Nintendo Boss: “Wii’s Position is Perilous”


Satoru Iwata, CEO of Nintendo, recently made the candid admission that the Wii is experiencing something of a crisis in Japan, with sales and releases the worst they have been in since launch.

His remarks were made to press whilst speaking about the future development of the console markets:

“It’s a fact that the Wii in Japan is now stagnant. It is in the most unhealthy position it has been in since release. The Wii’s sales model was that it was being driven by a few very powerful titles, but from 2008 this no longer worked effectively.”

Observers have long noted that the Wii’s release schedule has been looking extremely barren for some time now, and this confirms that. With mass appeal casual gaming titles apparently thin on the ground, the problems the Wii has with securing more “serious” games are highlighted.

The best title he can think to mention is apparently “Wii Sports Resort” due in June in Japan, July elsewhere.

He also remarks that no price cuts are being considered; without price cuts or blockbuster software, his strategy for Japan is not clear.

He does see the Nintendo DS as a core part of the company’s current and future business:

He explains that global economic conditions have left Nintendo largely unaffected so far:

“After we released the DS, our customer base broadened dramatically, beyond our expectations. From 2006 to 2008, our sales in both Europe and America also grew.”

He sees potential for expanding sales:

“Currently, many DS units are used by multiple people. Rather than it being ‘one per house’, our desired challenge is now to make it ‘one per user’ instead.”

He went on to outline a plan to make DS software and services ubiquitous, expanding the hand-held into being a mobile device rather than just a gaming device, a scheme readily visible in the features of the DSi.

Via J-Cast.

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    Comment by Anonymous
    01:06 11/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    As with many things, you can blame this one on the economy. Casual gamers may grow the market, but they're the first to bail when cash is short on hand. 360 and PS3 gamers are more hardcore, so they're reliable cash flow. That's why Sony and MS keep shoveling out sequels and generic games; for hardcore players it doesn't have to be new and different, it has to be new and familiar. I give props to Nintendo for trying to expand beyond the standard gamer. I'm not a gamer and I want a Wii.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:22 11/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Solution: Monster Hunter 3

    Avatar of Hirohata
    Comment by Hirohata
    01:28 11/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    +1 Definitely getting the Wii when that's released. I need a 3rd gen console sometime this decade...

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:18 11/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    3rd Gen Console?

    So you need an NES, Sega Master System, or Atari 7800?

    Comment by navi410
    01:11 11/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    I remember my friend saying that the Wii is not a gaming machine but a toy. I definitely agree with him. Who wants to play games moving around and waving your hands. If I wanted to do that I'll just go outside and play sports. The Wii controller was said to make you more immerse into the game but I fell it did the opposite. The Wii is great playing with your friend or family but when your alone, late nights dungeon crawling a gamepad is better or a mouse and keyboard.

    Comment by Jo
    21:04 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    OMG! I can't believe how stupid people are. LOL! The Wii sales gone down yeah which is to be expected since they haven't released a great game since christmas. Even then it wasn't that much great games and it's only in Japan the sales have gone down but wait for Wii Sports Resort, Monster Hunter 3 and Dragon Quest X. If you're a real gamer you know how much of a impact those games will have. Besides E3 is coming in less than 2 months and then they will announce what games will be released the second half of the year. If you're a REAL gamer you should know they announce their games only months before release unlike years as they did before.

    If you have a grudge against Nintendo I'm sorry to say you're and idiot. Nintendo created modern gaming and it was because of Nintendo Sony started making gaming consoles.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:53 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Sure you're the only who know that...... I can't wait to see if this will really boost wii "overall" sales back. Especially with many third developer already screaming of their sales. Let us just hope it will happen since if the winner of this console war goes back to Sony it will be boring.

    And Yeah so much for "console only for gaming" moto

    Avatar of Tateha
    Comment by Tate
    02:30 11/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    i can expect another wii music at this years e3.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:41 10/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    One Reason:


    Comment by Anonymous
    16:11 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    This is why computer programmers don't make the best CEO in the world. We just have a fine example of self-defeating prophecy here. Even if someone has a plan to purchase a Wii, he is gonna have second thoughts after hearing the comment from the CE. I hope their R&D department is more competent than this. Maybe rolling out something that is on par with Xbox 360 and PS3. It's sad to see Wii having its product life span cut short by incompetent management and ineffective business strategy.

    Comment by Steve Hester (UK)
    17:02 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Over here, you walk into a Games Store and the Wii Section looks like a kiddie toy department in a Store.

    I won't slate Nintendo for what they've tried to do, but they seem to keep digging a hole and falling into it with their shovelware.

    I haven't even bought the latest gen yet, I'm still a PS2 user (Persona 4 !!!!!), I can't be bothered with Nintendo's kiddie games, the 360 is an unreliable piece of scrap and the PS3 is still too pricey for my liking.

    Comment by shimazaki
    17:11 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Again nintendo is going agaist it's own policy of making a game console only for games, and is going for a mor multimedia stuff, kinda funny, because, nintendo said to sony that the multimedia way, was the grong way into entertaiment.

    looks like sony was always right in the route they choosed for going multimedia before nintendo.

    Avatar of metatron
    Comment by metatron
    21:01 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    then it is proven that casual gaming is indeed a passing "fad" and Nintendo is now trying it's best to get the "hardcore" gamers into the fold...

    Comment by Void
    06:17 13/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    The sales news is really confusing. When you read of the sailed of reach independent console sales thy differ in every article (atleast at N4G) One article speaks that wii and PS3 is doing great in Japan while another says the sales are real low. Don't know who to trust really (except for SG!)

    Comment by loliconNo.2398350
    13:11 12/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    I need more Wii-tan.

    Comment by Iolana
    05:49 21/05/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

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    Comment by Anonymous
    14:15 19/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Okay dumbfuck CEOs. Use what little brains you have if you haven't killed them due to excessive hard drug use due to all the money you USED to have.

    The NES was popular as all FUCK back in the day. Why? THE GAMES WERE GOOD! There were also a lot of them. They only got the second part right and forgot to make them half fun.

    For fuck's sake it is a simple concept. You don't even have to make it hardcore games or anything. All of nintendo's staple games were fairly simple to pick up and play. Hell my grandmother likes mario games(the older 2d ones)

    Avatar of h8GWB
    Comment by H8gwb
    10:34 12/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Analysis: there doesn't seem to be enough people in Japan without a Wii to allow sustained growth, and that these Wiis aren't breaking down plus are covered by warranties longer than 90 days seems to prevent their sales numbers from reaching PS2-like levels.


    Avatar of Zippydsmlee
    Comment by ZippyDSMlee
    12:22 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Its simple demaned has peeked...its time to make real games for gamers or realize you fcked over the WII and made a mistake.....and besides.... its made more money than the PS360 who the hell can it ever be in a crisis?

    In 2 years plug it and bring out a real console/media system!

    Avatar of maxchain
    Comment by maxchain
    12:25 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Wii-tan is so cute it's disgusting. I want to give her a piggyback ride.

    Comment by Jysus Christ
    06:57 11/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    I want to push her buttons.
    That is all

    Avatar of KamiOkurimono
    Comment by KamiOkurimono
    12:46 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    That's a great idea for Wii game!

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:28 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Of course this was going to happen, they have like, four titles that people fap furiously over(Smash Bros., Mario, Metroid, Zelda, feel free to add in more, that's the main four I can think of), and the rest of the games are rudimentary graphics wise and gameplay wise, resting solely on the gimmicky Wiimote. I so deeply regret getting caught in the Wii craze when it was released and shelling out an extra $50 for one, I haven't touched the damn thing in months. Their online capabilities are beyond abysmal, for some fucking reason my PS2, PSP, 360, and PS3 all can connect online, but you would not believe how many error messages fly up when I try to play a Brawl match online, it's absolutely shameful that they released such a subpar system in this day and age.

    They clearly learned nothing from the lackluster Gamecube, Nintendo just needs to go the path of Sega already.

    Avatar of Zippydsmlee
    Comment by ZippyDSMlee
    00:37 11/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    I'll take wiis poor atemp at innovation over the mindless graphical fapping with zero innovation in anything over priced bland under deved games....DO NOT WANT....same goes for party/non gamer casual crap.....

    Avatar of UncleMegamanX
    Comment by Vampire Lord
    13:31 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    No! if Nintendo goes the path of Sega they will end up making a kickass console even far beyond its time and then suddenly drop it and blaming piracy and the lack of interest overseas.

    Of course I am talking about the Saturn and the Dreamcast, both of them were treated like trash outside of Japan because the genius on the american/european marketing didn't have any faith on either Saturn RPGs, Arcade Ports (MvC, KoF), or late releases (Castlevania SotN), who needs them when you have sports games on those? not to mention programming for the Saturn was a little less complicated than the Cell on PS3 and Dreamcast was so easy to program so people made so many homebrew games an applications.

    Yes, I am done...

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:04 11/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Uh, I was more leaning towards the part where Sega bows out of the console race, but if that's what you only think of when someone says go the path of Sega, more power to you, or something.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:37 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)




    Comment by Anonymous
    12:31 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    The Wii's current standing in Japan appears to be similar to the last days of the Atari system. Nintendo should re-organize if they are to keep up with the console wars. I'd recommend less casual games and more hardcore games (Mad World is one of them). Furthermore, Nintendo should lift restrictions on developers to insist having all games done on the Wiimote and instead have them decide the controller that best suits the game - even if it means going to the old Gamecube one or the Virtual Pad.

    Avatar of tomoemami
    Comment by yaku
    11:45 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Meh. Sooner or later the trend needed to calm down. I see this as something positive; it will drive the Nintendo dudes to produce more creative games and not all this mini-game non-sense (they are fun for a while but soon grow tired of them) they keep on spouting.

    Comment by Lowlife187
    11:36 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    HELLO! MARIO? LINK? SAMUS? Why don't they put out some more of these characters and less Wii Sports. These are what gamers want! And make a shooting game that works right, that would help.

    Avatar of Palmtop Tsundere
    Comment by Palmtop Tiger
    12:27 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Why when Madascar 2 and High School Musical games make more money?

    True Nintendo fans who own the Wii are few and far between. The Virtual Console is their consolace.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:14 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    The rise of the PS3 is here, it's true.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:13 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    We all know that in the end Playstation always wins.

    But seriously am not surprised. I bought Wii and although it was a little fun at first you easily get bored of it. I sold after two months. No one has the appetite to always jump up and down to play a game and there weren't much interesting games anyway.

    Avatar of kamanashi
    Comment by Kamanashi
    09:21 11/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    I have mine, but I haven't sold it since I replay Metroid and Zelda every now and then. But my PS3 and 360 are always being played since there are real games on them.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:36 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Sadly that how most wii stories go..

    Avatar of takuya13
    Comment by takuya13
    11:10 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    mm... the wii had a good run.. but personally i think its because the concept behind the wii was too far ahead of its time and taht no other companies could throw out decent games that could adapt to it

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:08 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    It's well known that third party games developed for the Wii have not sold well. Most of the casual buyers who bought the Wii have no idea or care if some 3rd party developer releases a good game. All they look for is games that have "Wii" stamped on it, ie. Wii Fit, Wii Sports, Wii Shovelware...

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:44 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    But... but... Imagine Party Babyz was going to save Nintendo!

    Comment by Anonymous
    15:41 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Its because nintendo wont license any decent games in north America or Europe. They rather release bullshit games like wiicheer,wiimusic and other shovelware instead of games we actually want like fatal frame.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:37 19/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    yeah. I keep looking over seas and seeing some interesting games but here they have all these dumb shit games that look like they were designed for some collage project.
    I was looking forward to Project H.A.M.M.E.R but the canaled it. >:(

    Avatar of Obsidian
    Comment by Obsidian
    11:04 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    I knew it.
    I just knew it.
    Yes. I knew that the Wii would fall down to his. Wow, I'm psychic.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:30 19/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    I love playing the wii but I haven't played a good game since Elebits (one of the release games). I was hoping for a new fun game but all I see is junk. :(

    Its sad. It was fun but when there are no good games then whats the point.

    Comment by Keirnoth
    17:56 11/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Gamers everywhere fucking CALLED this. The Nintendo fanboys raised to the Wii's side and went UR JUST JEALOUS CUZ UR NOT #1.

    No. We just knew the Wii was floating on a marketing strategy that was eventually going to backfire on them as Soccer Mom Sue and their entire family loses interest on their Wii Fit.

    Anecdotal evidence: My workplace has many casual people who are too busy with their worklife to care about video games. They're all classic AMERICAN MOMZ WITH AMERICAN FAMILIEZ and all bought a Wii Fit. They're the type of people who won't put much thought or research into what they're buying - they just give in to the hype of whatever's popular. (see: iPhone, iPod, etc)

    These families I've known bought the Wii Fit months ago. Are they still playing it now?

    Nope. Did they buy any new fun games? Nope.

    Come on Nintendo, you can still go the other route. You still have a huge dedicated audience that wants to play good games.

    Comment by Anonymous
    17:00 23/07/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    dont worry at the last E3 they focoused mostly on acutual games not like in E3 2007 and 2008 when they forgot to mention anything about games that dident start with Wii.

    Avatar of kamanashi
    Comment by Kamanashi
    12:53 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    I knew it would too. It's one of those things that people can enjoyable for only so long before they go back to their PS3s and 360s.

    Comment by asd
    13:08 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    You both knew it because you are both the same.

    Avatar of Narcissist
    Comment by Narcissist
    22:32 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    First X360, now Wii. All according to plan.
    Let us walk towards a bright future of virtual rape and chikans in PS Home!

    Comment by flaskis
    19:32 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    you're not supposed to do a tsukkomi there!

    Crap, I've been watching comedy too much lately ;_;

    Avatar of kamanashi
    Comment by Kamanashi
    09:18 11/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    As long as 360 and PS3 come out in the top 2 spots by the end of this console cycle, I will be fine.

    Avatar of Obsidian
    Comment by Obsidian
    05:50 12/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    You'll be.
    The 360's gaining much more support because of windows. I don't even have doubts about it getting a low product release elsewhere.

    Avatar of Berserkhobo
    Comment by Berserkhobo
    16:05 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    haha lol I got confused at first too

    Avatar of Obsidian
    Comment by Obsidian
    13:38 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    We're not. We just have the same avatar. Confusing at first, really.

    Comment by EroMango
    14:24 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    wat about the possible thought that every family already owns a wii? thats why the market aint growing anymore?

    true fact they havent released any epic games in a while though.... wheres my next zaelda installment!!!

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:48 11/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    The Wii is being seen less as a mainstream console due to its massive piles of crap games, and small amount of good ones. The 360 and PS3 however, have been releasing quality games on a consistent basis and strengthening their position against the wii.

    Comment by treveon edwards
    14:57 11/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    true true.i still have hope for my wii though lol

    Comment by WondrousWizard
    14:41 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Did you read this article? His downfall is only in japan. If you look at the stats, the wii is the most popular of xbox360, ps3 and wii. Wii sold around 50 million in world wide, while xbox360 and ps3 are around 20-30 million. Things doesn't look good for Japan, but with how they are doing in north america, I wouldn't be worried about Nintendo future. For a fact, the system who has been sold the most worldwide is the nintendo DS with around 100 million. This article is just a way to show how the fight between system company is going. Just a fight for domination.

    Avatar of kamanashi
    Comment by Kamanashi
    09:20 11/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    But Wii sales are slowing down here too. My Gamestop can't even sell them anymore since no one wants one. Even the Walmart I hate going to can't sell them.

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:26 23/07/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    don't forget that nintendo actually makes their own games most of which are its best sellers and they make ALL the profit off of them unlike Xbox and PS3.
    also the gamecube (in fact it did terrible) may of not done well but thats all in the past

    Comment by Anonymous
    15:17 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    yes and if this continue either PS3 or Xbox360 will outsold wii in the future.

    I have wii myself and to be honest like everyone said It was fun at first but it got totallly boring in a short time. The question is will you recommend this kind of console to others? NO I WONT - Ironically I'm one of the hardcore gamers that support Nintendo PRE-Wii.

    Right now I'm eyeing either for PS3 or Xbox360. Most likely PS3 though. Haah pretty sad actually.

    Avatar of Wincest
    Comment by Sigh
    08:20 12/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    You don't know shit, the gamecube and N64 were miles better than the Wii. Embaressingly better.

    Avatar of Wincest
    Comment by Sigh
    08:19 12/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Nintendo dug their own grave, when they couldn't be bothered to up grade the graphics. It was only a matter of time before this happened, neglecting their core market, not a good strategy.

    Comment by Anonymous
    15:47 10/04/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    I knew it since years now, I knew it when N64, came out, I knew it when Game cube came out, and I knew it when the wii came out. SAME OLD CHILDISH STUPID GAMES OVER AND OVER AGAIN. Come on, anyone can see that. I don't understand why peolple keeps spending money in a company that will let you down in less than a year for sure. What happened with nintendo's supernes era, when wave after wave of quality (along with variety)of games were released?

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