We already knew that the Wii U was struggling. That was made clear earlier this month when Nintendo slashed its financial forecasts for the current fiscal year and lowered its Wii U sales predictions from the original 9 million unit estimate to just 2.8 million units. But just how bad has it been for Nintendo's new(er) console?
For starters, in the nine month period ending December 31, 2013, Nintendo has managed to sell just 2.41 million consoles. That's it — 2.41 million consoles since April 2013. Comparitively, this number is down on the 3 million consoles sold in the same period a year-ago; what's startling is the fact that we've already seen the release of high-profile titles Pikmin 3, The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker HD, and Super Mario 3D World. If those solid well-established franchies can't move Wii U units, what's to say that a new Super Smash Bros. or Mario Kart will?
To be fair, The Wind Waker HD, Wii Party U, and Super Mario 3D World each sold over a million units since release, but Wii U software sales on the whole only reached 15.96 million units for the nine month period dating back to April 2013.
"The Wii U hardware still has a negative impact on Nintendo’s profits owing mainly to its markdown in the United States and Europe,
and sales of software, which has high profit margins, did not grow sufficiently, leading to a gross profit of 149.2 billion yen," Nintendo said in its earnings report. Nintendo's revenue earnings in the nine-month period ending December 31, 2013 totaled just ¥499.1 billion ($4.8 billion), down 8.1 percent on the year before.
So how does the Wii U rebound? I don't know the answers, I just ask the questions.