The Wii U Sales Are Really, Really Bad

It's no secret that the Wii U is struggling. However, the extent of which the console is struggling might surprise you.

According to Nintendo, between April 1 and June 30 of this year, the Wii U sold 160,000 units. Those are global sales figures. Over three months. Ouch.

Simple maths tells us that the Wii U is selling, on average, 53,000 Wii U consoles each month since April. That's not very good!

Software sales were better, with over a million games between sold worldwide, but even those number pale to the 3DS software sales during the same three-month period: a whopping 11 million games sold globally.

Even the Wii outsold the Wii U, moving 210,000 units during the last three months.

Things for the Wii U, sadly, are not looking up. This past April, Nintendo reported that the Wii U only moved 390,000 consoles globally, which were well below expectations. These numbers are well below that.


    Whadya mean all the people who bought the wii and felt burnt didn't buy the wii u ?

    This just defies all logic :p

    Nintendo straight up botched this one.

    It might get a slight boost at Christmas when the HD versions of Mario Kart and the 3DS Mario game come out but I’d expect the WiiU to be borderline irrelevant by the time the next proper Zelda/ Metroid/ whatever comes out and the real next-gen consoles are in full swing.

    It’s starting to dawn on me that I probably won’t ever buy a WiiU despite being a big Nintendo fan. Apart from new 3DS Mario which I don’t care about the only other games on the horizon are “party style” games. I don’t know ANYBODY who actually owns one of these things and since I can’t use my old Gamecube controllers anymore I’m going to have to fork out $400 for the console and buy ALL the controllers before I can get the most out of what essentially looks like HD versions of games I can play on older consoles with controllers I already own.

      Go check the story about the next year line Up. Pretty solid list.

      since I can’t use my old controllers anymore I’m going to have to fork out $400 for the console and buy ALL the controllers before I can get the most out of what essentially looks like HD versions of games I can play on older consoles with controllers I already own.
      Um. Didn't you just describe every console from the last couple of generations? :P

        Na he is 100% correct I just finished Black ops using the N64 controller. For the simple lot that is a joke.

        Nope. I know people who own those other consoles.

        Meaning I can invite those people over and use their controllers initially and then outlay for more controllers over time.
        That’s what I’ve done for every console that’s come out for the last ever.

        I might not be in highschool anymore, where you probably have the biggest concentration of networked people who own consoles, but I honestly don’t know a single person who owns a WiiU.

          Whereas I own one, am sitting next to another person who has one, my friend up the hall has one, and I have maybe at least a dozen other friends on my Wii U's friend list. And all of us have been having a great time with it.

          As for the controllers deal, the Wii U vs Wii situation is hardly any different to the PS3 vs PS2. Uses the same old controllers, plays the same old games, and everyone's complaining about the new games just being HD versions of those same old games.

      I got to try out 3D Mario World (or whatever the upcoming Wii U mario is called) at PAX with a few random people and it was actually really fun but.... I just can't justify buying a Wii U when there's no other decent games :(

    Xenoblade2. Or whatever it's called

    I would have bought one on release if there were flashy new Mario and Zelda games to play on it. We don't even have any indication of when these big name titles will come but we know it won't be this year. Also I'm really not fussed about the tablet style game pad.

    The console needs to be no more than $250 Australian for the premium version. It's specs are garbage and its monstrously over priced, (retailers are already dropping over $100 themselves and even at that price its not worth it).

    If they did that by christmas when they will actually have 2 games worth buying, other than the singular pikimin they have now and it might shift some units. Otherwise they are shit out of luck because they aren't going to convince those stay at home mums and grandmas to go fork out for a new console that is no different to the wii for their "needs". Nope, this time they actually have to win over real gamers and low specs and high price don't do that in the slightest.

    Last edited 01/08/13 8:41 am

      Oh please, there are far more than 2 games worth playing.

        Unfortunately for Nintendo there’s a little bit of entry cost before people can assess whether their games are worth playing and at the moment the WiiU can’t justify that cost for most people.

        If you released Pikmin on the Xbox next week for $80 I might buy it, I’d probably spend $40 on ZombieU if you released it on something I already own….. that’s about it for now. Hard to justify any other purchase on the WiiU, especiially when the other current gen consoles have ENORMOUS back-cataloges of titles which are dirt cheap and better than the games on WiiU.

        Already own an Xbox or PS3 and haven't played Deus Ex: Human Revolution yet? Get that for $10, it looks as good as anything on the WiiU and would be the best game on the console. Save yourself $550!

          Something you own. How many people said I wont buy Blu-ray because I have the DVD, and actually now own it on Blu-ray?

            I can think of at least 5 reasons why that’s a stupid analogy.

            The strongest of which is that a blu-ray player actually offers a significantly better standard than a DVD player. It’s a generation forward from what people already own.

            The WiiU is like releasing a new DVD 2.0 in 2005 just before Blu-ray comes out, charging $450 for the player and charging $30 for movies which are already in the bargain bin for your existing system but aren’t significantly different.

              I see someone remembers those stupid "Superbit" editions :-)

              Its very similar. Your comment was you want to play current/next gen games on previous gen controllers. You said "I’d probably spend $40 on ZombieU if you released it on something I already own….." that goes against what is next Gen. To say the Wii U is not next Gen is like a republican saying Queen Elizabeth is not my Queen. The fact is that the U followed the Wii so it is next gen, as the Queen like it or not is the Queen of Australia. Regardless of its specs it's 8th generation. For you to say it's not based on an opinion is just that your opinion.

        Obviously this is going to depend on your tastes, but as an individual who plays almost all genres, literally nothing on the platform has caught my attention. DKC: Returns Returns might change that.

        No there really isn't, the entire collection is a horrible launch line up of which the best game is zombie U and that was buggy and all over rubbish, since then all that has been released is re hashes from other consoles and pikmin. Any sucker wanting to buy mario for the 555555th time is a glutton for punishment but pikmin is the only title worth a damn currently on the machine and even that doens't cater to alot of people.

      While I agree the specs are more inline with a thinclient PC it does essentially come with a tablet aswell, I still think its their lack of games, I believe in the future Nintendo needs to rectify this before releasing a new console instead of trying to win sales by sneaking in a console before the release of Sony and Microsoft before they are really ready.

    It's a real shame because the Wii U is great. I love it so much, even just little things like the Miiverse and so enjoyable to use and don't feel tacked on or intrusive at all.

    However Nintendo completely fucked up their advertising, and the game developers certainly aren't trying to push their wares (which is snarfed up,. Ubisoft, you have just as much blame for ZombiU's sales as Nintendo--you did poopie all as well).

    eh, its the same for most ninty consoles till they get a zelda or smash bros on the thing. both of which are coming, I wouldn't be worried.

      I think you should be worried, it’s not like this with all Nintendo consoles at all.

      This is the second time Nintendo have released a console with specs that are significantly behind the rest of the console market, but the first where they haven’t had a large base of early success (like the Wii had). I’m pretty certain that Nintendo’s strategy with the WiiU was to get the machine out at least a year before the other next gen consoles and build a big install base that would carry the system once the more powerful systems hit.

      That CLEARLY hasn’t happened. The WiiU has no momentum whatsoever and the new consoles are right around the corner. You‘ve now got a console with no install base, poor specs, no 3rd party support and a very expensive controller which makes dropping the price difficult and playing party style multiplayer (the Nintendo’s bread and butter) an expensive prospect for potential purchasers.

      Zelda is at least 16 months away, I’m sure it will be good but it’s probably too late to save the console. Smash Bros is a great multiplayer game, but do you know anyone who actually owns a WiiU? For someone like me who’s used to playing SSB on a Gamecube Controller, I’m left forking out $430 for a WiiU, $80 for the game and $180 for 3 more controllers…… that’s not really worth it in my books.

        And yet it will be worth it in many other people's books, save your doom stories for people who care to listen to them. There are good games coming and we'll wait for them.

          You may wish to wait for the games. No one else does. I have a wiiU BUT realistically it's already dead in the water.

    The console is pretty good and the tablet control is awesome. The lack of games and the lack of people knowing that the Wii U is a console is what is killing Nintendo.

    Does it play GameCube games?

      No it's not,

        No it's not play Gamecube games

        Presumably it will let you by them as virtual console titles at some point though.

    Although I think there is an obvious lack of games causing problems, I think this has much to do with the lack of support for the wii. How many people swore off Nintendo after they realised they dropped $400 for a console with very few worthwhile games?

    Price drop and some exclusive games and it should come around, like the 3DS when it was having the same trouble. I think they're dreaming if they think they'll reach the sales of the Wii though. The "new" market they aimed for (old people and mothers) aren't the type to regularly upgrade their hardware, and a chunk of the gamers they ignored have moved onto better things.

    need to do a quick redesign and rebrand on it so people actually realize that Nintendo have released a new console and not just a new version of the wii or a new controller with a screen on it. I love Nintendo but yeah....they really screwed this one up.

    ...having said the above, i will still be buying one once they release new Zelda game. im a sucker.

    As someone who has bought a Wii U (and really enjoying it), I honestly don’t mind this news. They were never going to get major third party support and this should just motivate them to push harder with their own games. This is an opportunity for Nintendo to evolve, start bringing some of their franchises into the modern era and hopefully look at starting up some Western studios.

    Except the sales really aren't that bad
    They aren't spectacular, and are a far sight from the Wii, they they line up pretty well with the last generation of consoles, with better initial sales, but underperformed since then

    Christmas will be the real show of how well it will perform


    Prime example of why you shouldn't be a mainstream company marketing a mainstream product to a niche audience. Aiming at kids and old people isn't going to get you very far.


    Last edited 22/04/15 1:13 am

      The profit was mostly from a boost in 3DS sales. Wii U sales are trending down rather than up. That is NOT a good sign at this stage in a console's lifecycle.

      The article is foretelling gloom and doom for the Wii U, not for Nintendo as a whole.

      Quite possibly the upcoming releases will boost sales again, but there are those who are interested in NEW games, not just another Mario/Mario Kart/Zelda rehash.

    Great machine , well under a year old . Pikmin 3 is great , 3D land will be great , one of the best games of all time polished up in Windwaker is coming , and MarioKart , Smash Bros & the New Zelda will as usual put all the other developers and their " superior machines " to shame . Good times ahead :)

    From what I have read, they are mostly blaming 'a lack of first party releases' which is completely crazy. They are blaming themselves for not releasing their own games for it? I honestly cannot believe that they would release a new console without at LEAST one of their AAA Flagship titles ready to go at the same time, or at least a month or two after release.
    But no it's been out for over 6 months, and, from those handful that own one, what games are honestly worth playing yet and plonking a wad of cash down for to buy a new console to play them on?
    It's almost like Apple releasing the ipod back in the day without iTunes and saying 'Theres some third party software you can use for it that sorta works, we'll have the proper stuff for it in a year or two'.
    It really boggles my mind that there wasn't a brand new Mario, or Zelda, or Metroid etc on release date.
    Hell even a brand new mario kart or smash brothers
    If anyone knew what the Wii U would and wouldn't do well, and come up with the best way to show it off at release, it's surely the guys that make the console.
    But no, from what I can tell, they release the console with perhaps a 'Wii sports' type mini-game collection and leave the thing for a couple of years before releasing their own internal 'must have' games, and then wonder why it sells poorly when you have a dozen great games coming to competing 'last gen' consoles every month of two that probably 95% of your potential user base already owns, and that usually don't even warrant getting a port for the Wii U
    It's like they thought everyone would get one regardless of the actual quality of software for it, because Nintendo, and well, that hasn't been the case for at least 3 generations now, back to the N64 really I think.

    It just annoys me because Ninty games are usually really great, but without anything at all to fill in the gaps between their infrequent releases, the console dies. In the Wii U case its pretty much a still-birth i think. And even then, their only hope is to release new versions of the same old things they have released for the last 20 years. Mario, Zelda, metroid etc. When was their last new, deep franchise (I am not talking about animal crossing the the like, though Pikman could possibly count)
    ... /end rant, that was longer than i intended.

    Last edited 01/08/13 11:09 am

      I agree to a extent but i think they could have atleast added back triggers not buttons. Also miyamoto said hes making a new ip now, so that will be interesting.

      If anyone knew what the Wii U would and wouldn't do well, and come up with the best way to show it off at release, it's surely the guys that make the console.
      They have that. Between Nintendo Land and ZombiU, I think it was shown pretty well what the console was capable of. I honestly bought the system just because of ZombiU, and got lucky in that Nintyland turned out to be great too.

    Haha, love all these comments being downvoted by this @ad loser, just for saying that they like the Wii U.

    Keep up the good work.

    I own a Wii U and at present there aren't any games out that I would say are real system sellers. There are a few solid 10-15 hour title worth playing, including what's on the VC/eshop, but that's about it. There also isn't enough games that make use of the offscreen feature, which is one of the best things about the system.

    Overall I'm getting out of it what I expected. It's a great 2nd system which in my case was purchased mainly for the 1st party titles.

    I bought a Wii U. I think you guys should to. I don't want Nintendo forced into portables, and the Wii U is actually quite great.

    The controller works just fine. My only problem with it is the loading screens.

    Monster Hunter plays extremely well on it, better than it has on any other console, and we're going to get Smash (I mean, why even bother playing Smash on a 3DS?), we've already got Pikman 3, and we've got the Wind Waker HD Remake on the horizon. Super Metriod was like 50c for a while, and there is a lot of retro/indie stuff we're seeing on the store.

    Point is, I really like my Wii U. I think it has the capability to play ANY sort of game without the need for extra accessories (within reason). The touch capabilities, the motion capabilities, and the regular controller design don't conflict with each other and all "stay out of each others way" (unlike the Wii controller, where the motion capabilities got in the way of the regular controller design's functionality).

    It's a good console, I don't want to see it go to shit like this. They're not throwing obnoxious social features in like the PS4 and the XB1 are, they've created a console where you can just stick a game in and play it. Sure, the loading screens aren't great and the "specs" aren't as good, but it makes up for it with the ability to simply play games and with the quality of Nintendo games. Remember, we vote with out wallets; currently we're all voting for social features we don't use and invasive publishers.

    I don't want to see competitive Smash become a bunch of people standing around with their 3DS's.

    Last edited 01/08/13 12:20 pm

      I love my PS3. It's a shitty console console (technically), BUT the number of good games more than make up for it. And we're still waiting for MGS5 and GTA 5!
      Wii U may be a technically 'good' system, but it lacks enough good quality games at the moment. And I think their Zelda and Mario franchises are really tired now. If I have to find another pair of Iron Boots, or another Ice Arrow, or find that DAMN Master Sword again!!!!! I'm going to... ARGHgggg!

      Last edited 02/08/13 7:53 am

    Well considering the next gen will near on have more games than the wiiu has now, at launch, its a little worrying haha

    For those of you who think it's all good....

    If the WiiU keeps selling at the rate it has the past three months, it will pass the Sega Dreamcast for sales sometime in 2024.

    Last edited 01/08/13 1:58 pm

Join the discussion!

Trending Stories Right Now