It toppled Atari. It went head to head with SEGA for years to come out the victor. Even during the slow times, it was still in the black. Then Nintendo took control of the home console market again with record sales from the Wii. But eventually being on top means you have to fall. March 31st, 2012 marked the end of Nintendo’s fiscal year where they were forced to announce something that seemed impossible to imagine. They were at a loss.
While many factors contributed to Nintendo losing $ 458 ,000,000 during the past year while sales were in the $7,990,000,000 range, the main two being looked upon are the lack of software and the gigantic price drop from the 3DS.
With a library of over 1200 games, one would think the Wii would have carried enough momentum to continue high sales. Unfortunately, 2011 marked a lackluster year for new Wii releases. With only The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword to be both a commercial and critical success releasing in late 2011, owners of the system didn’t flock to other critical darlings such as Xenoblade or The Last Story like Nintendo would have hoped.
This could speak strongly to the hardcore gaming audience already having written off Nintendo for forgetting them with a lack of big core titles when the system initially launched. With the Wii U on its way, there is a drastic drop off in titles being promoted for the Wii.
While the 3DS price drop proved to be successful in getting the system selling and pushing software as well, it did so at a loss with Nintendo effectively losing money with every unit sold. Between attach rate and decreased production costs, Nintendo hopes to turn a profit on the 3DS over the coming year. Nintendo continue pushes new titles coming for the 3DS including their core franchises and has already announced New Super Mario Bros. 2 and Animal Crossing for the 3DS later this year.
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