Activision disappointed with Wii U launch

CEO Robert Kotick says slow launch of latest Nintendo platform is "something we are concerned about."

Activision is not ecstatic about the Wii U launch. In a post-earnings financial call today, company CEO Robert Kotick said Activision is "somewhat disappointed" with the platform's launch. The console has sold 3 million units worldwide to date.

Kotick's comments came in response to a question concerning the sales potential for Activision's Skylanders series on the Wii U. He said that because the Skylanders series is aimed at children 6 to 11, the lackluster launch is "something we are concerned about."

Activision announced today that it has sold more than 100 million Skylanders toys, with the entire franchise having generated more than $1 billion worldwide. The company also revealed Skylanders: Swap Force this week, a third entry in the series due out this fall.

Though Activision was not cheering about the Wii U today, it had other reasons to be happy. The company posted record revenue and profit for the full year ended December 31.

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.

Discussion

385 comments
goldensunfan
goldensunfan

3DS had a less than stellar launch too. But after a price cut and 2 mario games in the form of Super Mario 3D land and Mario Kart 7 the 3DS quickly doubled the original DS's sales in the same span of time on the market.

All these people talking doom and gloom for Nintendo and the WiiU seem to completely overlook the competition. The WiiU has been out for what almost 3 months now and has sold 3 million units world wide. What is Vita's excuse? Vita has been out for a little over a year and a half now and only recently just hit 4 million. Kind of puts things in perspective doesn't it? WiiU will do fine once the games come out for it.

Monster Hunter, Bayonetta 2, Windwaker HD etc. And Nintendo said more 3rd party games would be announced during E3. Nintendo has faced scorn and "Nintendo will end up like Sega Dreamcast" mutterings before and has weathered the storm of cynicism to go on and be quite successful. I need only to point again to the 3DS and how everyone seemed to think it would fail. The Wii was an unprecedented success selling over 99 million systems worldwide. When the games come so to will the sales.

philMcCrevis
philMcCrevis

you really have to admit that Nintendo botched the Wii U launch.  obviously they were hussling for a holiday sales release and let it go to market without much software support.  I've seen the thing demod and its a nifty system but its merely playing catchup with rest of the hardware platforms - PS3 Xbox.  The thing that is scary for Nintendo is that next gen hardware is coming soon which will honestly leave Nintendo scrambling for developers and consumers.  Mario in HD isn't worth the price of admission

Itzdish30
Itzdish30

People said the same shit about the 3ds when it launched. Trust me when the games get here so will the sales. Nintendo isn't going anywhere despite what the trolls say. if any of you think the new ps3 and Xbox consoles are going to do much better and have tons of awesome games in the first year of launch, you're smoking that good shit.

forever_blank
forever_blank

The Wii tab died a long time ago on Gamespot

dangermouse2k
dangermouse2k

It's rather revolting that when you click the Gamespot's  WiiU page this article is non-existent. News is News. Let the reader decided if it's good or bad. Consumers should be aware of the pros AND THE CONS of a product.

grbolivar
grbolivar

Feb 20th, 2013 6PM EST: R.I.P. Nintendo! (and Micro$oft). Hail Sony!

TheWatcher000
TheWatcher000

id Really needs to come out with Super Turbo Bobby Kotick Puncher 3.

Where we get to use the Kinect, Move, or Wii-U Pad Controller to Punch The Actual Bobby Kotick, with Real Household Items and Garage Tools, Like A Toaster, End Table, Or Sledghammer.

BamaGoatt
BamaGoatt

Lol is it me or does this guy sound greedy we made a profit but it could have been better with a better selling WiiU. What a crybaby!

DeViLzzz
DeViLzzz

Hey Activision I could care less what you say.  I have enjoyed the Wii U in my household and if they never release another game for it well it won't matter to me as there are enough decent titles on it that I can play that are Wii U and it also plays Wii games.

hatieshorrer
hatieshorrer

I know hes the president of the largest game company in North America and possibly the world but this idiot also predicted the Wii would be $129.99 by 2009.  Why dose anyone take this guy seriously.

so_hai
so_hai

We'll have to launch a kickstarter fund to buy Activision the world's biggest pacifier and box of extra-soft tissues.

lorider25
lorider25

The news keeps getting worse and worse for Nintendo.

Ganados0
Ganados0

What the hell did they expect?

Black Ops 2 on Wii U was out of the blue.


TTDog
TTDog

Join a long line of people Activision... You'll find Nintendo at the front of it.

Leeric420
Leeric420

Not Surprised at all, you release a console with specs that are going to be blown apart by xbox and sonys new console. Who the hell is making these decisions at Nintendo? Hell i know more people who still have and play their N64 than the Wii U...

HyabusaRyu
HyabusaRyu

i think they're more concerned about blops 2 wiiU sales :P

osxgp
osxgp

Nintendo seems to be repeating what the Sega Dreamcast did: bringing out a new console with bigger and better things to follow. Nintendo sold an insane amount of Wii consoles... However, they failed to sell software; much less get 3rd party support. Most people bought the Wii because it came with Wii Sports and never purchased a game beyond that. I'm sure other companies are concerned as well before committing to developing games for the Wii U.

Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

Face it guys.  The Wii U is just another Wii - no third party support.  Nintendo won't weather the storm this time though.

tommy_boy9999
tommy_boy9999

Eddie you are such a Hack bro.   Every week its negative article this or that.  Talk about CNET getting in trouble fudging Reviews bro.

GreenReuben
GreenReuben

Did they say the same when the ps3 and 360 launched? Because those launches were way worse.

interrasteral7
interrasteral7

This should not matter to Activision, because they have a lot of money from sells of Call of Duty: Black Ops II.

goldensunfan
goldensunfan

The WiiU actually had decent software support. 24 titles at launch and most of which AAA third party titles. Granted a lot of them were ports of games already on other systems but for people who never owned a 360 or PS3; the WiiU versions of these games were still relevant to early WiiU adopters.

And if rumors are to be believed Sony and Microsoft's next systems won't be the hardware powerhouses that the PS3 or 360 were compared to their predecessors. Graphic fidelity has reached a plateau and I think the differences between consoles this gen will be fairly small with slight variances here or there.

Sony is focusing on social integration with PS4 as opposed to pure hardware power, and Microsoft seems to be pursuing integration of Xbox with Windows 8 etc. which has pissed off countless developers including Gabe Newell who cites that Windows 8 does not run steam very well if at all.
 
If you want to talk about developers for WiiU, WiiU is getting games like Bayonetta 2, Monster Hunter, and Nintendo signed a partnership with Unity which means over 1 million indie developers will have access to the WiiU.

BamaGoatt
BamaGoatt

@hatieshorrer I bought my Wii for $129.99 in 2010 he was close to right.. Even got a free game with it sucky fling smash got it for the wii mote though traded the game in .

Hurvl
Hurvl

@Strider8009 The enemy of my enemy is my friend. It's always nice that people can overcome differences by choosing to hate on the same subject.

hatieshorrer
hatieshorrer

@ABEzilla116  

I dont think Nintendo is waiting for third party developers.  I think Nintendo is happy knowing most of the people buying a Wii U will do so for Nintendo games that make Nintendo more money.  How do you convince people to buy Wii U a third party game on Wii U when that same game is on PS3 and X360 and most people already have one of the two.

No I think Nintendo planed on the Wii U sales to start slow the low manufacturing numbers would suggest that.

goldensunfan
goldensunfan

@Leeric420 And according to wall street investors Sony is focusing on social integration as opposed to hardware power.

And Microsoft is working on integrating Windows 8 with the next Xbox. Which by the way Windows 8 has pissed off guys like Gabe Newell due to the fact that Windows 8 seems to not support Steam very well.

The idea that Sony and Microsoft's next consoles are going to be leaps and bounds ahead of what we have now is absurd. We have reached a plateau in terms of graphics fidelity, we may see a slight boost but nothing like the jump from PS2 to PS3 or Xbox to 360. Game development costs will continue to rise and developers will not develop a game beyond 1080p native resolution because its simply too costly. Even with Sony touting 4K as the next big thing just think how expensive it would be to develop a game for 4k. At the most you can hope for a chip that up-scales games to that resolution.

Just look at the number of studios that closed their doors over the past two years. And then try to justify the argument that more powerful hardware is what this gen will be all about. Every time hardware is increased so too do development costs.


luigidude77
luigidude77

@Leeric420 its not all about the specs you know, you can have an amazing game with the crappiest graphics and stuff, think minecraft--> an immensely popular game. its more about the content most of the time than the graphics capabilities, yeah its nice to have spiffy graphics but i would rather play a game with an amazing storyline with good music and play-style with crappy graphics than have amazing graphics and a crappy storyline and play-style/music

goldensunfan
goldensunfan

@osxgp I doubt that Wii Sports was the sole reason people bought a Wii. Wii Sports was a pack in that appealed to the non gamers. It was games like Smash Bros, Zelda, Mario, Metroid, that a majority of the 'core' audience bought the system for. Here are some facts and figures for you... Naturally Wii sports would be listed at the top because it was packed in with the system. With over 99 million Wii systems of course Wii Sports would have a huge attach rate. But look at the next title... none other than Mario Kart.

Wii

Hardware: 95.85m
Software: 818.46m
Best-selling titles: Wii Sports — 79.60m
Mario Kart Wii — 32.44m
Wii Sports Resort — 30.14m
Wii Play — 28.02m
New Super Mario Bros. Wii — 26.26m

I myself have 22 Wii titles. Of those I have Twilight Princess, Skyward Sword, Smash Bros Brawl, Mario Kart, New Super Mario Bros Wii, Mario Galaxy, Red Steel 2, Goldeneye, MadWorld, Okami, Xenoblade, The Last Story, Metroid Prime Trilogy (3 games in one package) Cod WaW, CoD BOps, Tomb Raider, Tomb Raider Underworld and when it comes out I will be picking up Pandora's Tower.

wcwj26
wcwj26

 @osxgp NO,NO,NO..... Wii sold the MOST software! 900m units in fact. Xbox a little under 800m and Sony just under 600m.

With 98m Wii's sold that works out at roughly 8.4 games per Wii. Hell, Mario Kart Wii sold more than ALL the Halo's on 360 PUT TOGETHER!

Maybe you should should get your facts straight before makijg up BS and listening to the trolls!

hatieshorrer
hatieshorrer

@osxgp  

Thats funny because Wii owners are averaging as many games as PS3 owners.

nintendoboy16
nintendoboy16

@osxgp No, if they were repeating what SEGA Dreamcast did, they would have been bleeding money out the ass with their other consoles.

alrepairs
alrepairs

@Thanatos2k Yeah,

In order for you to tackle the problem, you must first acknowledge it.

Wii U has POS marketing.

hatieshorrer
hatieshorrer

@Thanatos2k  

Is that why Platinum games is making Bayonetta 2, and MistWalker and Monolith have also announced they are making Wii U games.

TTDog
TTDog

@hatieshorrerYou'll find that this is because Nintendo is throwing money at them by the trolley load. Nintendo has realised they need 3rd party support and without "incentives" companies aren't going to give that to them.

Leeric420
Leeric420

@hatieshorrer @Thanatos2k Until the games come out, or we have seen the games in action you can speculate all you want, but the truth is, if the WiiU fails before they dump money into those games, they could pull them.

vironydc
vironydc

 @PSYCHOV3N0M @hatieshorrer That will never happen as Nintendo is funding and publishing Bayonetta 2. As such, it will remain exclusive. The devs tried to get others to pick it up and no one but Nintendo did. Even Sega told them to approach Nintendo as they were more likely to help them.

hatieshorrer
hatieshorrer

@TTDog @hatieshorrer  

Omg third party companies are more likely to make exclusives on consoles whos companies pay them.  That sounds like business as usually.

 It doesnt say anything good or bad sense Sony and Microsoft do the same.

TTDog
TTDog

@hatieshorrer Keep in mind that Mistwalker made exclusive Xbox 360 games right up to the point Microsoft stopped funding them.

goldensunfan
goldensunfan

@Leeric420@hatieshorrer@Thanatos2kYou do realize that Nintendo are the ones funding the development of Bayonetta 2 right? They also are funding Wonderful 101. Not to mention Monolith soft the creators of Xenoblade are owned by Nintendo and are making the new Xeno title.

http://www.geeky-gadgets.com/bayonetta-2-wonderful-101-are-nintendo-funded-will-remain-wii-u-exclusives-02-10-2013/

Also a recent listing on gamestop reveals Watchdogs available for pre-order for WiiU. Ubisoft have been adamant about supporting WiiU. They already gave WiiU owners Zombi U so its not too hard to believe.

http://www.nintendolife.com/news/2013/02/gamestop_lists_watch_dogs_wii_u_for_preorder