Last week NPD figures — which cover U.S. retail results — were published covering 25th November to 29th December, and Nintendo of America issued a few facts and figures of its own in response to them.
The figures showed that Wii U had performed pretty well since it launched by generating over $300 million in revenue during this period, beating the Wii which only managed to attain slightly more than $270 million. Of course eagle-eyed readers will note that Wii U has a much higher retail price than its predecessor, which may well explain how it’s made more money.
If you look at units sold, Wii U didn’t match up to Wii – in 41 days Wii U sold 890,000 units, but it took the Wii just eight days to shift 600,000. Software generally seemed to do okay, with New Super Mario Bros. U shifting 580,000 copies during this period, however some have been quick to point out game sales have been disappointing compared to previous console launches.
Doug Creutz, analyst at Cowen & Company, said recently in a research note that Wii U software sales were “struggling a bit” and “remained well behind launch levels for the original Wii and GameCube in December”. He went on to state:
Totals for the November-December period were -43% lower than software sales for the Wii and -50% lower than those for the GameCube.
Wii U games have been finding it difficult to make an impact on sales charts since the system's launch, especially in the UK where not one exclusive title has broken into the all-format top 40 during the last three weeks. Naturally Wii U has a lower user base right now than other consoles, but this will certainly concern Nintendo.
The price of the games themselves has been an issue for many gamers; with the console retailing at $300 for the Basic Set and $350 for Deluxe Set in the U.S., it's perhaps difficult for people to fork out more cash for games — especially when they are priced so high. In its first few weeks Wii U was selling 1.2 games per console, which is low compared to Wii which mustered 2 games per console sold.
What are your thoughts on these relatively low software sales? Do you think it’s down to the price of games or are they just not appealing to you? Let us know in the comments section below.