Wii U sales tumble leads to $48m loss at Nintendo

27 Jul 2016

Despite the success of Pokémon Go, Nintendo said its core business is suffering

Plunging sales of Wii U games consoles and 3DS handsets contributed to a massive $48.6m loss for Nintendo in its first quarter.

Overall Wii U sales plunged 53pc year-on-year to 220,000 units. That is a 53pc decrease on the previous year.

The company said that foreign exchange rates and appreciation of the Japanese Yen also contributed to losses.

‘For Nintendo 3DS, we will release Pokémon Sun/Pokémon Moon globally in November’

Net sales dropped 31pc from $853m last year to $587m.

All of this comes against the backdrop of roaring success of Pokémon Go, the augmented reality game sweeping the planet.

This is no Wii dribble

As Wii U console sales fell 53pc, Wii U software sales rose a mere 3pc to 4.7m units.

3DS hardware sales dropped 7pc to 940,000 units while 3DS games like Kirby: Planet Robobot contributed to a 7pc rise to 8.5m units.

Amibo sales also were poor with just 1.7m units sold due to a lack of new compatible titles.

But there may be some tricks up Nintendo’s sleeve yet. This month the company unveiled its upcoming retro console that will breathe new life into the classic Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) with modifications for modern TVs.

It has also emerged that the company’s next portable console – called the NX – will bring back the era of cartridge gaming.

“For Nintendo 3DS, we will release Pokémon Sun/Pokémon Moon globally in November,” Nintendo said in a statement.

“These are the latest titles from the Pokémon series, which has sold 200m units worldwide since the first title from the series released 20 years ago. We will also release Mario Party: Star Rush this fall.”

Wii U image via Shutterstock

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years