News Article

The Wii U Continues to Struggle in Japanese Charts

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

The Wonderful 101 departs the top 20 in its second week

The Japanese charts often provide solace for Nintendo, especially with 3DS hardware and software sales continually leading the way. While the portable's hardware performance retains its strong run this week, the Wii U's issues in the market have been brought sharply into focus once again.

The software chart doesn't bring much news of note for Nintendo systems, as four new releases on the PS3 and PS Vita have occupied the top four spots. Some evergreen 3DS titles continue to shift units, however, while the Wii U's Pikmin 3 hangs on in the top 20; unfortunately The Wonderful 101 — which we rate very highly here at Nintendo Life — has followed up its debut week of 14th place and just 5,258 sales by dropping out of the list altogether.

1. [PS3] JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: All Star Battle (Namco Bandai, 08/29/13) – 425,718 (New)
2. [PS3] Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn (Square Enix, 08/27/13) – 184,018 (New)
3. [PSV] Ragnarok Odyssey Ace (GungHo Online Entertainment, 08/29/13) – 31,622 (New)
4. [PS3] Lost Planet 3 (Capcom, 08/29/13) – 27,503 (New)
5. [3DS] Disney Magic Castle: My Happy Life (Namco Bandai, 08/01/13) – 17,061 (244,570)
6. [3DS] Mario & Luigi: Dream Team (Nintendo, 07/18/13) – 16,723 (281,700)
7. [3DS] Tomodachi Collection: New Life (Nintendo, 04/18/13) – (1,409,182)
8. [PSP] Saki: Achiga-Hen Portable (Alchemist, 08/29/13) – 13,806 (New)
9. [3DS] Youkai Watch (Level-5, 07/11/13) – 10,895 (154,691)
10. [3DS] Animal Crossing: New Leaf (Nintendo, 11/08/12) – 8,702 (3,395,088)
11. [PS3] Super Robot Wars OG Saga Masou Kishin III: Pride of Justice (Namco Bandai, 08/22/13) – 7,822 (47,077)
12. [3DS] Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon (Nintendo, 03/20/13) – 6,854 (885,238)
13. [PSV] Conception II (Spike Chunsoft, 08/22/13) – 5,558 (24,436)
14. [3DS] Mario Kart 7 (Nintendo, 12/01/11) – 5,314 (2,111,835)
15. [3DS] Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D (Nintendo, 06/13/13) – 4,546 (263,003)
16. [Wii U] Pikmin 3 (Nintendo, 07/11/13) – 4,364 (175,765)
17. [3DS] One Piece: Romance Dawn (Namco Bandai, 08/08/13) – 4,265 (51,476)
18. [Wii] Taiko Drum Master Wii Super Wonderful Edition (Namco Bandai, 11/29/12) – 4,209 (553,574)
19. [3DS] Fantasy Life Link! (Level-5, 07/25/13) – 4,201 (53,075)
20. [3DS] New Super Mario Bros. 2 (Nintendo, 07/28/12) – 4,170 (2,087,158)

On the hardware side of the charts, both 3DS models saw an increase, in particular the more popular LL (XL) equivalents; the Wii U continued its decline, however, to the levels that were prominent prior to the release of Pikmin 3 earlier in the summer.

3DS LL – 49,149 (35,044)
PlayStation 3 – 20,090 (12,689)
3DS – 17,873 (16,053)
PlayStation Vita – 8,405 (11,507)
Wii U – 6,741 (7,030)
PSP – 6,218 (5,735)
Wii – 1,141 (1,103)
Xbox 360 – 177 (196)

It's clear that The Wonderful 101 has failed to add any notable momentum to the Wii U in Japan. There are a host of major releases on the way that may reverse these trends, but it seems a pity that the terrific PlatinumGames title hasn't enjoyed a stronger performance.

From the web

User Comments (77)



strongest_link said:

Nintendo just announced a price cut that hasn't taken effect yet. Why would anyone buy a Wii U between now and then?



Exile20 said:

Wind Waker hopefully will wake up the Wii U.
The price isn't dropping in Japan, it is 30,000 yen($307).



datamonkey said:

Yeah hopefully the Wii U price cut will have a positive effect on sales. It needs to in a big way really to entice 3rd party support.

I think the Vita deserves to sell more also. It's a superb console...



Dreamcaster-X said:

Well on the flipside, half of those titles are Nintendo 3DS titles. So I guess it ain't all bad but man the Wii U is struggling something fierce.



ferrers405 said:

3DS sell 67,022 units this week, imagine when MH4 and Pokemon X/Y launches, poor Vita...



Quickman said:

There were only 30,000 copies of W101 shipped in the first place so that's not surprising...



Dreamcaster-X said:

Yeah, the 3DS is outselling PS3 & 360 in North America already so it's gonna EXPLODE when Pokemon releases!!



FMillman said:

@strongest_link Well, in the UK, the price has been down for a fair few months on Amazon and Game so anyone waiting in the UK shouldn't be waiting to get it as it is now £249-£259 at Game or on Amazon (thereabouts).



Tate24 said:

Need more advertise for game seen none at all?

Personal I Played the demo though it really good and am defo gonna pick it up next week



FLipSide5254 said:

I'm sure they love handheld since you can take it to work and play it during break time or their just waiting for more games comes out for Wii U. Once all the big names first party comes out everything will change.



TheAdrock said:

Tell me again about how the U's problems are all because of 3rd party devs.
Or the media conspiracy against Nintendo (which somehow didn't affect the first Wii).
Or tell me about how its Fukushima's fault.
Or maybe George W Bush's fault (if you're a Democrat)... and its Obama's fault if you're a Republican.



Savino said:

@ScroogeMcLz Look at Last of Us and say it again!

The problem is that W101 isn´t a compeling game. It´s a ninche game and a lot of people, like me, simply doesn´t have any interest in this. Like Pikmin!

I mean, they´re not bad games, but they isnt the cup of tea of many gamers!
The market today asks for cinematic experiencies, like Bayonetta 2 promisses, not a bunch of little guys running around the town with huge hands or wips.



fortius54 said:

@ScroogeMcLz I agree completely. People get on here and talk about needing new IPs, and when they get one, they do not support it. It was just a week or two ago that people could not understand why they only shipped 30,000 units. The gaming community on occasion reminds me a lot of the comic book community. No offense to us Nintendo fans and I count myself in this, but we want more third party developers. However, we do not do a good job of aupporting third party titles. Of course, third party developers need to do better than porting old games. It gets frustrating.



rmeyer said:

The demo for 101 was pretty terrible. They pulled a Capcom by turning off gamers to a great game with an awful demo



MAB said:

I might just do a point and laugh for the future of XBone in Japan



Dreamcaster-X said:

@FMillman Yeah, the 3DS did outsell the bog 2 consoles here the last couple of months. I also never understood why the consoles never got a full fledged Pokemon game instead of the quirky spin-offs. A Pokemon Wii U version would push consoles.



unrandomsam said:

@ScroogeMcLz Japan has plenty of new IP's that do well - nobody has a right to do well. (The ones that seem to me to do well are either casual or not. Not we will cater to both.)



Dreamcaster-X said:

@-KwB- It's been like this for a while now. They buy portables more than home consoles now. I mean I was in Tokyo for the 1st time right before the earthquake and everybody & I mean everybody was playing a 3DS or PSP. Adults, children, & Seniors. It's not like that here in the U.S. Everybody games there but they just do it on the go now.



unrandomsam said:

@fortius54 Game developers are not charities. (I support games that I want - i.e I have the Dreamcast Gunlord even though it is annoying connecting and reconnecting the thing.).

If I want it I will buy it straight away. What I don't like is people deciding what is and isn't niche before something is released. It makes it almost impossible for the dev's of the type of games I like.



ricklongo said:

@Savino It is a sad, sad state of affairs when cinematics matter more than gameplay.

Just finished Pikmin 3's main quest last night, by the way, and it was a beyond fun experience. Eagerly awaiting for The Wonderful 101 on the 15th.



AVahne said:

As far as I know, the price cut is NOT for Japan. Unless you want to point me to an article stating that Japan will also get a price cut soon.



Kaabiitorori said:

Logically, the announced price cut is holding people to buy the console. While America and Europe will have their price cut, I haven't heard a thing about Japan though. Anyone knows?

@Caryslan In theory, Sony is not launching the PS4 in Japan this year: this might help Nintendo sell the Wii U substantially. I say in theory because Sony could announce their release date and price at Tokyo Game Show in a few weeks as well as announce several games targeted to the Japanese market (quite frankly, the vast majority of its launch catalog is more aimed towards the western market).



OorWullie said:

JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure has sold more in it's debut week in Japan than W101 will likely ever sell in it's whole lifetime...worldwide! These hardware figure are going to need to increase tenfold over the holidays or Mario Kart's/SSB online is gonna suffer!



rjejr said:

Next week - 4 million for AC:NL. The Wii had 1 of those games right? W/ Wii Speak support? Time for a Wii U version w/ video chat. Or they could just make a Pokemon MMO.



Zael said:

I respect jo jo, but I don't understand why a great game like won101 sell so low
in japan



Kaabiitorori said:

@ricklongo @Savino Cinematic games might start to become a norm in the industry, and quite frankly, I wouldn't like to see that happening.

The Last of Us seemed like a good balance between gameplay and story development to me. I don't mind it when you have to sit through cutscenes as long as they don't compromise gameplay and it feels like you are playing... well, a proper video game! The Walking Dead, on the other hand, showed to me the horror of cinematic gameplay mechanics (yes, gotta admit I am in that minority who dislike that game). Yes, it does have an amazing story and characters, but when its gameplay is only based on dialogue and QTEs, then it stops to be a game as we know and goes more towards an interactive movie.

If interactive movies are the maturity of the video game industry as some experts pointed out with The Walking Dead... I am afraid I won't take part of that lead. =( I would take any actual video game with actual gameplay mechanics any day.



MAN1AC said:

Its sad that Nintendo is substituting ND's for actually marketing some of these games.



Peach64 said:

So Wonderful 101 does poorly on it's Japanese and UK debut, and some people get really angry at Nintendo Life for posting a chart when the game had only been out for 3/4 days in each region. Some people tried to reason and say all games only have 3/4 days on their debut week, and still sell more that week than any after.

The following week, the first full week, the title drops off the Japanese top 20 and the UK top 40 entirely. I don't know why this has happened, and I'm pretty sad about it, but it's bombed badly.



fortius54 said:

@unrandomsam I understand where you are coming from. I know that fans aren't the only ones to blame. I do not usually get games on the initial release with the exception of a preorder exclusive I can't live without. From the post, it just amazes me that we always seem to chase our tails on one thing or the other, and again, I know I am as much to blame as any one.

Just a few days ago, one of the posters made a statement on these comments that Nintendo needed new IPs for them to start taking back market share. I just found it humorous that this is a new IP, and it is not selling much. I paralleled this with the argument concerning third parties, but I was also sure to blame third parties because they do it as well.

For instance,Bethesda comes out this week and says well it is Nintendo's fault that we do not make games for their system because they didn't work close enough with or whatever this weeks excuse is. However, I can almost bet my Wii U that their big idea would have been to bring out a Wii U version of Skyrim.



FiveDigitLP said:

So sad that such a wonderful and unique game is doing so poorly. And here I thought the style of W101 would be something that would attract Japanese gamers. Shows what I know...



Savino said:

@FiveDigitLP I am in the same boat...
I though it would flop in the US charts, it would do well in Europe and that it would move thousand of japaneses to the stores in the night before launch....

I really need to study more market... and platinum too...



fortius54 said:

I think ultimately, I would like it if Nintendo and I guess the fans to some extent recognize the fact Nintendo doesn't have to be in competition with Sony and Microsoft. I thought that was the position they were trying to take until Reggie kind of mouthed off. I have a PS3 and a Wii U. I had a PS3 and a Wii before that. The Nintendo games are so distinctly different than what you might play on the other systems that it would not be a hard sell.

Don't get me wrong. You would certainly have to try to sell it which is another area that I feel Nintendo has grossly under utilized. The Wii U commercials did not start coming out until about a week before the console launched. They have little to no advertising outside of Directs for games. At e heir of their popularity, you were always seeing the "Now You're Playing with Power" ads, and that was before we had whole stations dedicated to nothing but children's entertainment.



Pachterkid said:


Solid point. Between that price drop and the fact that the good games don't come out until the fall it really is no surprise that it's not selling.

Then again, that's not really an excuse because it's been struggling ever since it launched, but still. When you're routinely outsold by the Vita you know you're in trouble...



strongest_link said:


I'm not sure it matters. If I'm in Japan, I am aware of the price drop in North America and Europe and I am expecting that price drop in Japan any time now. It still makes sense to wait. Obviously the Wii U wasn't selling well before either. I am just suggesting that this may be why Wonderful 101 and Pikmin 3 aren't doing more to sell hardware now.



Daggo said:

"(Wonderful 101) isn't the cup of tea of many gamers! The market today asks for cinematic experiencies"

Agreed. And that's why I'm thankful for what Nintendo does in regard to gaming. I'm happy that a game like the Wonderful 101 gets made; with everything that made love videogames in the first place. "Gameplay experiences"
I'm going to buy it and enjoy it, 3DS will cover all losses for Ninty xD


Please elaborate, I'd like to read more about those markets and its similarities. I've heard the term "cinematic" applied to comics too. What do you mean in the big picture of things, people buying mainly DC and Marvel?


"The Last of Us seemed like a good balance between gameplay and story (...)"

I disagree. Story and game mechanics felt so disjointed to me, the ending was nowhere satisfactory thanks to that, and almost borderlining the cliché. Basically everything I did on that game was unuseful and meaningless... there were great moments when maybe you can connect with the characters...
But only on the cutscenes.

I know a game have problems for me when I can say "This could have worked better as a movie".

Other example is Remember Me, and is sad to think about it, because it had so many potential mechanics, those Remixes sequences should be the focal center of the game, but instead opted for the modern trend to be part of the "story/do-this-do-that/story/point-a-to-b" cycle. Story-wise it was good, it might be like the Fifth Element. Maybe as a movie.

Once in a while, I can appreciate the simplicity of those "cinematic experiences". But with the PC games that I (unfortunately) bought this year: Assasin's Creed 3, Bioshock Infinite, Tomb Raider, Remember Me. I'm frankly tired.

Last week it took me playing Super Metroid on VC, Tomb Raider III (&*%# yeah!) and Euro Truck Simulator to remember games should be fun not a chore
But I digress. xD

On a unrelated topic, Youkai Watch had a cool increase... let's see if when the anime starts airing it does again... unless L5 does some YW boost re-release.



Wildfire said:

This really are bad news after all the effort put on the game by Platinum.
I loved every minute of The Wonderful 101 and despite the fact that I already knew this was going to happen, I still feel disapointed.



gazamataz said:

Everyday I see the same story about Wii U and I'm just about sick of it. The Wii U will sell as many as Xbox1 and PS4. Just because a couple of thousand hardcore geeks say it won't does not mean it is true. Kid's love Nintendo and responsible parents love Nintendo and it's the cheapest option. Print these stories when there may be a story after the launch of Xbox1 and PS4 or better still after the launch of Mario Kart 8 as the true fate of Wii U will not be known until then.




What on earth is wrong with gamers today ?

BUY THIS GAME ! it's fantastic, it really aggravates me when great games are overlooked.



WiiLovePeace said:

@I-AM-REGGIE THIS THIS THIS & MORE THIS! Seriously! The Wonderful 101 totally blew my mind with the over 9000% of awesomeness that has been put into this game! The reviews I read really give no clue on how much awesome this game truly is. In my opinion the controls are spot on, both touch & stick, the music is amazing, graphics are amazing, the action is INSANE and the characters are hilarious! Extremely cool game with tonnes of replayability & challenge. I feel extremely sorry for those who choose not to buy a Wii U for this game alone it is just that awesome.

P.S. These charts don't include digital downloads of the game, I don't know if they had the same deal in Japan, but I downloaded it along with Pikmin 3 for the 30% discount + Nintendo Premium points



Daggo said:


Sell as many units as Xbone/PS4? Mmm, we'll see...

The thing is, Nintendo hasn't sold well their idea of Wii U, it lacked a cohesive identity from the start, and that has permeated even on the (scarce) marketing.

Also, the Wii brand has attached a series of self-fulfulling prophecies that damages any attempts 3rd Parties make and scare some potential customers. Things like "Only Nintendo games sell on Nintendo consoles", "Wii has no mature games", "There are more exclusives games on other consoles".

Next time, they better send a clear message to the market. Sony is doing a good job currently with PS4. We somehow know what the console is about and which demographics they are targeting. Even when its launch titles aren't that exciting, many people are buying only on promises of upcoming titles like Final Fantasy or Kingdom Hearts.

I doubt Wii U will sell as much as PS4 or even XBone, at least on the west, due its unclear message. But hopefully Nintendo will prove me wrong and pull a 3DS.



XneroX said:

I mean...there was a price cut announced. People are going to wait for the cheaper console, honestly is like to see the bump in games sales after the price drop.



Kaabiitorori said:

@Daggo I understand what you mean. In my case, while gameplay matters the most in a game, I will be absolutely fine if the story complements it well enough.

With The Last of Us, it felt to me like both had a good balance. Story-wise was lineal yet good enough to show how well it developed alongside the connection of the characters (although I gotta agree with you about the ending); gameplay-wise, it felt to me like it was an action-adventure game within its own way, something that Naughty Dog was doing throughout the Uncharted series. The game overall was very good, yet not as perfect as many people claim.

Now that you mentioned this, BioShock Infinite was whole different story. While story-wise was excellent (God, that ending was just mind-blowing), the gameplay wasn’t even close to the magnificent first BioShock game: too lineal with non-existant backtracking and combats were scripted, open area based. Elizabeth’s interaction aside from the story was reduced to give you items and open mere tears, but originally, she was intended to combine her powers with your Vigors. There was so much wasted potential. Overall, the game felt like a run of the mill shooter and not BioShock. =( Now let’s see about the upcoming DLC if things can change though!

Maybe it’s just me, but I feel games should stick to its old roots and not depart from ‘em at all. Yes, there can be amazing stories in a video game, no doubt; but it seems like the norm is going towards caring more about the story and less about the gameplay until making it almost non-existant, something I don’t find comfortable at all. =(

Sorry for digressing about the main topic as well. XD



micronean said:

Don't underestimate the power of Nintendo franchises in Japan. Zelda, Mario, and especially pokemon with the new 3DS colours, are going to blow the charts away.



ACK said:

If this flops, I'll be swimming in my tears. W101 is what gaming should be.



S7eventhHeaven said:

this game is destined to become one of those games like earthbound that no one buys and ends up in a bargain bin for $1 or £2 english pound. it will then become collectable and hard to find in years to come and you will end up having to remortgage your house to buy a copy on Ebay



S7eventhHeaven said:

wii-u has rayman legends now. it has the best version and the game overall is one of the best games this year.



Kirk said:

Didn't think The Wonderful 101 would have much of an impact.

There's a few other even bigger games coming to Wii U by the end of the year but I'm still not entirely convinced they're going to help sell the system in any decent numbers.

We'll see I guess...



Ferret said:


Yep. I'm almost considering buying a Japanese version seeing as Nintendo produced so little of the Japanese version. Wait for prices to bottom out, then snatch some copies up.

Fantastic game. New IP with creativity. Of course it isn't going to sell well as as it gives all the haters the exact thing they've been whining that Nintendo doesn't do.



Rafie said:

Glad to see the Vita doing...better. I am disappointed with the Wii U sales though. Though I'm still not worried at all. People are forgetting the games that will move the console is yet to come. The 3DS will be the best selling console for months to come for the time being. Time will tell if or when the Wii U will catch it's little sibling in sales.



Windy said:

This is horrible News. A Wii game still in the Top 20 but Wonderful 101 can't hold on to stay in. Very strange. I hope something will wake up the Wii-U soon. I don't think Windwaker is that game.



JaxonH said:

It's depressing watching these sales numbers every week. It'd be nice to go to bed at night knowing the Wii U is doing fine (and Vita, for that matter), but I'm slowly adjusting to the idea that Wii U may never catch on big. I certainly don't think it'll continue THIS bad, but I've done a lot of thinking, and I'm not so sure Wii U is going to break the trend this gen.

If you look back at pre-Wii generations, Nintendo consoles were selling less and less with every passing generation. SNES sold 60 million, then N64 sold 40 million, then GC sold 20 million... and then the anomaly happened- the Wii caught fire. Unfortunately those days are past, and it looks like it's back to business as usual for Nintendo home consoles. It sucks, because Wii U is such a great console with such great games, and yet people snub their nose at it like it's garbage.

And Vita too. I think Wii U and Vita are 2 of the most underrated gaming systems of all time, and it's a shame watching Sony and MS rise to prominence with relative ease in the home console market, but can't get a handheld to sell... and it's a shame watching Nintendo dominate in the handheld market, but can't get a home console to sell. But, it is what it is.



G3ry said:

@Savino This is why this why this and last gen are the worst... remember the times when games were only games, which we had FUN playing and got excited when we bought a new game with colorful characters and a nice box we took care of for years so our children would feel the same thing we once felt and still feel...
Please support Wii U!!!
Dont let the magic die.



LztheQuack said:

@Savino Kay, "And...this is why new IPs are so rare". I said "rare" and not "never successful" or "nonexistent"

One success does not guarantee success for all games (same for failures)

@URAmk2 Yes, it's safe to say rather than simply two days and call them a "week"



shonenjump86 said:

That sucks about the Wii U. Maybe the new Mario 3D Land game and Smash will boost up sales when they get released. Nice to see JoJo on top of that list though . ORA ORA ORAAAAAHH!



ToxieDogg said:

It simply isn't a 'great' game.

I've bought a copy but I'm finding it tricky to get to grips with, the control system is not immediately user friendly and the tutorials aren't very helpful. Using the right analogue stick to 'draw' attack patterns is a pain, and harder than it should be, and the way the action sometimes switches from TV screen to Gamepad, or screen-within-a-screen on the TV is confusing.

I also know a few other people who were put right off buying it just by playing the demo.

It's an original new IP, and one that I wanted to support. But it doesn't have mass appeal at all, either in it's concept or gameplay.



Savino said:

@ScroogeMcLz i understood, and that's my point... LoU is a new IP and sold extremely well, so, the problem isnt with new IPs, but with w101 that didnt captivated the public!



ACK said:

@ToxieDogg I have to say, I jumped right into the Wonder Missions co-op with my 4 year-old son and neither of us had the slightest hitch. It was outrageously fun. I mean, within seconds it was his favorite game.

I was honestly shocked how intuitive the controls were after all the complaints I've heard about the demo and such. Given the complexity of most modern control schemes... This isn't really a game I could find much to fault in the controls scheme, myself.

That said, we'll throw Mommy in the mix tomorrow so she can issue a definitive verdict. She tends to do that.



RedRocBoy said:

Surprised Nintendo doesn't get some of those games that have big sales in Japan. Jojo's Bizzare Adventure,Naruto etc. those seem to do really well especially if they got exclusive entries into those franchises. But with the price cut and the big guns coming out this fall & winter this not surprising if theirs no games then people aren't going to be buy the console. DUHHHH!!!!



RedRocBoy said:

@G3ry I love you man. I'm definitely supporting 3rd parties. Got Batman and Assassin's Creed paid for Watch_Dogs and COD:Ghosts are next. And definitely getting all the 1st party, it's just a matter of managing my money. LOL



MathRaph said:

@Dreamcaster-X I think they argued in the past that Pokémon was very much a portable experience, mostly because of the local mutliplayer/exchange thing.
But online as come a long way since then, so I guess the argument is not really relevant anymore.
I would also like a full Pokémon game on Wii U, but I think they will go for the Pokémon Stadium model once again... or regular smaller eShop releases on 3DS and Wii U, all tied to Pokémon bank.

Leave A Comment

Hold on there, you need to login to post a comment...