I said on my very first post here way back in mid-March that Wii would have sold worldwide 20 Million units by the end of 2007/before the start of 2008 at the VERY LEAST. And I have stuck by that word unflinchingly despite the disbelief and appeals to modify the thought from concerned posters.
With Wii on the crest of 15 Million while we still stand in November, the prediction is now a certainty. Japan will come out of the usual fall seasonal slump with Wii Fit in a few days and complete the Wii-moving trifecta of markets. 2007 is ready for the record books. It's all over with, done & solved.
But it wasn't so long after I talked about 20 Million in 2007 that I began talking about 60 Million by the end of 2008. And still I received more disbelief and appeals to modify predictions from varied posters. I can't blame them for feeling that way. It does seem hard to swallow upon sight.
HERE is what people miss when assessing this number.
First off Super Smash Bros. Brawl will cement buyers from the other console camps, 360 & PS3, over to Wii's side. Even though I hate these erroneously-applied labels Brawl will be the "hardcore magnet" that pulls its strength from other competitors. Melee on Gamecube was sometimes the only reason some people picked up the so-called "kiddie" Gamecube. This effect will be seen again in Brawl and more since Wii is much more popular than Gamecube ever was. The game adding so much than the loaded-to-chock-full Melee already did will make this game a tower of power in 2008. It all depends on when Nintendo releases it and short of another long-term pushback I think this title will move some serious Wii even to those whiners who mindlessly parrot that "collecting dust" mantra.
Next you got Mario Kart Wii which as seen by DS is just one of those titles that pulls in all types. Nintendo ingeniously created this madcap genre of manic zany go-kart racing and the online component on Wii mixed with Wii controls will just ensure the grabbability of this title. The so-called "hardcore" & "casual" (whatever those mean) alike. It will be very accessible and the online play component makes sure it's locked in tight. Another system seller supreme.
Next is Wii Fit which will show you its impact in Japan very shortly. Wii Fit will outsell ALL of the titles in 2008. ALL of them. It will scare you with its Wii Play-like ever-presence. It will never stay out of the top 10 for long and most likely will never drop out of top 20 for a giant portion of its life. If Nintendo (When Nintendo) succeeds in finally merging exercise and gaming together in one neat package it is all she wrote for system sales. Don't let Oprah or NBC/CBS/ABC morning shows start proclaiming its uses and benefits. Don't let evening news broadcasts local and national start rattling off stories promoting the benefits of Wii Fit. Don't let Newsweek, Time, Redbook, Esquire or any lifestyle magazine start pushing up Wii Fit as a useful fitness aid. And lo & behold do not let it get out that through the idea of turning exercise into a game that people stick with the routines more making them lose a little weight in the process. If THAT happens Nintendo will have only exacerbated their Wii production woes. They would have just made things worse for getting this rarified product out onto shelves to satisfy an ever-increasing demand. Some may call Wii Fit the "casual magnet". I look at it as the "everybody magnet". Don't be surprised if frat houses start picking up this package with the competition aspects built into the game. The charts and stuff. This title has Tom Hanks' "Big" written all over it.
Next is the influx of powerful 3rd party titles AT LAST. FINALLY the 3rd party recognized the errors of their ways and are now producing selections for the Wii that are not thoughtless and slapped together at the last minute. These 3rd parties will learn how to make novel uses for the Wii control that can potentially expand the direction of gameplay though this will be seen more in 2009 than in 2008. Nintendo's side story franchise receivings of the Crystal Chronicles kind will NOW began receiving the Real Enumerated (5) deal. Guitar Hero III is showing 3rd party that it is possible to make some bank on Wii despite Nintendo's starpowered presence. The results of this Christmas season will further change 3rd party attitudes toward Nintendo and the Wii. This will bring a few people over to the Wii side from other 7th gen competitors and from some still playing around in the 6th gen (PS2ers). The influx of powerful 3rd party offerings will in turn produce an influx of buyerbase for the Wii.
Star Wars. You missed Star Wars. There's a reason why Nintendo's in San Francisco now and part of that reason is to talk to Lucasarts about some choice Star Wars titles. The very moment a prominent title involving lightsaber dueling is put on the market is the day when buyers flood in like Guitar Hero III X Over 9000!! When perfected Wiimote lightsaber dueling is produced that encourages a social aspect with more than one person playing in one room is the day when Nintendarmageddon begins. It will be HUGE. I have to check out Lego Star Wars Wii to see how it plays. This will give me an idea on how the really big Star Wars title performs.
Nintendo will be faced with games like these pushing demand even higher than the uncanny level it already is now. In turn they will adjust up up up UP as these factories work out the kinks and start pushing out some real units. Nintendo has been under a NES/SNES production model for so long that it is hard to adjust to the new way of producing. NES sold over 60 million & SNES sold about 50 million. In their console dethroning by Sony, Nintendo then sold about 35 million N64s & 21 million GCs. So as you can see they haven't had practice putting out PS-levels of product on the console side with PS1 selling 100 million & PS2 selling well over 120 million. They have to plan out how to produce on this level without waste. It's not Nintendo's way to waste. So they are in the process of adjusting to a PS-level of production as we speak. BUT that will not be enough. The philosophy of the system ensures greater audience gathering so while they, this comparatively smaller company, are trying to match Sony's levels of production they will THEN have to pioneer a new standard of production that you can label "Wii". This level will surpass the PS production levels because demand...well, demands it.
You also gotta remember that Nintendo produces handhelds too. A record number of these as always. So Nintendo has to balance selling record levels of DSs as well as record levels of Wiis. A company with only 3000 employees worldwide without the internal factories of a Sony will have a harder time adjusting. But they will eventually adjust. The money is on the table and it will compel them to make sure not to miss it. Strong titan-like demand will cause conservative Nintendo to raise their bare minimum of conservatism. To meet record demand without wasting is Nintendo's plan right now.
In the end all this will put Nintendo at 60 million by the end of 2008. Japan will be on fire. The Americas will be on fire. And the way things are going Europe & PALs will be on fire. They are going to have to meet all this demand.
And one more thing. What if they finally decide to price drop? I don't see it coming either. Not until say 2009 at the LEAST but it could happen even though it would make no sense selling the way they're doing now. The moment this system hits the magic $200 number and below is the moment sales flare like sunbursts on the solar star. Only worsening Nintendo's supply & demand problem.
Oh and more other thing. Colors. All those colors we saw back in the day of Wii. Some people are just waiting on their black Wii that Kotaku leaked last year. This is far off too because they don't really need these routines right now or for a long time. But this will push up sales too.
The first year is always the slowest for the new hit system. Each subsequent year piles on until the next generation slows its momentum. There is always a flare out. How did PS2 sell between 10 to 15 million in the first year and end up with over 120 in 7 years? 10 X 7 = 70 & 15 X 7 = 105. So there must have been momentum that was built allowing sales to flood in at some point. Some people see a system in stores for years before buying. The habit of it always being there sticks in the mind of the potential buyer and one day that buyer decides to get it when mood or finances allow. First-year adopters, second-year adopters, third-year adopters and so on even to last-minute adopters (which is what we're seeing with PS2 on the charts right now). The range of early birds to johnny-come-latelies push sales through the roof for the leading system.
Wii is the leading system PERIOD and it is tracking above PS2 in every way including being able to sell 20 Million in the 1st full year. This system will break all records. You are looking at the Michael Jackson's Thriller of game consoles. And me being a dedicated MJ fan who witnessed Thriller as it was taking place (6, 7, & 8 years old) knows a phenomenon when I see it. They laugh at Avinash_Tyagi saying that Wii will outsell the entire family of Playstation machines. I see that he smells what I'm cooking when I say lifetime sales of Wii will be AT BARE BOTTOM, VERY LEAST, MINIMUM of 240 Million units sold. I see 500 Million as a territory when this is all said and done. It will break all records and all conventions and all rules and all modes of thought. This game console was called Revolution for a reason. And you're only seeing the opening stages.
Words from the Official VGChartz Idiot
WE ARE THE NATION...OF DOMINATION!