 eventually got better because it was the most powerful console of its time, buying one was an investment while waiting for the games. Also the blu ray player was great. The Wii U has the OPPOSITE view point, people are waiting for the more powerful consoles to be released. 

So can we PLEASE stop comparing to the PS3? They are nothing the same, the PS3 had strong hardware and at the time the backwards compatibility to boot, sales started slow and then took off. The Wii U started well and now it's flat lining, complete opposite to the PS3. 

Wii U is an expensive gimmick, the touch screen is what you would find on a $50 chinese knock off iPad, no games, slow OS and a butchered online experience. Core gamers?? The "pro" controller doesn't even have real triggers so racing games are out of the question. 

Flame on fanboys. 

KitsuneHazard
KitsuneHazard

@blasterman1You do realize that the Wii U also sold out of launch units, right? So what, there were more available soon after which means it sold better. It's not shocking.

The 360 could've sold more (and quite possibly would've) if they were available too, I'm not discounting that. I'm saying as far as what was available, the Wii U is second ONLY to the Wii, which also had severe shortages of stock, like the 360 (which got creamed by it). Sure, if MS had more stock out there it probably would've sold more. Fact is, it didn't. It's also possible that the 360 could've sold 3mil+ in the first few months and then fizzled just as the Wii U if there had been more product on shelves. There's literally no way of knowing exactly what would've happened. Though you can speculate all you like, it's not the reality of the situation.

So, at this point in each system's life cycle there are more Wii U's in the wild than 360's. How do you argue that reality?

blasterman1
blasterman1

@KitsuneHazard What do you mean, would the 360 have sold better?  OF COURSE IT WOULD HAVE SOLD BETTER.  It was sold out!  Unless you're making some outrageous claim that the number they sold, which just happened to be every single unit they produced EXACTLY MET DEMAND.  Give me a break.  Your acting absolutely dense.  Do you have no common sense or logic in you?

patrick.mork
patrick.mork

@blasterman1 @BobJorganson @KitsuneHazard don't forget the other problem: the whole industry has changed.. Android and iOS now offer viable gaming alternatives particular for casual gamers who are among Nintendo's bread and butter. This is totally new territory for them and they totally ignored mobile

blasterman1
blasterman1

@BobJorganson  @KitsuneHazard Games are a huge problem.  If you look at the Eurogamer article how sales have dropped off though, it's obvious that it's more than that.  If you were around in Spring of 2007, this exact thing happen to the PS3.  This is almost exactly the same situation.  The PS3 launched with a price higher than people expected.  The PS3 had no games.  The PS3 had a few games in Spring of '07 (it launched holiday 06), then all of the games were delayed.  Even with a console price of 500 for the low end and 600 for the high end, they sold better than the Wii U is now.  

Nintendo has other problems besides games.  

1. Price.

2. Hardware isn't an improvement over current hardware.

3. The gamepad.  Most people call this a "tablet" and considering it's garbage compared to an iPad it doesn't help at all...

4. Brand confusion, people don't know what the Wii U is, they think it's an add on.  Do you think MS would be dumb enough to call the next Xbox the "Xbox 360 U"? 

5. Much of the casual crowd doesn't want another console.  They're find with the original Wii.

Current gen hardware at higher prices with less games is hurting their chances with core gamers.  Their "tablet" and brand confusion hurts them with those in the casual crowd that would actually buy another console.  This console was a huge mistake.  I'm a core gamer (I buy all the game systems and even buy gaming stock) and I'm not buying it until it's got a price drop and comes with a good bundle (the current bundle + one real game).

blasterman1
blasterman1

@stretch90   Clearly there are differences between Galaxy, Sunshine, and Mario 64.  The point I'm making is that people complain about iterations of games while Nintendo's hardcore fans have no problem playing iterations of the same games over again.  Mario 64 had a hub world and star collection.  While Galaxy was certainly better than Mario 64, it's only an iterative improvement much like each successive gears game (minus the continuing storyline).  Compare Super Mario World for the SNES to Mario 64 and you'll see a drastic change.  Compare Zelda 1 and Zelda 2 and you'll see a drastic change.  Nintendo has all but given up on experimenting with new ideas.  All they do is iterate.  All their games are the equivalent of the iPhones with the "S" at the end.

Nintendo needs fresh blood in it to get some ideas.  It's not like all possible ideas are used either, take a look at Double Fine, Ninja Bee, and Santa Monica Studio for a few examples.

stretch90
stretch90

@blasterman1 

So you didn't see anything innovative with Mario galaxy or even Mario sunshine?

And you think twilight princess and skyward sword weren't innovative at all. even though they completely redid sword play mechanics?

What I mentioned about Gears of war is that it's difficult to tell which iteration you're even playing since they released so many in just 1 generation.

blasterman1
blasterman1

@stretch90 I'm not exactly sure if this is some kind of argument that's opposed to mine or if you're agreeing.  You seem to think you're making points against my statement but in fact all you're doing is validating my statement.  A zelda game is a Zelda game is a Zedla game.  Run around, do some dungeon puzzle, push some blocks, use bombs, use a bow and arrow, etc etc etc.  No one confuses the Gears games with one another because narratively they're part of the same store (the first 3).  You wouldn't know this if you played games other than Zelda's.  The Zelda games, Mario games, etc are all self contained stories that have nothing to do with one another but all play almost identically.  Lame.  At least Final Fantasy games are very different in function and they're trying to find a new and better way to do things.  They may not have succeeded yet but at least they're trying unlike Lame-tendo.  Take a look at Super Mario Bros.  Then take a look at Super Mario Bros 2.  Then take a look at Super Mario Bros 3.  Those games are COMPLETELY DIFFERENT.  Now look at what Nintendo has done over the last 20 years.  Super Mario 64 was the last innovative game they've put out in that series.  Every one of them since then has been a slightly enhanced clone of Mario 64 or a rehash of the old "new" super mario games.  It's been YEARS since they've tried something new.  Nintendo is loaded down with old folks that have been in the industry for 40 years and repress new ideas.  It's time for them to retire.

stretch90
stretch90

@blasterman1 

People complain about so many Gears of War and CODs because those games dont't change. Even though there are so many Zelda and 3D Mario iterations Nintendo actually creates new innovative gameplay every time. 

And lets see, 4 gears of war on the 360 alone and I doubt people would be able to tell the difference between them. And probably 7 CODs carbon copies as well.

The last Zelda's were Skyward Sword, Twilight Princess, Wind Waker, Majora's Mask and Ocarina of time. So 5 games on 3 consoles. Next time think before you make some dumb assumption like Nintendo doesn't make new games.