Faith or No Faith: Nintendo Wii-U, Struggling Sales, and Improving Morale

Nintendo Wii U

The Wii-U; yet another underdog console from Nintendo.

Every now and then it helps to deliberately ask people for their thoughts or views. In terms of Nintendo’s Wii-U, the overall consensus seems somewhat scattered. There is no shortage of articles lamenting the consoles poor sales, and recently it was announced that the Wii-U is still going to be sold at a loss:

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“Earlier this week, Nintendo’s annual report cited Wii U hardware sales as a major factor in the company’s 36.4 billion yen ($387 million) operating loss. In the same document, Nintendo [President] Satoru Iwata promised investors the company will ‘strive to regain ‘Nintendo-like’ profits’ in the current fiscal year.

Selling hardware at a loss is a decidedly un-Nintendo-like practice. Iwata made headlines last October when he first revealed the company would be losing money on each Wii U sold. However, the following month Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime downplayed the significance of the profit shortfall, saying ‘as soon as we get the consumer to buy one piece of software, then that entire transaction becomes profit positive.’”

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According to a recent Forbes article, the specific numbers themselves do not look so good:

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“But things aren’t getting better. In this new first quarter, Nintendo moved only 160,000 Wii Us worldwide, a massive 51.3 percent decrease from the last quarter. In contrast, 210,000 Wiis were sold over the same time period. That’s 160,000 units sold. Over three months. Worldwide. With no next-gen competition released yet. That isn’t just bad, it’s terrible, and no “historically slow first quarter” excuses can change that.”

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Despite this, the upcoming line-up is looking pretty good, with all of Nintendo’s usual staples; Mario Kart 8, Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, Super Smash Bros., The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD (though a brand new Zelda title would be preferred to a Wind Waker remake, but then again, Wind Waker was one of the best installments in the franchise in this humble author’s opinion, so it gets a pass), etc. There is also Pikmin 3 which was just recently released, and other strange and awesome looking games such as The Wonderful 101 from Platinum Games.

So, in order to boost morale, let’s look over some of the more prominent examples in detail, with a short list of 5 of the most anticipated and upcoming Wii-U titles:

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5. Super Mario 3D World

This looks surprisingly interesting for what basically amounts to another standard Mario title. The co-op is still probably one of the most infuriating things to do on the system. Why exactly is it called “3D” though? Super Mario Galaxy had people moving spherically, in space of all places, so merely changing a little perspective here and there doesn’t seem all that significant.

4. The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker HD

As stated previously, Wind Waker was probably one of the better Zelda games. Unfortunately, not only was it a risky and creative new direction, which always garners loads of criticism, but it debuted on the Nintendo Gamecube of all things, which did not do so well.

Anyways, it’s awesome that it’s coming back. Though a brand new Zelda title would probably be preferred, this should hold people over for a while.

3. Super Smash Bros.

The fact that there won’t be any story mode or major cutscenes seems like good news, honestly. The Sub Space Emissary was a massive waste of time, dull, repetitive, and only existed as a means of easily/quickly unlocking all of the characters. All of the new characters announced thus far seem genuinely interesting as well.

Also; the Wii Fit Trainer is pretty hot, which is worrying considering that she’s basically a walking mannequin, and thus implies that any affection for her/it equates to suffering from Agalmatophilia.

Also; she is a walking mannequin! “Objectifying” women in games does not get any more literal than this! Where’s all the false and misguided outrage over this? Then again, she has yoga pants, so who cares?

2. Mario Kart 8

The whole car-transforming-hover-car thing looks pretty awesome, as well as all of the twisting, turning, and upside down action going on. I just hope this game has a good ratio of retro levels to new levels. The retro levels tend to be very flat and boring. Either way, it looks neat and addicting as usual.

It’s also really nice to see all of these newer titles looking to push the graphical capabilities of the console. The original Wii was certainly lacking as far as titles pushing the “visual envelope.” As long as the screen is filled with colors and stars, all is well.

1. The Wonderful 101

Now this game looks like something special. It’s like the Power Rangers game that never was, should have been, and is now going to be. This looks like Viewtiful Joe on steroids.

The blatantly cheesy and hilariously racial stereotypes are pretty awesome as well. I half expected Wonder Black to have a bucket of chicken, but instead the green pudgy one got it instead. Maybe he stole it from t-… This probably isn’t the best line of thought to go with…

Also; the carrier thing is called the “Virgin Victory?” That’s so awesome it’s not even funny.

[Note – At 5:58] Wonder Red: “-It’s a trap!” – (Ackbar would be proud.)

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