Wii is successful outside first-party hits

Satoru Iwata, current president and CEO of Nintendo, gave a briefing to investors in Japan on January 29th, and had a lot to say about the future of Nintendo.  Among those was his response to allegations that the Nintendo Wii isn’t a console friendly for third party developers, at least not to the extent that the PS3 and Xbox 360 have been.  His initial remarks on this issue explained that the Wii has required developers to learn a new language in making games because of the "revolutionary controls".  According to Iwata, this is what caused third party developers to shy away from the Wii initially.

However, Iwata followed this information with some numbers and a few charts, two of which are particularly interesting.  First, Iwata showed the graph below which shows that while there may have been more third party games available for the Wii (753) according to NPD data, PS3 and Xbox 360 third party game sales were, on average, higher than those of third party games for the Wii.  However, once subtracting the effect of the blockbuster third party hit for both PS3 and Xbox 360, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, the chart above shows that the Wii actually edges out in front of its competition as far as third party developed games are concerned.(Note: You may notice that subtracting MW2 from the sales decreased the number of titles for PS3 and Xbox 360 by 3 titles, not just one.  This is because the NPD data counts the special editions of the game as seperate titles entirely.)

wii sales chart

There has been no real debate regarding the Wii’s dominance in total video game sales overall, largely because of the wild success of what Iwata calls the "ten million trio" (Wii Sports Resort, Wii Fit Plus, and New Super Mario Bros. Wii). However, this new data shows that even aside from this first party triumph, the Wii is still doing quite well in the world of third party software.  That is, at least, if Soap had never returned for duty.



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Author: Dan Crabtree View all posts by
Dan is Managing Editor for GamerNode and a freelance gaming writer. His dog is pretty great. Check him out on Twitter @DanRCrabtree.

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