to tell you all my opinion the wii may sell 80 miliion units but not to hardcore gamers who keep consoles going. if u look at what the wii is selling most it is wii play and wii sports. okay but compare to xbox360 which is selling crackdown lost planet,gears of war and so. those games are for serious gamers not just the non-gamer. the ps3 on the other hand it top sellers are resistance:fall of man, motor storm, and virtua fighter 5. these are real games. as in theyre games meant to be played not wii sports or wii play or even raymond raving rabbids. these arent games you enjoy. and personally when u buy a hdtv u already have the money so many people just buy a ps3 or 360 to go with it. and if i made any grammar mistakes please excuse me cuz my spelling sucks.
First, I don't know the actual breakdown of casual vs traditional gamers so far as Wii sales go. I would be willing to venture a guess that a large number of households contain both, so the difference may not be as big as some are making it out to be.
Second, casual gamers often includes adults with well paying jobs and disposable incomes. Its going to be hard to predict exactly what their long term purchases will look like. God knows 8 years ago I would never have predicted that so many casual movie watchers would have purchased so many DVDs.
Thirdly, what Nintendo and Sony and 3rd parties care about is not so much which games are sold as they are how many copies of a given game are sold. So far, Nintendo's top titles are handily outperforming Sony's top titles. Third parties are especially taking note of this, and are beginning to move their better development teams onto Wii titles. The question is - what are they being moved from?
Finally, you can't really look at WiiPlay or WiiSports as typical games. WS is obviously packed in with the console, so there's no way to tell who would have bought it had it been a separate purchase. And many gamers are buying WiiPlay simply because they want the 2nd controller, and given the success of WS, are willing to spend the extra $10 to give it a shot. Rayman Raving Rabids is a better sample, and that's the 2nd or 3rd best selling Cube game after Zelda. The other game in that trio is, I think, Red Steel, which does appeal to the traditional gamer more than the casual one, so I'm not sure there is any discernable pattern emerging yet. The real test will be when games like Brain Age, EA Playground, and Carnival Games, come out against Mario, Metroid and Smash Bros.
The real trick here is that Nintendo is trying to engage the casual gamers so that they don't continue the same lacksidasical pattern you cite in previous generations. If Nintendo fails, they may still have enough traditional gamers (who are more interested in the Wii than they ever were in the GCN), but if they are successful (as they have been with the DS), then all past precedent has to be tossed out the window, and Sony and MS will have to hurry up and adjust to a brand new paradigm.