Wii U Name “Abysmal,” Reason Behind Poor Sales, Says Former Nintendo Employee

GR: Dan Adelman, the former Nintendo employee who just recently parted ways with the company, shared his thoughts on the Big N's latest home console and the reason behind its less-than-stellar performance.

The story is too old to be commented.
DanielGearSolid1446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

I agree it could be one reason, it adds unnecessary confusion, I think the same thing happened wit the Vita...

Ppl are still wondering when the Psp 2 is coming out

iamnsuperman1446d ago

No the Vita is unpopular not because of its name but because of the type of market it went after. The names may be stupid but people aren't waiting for a 2 version. Consumers are not that brain dead. People are used to new products with weird PR names attached

DanielGearSolid1446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

Well in my experiences, parents & kids have been asking for the Psp2. Even have one customer that calls his Vita a Psp

I repair game consoles, so customers always talk games with me. I estimate less than 5% knew wat a Vita was b4 I told them

I'm not sure how you can say No with such confidence... It's not like you've conducted any research on the subject

darthv721446d ago

Wii-U does seem like it would throw people off but they wanted to have some prior connection to the success of the Wii. Its been like that since the NES and its followup the SNES.

The first name is the brand/company and the second being the platform. With sony and the success of the "playstation" brand, its no surprise that all of their platforms continue that trend with branding then platform name or number.

Sega, nintendo and Atari are the only ones that use their name AS the brand. Atari 2600, 5200, 7800. Sega Genesis, Saturn, Dreamcast. Nintendo NES, SNES, N64.

ShinMaster1446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

Nintendo dropped support for the Wii in its last 2 or so years at the end of its lifespan. This made it so the casual gamers that were attached to the Wii name went elsewhere for their entertainment, and it made it so any momentum Nintendo would have had going into the Wii U was dead.

You can't bet on casual audiences. They're like nomads. They go from one trend to the next. Nintendo got lucky with the Wii. They had the right novelty at the right time and marketed it to the right people.
Without the casuals, the Wii U is exactly how it would normally sell. Just look at the Gamecube(22m total) and to a certain extent, the N64(33m total).

Also, naming it something a lot better would have helped solve this problem.
They could have at least named it the "Wii 2" if they wanted to recapture the Wii audience.

rainslacker1446d ago

After the Wii U first released, I witnessed first hand on two occasions people who were confused by it. One who thought Wii U games would work on the Wii, and another who didn't realize it was an entirely new system.

Most people don't keep up on stuff, but I honestly doubt that the naming confusion is causing a hugely significant drop in sales this long after release. Anyone who was confused before has likely become informed by now.

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 1446d ago
colonel1791446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

The Wii U name was a much bigger mistake than the PS Vita. Also, Sony might have disqualified PSP 2 because 1. It might not look good (logo, etc), and 2. Because it could have cause a little bit of confusion with the PS2.

Wii U is a horrible name. The whole idea of the 'Wii' was that it meant "together". However, Nintendo did the only logical thing since they wanted to continue the success of the Wii. They must have thought that by keeping the name, people would still be interested. That's why the Nintendo 3DS didn't get rid of the Nintendo DS brand.

With the Wii U though, it was a huge mistake. One that started with the horrible reveal. After having so many peripherals for the Wii, Nintendo's decision of revealing just the controller was awful. Obviously people was going to get confused. The name Wii U also didn't fit, since the console is another concept entirely from the Wii. People that bought the Wii (mothers, sisters, grandparents and other people that had never played video games before) had it only to have fun and they just played a couple games. The Wii U is more of a traditional console, targeted more to gamers than to casuals.

The Wii U being a more traditional console is also a mistake from Nintendo, not because is a traditional console, but since it is, it should have had more power. They were trying to get back the hardcore gamer, but those are the people that focuses on RAM, graphics, online, etc. and Nintendo does not have that.

Nintendo is in a difficult position. The Wii U is not casual enough like the Wii to target casuals, but it is also not "hardcore" enough to target old-time gamers.

Justindark1446d ago

I don't focus on graphics, Ram or online... i focus on game play.

zeuanimals1446d ago

Sure, kids and parents might be asking you about the PSP2 but it's likely they haven't even heard of the PS Vita because of Sony's reluctance on advertising it. If Sony actually advertises the thing, they could get some sales.

colonel1791446d ago

Don't count on that. With the PS4 success, they will focus entirely on it.

SilentNegotiator1446d ago

People aren't buying Vita because it doesn't have all that much going for it.

strangeaeon1446d ago

I agree, they should have just come up with a new name, nearly anything would have been better than Wii U, it just didnt sound new.

greenlantern28141446d ago

I agree the Wii U name confuses some, mostly casual gamers who don't go online to find video game news. I still to this day answer the same questions about Nintendo.
1) isn't Nintendo releasing a new console to?
2) why is that tablet controller for the Wii so much money?
IMO the biggest problem for Nintendo is lack of advertising. And the Nintendo directs don't help because only people looking for Nintendo news will see them.
Off topic I personally have a great time with my Wii U

+ Show (3) more repliesLast reply 1446d ago
-Foxtrot1446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

I think we all knew that the second it was revealed. Even if it was called "The Nintendo U" then it would of been better.

I really think they should of had two bundles at launch, one with the gamepad and one with a pro controller (a gamecube styled one for Smash Bros U in the future). They could of seen then which one sold more.

I mean if I could of bought my Wii U without the gamepad but with a pro controller at a lower price then I would of bought one a year ago

Silly decisions in my opinion, it's why Iwata needs to be demoted.

iamnsuperman1446d ago

But the gamepad was the big sell. Nintendo needed to sell it that way since they didn't blow anyone with any content (bar Zelda tech demo). Nintendo wanted a reason for us to get it and having 2 completely different skus would have made things worse for Nintendo. Though the tablet controller was a huge mistake for future proofing the system. They should have looked into doing a remote play style service but worked with any tablet. Making their own dedicated tablet controller was a mistake at it bumped up the systems price/cost

-Foxtrot1446d ago

I can see your point but to me a standard controller like the pro controller is much better the Gamespad when playing games.

Sure it's got it's uses but you can never beat traditional gaming.

Even then as a consumer I would of liked a choice in bundles. A lower price bundle would of hopefully boosted sales. I just don't want Nintendo to keep relying on gimmicks big or small to sell their consoles.

N4g_null1446d ago

Foxtrot I can agree with one thing you said. You can't beat traditional gaming but sony has many times. Sony is not traditional gaming. They are their own brand and ms is just copying them.

randomass1711446d ago

But the gamepad is basically a traditional controller with a screen in it. It doesn't really hamper the experience at all IMO.

-Foxtrot1446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

When you place the Gamepad in your hands then switch to the pro controller the difference is unreal...I mean the pro controller is so comfortable, much better then the Gamepad and it feels better when playing.

I can't describe just feel it when playing.

Such a huge difference. The problem with the Gamepad is that it's not an all rounded controller. Some people with different size hands get cramps or pains when playing for a long time, it really depends on the game aswell with what buttons you are holding down longer.

gerbwmu1446d ago

-Foxtrot - I actually prefer the feel of the gamepad over the pro controller. I think a lot of people look at it and assume it is a bad controller to use but at least for me it works great. My pro controller rarely gets used.

N4g_null1446d ago

I don't know foxtrot the 3ds xl gamers love it. It even has two joysticks and a bigger screen.

SteamPowered1446d ago

I was not impressed with the gamepad when I was playing Deus Ex. It definitely has it's drawbacks for fps.

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 1446d ago
pcz1446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

it doesnt help that the wiiu is a console with poor tech inside.

it doesnt help that it comes with a pointless and gimmicky controller.

it doesnt help that controller costs a fortune.

it doesnt help nintendo try to sell the console on the strength of the controller and yet dont offer any support for it.

it doesnt help that the wiiu has no third party support.

it doesnt help that the games it does get from third parties come a year later.

it doesnt help that nintendo doesnt have many games of its own to put on the console.

it doesnt help that the games nintendo do release are games nobody wants... ie party and gimmick games.

it doesnt help that nintendo doesnt advertise the console.

it doesnt help when they do advertise it they do it very badly.

it doesnt help the console looks identical to the wii

etc i could go on forever listing the wiius problems.. its name is just one of the many failures.

-Foxtrot1446d ago

Shhhhhhh...your not allowed to say too many things like that in one comment.

People could explode

KonsoruMasuta1446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

I could agree with some of those, but not the part where you claim nobody wants Nintendo's first party games.

Nintendo's first party games actually do well.

modesign1446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

konsoru, dont know if they want as more as they are forced to buy them, if the wiiu had the same 3rd party titles as ps4/x1 then you would see lack of 1st party sales. wiiu users are forced to buy 1st party since they cant get anything else.

atleast with ps4 you can tell what 1st party titles people like, aka killzone SF= 1.8 million sales vs MLB the show .33 million sales.

FinalomegaS1446d ago

concerning the gamepad feel vs the traditional controller.

this is basically your personal pref. and opinion. You have to be real about it and if the user prefers the gamecube controller to the Dreamcast then that is their preference. Same as you or me.

2 bundles would created confusion as it is, but you need to standardize what you're selling.

Wii U pro controller with no game - 249.00
Wii U with gamepad + nintendoland - 399.00

already... the mass public have this idea of the name Wii.. and they've seen some at 99$. WTH, an other one, and a more expensive... more ???? will be howvering.

The name and the concept of the name wii has been in use for all these years. If you were a core gamer and wanted nothing to do with Wii... i'm pretty F'ing sure the day you walked into a Gamestop and saw Wii again, you would be saying F'that!

I have over 1000 hours on ME3 3/4 on gamepad and 1/4 pro. you get used to the input device.if you really don't like the gamepad and you feel like it's the bane of the wiiU then my condolences.

Change the name and make the public see and love it, bring it up with advertisement. As a PR, you need to make the public forget about that old name and shine the light on the new.(look at your US presidential elections, they must spin magic)

you don't advertise then you'd be just letting fate run its course.

Smash brothers should be in the subway trains. on cereal boxes, tv commercials.Promoted with bundles and like you said he pro controller bundle! NINTENDO NEEDS to fire their advertisement dept.

Concertoine1446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

What does Iwata have to do with this article?

He didn't name the console, the R&D division did.

Plain and simple, they failed to separate the two consoles in advertisements and shouldnt have named it Wii in the first place because the Wii has a bad reputation and the Wii U is not much like it.

I definitely don't think getting rid of the gamepad would be a good idea since that's what makes the console special. I wouldnt have the same respect for the company if they killed gamepad support in one swift 180 like MS. The gamepads pretty awesome, too. Its nice to take on trips and play in a hotel (since the bastards often wont let you plug in the console to the tv).

Edit: Yeah i guess he would have to approve it. I still wouldn't pin much blame on him in this case. The name really wouldnt even be a problem if they advertised it correctly. The Xbox One is perfect example of that.

randomass1711446d ago

I think Iwata may have had the final say on the name even if he didn't come up with it. It's one of those things where it seemed simple to them and not so good to anyone else except for dedicated fans. But I agree that taking away the gamepad is a bad move. You need it for several Wii U games and features so taking it away would gimp all of that.

iamnsuperman1446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

You do realise the head of a company would have to approve the name before release of their major product. That is like saying Iwata has no say in what direction (tech wise) the Wii U went. Of course he does. He is the CEO. He would be an extremely bad CEO if he let the people under him do whatever they like without his approval (he wouldn't be needed). In the name department he probably got a range to choice from

lilbroRx1446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

For once, I agree.

People want Iwata to be the problem because he's a current popular target for hate.

Its just like how its getting attacked for Tecmo-Koei's decision to not have online coop for Hyrule Warriors.

Sure Iwata had the final say in the things, but he still didn't make it. Nintendo doesn't have 4000+ employees for no reason. The hardware was made by their R&D deparment and the specs were decided upon by them and AMD/IBM. Yet people accuse Iwata of being the reason why the Wii U's specs aren't as high as the PS4 or XboneOne(always omitting year gap between their releases and the two year gap in their R&D/release schedule).

Iwata's primary roles are business related, not development. This is why I don't get most of the Iwata hate. The people who are responsible for all of the things that are not doing so well, like the long periods inbetween game releases, the problems with early development on the console, the third party issues are more than likely independent of Iwata and removing him wouldn't change them in the slightest as he is not the source of any one of those issues.

smashs1446d ago

You must be veryp stupid brain dead person if you think Iwata chose the name. I suggest you getting far away from here because nobody likes you.

-Foxtrot1446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

Says the guy who just joined to troll Sony/MS articles and praise Nintendo ones...and you have the cheek to say nobody likes me lol...ok then ¬¬

Awwwww your upset that someone said something you don't like.


Iwata didn't choose the name but he signed off on it.

Dunban671446d ago

Who do you think would have been responsible for signing off on the name if not Iwata? Are you also saying that if Iwata disliked the name he couldn't t have done anything about it?

It must have been named by 3rd party developers! They named the Wii u then they gimped the name - it's all thier fault!!!

lilbroRx1446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

Dunban, I'm sure many people "signed off" on the name.

The people who actually made it more than likely didn't include Iwata, though. I'm sure whoever it was gave a good demonstration and provided many viable reasons for why it should use that name to the higher ups in the company.

Iwata is not the primary source of those types of decisions. If he was then there would be no reason to have hired all of the other people at the company. 1 man doesn't make all of the decisions. The people who actually made the Wii U are known, because there was an Iwata asks with them in it before the Wii U launched.

Iwata was not directly involved in its development. Saying yes or no is his "only" role in it and he more than likely wasn't presented with any reason to say know at the time.

+ Show (3) more repliesLast reply 1446d ago
insertcoin1446d ago

Agreed. Even the "Wii 2" would make more sense for consumers.

KonsoruMasuta1446d ago

In my opinion, they should have just dropped the Wii name all together.

NiteX1446d ago

I also wanted this. I hated the Wii, and really wish they would have separated it from anything to do with the Wii.

lilbroRx1446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

No, Wii 2 would have been even worse. It would have been too predictable and unoriginal. It also would have fed into all of the whiners who were insisting there would be a Wii 2 like Patcher.

The name Wii should have been dropped from the system.

I personally would have gone with the Split Screen System(SSS) following in the vein of the NDS which the console is based on. That would have been much more marketable.

LOL_WUT1446d ago

Or the Nintendo ultra but honestly anything would've been better than the name it currently has ;)

IonDestroy1446d ago

@NiteX I hit disagree on accident, sorry... N4G should really give you the option to remove votes.

That being said, I suppose Nintendo was just trying to attract both the casual and hardcore crowds with the console, the casuals were supposed to flock to a second Wii while the hardcore crowd (who usually do more research) were supposed to flock to a console with more power in it than the Wii.

I also suppose that trying to attract too many people often results in attracting nobody altogether, Nintendo really needs to find a way to reformat the Wii U brand into something more unified, the multitude of controller options is nice and all but I can see less informed people being confused at stuff like whether the gamepad is the console or if it's an add-on for the original Wii.

OtakuDJK1NG-Rory1446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

nah people are just dumb. Rather than researching something. They rather be told and through with it.

It also journalist being negatives and confuse on whether or not Wii U a new system despite being in the gaming media and claiming to be gamers.

Also Nintendo consoles spans 5-6 years

Also delays and cancelled third party games.

Nintendo games being delayed and droughts.

N4g_null1446d ago

There was a large community that read the presser and knew it was a new system but claimed it was an add on anyway. It got them more clicks plus nintendo made them all look stupid last gen when it sold crazy numbers.

XiNarutoUzumaki1446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

The first time I heard about the Wii U, I knew it was a new console. I had been following the console since it was first called Project Cafe.

I don't undertand how people can get confused by the name? Parents and Grandmas I get it, but how a gamer of my age(23) can get confused so easily

DanielGearSolid1446d ago

Parents and Grandmas were probably the majority of the Original Wii's install base.

And by the time Wii U came out. They already burned themselves out with anything Wii related

N4g_null1446d ago

You bring up a huge point. Everyone was just looking for a reason not to like it.

I mean in just got finish building an underpowered pc to simulate the wiiu. The same was not done with the ps4 or xbone.

The negative pr is pretty bad. Nintendo didn't offer an over priced console. It was no where near $700 lol. They didn't force a new movie playing standard on you. You get hd at a good price and they let you play with friends and pretty much support their console on their own. They are ripped apart for all of the above. Even bc and free online is still there. I'm not even sure we are dealing with console gamers anymore.

CertifiedGamer1446d ago

I disagree with you because Wii U is an overpriced console, you can build a PC with better specs for less than $200.

N4g_null1446d ago (Edited 1446d ago )

How much is a 3ds? Is that over priced? You have a huge jump in power in the wiiu. The truth is Nintendo could have the same specs and you would just say it is too kiddy. That is ok the wiiu may be out of your price range if you think it is not powerful enough.

I can do the same to get the out put of the ps4. The new apus are coming out and even core m is going to be more powerful than the ps4 cpu. All graphics cards in the consoles can be had for under $49 now. If any thing sony is making money off you. I mean you even pay for online now. You are about to only be able to rent your games soon.

Oh and I meant ign built a pc to replicate the wiiu. Sorry auto correct. At least nintendo gives me something I truly can not get on pc. You get a system that embraces dual screen play, it's the only system not tied to a tv.

Price a wacom tablet cintq. They are not cheap. Try $1000 and this one is even wireless with no lag. It is arguably that most current wiiu owners are also pc gamers. The die hard Jr pc people covet the ps4 and xbone. I mean you actually rebought tlou just so you could play it the way a game should be played finally. Where was all that talk about power? That game was accepted below 30 fps.

LOL_WUT1446d ago

Sorry but no DVD/blu ray or any sort of real multimedia features it's definitely overpriced! ;)

Benjaminkno1446d ago

There's plenty of retailers that were getting confused.