Nintendo has announced it’s fiscal year 2014 results, and they are not good. The company is reporting a 46,425 billion yen ($456.4 million) operating loss for the year. During the first three months of 2014, the last quarter of the fiscal year, Nintendo sold 590,000 3DS units, and 310,000 Wii U units. 3DS lifetime sales now sit at a healthy 43 million units, while the Wii U has sold just over 6 million units in it’s year and a half lifetime.
The Wii U had a “negative impact” on Nintendo’s profits. In it’s announcement, Nintendo wrote “With respect to “Wii U,” while five key first-party titles, such as “Super Mario 3D World,” “New Super Mario Bros. U” and “New Super Luigi U” became million-seller titles, the “Wii U” business as a whole showed slow growth. The global sales of the “Wii U” hardware and software reached only 2.72 million and 18.86 million units respectively.”
Nintendo is only forecasting to sell 3.6 million Wii U units in the next fiscal year, a stark contrast from the 12 million they expected to sell last fiscal year. The 3DS also missed it’s projected sales mark, though it sold an extremely respectable 12.24 million units. On the software side, the Wii U sold 18.86 million units, and the 3DS sold 67.89 million units worldwide.
To stimulate sales, Nintendo plans on release “key titles” throughout the year to continue to make robust sales off of the 3DS platform. Nintendo admits they are facing large challenges with the Wii U, but plans to stimulate sales in many ways. They will add Nintendo DS games to the Wii U virtual console, and provide software that will take advantage of the Wii U gamepad and it’s NCF reader which Nintendo calls the Wii U’s “most important differentiator.”
This reporter’s opinion: Boy, this is not good. Nintendo has to find something to generate sales for the Wii U, and it needs to come now. They in a bad place with their console, and need to generate buzz for it. On the other hand, the 3DS is doing great even with the massive rise in mobile games. I don’t honestly see how this news can come without Satoru Iwata stepping down as Nintendo CEO. His leadership, while it did lead the company to strong sales in the last generation, has been abysmal for this generation. While I wish he wouldn’t have to step down, I don’t see how he could keep the job after this sort of news.
by, Bobby Marquardt