How Many Copies Does A WiiWare Game Need To Sell?

Last week, Gamasutra heard whispers about Nintendo placing sales criteria on WiiWare games. If developers didn't reach them, they wouldn't get paid. Well, we now know just how many they need to sell.

Courtesy of a developer "familiar" with the subject, these are the targets a WiiWare game has to meet before the creators start seeing profits (and if/when they do, what that profit breakdown is).

North America

If game is over 16MB - 6,000 units
If game is under 16MB - 4,000 units


If game is over 16MB - 3,000 units
If game is under 16MB - 2,000 units

Once those goals are met, the developer starts seeing a return (which is based upon every sale, not just those made once the target is reached). And that return is split 65/35 between the developers/Nintendo.

Games have two years to hit their mark. If they haven't hit it by then, sorry, no dice.

Interesting that games are divided according to size, which seems pretty arbitrary. On the bright side, though, that profit split is a healthy one, particularly if a small team is able to create a cheap game that beats the sales targets.


    It's still kind of shitty of Nintendo to get 6000 units worth of profit and then still take a cut. This is free money for them, they should be splitting the profit at the current percentage from sale number 1.

    I understand that it forces the development team to really decide if their game is good enough to release, but I can see many small teams putting considerable money into a good game that is largely ignored because it is released the same week as Ocarina of Time: Master Quest or some other million seller.

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