Wii Cuts Deeply into HD Lead; Will 360 and PS3 Lose Grip on 3rd Party Exclusives?


US - Nintendo continued its console dominance with a shocking sales total of 2.04 million systems sold in November. At the same time, the Wii made major gains against the combined force of HD systems 360 and PS3.

After a full year on sale in November 2007, it appeared the HD systems would fend off the sensational sales of the Wii with landmark sales of their own.

As both the 360 and the PS3 shared an extremely common library outside of several marquis exclusives, one could observe the strategy of 3rd parties favoring the higher-powered systems with multi-platform hardcore titles while pushing sub-standard shovelware onto the Wii audience.

And you could see why, too. The audience for the HD systems is clearly an older set than what many presume the Mario Kart audience is, and most 3rd parties are still marketing primarily to the older group.

Beyond that, the combined total of the 360 and PS3 in the US outpaced the Wii by almost five and half million as late as March of this year (60% market share). With the difference in audience, HD system's sales lead, and more viable options for after-the-purchase revenue streams (DLC), 3rd parties really haven't had a choice.

This month does not erase everything, but it certainly will raise the eyebrows of 3rd parties that haven't yet taken the Wii audience seriously. In the past eight months the Wii has lowered the HD lead by two-and-a-quarter million units, a million of that in the last month alone. How 3rd parties respond to that, or if they do at all, remains to be seen.

Questions for consumption down below.
(click to enlarge)

Questions for Consumption
1. Will Wii LTD ever pass the combined total of the HD systems in the US? When? Does it matter?

2. Will Japanese 3rd party exclusives like Monster Hunter 3 and Dragon Quest X significantly alter the race in the United States?

3. Wii Western Publishers see the significant Japanese exclusives and return volley with their own?

4. Will the certain addition of jRPG-enthusiasts from MH3 and DQX mean even more jRPGs for the Wii?

5. Considering the current Western 3rd party struggles on the Wii as well as the acknowledged difference in audience, is the Wii a viable option for 3rd parties to publish traditional harder-core games?



DarkLord said...

1. Yes - it seems so. 2009 is my guess. Looks like it would matter (Wii LineUp 2009 is getting better an better) - but can say for sure?
2. Well, it will work in Japan, but in the US? Well a bit of course, but not significantly.
3. We can just hope - but they shouldn't forget the 360...
4. Yes - I'm positive about that.
5. It should be. Hotd:overkill, Mad World, The conduit,... I will love these games and I want more Shooter and Shooter-like games for the Wii. RE4 rocks and there should be more games like that!

Anonymous said...

The Conduit shows that 3rd parties aren't even trying. There are zero AAA efforts on the Wii from them, the closest being World at War.

3rd parties need to bring their A game if they are going to compete in the land that Mario built.

chart said...

Can anybody see the google ads on this page? I think it might be the computer on but I can't tell.

David Macphail said...

I don't think the Nintendo Wii is a viable platform for the TOP third party developers. Games such as Grand Theft Auto, Final Fantasy (XIII, that is), Assasin's Creed, Metal Gear Solid, Bioshock and Far Cry just wouldn't be possible on the Wii and those are the games that really matter to developers, they're the one's that bring in the money.

Nintendo have never had the third party support that Sony enjoy and they never will (At least with the Wii). Every generation, it's been Nintendo's own first - party games they've had to rely on to spur hardware sales. So it's a good thing Nintendo's first party games are so good. Don't expect Ubisoft to announce a Wii version of Assasin's Creed 2 or Rockstar to announce GTA: V as a Wii exclusive anytime soon...............

Anonymous said...


Sony has got to be wondering what went wrong. I know they're doing better overseas but these numbers must be keeping Sony up at night.

Nintendo has absolutely nothing to worry about. Even though the system has NOTHING for the hardcore gamer it doesn't matter. The Wii is just printing money at this point.

Sony's only hope for the next generation is that both the 360 and the next Nintendo system (or will they just ride out the Wii for 10 to 15 years?) both have Blu-ray drives. Then they can start making some of that money back.

Sony has NO chance of coming back this generation. No chance. Not even the mighty Uncharted 2, Gran Turismo 5, God of War III or ANY game can get them back in this race.

Maybe PS4 will fare better.

Anonymous said...

Dude... Look at the ps2 for example... the damn thing still sells.... (over 140 million sold worldwide) you know the ps3 sales will increase... problem is we gotta be patient.

but guess what... I don't give a fuck about everyone else..i'm enjoying the ps3 right now... and EVERY DAMN FEATURE!!!

woooooooooo weeeeeeeeeee

David Macphail said...

For the reatrd that said Sony had no chance getting back into the console race this gen, you need to take a look at where the market is now, do some serious research and stop freaking embarassing yourself you moron!

The Xbox 360 and the Nintendo Wii have hit their lowest - possible price point to the consumer. The price of the Wii60 is so low now that ANYONE can afford one. What this means is, for the rst of those consoles lifecycles they have to rely on good games to spur hardware sales, a price cut at this point would not make any difference.

Then look at the PS3 you freaking idiot, it costs WAY too much for the average consumer, so a price cut on the PS3 would cause a sales explosion. By making idiot statements like that you have proved you know nothing about the videogame industy or even videogames in general.

Nintendo will do just fine with their games, however Microsoft are the company that are looking into the abyss at the moment, their sub - par exclusives such as Gears Of War 2 and Fable 2 were not good enough to shift hardware units (Which is why Microsoft were FORCED to cut the price on the console in September). Then there's the fact that the 360 has no games coming out for it next year and the ever - present faulty hardware fiasco.

The 360 is cheaper than the Wii, so why does the Wii outsell it some 5 - to - 1??? Because the Wii's games warrant the price tag, the 360's aren't NEARLY good enough to.

This generation has already boiled down to just Sony and Nintendo, once the PS3 hit's the sub - £200 price point the PS3 is more than capable of hitting the 200 million mark in sales, based of the quality of it's games (Which Microsoft simply don't have). Then it just depends on wether Nintendo's Wii has the legs to outlast the PS3 or not (Remember, the PS2's amazing line - up of games has kept it selling for over 8 years, the PS3 could easily stretch out to 10 or even 12).

Microsoft's 360 has hit the sweet point in price but isn't selling nearly as good as it should, basically microsoft have epically lost this generation AGAIN.

JJS said...

David: "The Xbox 360 and the Nintendo Wii have hit their lowest - possible price point to the consumer. The price of the Wii60 is so low now that ANYONE can afford one. What this means is, for the rst of those consoles lifecycles they have to rely on good games to spur hardware sales, a price cut at this point would not make any difference."

Did I just imagine all the sales increases from consoles that dropped to 200, 180, 150, 130, 100? Wii is still more expensive than any previous Nintendo console ever has been.

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