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Wii U Surge Due to Disappointment Over PS4 and Xbox One?

Is the Wii U's recent popularity surge due entirely to the system's own merits, or is it because of another influence?

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Wii U sales are on the upswing.

The system is selling very well in Japan and in the US in the month of June, sales skyrocketed 233 percent (as compared to June 2013). The release of Mario Kart 8 has certainly helped, but are there other factors at play?

The next-gen war is just that: A war. It's a competition. These consoles are competing against each for video game market share, despite the fact that the intended demographics are a little different. The Wii U's audience simply is not exactly the same as the audience for Sony and Microsoft. That doesn't mean Wii U is a "kiddie" system; it just means the demographic is a little different.

The bottom line is that when one product surges, we need to look at the competition.

 

Is anybody wildly impressed with the PS4 and Xbox One right now?

If one puts his or her finger on the pulse of gamer nation, the answer becomes clear. While I'm sure everyone has high hopes for both systems, and although we've already seen glimpses of true "next-gen" brilliance, neither system has really shown off its full potential. That could take some time, of course, but let's not forget that several key exclusive titles for each console have fallen a little shy of expectations.

Killzone: Shadow Fall really wasn't the killer AAA exclusive Sony needed for the PS4 launch; it ended up dragging down 7s and a few 8s, and that's really not what we wanted. Dead Rising 3 didn't cut the mustard, either, and Ryse: Son of Rome was a major disappointment, according to most critics. inFamous: Second Son was a good game but again, the majority agree that it's not indicative of full "next-gen" power. Titanfall is probably the closest we've seen to a killer app for the new consoles, but that game has plenty of detractors.

The point is, as of now, is there any super compelling reason to own or purchase the PS4 or Xbox One?

And maybe the Wii U has benefited greatly

I wouldn't say there's any pressing need to own the Wii U now, either, but it's cheaper, and Nintendo had a solid E3. I wouldn't say the recent sales surge is due entirely to Mario Kart 8 and the unveiling of Hyrule Warriors, but these games certainly had an impact. The majority of that impact, however, may be due to a general "ho-hum" attitude concerning the competition. The biggest game of 2014 so far for the PS4 is The Last Of Us: Remastered, which is, of course, a gussied-up PS3 game. And unless you're into shooters, Xbox One doesn't have anything, either.

Sure, we'll see games like Sunset OverdriveFable LegendsDriveclub and LittleBigPlanet 3 in the fall. But the big-time heavy hitters like Uncharted 4: Among Thieves won't come out until 2015, and there have been several delays of high-profile multiplatform titles, too. In such an atmosphere, the Wii U - which is decidedly different from the competition - can gain traction. Gamers might want to try a little something new; the legendary Nintendo brand might become more appealing in their eyes.

Is the Wii U selling based on its merits alone? No. If the PS4 and Xbox One were pushing out the amazing cutting-edge next-gen games at a rapid clip, I seriously doubt we would've seen such a surge. We would've seen an increase, but nothing like this. That's where I come out.

Originally Published Jul. 18th 2014

Featured Columnist

A gaming journalism veteran of 14 years, a confirmed gamer for over 30 years, and a lover of fine literature and ridiculously sweet desserts.



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Comments
  • 1
    Ha Ha Ha Ha 5 months ago
    Thanks for the big laugh.
    Just another Nintendo fanboy's imaginary opinion. There's no facts used to prove his point and the facts pretty much contradicts his view which is the reason why he can't use it.
  • 1
    Dbutt 5 months ago
    This site has some crazy bad formatting issues.
  • 1
    The Truth_8288 5 months ago
    There isn't any super compelling reason to own or purchase the Wiiu either but your pro Nintendo propaganda is good for a laugh at least.
  • 1
    kev_3603 5 months ago
    I don't understand, why are people saying Wii U sales increase came at expense of something else? PS4/XB1 sales rose a lot during June. PS4 went up like 70k in US and XB1 went up like 100k I think.
  • 1
    kev_3603 5 months ago
    Hyrule Warriors was revealed last year not in June. Mario Kart 8 and better marketing are entirely the reasons why Wii U sales are up. XB1 and PS4 sales are up since June too, this has nothing to do with new console indifference. Just X system got a big system selling title that traditionally has long legs
  • 1
    The number game 5 months ago
    If your going to compare different hardware, percentage pretty much means nothing unless you compare it between the different hardware, not the same hardware.

    Your pretty much saying:
    (numbers are made up to explain percentage means nothing in these scenario)

    Wii U last month sales: 1
    Wii U this month sales: 3
    Wii U increase of sales: 200%

    PS4 or Xbox One last month sales: 1 million
    PS4 or Xbox One this month sales: 1 million
    PS4 or Xbox One increase of sales: 0%

    Wow, Nintendo won by 200%, but ignores that the that the sales difference increase by 2 million.

    And if they did so much well while others are falling, why haven't they won the NPD hardware or software sales? Both consoles seem to even have better sales than last month and you call that falling? And even with Wii U's boost from Mario Cart, it still came in third.
    Last edited 5 months ago
  • 60
    Fathoms_4209 5 months ago
    Featured Columnist
    The stats are entirely irrelevant. You're trying to explain something that has nothing to do with the theory in question.

    A sales increase is a sales increase. A 233% increase is a 233% increase. There's no point in saying the Wii U sales were 1 or 3 or something, because obviously, that's not remotely close to accurate.

    Wii U sales rose steeply, regardless of how many it sold previously, and how many units the competition sold. The question is whether or not that rise is due entirely to the Wii U's appeal or to the lack of appeal on the competition's side. That's all.
  • 1
    Frost_9304 5 months ago
    To surge at the expense of something will suggest that your sales rose while the sales of "something" fell.

    Just looking at the PS4/XB1, their sales were also up compared to the month before. So I really don't know what you are saying.
  • 1
    The Truth_8289 5 months ago
    Yep, $0N¥ = lies and overhype that underdelivers.