The Wii U (/ / WEE YOO) is a home video game console developed by Nintendo as the successor to the Wii. Released in late 2012, it is the first eighth-generation video game console and competed with Microsoft's Xbox One and Sony's PlayStation 4.
A Wii U (right) and a Wii U GamePad (left)
|Also known as||Project Café (codename)|
|Developer||Nintendo IRD, NTD|
|Manufacturer||Nintendo, Foxconn, Mitsumi|
|Type||Home video game console|
|Introductory price||US$299/¥26,250 (Basic Set)|
US$349/¥31,500 (Deluxe/Premium Set)
|Units sold||Worldwide: 13.56 million|
(as of December 31, 2019[update])
|Operating system||Wii U system software|
|CPU||1.24 GHz Tri-Core IBM PowerPC "Espresso"|
|Memory||2 GB DDR3|
|Storage||Internal flash memory:|
8 GB (Basic Set) / 32 GB (Deluxe Set)
|Removable storage||SD/SDHC card (Up to 32 GB)|
USB storage device (Up to 2 TB)
|Display||Wii U GamePad (FWVGA)|
|Graphics||550 MHz AMD Radeon-based "Latte"|
|Sound||5.1 Linear PCM, Analog stereo|
|Controller input||Wii U GamePad, Wii U Pro Controller, Nintendo 3DS (Select games and applications only)|
|Camera||1.3 Megapixels (Wii U GamePad)|
|Touchpad||Resistive touchscreen (Wii U GamePad)|
|Connectivity||Wi-Fi IEEE 802.11 b/g/n|
4 × USB 2.0
|Current firmware||5.5.4, as of 24 June 2019|
|Dimensions||Width: 17.2 cm (6.8 in)|
Height: 4.6 cm (1.8 in)
Length: 26.9 cm (10.6 in)
|Mass||1.5 kilograms (3.3 lb)|
|Best-selling game||Mario Kart 8, 8.45 million|
(as of March 31, 2020[update])
The Wii U is the first Nintendo console to support HD graphics. The system's primary controller is the Wii U GamePad, which features an embedded touchscreen, directional buttons, analog sticks, and action buttons. The screen can be used either as a supplement to the main display or in supported games to play the game directly on the GamePad. The Wii U Pro Controller can be used in its place as a more traditional alternative. The Wii U is backward compatible with all Wii software and accessories. Games can support any combination of the GamePad, Wii Remote, Nunchuk, Balance Board, or Nintendo's Classic Controller or Wii U Pro Controller. Online functionality centers around the Nintendo Network platform and Miiverse, an integrated social networking service which allows users to share content in game-specific communities.
The Wii U met with a mixed reception. The system was praised for its innovative GamePad controller, improvements to online functionality over the Wii, backwards compatibility with existing Wii software and peripherals, and relative affordability. However, the Wii U was also criticized for the GamePad's short battery life and issues with the console's user interface and functionality. The Wii U met with slow consumer adoption, with low sales that were primarily credited to a weak lineup of launch titles, limited third-party support, and poor marketing of the system, including the lack of distinguishing the unique functionality of the GamePad from just being a tablet device. Wii U production officially ended in January 2017. On March 3, 2017, Nintendo released its successor, the Nintendo Switch, which notably retained and refined concepts that were first introduced with the Wii U.
The system was first conceived in 2008, after Nintendo recognized several limitations and challenges with the Wii, such as the general public's perception that the system catered primarily to a "casual" audience. With Wii U, Nintendo wished to bring back "core" gamers. Game designer Shigeru Miyamoto admitted that the lack of HD and limited network infrastructure for Wii also contributed to the system being regarded in a separate class to its competitors' systems, the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. It was decided that a new console would have to be developed to accommodate significant structural changes. Ideas on which direction to take for the new console led to a lot of debate within the company, and the project started over from scratch on several occasions. The concept of a touchscreen embedded within the controller was originally inspired by the blue light on the Wii disc tray that illuminates to indicate new messages. Miyamoto and his team wanted to include a small screen to provide game feedback and status messages to players (similar to the VMU for Sega's Dreamcast). Much later in development, this was expanded to a full screen that could display the game being played in its entirety, a concept which was suggested but not financially viable earlier in the project.
Public rumors surrounding the console began to appear in 2010, with speculation of an upcoming revision of the Wii scheduled for 2011 known as the "Wii HD", that would support high definition video and have a Blu-ray drive. However, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata later stated that he saw "no significant reason" to include HD into the Wii and that such an addition would be better suited for a successor. Miyamoto also expressed Nintendo's interest in working with HD graphics, but clarified that the company is primarily focused on gameplay. In October 2009, Miyamoto said that Nintendo had no concrete plans about its next console, but thought that the new system would continue to feature motion controls and also expected its interface to be "more compact" and cheaper. Iwata also mentioned that the Wii's successor might be 3D-compatible but concluded that the adoption rates of 3D televisions should increase to at least 30% first. In 2010, Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aimé commented that he felt "confident the Wii home entertainment console has a very long life in front of it" and declared that a successor would not be launched in the near future.
After its E3 2010 presentation, Iwata revealed to the BBC that Nintendo would begin announcing a new console once it ran "out of ideas with the current hardware and cannot give users any more meaningful surprises with the technology". Later, at an investor's meeting, he disclosed that Nintendo was "of course studying and developing the next console to Wii", but it was simultaneously keeping its concepts secret because it was "really important for [his] business to positively surprise people." Fils-Aimé also stated that Nintendo's next home console would likely not feature stereoscopic 3D, based on the 3D technology Nintendo had experimented with.
In April 2011, an uncredited source indicated that Nintendo was planning to unveil a successor to the Wii known as "Project Café" at its E3 2011 presentation. Café was claimed to be a high definition console, also would have backward compatibility with Wii software. Conflicting reports also surrounded the console's new controller, with reports suggesting a tablet-like device with an embedded touchscreen and the ability to stream games from the console directly to the screen, while others reported that the controller would be similar to the GameCube controller and feature dual analog sticks, shoulder buttons, and triggers.
On April 25, 2011, Nintendo released an official statement announcing a system to succeed the Wii to be released during 2012, and that playable console units would be present at E3 2011. Speaking at an investor's conference, Iwata stated the Wii successor would "offer something new for home game systems." He also confirmed that the device would not launch in fiscal year 2012, meaning that it would release after April 2012. In early June, Nikkei issued a report confirming earlier rumors that the new console would feature a controller with a 6-inch touchscreen that would give tablet-like controls to games, as well as a rechargeable battery and camera.
Project Café was officially unveiled as the Wii U during Nintendo's press conference at E3 2011 by Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aimé; he explained that the Wii U would be "a system we will all enjoy together, but also one that's tailor-made for you". The rumored tablet controller was also shown at this time. No first-party titles for the Wii U were officially announced during the presentation, but several major third-party studios announced planned titles for Wii U in a pre-recorded video, the possibility of a new Super Smash Bros. game was teased, and Electronic Arts' then-CEO John Riccitiello appeared on-stage to discuss the company's prospective plans for products on the Wii U. Prototype hardware and a series of tech demos were available to attendees, showcasing gameplay concepts and the technological capabilities of the console—including a The Legend of Zelda-themed graphics demo, and New Super Mario Bros. U.
In the two days following the unveiling of the Wii U, Nintendo's stock fell nearly 10% to levels not seen since 2006. Some analysts expressed skepticism in regards to the addition of a touch-screen, expressing concern that the controller would be less affordable and less innovative than the original Wii Remote. When asked about whether or not the Wii U was going to support stereographic 3D via 3D televisions, Iwata stated that it was "not the area we are focusing on."
On January 26, 2012, Iwata announced that the Wii U would be launched by the end of the 2012 shopping season in all major regions, and that its final specifications would be revealed at E3 2012. He also stated that the console would feature a unified online system known as Nintendo Network, which would feature user account support as opposed to the use of friend codes. Nintendo Network would also provide the framework for online multiplayer interactions, add-on content, as well as online distribution of applications and video games. Iwata mentioned that the Wii U GamePad would support NFC, which would allow the system to wirelessly interact with figurines and cards. It would also allow for microtransactions to take place wirelessly using credit cards with NFC support.
On September 13, 2012, Nintendo announced that the Wii U would launch in Japan on December 8, 2012. Later that day, Nintendo announced that the North American launch date would be November 18, 2012. Nintendo of Europe and Nintendo Australia also announced that the Wii U would be released in both regions on November 30, 2012. In an interview with GameSpot the next day, Nintendo of America's Senior Product Marketing Manager Bill Trinen admitted that Nintendo's pre-launch marketing and presentations of the Wii U had focused too much on the GamePad, to the extent that some consumers mistook the device as an accessory for the existing Wii rather than a component of an entirely new platform. Trinen ensured that future promotional material for the console, including its packaging, would emphasize both the Wii U console and GamePad.
The Wii U was originally released in two bundles: the Basic bundle and the Deluxe (U.S.) / Premium (WW) bundle. The Basic bundle contains a white Wii U with 8 GB of storage, a white Wii U GamePad, stylus and an HDMI cable, while the Deluxe (U.S.) / Premium (WW) contains a black Wii U with 32 GB of storage, a black GamePad and stylus, an HDMI cable, and adds a Nintendo Network Premium subscription, the Nintendo Land game (except Japan), as well as stands for the console and controller and a sensor bar (except Japan). The Wii U launched in North America priced at US$299.99 for the Basic Set and US$349.99 for the Deluxe Set. The system launched in Europe, Australia and South Africa, with European pricing set by retailers. The system launched in Japan priced at ¥26,250 for the Basic Set and ¥31,500 for the Premium Set.
On July 13, 2013, Nintendo released a white version of the Premium Pack in Japan, as well as an official battery pack and charger dock for the Wii Remote. The battery pack is capable of about 3 hours of gameplay before needing to be recharged. On July 25, the company released an improved battery pack for the Wii U GamePad. In contrast to the standard 1500mAh battery bundled with the console, the new 2550mAh battery pack increases longevity to between five and eight hours before needing to be recharged.
On August 28, 2013, Nintendo announced that the Deluxe (U.S.) / Premium (WW) 32 GB model would drop in price from US$349.99 to US$299.99 in North America. The price drop took effect on September 20, 2013. In Europe, Nintendo didn't confirm a formal price cut since individual retailers set their own prices. However, starting October 4, 2013, the company reduced the wholesale price of the system to retailers. Coinciding with the system's price cut, Nintendo released a limited edition The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD Wii U Deluxe Set bundle. The bundle included a black Wii U console with 32 GB of storage, a black Wii U GamePad decorated with a golden Triforce and other thematic symbols, a download code for the game and, in North America, a digital copy of The Legend of Zelda: Hyrule Historia, a collector's book about The Legend of Zelda series. In Europe, Nintendo also released a limited edition Lego City Undercover Wii U Premium Pack bundle. Both European bundles featured a 7-day trial of the Wii Karaoke U service. Nintendo did not cut the price of the Wii U in Australia or New Zealand nor did it release any of the previous bundles in the regions.
On October 31, 2013, Nintendo introduced two new Wii U Premium Pack bundles in Japan, called Family Set. The first included either a black or white Wii U console with 32 GB of storage, a black or white Wii U GamePad, New Super Mario Bros. U and Wii Party U preloaded, a black or white Wii Remote, a Wii Sensor Bar, and a 30-day trial of the Wii Karaoke U service. The second bundle included all of the previous one's contents, additionally preloaded with Wii Fit U and including Nintendo's official Fit Meter pedometer (with the Wii Balance Board available separately).
On November 1, 2013, Nintendo released a Mario & Luigi Deluxe Set in North America with the intention of replacing the original Wii U Deluxe Set, which included a copy of Nintendo Land. The Mario & Luigi bundle contains both New Super Mario Bros. U and New Super Luigi U packaged as a "2 in 1" disc alongside a black Wii U console with 32 GB of storage and black Wii U GamePad controller. The bundle was later released in Europe on November 8. On November 14, Nintendo released a Just Dance 2014 Basic Pack bundle in Australia and New Zealand. It contains a white Wii U console with 8 GB of storage, a white Wii U GamePad and Wii Remote Plus controllers, a Sensor Bar, and disc versions of both Ubisoft's Just Dance 2014 and Nintendo Land. The bundle was later released in Europe on November 22. On November 15, Nintendo released a Wii Party U Wii U Basic Pack bundle in Europe. It features a white Wii U console with 8 GB of storage, a white Wii U GamePad and Wii Remote Plus controllers, a Sensor Bar, and disc versions of both Wii Party U and Nintendo Land. On November 15, Nintendo also released a Skylanders: Swap Force Wii U Basic Set bundle in North America. It contains white Wii U with 8 GB of storage, Activision's Skylanders Swap Force game, a Portal of Power, three Skylanders figures, a collector poster, trading cards and sticker sheets, and a Nintendo Land game disc. The bundle was released in Australia and New Zealand on November 21.
On November 26, 2013, the Wii U was released in Brazil. However, the system is only available in the black Deluxe Set in the region. On January 10, 2015, Nintendo announced that it would cease selling consoles and games in Brazil due to the high cost of doing business in the country.
On May 30, 2014, Nintendo released a Mario Kart 8 Deluxe (U.S.) / Premium (WW) Set bundle in Europe and North America. It features a black Wii U console with 32 GB of storage, a black Wii U GamePad, a copy of Mario Kart 8, a Sensor Bar, and special edition red Wii Wheel (North America only). Additionally, registering the game on Club Nintendo before July 31, 2014 presents the buyer a free Wii U game from a selection of four in North America and ten in Europe. The bundle was released in Australia and New Zealand on May 31.
Anticipating the release of the console's successor, the Nintendo Switch, a hybrid video game console, Nintendo had planned to diminish production of the Wii U. It formally announced the end of its production on January 31, 2017.
The Wii U uses a custom multi-chip module (MCM) developed by AMD, IBM and Renesas in co-operation with Nintendo IRD and Nintendo Technology Development. The MCM combines an "Espresso" central processing unit (CPU) and a "Latte" graphics chip (GPU), as well as a SEEPROM memory chip. The Espresso CPU, designed by IBM, consists of a PowerPC 750-based tri-core processor with 3 MB of shared L2 cache memory and clocked at approximately 1.24 GHz.[a] Despite being based on the PowerPC 750, the Espresso also shares some architectural concepts with the POWER7 architecture, such as the use of eDRAM cache and being manufactured at a 45 nm node.[b] The Latte graphics chip contains both a "GX2" GPGPU, which runs Wii U applications, and a "GX" GPU, which enables backward compatibility with Wii games. The GX2, designed by AMD, is based on the Radeon R600/R700 architecture and is clocked at approximately 550 MHz.[a] It contains 32 MB of eDRAM cache memory, which can also act as L3 cache for the CPU.[a] The GX, originally designed by ArtX, contains a 1 MB and a 2 MB bank of eSRAM cache memory. The Latte chip also includes a secondary custom ARM9 processor with 96 KB of SRAM memory that handles system tasks in the background during gameplay or while the system is in sleep mode, and dedicated hardware audio DSP module.
The console contains 2 GB of DDR3 system memory consisting of four 512 MB DRAM chips with a maximum bandwidth of 12.8 GB/s. This is 20 times the amount found in the Wii. Of this, 1 GB is reserved for the operating system and is unavailable to games. The memory architecture allows the CPU and GPU to access both the main DDR3 memory pool and the eDRAM cache memory pool on the GPU, removing the need for separate, dedicated memory pools. The console includes either an 8 GB (Basic) or 32 GB (Deluxe (NA) / Premium (WW)) internal eMMC flash memory, expandable via SD memory cards up to 32 GB and USB external hard disk drives up to 2 TB.
The Wii U features 802.11 b/g /n wireless network connectivity and support for Fast Ethernet with an accessory, Bluetooth 4.0, a total of four USB 2.0 ports, and an SD/SDHC memory card slot. An additional power port is also included to power the Wii Sensor Bar, an auxiliary infrared emitter used by Wii Remote peripherals for motion tracking. Video output options include 1080p, 1080i, 720p, 576i, 480p and 480i, through HDMI 1.4 and component video (YPBPR, D-Terminal and RGB SCART) or 576i, 480i anamorphic widescreen through composite video (S-Video, SCART and D-Terminal). Audio output options include six-channel 5.1 linear PCM surround sound or analog stereo. The console also supports stereoscopic (3D) images and video.
The Wii U GamePad is the console's primary controller: its main feature is a built-in 6.2 inch (15.7 cm) resistive touchscreen, which can be used as a companion to games being played on a television, or as a means of playing games on the GamePad itself without a television. The GamePad is designed to enable a concept referred to by Nintendo as "asymmetric gaming": in multiplayer games, a player using the GamePad may have a different gameplay objective and experience than other players.
The GamePad's display contents are rendered on the Wii U itself, and streamed wirelessly as video to the GamePad. The GamePad also supports near field communications; cards and specially-designed figurines, such as Nintendo's Amiibo line, can be used with the GamePad to interact with games. In Japan, it can also be used for contactless payments from eShop with Suica cards.
A new Wii U Pro Controller was released alongside the Wii U. The Wii U Pro Controller is an updated version of the Wii's Classic Controller that is designed to appeal to "hardcore" players, with a more traditional gamepad design that resembles those used by the PlayStation and Xbox lines (and in particular, the Xbox 360's controller), and a claimed 80-hour battery life. The Wii U Pro Controller is compatible with supported Wii U games, but is not supported by Wii games.
The Wii U is compatible with existing Wii Remote and Wii Remote Plus controllers, along with their Nunchuk and Classic Controller attachments. A combination of up to four Wii Remotes or Pro Controllers can be used simultaneously, and the console can theoretically support up to two GamePads. Most software requires a Wii Sensor Bar in order to use Wii Remotes with the system, though some aspects, such as Off-TV Play and the Wii Mode, allow the Wii U GamePad to detect Wii Remotes. The Wii U does not natively support GameCube controllers. While a USB adapter accessory allows GameCube controllers to be used on the console in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U, it is not compatible with any other software.
The Wii U's main menu has two main components: by default, the GamePad displays a home screen consisting of a grid with shortcuts to games and apps, while the television screen displays a lobby (WaraWara Plaza) populated by other users' Miis. The two displays can be switched between the television screen and GamePad.
Pressing the controller's "Home" button suspends the current game or app and opens the Home Menu: it shows basic information (such as the current time, controller battery levels, and notifications), and allows access to several "multitasking" functions, including the Nintendo eShop, Miiverse, download manager, a web browser, and the user's friends list. To play Wii games, the user must enter "Wii Mode", a legacy mode that emulates the Wii's system software and Wii Menu interface. Initially, Wii Mode could only be used on the television screen, but the October 2013 firmware update enables Wii Mode to be used off-TV. Either way, Wii controllers must be used.
The Wii U uses the Nintendo Network platform for online services (replacing the friend code system of the Wii), enabling online multiplayer, downloading and purchasing games or apps via Nintendo eShop, video chat using the GamePad's camera and the Wii U Chat service, and other services. Up to twelve accounts can be created per console.
A social networking service known as Miiverse is integrated into the Wii U's system software; it allows players to interact and share content in game-specific communities using their Mii as an avatar. Miiverse allows users to share accomplishments, screenshots, drawings and hand-written notes. Select games are integrated with Miiverse, where social interactions can also occur within the game, or appear within their content (such as in Splatoon, where drawn posts can appear as graffiti on walls in its settings). Miiverse is moderated through software filtering as well as a human resource team in order to ensure that the content shared by users is appropriate and that no spoilers are shared. In order to facilitate this, it was initially stated that comments posted could take up to 30 minutes to appear on Miiverse.
The Wii U supports online video services through apps, such as Amazon Video, Crunchyroll, Hulu, Netflix, and YouTube. The Wii U does not support playback of DVDs or Blu-rays; Iwata explained that the decision to exclude these formats was motivated primarily by patent licensing fees, and the fact that such functionality would be redundant to DVD and Blu-ray players that users may already own.
The Nintendo TVii service allowed program listings from a user's television provider to be aggregated with online video on demand services into an electronic program guide with recommendations and search functionality, and the ability to use the GamePad's infrared functionality to tune a set-top box to a particular program. The app also provided integration with IMDb, Rotten Tomatoes, and Wikipedia to provide additional information, and social connectivity through Facebook, Twitter, or Miiverse. TVii was made available with the Wii U's release in Japan on December 8, 2012, and in North America on December 20, 2012. Following delays, a European launch was cancelled, and the service was discontinued in North America on August 11, 2015. The service was discontinued in Japan on November 8, 2017.
Wii U games can be downloaded digitally through Nintendo eShop, or at retail on physical media. Retail copies of Wii U games are distributed on Wii U Optical Disc, a proprietary high-density optical disc format co-developed with Panasonic. The format is similar in design and specifications to a Blu-ray, with a capacity of 25 GB per layer, but the discs themselves have a soft, rounded rim. Unlike previous Nintendo consoles, game manuals are only available digitally. The console is region locked; software purchased in a region can be only played on that region's hardware.
New games in Nintendo's flagship franchises (including Super Mario, Donkey Kong and The Legend of Zelda), as well as several Wii series games (including Wii Sports Club, Wii Fit U and Wii Party U) have been released, in addition to many original titles and third-party-developed games. Nintendo has received third-party support from companies such as Ubisoft, Sega, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, Activision Blizzard and Capcom, and various independent developers such as Two Tribes. As of late July 2016, there have been 39 first-party and 118 third-party Wii U games physically released in the United States; both figures are the lowest for any Nintendo console.
A total of 103.10 million Wii U games have been sold worldwide since March 31, 2019[update], with ten titles surpassing the million-unit mark. The highest selling game is Mario Kart 8 at 8.45 million units, followed by Super Mario 3D World at 5.84 million units, and New Super Mario Bros. U at 5.80 million units. Super Smash Bros. for Wii U was the fastest selling Wii U game as of November 25, 2014[update].
The Wii U was launched with 23 games in North America, 26 games in Europe, 25 games in Australia, and 11 games in Japan. Some download-only games were also available on launch day for the Wii U via Nintendo eShop. An additional 30 games were announced for release during the system's launch window, which included the three months after the system's launch date.
|List of Wii U launch titles by region released|
|Launch title||Region(s) released on launch day|
|Assassin's Creed III||NA, PAL|
|Batman: Arkham City – Armored Edition||NA, PAL|
|Call of Duty: Black Ops II||NA, PAL|
|Darksiders II||NA, PAL|
|Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two||NA, PAL|
NAESPN Sports Connection
NAFIFA Soccer 13
|Funky Barn||NA, PAL|
|Game Party Champions||NA, PAL|
|Just Dance 4||NA, PAL|
|New Super Mario Bros. U||NA, PAL|
|Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor's Edge||NA|
|Nintendo Land||NA, PAL|
|Scribblenauts Unlimited||NA, PAL|
|Skylanders: Giants||NA, PAL|
|Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed||NA, PAL|
|Tekken Tag Tournament 2: Wii U Edition||NA, PAL|
|Transformers: Prime – The Game||NA|
|Warriors Orochi 3 Hyper||NA|
|Your Shape: Fitness Evolved 2013||NA|
In January 2013, Nintendo announced that NES and Super NES titles would be made available for the Virtual Console service on the Wii U in April 2013 and would include the option to use Off-TV Play on the GamePad. On March 26, 2014, Game Boy Advance titles were confirmed and started to appear on the eShop the following month. Nintendo 64 and Nintendo DS games were added in April 2015.
The Wii U is compatible with all Wii games and Wii accessories such as the Wii Remote (Plus), Wii Nunchuk, and the Wii Balance Board. It is possible to migrate most downloaded software and save files from a Wii to a Wii U. Although Wii games can be displayed on the GamePad's screen, they can only be controlled using a Wii controller, and not the GamePad's controller.
The Wii U is not compatible with GameCube discs or accessories, although a homebrew application for Wii Mode exists that enables GameCube hardware and GameCube controller support. A USB GameCube controller adapter with four ports was released exclusively for use with Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and does not support any other Wii or Wii U titles.
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (December 2016)
John Teti of The A.V. Club's Gameological Society considers the Wii U a compelling video game system which lacks focus, citing Nintendo Land as "ideas act[ing] in service of the technology". Ben Gilbert of Engadget states that Nintendo delivers on its promise of releasing "a modern HD gaming console" but notes that "there are also some major missteps and half-baked ideas: a befuddling Friends List/Miiverse connection, a complete lack of many system-wide console standards (group chat, achievements, the ability to play non-game disc-based media) and a game controller that lasts only 3.5 hours", and stated that he could not give a complete assessment of the console with online components such as Nintendo TVii missing at launch. Similarly, TechRadar praised the system's GamePad functionality and HD graphics, but criticized the limited battery power on the GamePad, and the insufficient number of top-tier launch titles. Some industry figures do not consider the Wii U to be an eighth-generation console, with many citing the hardware's processing speed. However, Fils-Aimé has noted that similar comments were made in 2006 when the Wii first launched.
Following the launch of other eighth-generation consoles, the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, in November 2013, some critics suggested that the Wii U would continue to struggle as it lacked the third-party support of its rivals. In December 2013 article, Chris Suellentrop of The New York Times argued that the Wii U was the only new console with a video game worth playing—Super Mario 3D World—which he described as being "the best Mario game in years". Despite the praise, he noted that "one great game won't save a console", and although other good games exist on the Wii U, he admitted that its original lineup "was still pretty thin". Time writer Matt Peckham said that the Wii U was the system of choice to pick up during that Christmas season, praising the console's game lineup, affordable price, Off-TV Play, the absence of subscription fees for its online services, backward compatibility and media features. However, he noted that the system still needs a price cut and an improved first and third-party software lineup. CNET also noted that the Wii U had a better lineup of games and lower price in comparison to its competitors, mainly due to its one-year head start.
By December 2019, Nintendo reported life-time sales of 13.56 million Wii U console units and 103.01 million software units worldwide.
During its first week of release in the United States, Nintendo sold its entire allotment of over 400,000 units and sold a total of 425,000 units for the month of November, according to the NPD Group. It also sold over 40,000 consoles in the UK in its first weekend. In Japan, over 600,000 Wii U units were sold during December 2012. Nearly 890,000 Wii U units were sold in the United States after 41 days on the market. From the Wii U's launch till December 31, 2012, Nintendo reported that 3.06 million consoles and 11.69 million software units had been shipped worldwide.
In January 2013, Nintendo sold 57,000 Wii U units in the US. By comparison, the original Wii sold 435,000 in January 2007, also two months after launch. Initial sales numbers in the U.S. and other territories were lower than expected, resulting in Nintendo cutting sales projections for fiscal year 2013 by 17%, from 5.5 million to 4 million; the system actually ended up selling 3.5 million units. During the first quarter of 2013, Nintendo reported that 390,000 consoles and 1.73 million software units were shipped worldwide. From March to June 2013, the system sold approximately 160,000 units, which was down 51% from the three months prior. During the second quarter of 2013, Nintendo reported that 160,000 consoles and 1.03 million software units were shipped worldwide.
Loss of support
In May 2013, Electronic Arts announced that it was reducing support for the Wii U and had no games in development for it, but then partially reconsidered this decision a few days later, with EA's CFO announcing that "We are building titles for the Nintendo console, but not anywhere near as many as we are for PlayStation or Xbox". At E3 2013, Ubisoft revealed that it was not going to make any more exclusives for the Wii U until sales of the console improved, though it stated shortly thereafter that it was still a "big supporter" of the Wii U, and planned to release as many Wii U games in 2013 as it did in 2012. In July 2013, Bethesda Softworks announced that it had no games in development for the Wii U, with Bethesda VP of PR and marketing Pete Hines explaining: "It depends on the games that we are making and how we think it aligns with that console, and how the hardware aligns with the other stuff we are making". This explanation was later refined to being largely due to the hardware. Contrarily, Activision has stated that it will "do everything they can" to support the system.
At the end of July 2013, Asda, the second-largest supermarket chain in the UK, confirmed that it had no plans to stock the Wii U, but would still stock games "on a title by title merit basis". Despite this, many specialist retailers continued to emphasize their support, with Game CEO Martyn Gibbs saying "We fully support all Nintendo products, including Wii U."
Price cut and first-party titles
Following the system's $50 price cut and the release of The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD on September 20, 2013, Wii U sales in North America saw a 200% rise over August. From July to September 2013, the system sold approximately 300,000 units, which was up 87% from the three months prior. Despite only having sold 460,000 consoles since April, Nintendo maintained its 9 million Wii U sales forecast for the fiscal year through March 2014. Wii U software showed improvement in the Q2 period, reaching 5.27 million units, a 400% jump on the previous quarter. Nintendo credited the software growth to key first-party releases like Pikmin 3 and The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD. During the third quarter of 2013, Nintendo reported that 300,000 consoles and 5.27 million software units were shipped worldwide.
In October 2013, online retailer Play.com announced that its Wii U sales saw a 75% sales increase. The company also predicted that the Wii U would be more popular than its competition, the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, among children during the holiday season. Following the release of Wii Party U on October 31 in Japan, weekly Wii U sales spiked to 38,802 units sold. On November 29, 2013, Nintendo of France deputy general manager Philippe Lavoué announced that the Wii U had sold approximately 175,000 units in France since launch. During the first two weeks of December, the Wii U was the top performing home console in Japan, with 123,665 units sold. After one year in the market, the Wii U had sold approximately 150,000 units in the United Kingdom. According to the NPD Group, Wii U sales in November increased by 340% over sales in October in North America, selling approximately 220,700 units sold in that month. According to several publications, including NPD Group, December 2013 was the best-selling Wii U month in the US since its launch, selling around 481,000 units. Independent estimates put the number of Wii U consoles sold by the end of 2013 between 4.5 and 5.2 million. During the fourth quarter of 2013, Nintendo reported that 1.95 million consoles and 9.96 million software units were shipped worldwide.
In January 2014, citing lower-than-expected sales during the 2013 holiday season, Nintendo announced that Wii U sales forecasts for fiscal year 2014 had been cut from 9 million units to 2.8 million. In light of this announcement, the Wii U's long-term viability has been called into question. In February 2014, Nintendo revealed that the Wii U had improved about 180% in year-over-year sales in the United States due to the launch of Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, which sold 130,000 copies. By February 26, Wii U sales had surpassed those of the Xbox 360 in Japan. In March 2014, Nintendo sold just over 70,000 Wii U units, tracking it down 50% less than the GameCube and 90% less than the Wii during equivalent time periods. During the month, total worldwide sales of the PlayStation 4 surpassed those of the Wii U. During the first quarter of 2014, Nintendo reported that 310,000 consoles and 2.91 million software units were shipped worldwide.
During an annual investors' meeting, Satoru Iwata revealed Nintendo's projection of 3.6 million Wii U unit sales during the fiscal year ending March 2015 On May 22, 2014, Nintendo France announced that sales were 50% higher compared to the last year. With Mario Kart 8 being Nintendo's biggest game launch, Wii U console sales reportedly increased by 666% in the United Kingdom, with the Mario Kart 8 console bundle representing 82% of the region's Wii U console sales for the week. NPD Group reported that in the United States, when comparing the month of June 2013 to the same month in 2014, Wii U software sales were up 373% and console sales were up 233%..
The record would be surpassed in November 2014 by Super Smash Bros. for Wii U, which sold 490,000 copies in the United States during its first three days of availability. According to Nintendo of America, December 2014 was Wii U's biggest month in terms of sales in the United States. Hardware sales increased 29%, and software sales increased 75% in comparison to December 2013.
In July 2015, Nintendo announced that as of the end of fiscal third quarter 2015, and nearly three years following its launch, it had shipped over ten million Wii U units worldwide. However, sales of Wii U units during this quarter were down in comparison to the same quarter in 2014, with 470,000 units sold (in comparison to 510,000 in 2014). In comparison, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One had each yielded sales of ten million units after approximately one year from their respective launches.
The future of the Wii U was left unclear with Nintendo's announcement of a new console platform codenamed NX, which was scheduled to be launched worldwide in March 2017. Nintendo stated that NX would have a "brand-new concept", and not be a direct successor to the Wii U or 3DS product lines; in an interview with the Asahi Shimbun, company president Tatsumi Kimishima reiterated this position and stated that while he thinks that the Wii U business would "slow" after the release of NX, he felt that the console would "have a larger impact than the Wii U". The announcement that The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild was in development for both Wii U and NX further supported Nintendo's view of the console as being a new product line, rather than a replacement for its existing hardware. In a shareholders report in July 2016, Kimishima and Miyamoto stated that they had expected the Wii U to sell one hundred million units, comparable to the success of the Wii, but with only thirteen million units sold worldwide, they would now need to rely on NX to make up for losses on Wii U sales.
The new platform, now known as Nintendo Switch, was officially announced on October 20, 2016; it is a tablet-like hybrid video game console with detachable controllers, and the ability to be placed in a docking station with an output to allow games to be played on a television. Although it is a hybrid device capable of being used as both a portable and home console, Nintendo officially positioned the platform as "a home gaming system first and foremost". Following the unveiling, a Nintendo spokesperson confirmed that the company would slow production of Wii U hardware, stating that "as we prepare for the launch of Nintendo Switch in March of 2017, Nintendo will ship 800,000 Wii U hardware units to the global market for this fiscal year." In mid-November 2016, Nintendo announced that Japanese production of the Wii U would be ending "in the near future", and that shipments to the North American and European markets for the year had already been sent out.
In an interview with Time Magazine in January 2017, Reggie Fils-Aimé commented that the system was "a necessary step, in order to get to Nintendo Switch." Fils-Aimé also compared the system to the GameCube, claiming that the Wii U will be remembered fondly despite its relatively poor sales. Fils-Aimé stated that the commercial failure of the Wii U, specifically the lack of clarity of the Wii U GamePad's function, and the lack of support from third-party publishers to build out its software library, led to how they changed the marketing and promotion for the Switch. He said the Switch's promotion was developed "to make it crystal clear what the proposition is" for the systems, and that they had "strong support" from large and small software developers and publishers to support the new console.
In mid-January 2017, Fils-Aimé told Polygon that Breath of the Wild, which would ship at launch with the Switch in March 2017, would be Nintendo's final first-party title for Wii U. Nintendo formally announced that production of the Wii U had ended worldwide on January 31, 2017. Despite this, the console had third party releases until 2020.
- Purchese, Robert (June 7, 2011). "Project Cafe becomes Wii U". Eurogamer. Retrieved January 31, 2015.
- "iPhone, Wii U Manufacturer Admits to Employing Children". IGN. October 17, 2012. Retrieved October 17, 2012.
- "IR Information : Sales Data – Hardware and Software Sales Units". Nintendo Co., Ltd. Retrieved October 31, 2019.
- Delivers Advanced Wireless Connectivity to Nintendo's Wii U Gaming Experience. Broadcom. Retrieved on August 23, 2013.
- "IR Information: Sales Data". Nintendo Co., Ltd. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
- "'Wii 2' Codenamed 'Project Café'". IGN. April 15, 2011. Archived from the original on August 2, 2012. Retrieved April 16, 2011.
- "Wii U confirmed for Europe this year". Metro. January 26, 2012.
- "WiiU Price and Release Date Announced". WiiU News. September 13, 2012. Retrieved September 13, 2012.
- "Nintendo's Project Cafe: Will Gamers Feel The Buzz?". Business Insider. Retrieved June 11, 2011.
- "Weekend Hot Topic, Part 2: Xbox 720 and PlayStation 4". Metro.co.uk. Retrieved June 11, 2011.
- Gilbert, Ben (October 9, 2017). "Nintendo learned from 2 huge mistakes with the Wii U to make the Switch a runaway success". Business Insider.
- Weinberger, Matt (December 31, 2017). "Nintendo started 2017 as a punching bag — and ended up with the hottest gadget of the year". Business Insider.
- Romero, Ishmael (March 2, 2016). "Every Single Way the Nintendo Wii U Failed". Twinfinite.
- Gittins, Liam (July 3, 2015). "Why the Wii U Really Failed". VGU.
- Kuchera, Ben (August 5, 2014). "The Wii U name is still hurting Nintendo". Polygon.
- Ashcraft, Brian (January 31, 2017). "Wii U Production Has Officially Ended For Japan [Update]". Kotaku. Retrieved January 31, 2017.
- Clark, Peter Allen (January 31, 2018). "Thank Nintendo's failed Wii U for the Switch's wild success". Mashable.
- "Iwata Asks: E3 2011 Special Edition". p. 1. Archived from the original on September 27, 2011. Retrieved June 9, 2011.
Iwata: I've been looking back at my calendar right before this interview, and I noticed that it's been just about three years since we started having meetings about this.
- "Iwata Asks: E3 2011 Special Edition". p. 7. Archived from the original on September 27, 2011. Retrieved June 9, 2011.
Iwata: The other things is, shortly after the Wii console was released, people in the gaming media and game enthusiasts started recognizing the Wii as a casual machine aimed toward families, and placed game consoles by Microsoft and Sony in a very similar light with each other, saying these are machines aimed towards those who passionately play games. [...] It was a categorization between games that were aimed towards core, and casual.
- "Iwata Asks: E3 2011 Special Edition". p. 7. Archived from the original on September 27, 2011. Retrieved June 9, 2011.
Iwata: On the other hand, I certainly do not think that Wii was able to cater to every gamer's needs, so that's also something I wanted to resolve. [...] The keyword for our presentation at this year's E3 is "Deeper and Wider". With Wii U, I would like to offer this proposal with that idea
- "Iwata Asks: E3 2011 Special Edition". p. 7. Archived from the original on September 27, 2011. Retrieved June 9, 2011.
Miyamoto: But one of the key reasons that such things as the core and the casuals exist today is that we decided not to adopt HD on the Wii console. Of course, besides that there are things like issues with the controller and the challenges that it brings, network functionalities and many other things, but I think HD was the biggest factor that everyone was able to clearly understand the difference.
- "Iwata Asks: E3 2011 Special Edition". p. 1. Retrieved December 11, 2013.
Iwata: We actually debated quite a bit until we settled on the way it is now. There was a lot of back and forth before reaching where we are now. Miyamoto: Right, we did. We started from scratch many times.
- "Iwata Asks: E3 2011 Special Edition". p. 2. Retrieved December 11, 2013.
Miyamoto: The Wii console did have the blue illumination lamp to notify new messages, but the amount of information a lamp could get across was limited... Iwata: It was only able to say whether there was new information or not, so it had limits on what it could do. Miyamoto: Yeah, so we started from the notion of "It would be nice if there was a small monitor of sorts other than the TV, where we could always see the status of the Wii console."
- "Wii HD in 2011?". IGN. Retrieved April 25, 2011.
- Davidson, John (September 30, 2008). "New Wii due by 2011". What They Play. Archived from the original on April 12, 2010. Retrieved August 7, 2010.
- Ivan, Tom (June 5, 2009). "Nintendo: No "Significant Reason" To Make Wii HD". Edge. Archived from the original on January 25, 2012. Retrieved April 17, 2011.
- Brightman, James (October 15, 2009). "Nintendo:Miyamoto on HD Graphics: Nintendo Games Will Move Along with Progression of Technology". IndustryGamers. Archived from the original on July 13, 2011. Retrieved April 17, 2011.
- "Exclusive Interview With Nintendo Gaming Mastermind Shigeru Miyamoto – Popular Mechanics". Popular Mechanics. December 18, 2009. Retrieved April 15, 2011.
- "E32010: Wii Successor "Probably" 3D – Iwata". EDGE. June 17, 2010. Archived from the original on January 25, 2012. Retrieved April 15, 2011.
- Edwards, Cliff (January 13, 2010). "Nintendo: No Wii Successor Anytime Soon". BusinessWeek. Retrieved August 7, 2010.
- Bramwell, Tom (June 23, 2010). "Wii successor "when we run out of ideas" Wii News – Page 1". Eurogamer. Retrieved August 7, 2010.
- "Iwata: Wii successor will surprise people". QuickJump. August 4, 2010. Retrieved August 7, 2010.
- "After false starts, Nintendo sees a world ready for 3-D". CNN Tech. March 25, 2011. Retrieved April 17, 2011.
- "Multiple Sources Confirm New Nintendo HD Console". Game Informer. April 14, 2011. Retrieved April 17, 2011.
- "Sources from IGN and GameInformer leak info on Nintendo's new console". LazyTechGuys. April 15, 2011. Archived from the original on April 18, 2011. Retrieved April 18, 2011.
- "Wii 2 is 'Project Café', says report – tech specs, controller details claimed". CVG. April 15, 2011. Retrieved April 18, 2011.
- "Nintendo Set to Reveal New Console". IGN. April 14, 2011. Retrieved April 16, 2011.
- "New Nintendo Console Debuting At E3 This June, Launching In 2012, More Powerful Than Xbox 360 and PS3". Kotaku. April 14, 2011. Retrieved April 18, 2011.
- Jackson, Mike. "Wii 2 controller details: 8 buttons, twin analogues". ComputerAndVideoGames.
- "Sources Confirm More Details On Wii Successor". EDGE. April 15, 2011. Archived from the original on January 15, 2013. Retrieved April 17, 2011.
- "Wii 2: Fresh rumours emerge on 'Project Café'". Develop. April 15, 2011. Archived from the original on January 2, 2012. Retrieved April 17, 2011.
- "Project Cafe: The Tech Behind Nintendo's Next Console". IGN. April 21, 2011. Retrieved April 29, 2011.
- Ashcraft, Brian (April 24, 2011). "Nintendo Confirms Wii Successor". Kotaku.com. Retrieved April 25, 2011.
- Jackson, Mike. "Wii 2 promises 'something new for home consoles'". ComputerAndVideoGames.
- Mike Jackson. "Iwata: No Wii successor until after FY2012". Computer and Video Games.
- "Nikkei Confirms Wii 2 Controller Details". Andriasang.com. June 3, 2011. Archived from the original on June 6, 2011. Retrieved June 3, 2011.
- "The Wii U name is still hurting Nintendo". Polygon. Retrieved October 13, 2015.
- "E3 2011: Wii U unveiled at Nintendo press conference, Skyward Sword due in Q4". GameSpot. CBS Interactive. Retrieved October 13, 2015.
- Keza Macdonald. "WiiU – Hands-on impressions and hardware photos". VG247.
- "E3 2011: The Miis Meet Classic Nintendo Franchises on Wii U". IGN. June 8, 2011. Retrieved January 31, 2015.
- "Nintendo shares fall to 5 year low after Wii U reveal". GamesIndustry.biz. June 8, 2011. Retrieved October 13, 2015.
- Wolverton, Troy (July 5, 2011). "Mercury News interview: Satoru Iwata, Nintendo president". Mercury News. Retrieved July 26, 2011.
- "Corporate Management Policy Briefing/Third Quarter Financial Results Briefing for Fiscal Year Ending March 2012". Nintendo.co.jp. January 27, 2012. Retrieved June 12, 2012.
- "Corporate Management Policy Briefing/Third Quarter Financial Results Briefing for Fiscal Year Ending March 2012". Nintendo.co.jp. January 27, 2012. Retrieved June 12, 2012.
- Ashcraft, Brian (September 13, 2012). "Wii U Goes On Sale In Japan On December 8". Kotaku. Retrieved September 15, 2012.
- Pham, Alex (September 13, 2012). "Nintendo's Wii U to go on sale Nov. 18 for $299.99 and $349.99". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved September 15, 2012.
- "Nintendo believes Wii U messaging issues corrected". GameSpot. Retrieved December 23, 2014.
- White, Mike (September 12, 2012). "Wii U Price And Release Date Just Announced". NintendoWiiU.com. Archived from the original on September 26, 2013. Retrieved September 15, 2012.
- Kohler, Chris (September 13, 2012). "Wii U Will Ship in North America Nov. 18 In $300, $350 Bundles". Wired.com. Retrieved September 15, 2012.
- "Wii U to launch in South Africa with 17 games available on launch day". Nintendo of Europe. Retrieved November 30, 2013.
- "Wii U out in Australia on November 30th, $349 and $429". Vooks. Retrieved September 15, 2012.
- Improved Wii U GamePad Battery and More Headed to Japan – IGN. Uk.ign.com. Retrieved on August 23, 2013.
- "Wii U getting price cut September 20". GameSpot.com. August 28, 2013. Retrieved September 21, 2013.
- Whitehead, Thomas. "Nintendo Confirms Wii U "Price Reduction Initiative" in Europe from 4th October". Nintendo Life. Nintendo Life. Retrieved July 23, 2014.
- Corriea, Alexa. "The Wind Waker HD Wii U bundle coming Sept. 20". Polygon. Polygon. Retrieved July 23, 2014.
- Vuckovic, Daniel. "No Wii U price drop for Australia or New Zealand". Vooks. Vooks. Retrieved July 23, 2014.
- Vuckovic, Daniel. "No Wind Waker HD Wii U bundle or Limited Edition for Australia". Vooks. Vooks. Retrieved July 23, 2014.
- "Wii U すぐに遊べる ファミリープレミアムセット". Nintendo Japan (in Japanese). Nintendo. Retrieved July 19, 2014.
- Goldfarb, Andrew. "New Wii U Deluxe Bundle Includes New Super Mario U, Luigi U". IGN UK. IGN. Retrieved July 23, 2014.
- East, Thomas. "Nintendo announce three new Wii U bundles for Christmas". Official Nintendo Magazine. Official Nintendo Magazine. Archived from the original on November 10, 2014. Retrieved July 23, 2014.
- Southcott, Chris. "New Wii U bundles coming to Australia, but still no price drop". TechGeek. TechGeek. Retrieved July 23, 2014.
- Whitehead, Thomas. "Nintendo Announces Skylanders SWAP Force Wii U Hardware Bundle". Nintendo Life. Nintendo Life. Retrieved July 23, 2014.
- Azevedo, Théo. "Mais caro do mundo, Wii U sai no Brasil por R$ 1.899 em 26/11" (in Portuguese). UOL Jogos. Retrieved November 7, 2013.
- "Nintendo ends console and game distribution in Brazil, citing high taxes". Polygon. Retrieved January 10, 2015.
- Dyer, Mitch. "Mario Kart 8 Bundle Announced for North America". IGN UK. IGN. Retrieved July 23, 2014.
- Corriea, Alexa. "Mario Kart 8 Wii U bundle, Peach and Yoshi Wii Remotes hitting Europe May 30". Polygon. Retrieved July 23, 2014.
- Sobrello, Andrew. "Mario Kart 8 Premium Wii U Bundle, new Wii Remote Plus designs confirmed for Australia". TechGeek. Retrieved July 23, 2014.
- "Basic Wii U to be discontinued in Japan". IGN. Wesley Copeland. Retrieved May 22, 2015.
- Dent, Steve. "Nintendo kills off the basic Wii U in Japan". Engadget. Retrieved May 22, 2015.
- Carter, Chris (January 31, 2017). "Wii U production is dead in Japan, long live the Wii U". Destructoid. Archived from the original on February 2, 2017. Retrieved January 31, 2017.
- Ashcraft, Brian (January 31, 2017). "Wii U Production Has Officially Ended For Japan [Update]". Kotaku. Archived from the original on January 31, 2017. Retrieved January 31, 2017.
- "Iwata Asks : Wii U: The Console : Changes in Television". Iwata Asks – Nintendo. Nintendo. Retrieved August 1, 2014.
- Martin, Hector. "Console Hacking 2013: Omake". Fail0verflow. fail0verflow. Retrieved August 1, 2014.
- "Wii U Technical Specs". Nintendo. Nintendo. Retrieved August 1, 2014.
- Leadbetter, Richard (November 29, 2012). "Wii U has 1.24GHz CPU, 550MHz graphics core – report". Eurogamer. Eurogamer. Retrieved August 1, 2014.
- "IBM Microprocessors to Power the New Wii U System from Nintendo". IBM. IBM. June 7, 2011. Retrieved August 1, 2014.
- Michael, Gorman. "IBM puts Watson's brains in Nintendo Wii U". Engadget. Engadget. Retrieved August 1, 2014.
- Hernandez, Pedro. "Wii U to Have 2GB Internal Memory, GPGPU Support". Nintendo World Report. Nintendo World Report. Retrieved July 19, 2014.
- "Nintendo Wii U Teardown". AnandTech. Retrieved November 26, 2012.
- "| Wii U Internal Storage Space Information". Nintendo.com. Retrieved November 26, 2012.
- Kohler, Chris (September 12, 2012). "Wii U Coming to Japan December 8 In Two Configurations". Wired.com. Retrieved September 15, 2012.
- "Wii U Technical Specs". Nintendo.com. Retrieved November 18, 2012.
- "Nintendo Unveils Wii U, Controller With Built-In 6.2" Touchscreen". Gamasutra. Retrieved June 4, 2012.
- "Nintendo Land preview: Zelda: Battle Quest and Luigi's Ghost Mansion". Metro. Retrieved June 6, 2012.
- Crecente, Brian (November 16, 2012). "Wireless Tech Behind WiiU Gamepad". Polygon. Retrieved November 27, 2012.
- Kee, Edwin. "Wii U details released, gets redesigned controller and NFC capability". Ubergizmo. Retrieved June 12, 2012.
- "Wii U will let you purchase items using compatible transport money cards". Polygon. Retrieved December 3, 2014.
- LeJacq, Yannick. "How Nintendo's Amiibo Toys Will Work In Smash Bros. And Beyond". Kotaku. Kotaku. Retrieved July 19, 2014.
- "Corporate Management Policy Briefing/Third Quarter Financial Results Briefing". Nintendo. January 27, 2012. Retrieved February 11, 2012.
- JC Fletcher (January 31, 2012). "Iwata interested in NFC payments, tolerant of microtransactions". Joystiq. Retrieved June 12, 2012.
- "Wii U Pro Controller Boasts 80-Hour Battery Life". IGN.com. October 16, 2012. Retrieved September 21, 2013.
- Franich, Darren (June 3, 2012). "The Wii U Pro Controller looks very familiar..." EW.com. Retrieved July 28, 2012.
- Kain, Erik (June 5, 2012). "Nintendo's Smart Decision With Its Wii U Pro Controller". Forbes. Retrieved July 28, 2012.
- Grubb, Jeffrey (June 3, 2012). "Nintendo's Wii U Pro Controller may make Microsoft blush". VentureBeat. Retrieved July 28, 2012.
- Liebl, Matt (June 12, 2012). "Nintendo defends Wii U Pro Controller design". GameZone. Retrieved July 28, 2012.
- "Wii U Pro Controller Not Compatible With Wii Games". Tom's Hardware Guide. Retrieved November 26, 2012.
- Jon Fingas (June 5, 2012). "Nintendo: two Wii U Gamepads will work on one system". Engadget. Retrieved June 5, 2012.
- "Nintendo Unveils Hardcore Wii U Controller". Kotaku. Retrieved June 12, 2012.
- "Wii U GameCube controller adapter compatible with more than just Smash Bros". Eurogamer. Retrieved December 24, 2014.
- Newhouse, Alex (June 10, 2014). "E3 2014: Wii U's GameCube Controller Adapter Launches Alongside Super Smash Bros., Costs $20". GameSpot. Retrieved June 11, 2014.
- "Wii U's online gaming and 'Miiverse' outlined, including video chat and web client". The Verge. Retrieved December 24, 2014.
- "Nintendo reveals English version of 'Mii WaraWara': the WaraWara Plaza". Polygon. Retrieved December 24, 2014.
- "Social networking comes to Wii U, Miiverse will interface with PCs and phones". VentureBeat. June 5, 2012. Retrieved June 12, 2012.
- "Wii U Internet Browser Functionality Detailed – News". Nintendo World Report. Retrieved June 12, 2012."The Wii U web browser's HTML5 gaming capabilities". Gamasutra. December 9, 2012. Retrieved December 29, 2012.
- "Nintendo's Massive New Wii U Update Is *THIS* Shy of Greatness". Time. October 1, 2013. Retrieved December 26, 2014.
- "Nintendo Wii U Adds Video Chat". InformationWeek. Retrieved December 25, 2014.
- "Wii U allows 12 user accounts per system, eShop downloads playable by all". Eurogamer. Retrieved December 25, 2014.
- "Checking in on Splatoon's lively community and sleazy amiibo support". The AV Club. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
- JC Fletcher on (June 7, 2012). "Miiverse messages will be subject to moderation before posting". Joystiq. Retrieved October 25, 2012.
- "Nintendo shutting down Wii U TVii service in August". Polygon. Vox Media. Retrieved July 25, 2015.
- "PSA: Nintendo Wii U day-one patch now live, includes entire online infrastructure". Engadget. November 17, 2012. Retrieved November 18, 2012.
- "Wii U will not play DVDs or Blu-ray, Iwata says". Engadget. Retrieved December 25, 2014.
- "Nintendo TVii for Wii U Hands-On". IGN. Retrieved December 25, 2014.
- "Nintendo TVii Streams Video, DVR, Live TV to Wii U". PC Magazine. Retrieved October 13, 2014.
- "Nintendo TVii will launch with Wii U in Japan on December 8th, IR remote costs $1". Engadget. November 27, 2012. Retrieved December 19, 2012.
- "Nintendo officially launching TVii for Wii U in the US and Canada on December 20th". Engadget. December 19, 2012. Retrieved December 19, 2012.
- "Nintendo Officially Cancels TVii Support For Wii U In Europe". Game Informer. Retrieved February 15, 2015.
- "Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but soon Wii U TVii will hit Europe". TechRadar. Retrieved December 25, 2014.
- "Wii U『Nintendo TVii（ニンテンドーティービー）』サービス終了のお知らせ｜サポート情報｜Nintendo". www.nintendo.co.jp. Retrieved December 23, 2018.
- "Nintendo TVii | Wii U｜Nintendo" (in Japanese). Nintendo.co.jp. Retrieved June 16, 2016.
- Totilo, Stephen. "Wii U Discs Will Be 25GB In Size". Kotaku.
- Kohler, Chris (June 7, 2011). "Hands-On: With Wii U's Touchscreen Controller, Nintendo Could Radically Change Games". Wired.
- Gilbert, Ben (November 12, 2012). "Take a very, very close look at the round-edged Wii U proprietary discs". Engadget. Retrieved November 18, 2012.
- Plunkett, Luke (July 27, 2016). ""The Wii U Has No Games", A Study". Kotaku. Retrieved July 29, 2016.
- Tom Ivan (November 25, 2014). "Super Smash Bros becomes fastest-selling Wii U game in the US". Computer and Video Games. Archived from the original on November 28, 2014. Retrieved November 25, 2014.
- Makuch, Eddie (September 26, 2012). "Wii U launching with 23 games". GameSpot. Retrieved November 22, 2013.
- Goldfarb, Andrew (January 23, 2013). "Wii U Virtual Console, OS Upgrades Announced". IGN. Retrieved January 23, 2013.
- "Game Boy Advance Classics on Virtual Console". Nintendo of America. March 26, 2014. Retrieved October 27, 2015.
- "Nintendo-64-and-DS-Games-Coming-to-Wii-U-Virtual-Console". IGN. April 1, 2015. Retrieved July 23, 2015.
- "Nintendo DS and Nintendo 64 titles launching on Wii U Virtual Console". Polygon. April 1, 2015. Retrieved July 23, 2015.
- Peckham, Matt (September 17, 2012). "Nintendo: Wii U Is Core Enough and It's the Most Innovative Game System Ever Made". Time. Retrieved February 6, 2013.
- Bogos, Steven. "Wii U Mod Allows Gamecube Games to Be Played". The Escapist. Retrieved March 12, 2017.
- Teti, John (November 18, 2012). "Wii U: Every Which Way". The A.V. Club. Retrieved November 19, 2012.
- Gilbert, Ben (November 18, 2012). "Nintendo Wii U review". Engadget. Retrieved November 19, 2012.
- Andrew Hayward. "Nintendo Wii U review | Games consoles Reviews". TechRadar. Retrieved April 22, 2013.
- Shearer, Stew (May 11, 2013). "Insomniac "Not Working" on the Wii U". escapistmagazine.com. Retrieved May 12, 2013.
- Leadbetter, Richard (February 5, 2013). "Wii U graphics power finally revealed". EuroGamer.net. Retrieved February 28, 2013.
- Purchese, Robert (June 26, 2013). "Dreamfall Chapters: "We are preparing to go to consoles"". eurogamer.net. Retrieved July 11, 2013.
- Totilo, Stephen (June 18, 2013). "Nintendo: Saying Next-Gen is Only Sony vs. Microsoft Is So 2006". kotaku.com. Retrieved June 18, 2013.
- Kohler, Chris (December 5, 2013). "What the Hell Is Wrong With Nintendo?". Wired. Retrieved December 30, 2013.
- Nowak, Peter (December 30, 2013). "Year in review: The biggest tech flops of 2013". CBC News. Technology & Science. Retrieved December 30, 2013.
- Suellentrop, Chris (November 24, 2013). "Mario Tries to Rescue His Console". New York Times. Retrieved December 12, 2013.
- Peckham, Matt (December 4, 2013). "10 Reasons I'd Pick the Wii U over the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One Today". Time Tech. Time. Retrieved December 14, 2013.
- "Xbox or PS4? Maybe that's the wrong question". CNET. Retrieved December 14, 2013.
- "Consolidated Sales Transition by Region" (PDF). Nintendo. January 24, 2012. Archived from the original (PDF) on February 28, 2013. Retrieved June 16, 2013.
- "Consolidated Sales Transition by Region" (PDF). Nintendo. April 24, 2012. Archived from the original (PDF) on May 26, 2013. Retrieved June 16, 2013.
- "Consolidated Sales Transition by Region" (PDF). Nintendo. July 30, 2013. Archived from the original (PDF) on August 10, 2013. Retrieved July 31, 2013.
- "Consolidated Sales Transition by Region" (PDF). Nintendo. October 29, 2013. Archived from the original (PDF) on November 1, 2013. Retrieved October 30, 2013.
- "Consolidated Sales Transition by Region" (PDF). Nintendo. January 28, 2014. Archived from the original (PDF) on February 1, 2014. Retrieved January 29, 2014.
- "Consolidated Sales Transition by Region" (PDF). Nintendo. May 7, 2014. Archived from the original (PDF) on May 8, 2014. Retrieved May 7, 2014.
- "Consolidated Sales Transition by Region" (PDF). Nintendo. July 30, 2014. Archived from the original (PDF) on August 8, 2014. Retrieved July 30, 2014.
- "Consolidated Sales Transition by Region" (PDF). Nintendo. October 29, 2014. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 29, 2014. Retrieved October 29, 2014.
- "Consolidated Sales Transition by Region" (PDF). Nintendo. January 28, 2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on January 28, 2015. Retrieved January 28, 2015.
- "Consolidated Financial Statements – Consolidated Results for the Years Ended March 31, 2014 and 2015" (PDF). Nintendo. May 7, 2015. Archived (PDF) from the original on May 7, 2015. Retrieved May 7, 2015.
- "Consolidated Sales Transition by Region" (PDF). Nintendo. July 29, 2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on August 7, 2015. Retrieved July 29, 2015.
- "Consolidated Sales Transition by Region" (PDF). Nintendo. October 28, 2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on November 21, 2015. Retrieved October 28, 2015.
- "Consolidated Sales Transition by Region" (PDF). Nintendo. February 2, 2016. Archived from the original (PDF) on February 7, 2016. Retrieved February 6, 2016.
- "Consolidated Sales Transition by Region" (PDF). Nintendo. April 27, 2016. Archived from the original (PDF) on April 27, 2016. Retrieved April 27, 2016.
- "Consolidated Sales Transition by Region" (PDF). Nintendo. July 26, 2016. Archived from the original (PDF) on July 27, 2016. Retrieved July 27, 2016.
- "Consolidated Sales Transition by Region" (PDF). Nintendo. October 26, 2016. Archived from the original (PDF) on July 27, 2016. Retrieved October 27, 2016.
- "Consolidated Sales Transition by Region" (PDF). Nintendo. January 31, 2017. Archived from the original (PDF) on July 27, 2016. Retrieved January 31, 2017.
- Reisigner, Don. "Nintendo:1.2 million hardware units sold, 400,000 Wii U". cnet.com. Retrieved November 26, 2012.
- Snider, Mike; Molina, Brett (December 6, 2012). "'Call of Duty,' Wii U can't stop video game slide". USA Today. Gannett Company. Retrieved December 7, 2012.
- Cook, Dave. "Wii U: 40,000 Consoles Sold Over UK Launch Weekend – Report". VG247. Retrieved December 3, 2012.
- "Year-end Wii U sales steady, says Nintendo chief". Reuters. January 7, 2013. Retrieved January 7, 2013.
- Reisigner, Don. "Wii U sales surpass Wii's through first six weeks". news10.net. Archived from the original on October 4, 2013. Retrieved January 10, 2013.
- Sinclair, Brendan (February 15, 2013). "Wii U sells 57,000 systems in January". Retrieved February 17, 2013.
- Don Reisinger (February 15, 2013). "Uh-oh: Nintendo sold 57,000 Wii U units in the U.S. in January". CNET. Retrieved April 18, 2013.
- Jason Evangelho (January 30, 2013). "Nintendo Cuts FY 2013 Sales Projections By 17% Based On Sluggish Wii U Sales". Forbes. Retrieved February 6, 2013.
- Shaer, Matthew (January 30, 2013). "Nintendo Admits the Wii U Is Struggling to Gain Traction". The Christian Science Monitor. Christian Science Publishing Society.
- "Nintendo's Wii U sales disappoint". BBC. July 31, 2013.
- Shaer, Matthew (May 17, 2013). "EA Turns Its Back on the Nintendo Wii U: Report". The Christian Science Monitor. Christian Science Publishing Society.
- Tach, Dave (May 21, 2013). "EA is developing Wii U games, has bigger plans for PS4 and Xbox One, CFO says". Polygon.
- Totilo, Stephen (June 6, 2013). "Ubisoft to Nintendo: Sell More Systems and We'll Make More Exclusives". Retrieved July 11, 2013.
- Goldfarb, Andrew (June 24, 2013). "Ubisoft 'Big Supporters' of Wii U, Mobile Companion Apps". ign.com. Retrieved July 11, 2013.
- Crossley, Rob (July 17, 2013). "Bethesda has 'no games in development for Wii U'". Retrieved July 17, 2013.
- Mallory, Jordan (August 6, 2013). "Wii U not on Bethesda's short-term radar". joystiq.com. Retrieved August 8, 2013.
- Phillips, Tom (July 26, 2013). "Activision: we're doing "everything we can" to support Wii U". Eurogamer. Retrieved August 3, 2013.
- Crossley, Rob (July 29, 2013). "Asda suspends Wii U stock". ComputerAndVideoGames.com. Retrieved July 30, 2013.
- Whitehead, Thomas (August 2, 2013). "Specialist Retailers Emphasize Their Support for the Wii U". Nintendo Life. Retrieved August 3, 2013.
- Buckley, Sean (November 18, 2012). "Wii U sales jump in wake of price cut, increased by 200% in September". Engadget. Retrieved November 22, 2013.
- Andy Robinson (October 30, 2013). "News: Nintendo reports 300k Wii U console sales in Q2". ComputerAndVideoGames. Retrieved November 22, 2013.
- Parfitt, Ben. "Play.com predicts Wii U dominance this Christmas". MCV UK. Retrieved December 12, 2013.
- Haywald, Justin. "Wii U sales in Japan surpass PS3, Vita, and Xbox 360 this week". GameSpot. Retrieved December 19, 2013.
- Hellio, Patrick. "Super Mario 3D World Killer-App De La Wii U ?" (in French). JDLI.com. Archived from the original on February 7, 2015. Retrieved December 4, 2013.
- Cook, Dave. "Japanese game charts: Puzzles & Dragons Z tops software, Wii U sales up". VG247. Retrieved December 19, 2013.
- Phillips, Tom. "PlayStation 4 UK launch sales hit 250k". Eurogamer.net. Retrieved December 14, 2013.
- Jackson, Mike. "NPD: PS4 tops Xbox One in North American November sales". CVG. Retrieved December 14, 2013.
- "3DS Tops US Hardware Sales as Wii U Achieves "Its Highest Month" in December". Nintendo Life. Retrieved January 18, 2014.
- Davis, Justin (January 7, 2014). "What Sony's '4.2 Million PS4s Sold' Figure Actually Means". IGN. Retrieved January 29, 2014.
- Chang-Ran Kim (January 17, 2014). "UPDATE 2-Nintendo heads for third consecutive annual loss as Wii U flops". Reuters. Retrieved January 29, 2014.
- MacDonald, Keza (January 17, 2014). "Does it Really Matter if the Wii U Fails?". IGN. Retrieved January 29, 2014.
- Haywald, Justin. "Nintendo's Wii U and 3DS see strong February sales over last year". GameSpot. Retrieved May 17, 2014.
- Whitehead, Thomas. "Wii U Lifetime Sales in Japan Overtake the Xbox 360". Nintendo Life. Retrieved May 17, 2014.
- "Wii U sales tracking 50% less than GameCube, one-tenth of Wii". Metro. Retrieved May 17, 2014.
- Whitehead, Thomas. "Latest PS4 Sales Figures Take it Past Wii U Life-to-Date Q3 Total". Nintendo Life. Retrieved May 17, 2014.
- Whitehead, Thomas. "Satoru Iwata Explains "Conservative" Wii U Sales Projection of Just 3.6 Million Units". Nintendo Life. Retrieved May 17, 2014.
- Woitier, Chloe. "Mario Kart 8 va relancer les ventes de la Wii U". Le Figaro (in French). Le Figaro. Retrieved June 2, 2014.
- Castle, Matthew. "Mario Kart 8 and Wii U celebrate chart success!". Official Nintendo Magazine UK. Official Nintendo Magazine. Archived from the original on November 10, 2014. Retrieved June 2, 2014.
- Ivan, Tom (June 2, 2014). "Mario Kart 8 boosts UK Wii U hardware sales 666%". Computer and Video Games. Retrieved June 2, 2014.
- Peckham, Matt (July 18, 2014). "PlayStation 4 Sweeps June Game Sales, While Mario Kart 8 Resuscitates the Wii U". Time. Time. Retrieved July 19, 2014.
- "Nintendo says Wii U just had its biggest month of sales". Polygon. Retrieved February 22, 2015.
- "Wii U sales finally hit 10 million units as Nintendo nabs tiny profit". CNET. Retrieved October 13, 2015.
- "Nintendo NX "is neither the successor to the Wii U nor to the 3DS"". VG24/7. Retrieved May 17, 2016.
- "Nintendo NX launches March 2017, won't simply replace Wii U and 3DS". Geek.com. Retrieved May 3, 2016.
- Westaway, Luke. "Nintendo will make games for phones, new 'NX' system". CNET. Retrieved March 17, 2015.
- Reilly, Luke (April 27, 2016). "Nintendo NX Will Launch In March 2017". IGN. Ziff Davis. Retrieved April 27, 2016.
- "Zelda Wii U Delayed to 2017, Also Coming to NX". IGN. Ziff Davis Media. Retrieved May 3, 2016.
- Brightman, James (July 7, 2016). "Wii U was expected to sell 100 million units". GamesIndustry.biz. Retrieved July 7, 2016.
- Crecente, Brian (October 20, 2016). "Nintendo: Switch is a home gaming system 'first and foremost'". Polygon. Retrieved October 20, 2016.
- Orland, Kyle (October 21, 2016). "One day later, additional Nintendo Switch details dribble out". Ars Technica. Retrieved October 21, 2016 – via Condé Nast.
- Osborn, Alex (November 11, 2016). "Nintendo Officially Announces Wii U Production is Ending". IGN. Retrieved November 11, 2016.
- Peckham, Matt (January 15, 2017). "Nintendo America Boss: Switch Will Have 'Nintendo Flair'". TIME.com. Retrieved January 15, 2017.
- Yuriff, Kaya (November 9, 2017). "Nintendo exec: Failed Wii U is responsible for Switch's success". CNN. Retrieved November 10, 2017.
- "Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild will be the last Nintendo game for Wii U". Polygon. Vox Media. January 19, 2017. Retrieved January 19, 2017.
- Life, Nintendo (August 16, 2020). "Shakedown: Hawaii For Wii U Arrives Next Week". Nintendo Life. Retrieved September 12, 2020.