Nintendo's president, Satoru Iwata, has acknowledged that "there must be some concerns" over the Wii U's software and pricing, but he has said that Nintendo plan to deliver a strong message in the autumn to help gather momentum for the console's launch.
Iwata also hit back at critics suggesting that the Wii U might not be as revolutionary as its predecessor, stating that the unveiling of the original Wii was met with similar scepticism and that those critics have short memories.
"There are some media reports saying the Wii U may not be a revolutionary product like the Wii," explained Iwata during a recent shareholders meeting. "When I was interviewed by media reporters overseas at E3 recently, their comment was, 'The Wii appeared to be a promising product to succeed from the beginning; however, Wii U does not look that way.'
"People have forgotten what the real story was.
For the Wii, before its launch and right after its announcement, the feedback was similar to that of the Wii U. In other words, when something unique comes up, it’s difficult for people to understand it at the beginning. A lot of misunderstandings and pessimistic observations, like, 'Will a product like this really spread in the market?' prevail and then after some time, after being able to experience it, the atmosphere changes.
"Almost every one of the reporters asked [of the original Wii], 'How in the world are you going to compete with SONY or Microsoft with a product like this?' Everyone has forgotten what the real situation was. Then, in hindsight, I think some people say, 'I was convinced about the success of the Wii from the beginning' only after looking at the results."
Iwata also reminded the assembled shareholders that neither the 3DS nor the Wii were given a launch date or price at their corresponding E3 events, firing a blow at media outlets who were (admittedly) rather obsessed with both details.
Iwata did concede that Nintendo's announcements (or lack thereof) had made the future software lineup unclear, but he indicated that there would be news on both the launch window and the Wii U's pricing this autumn, noting that Nintendo would need to generate sales momentum approaching winter.
"Finally, another issue is that the visibility of the future software lineup is unclear. During E3, titles for the overseas markets were highlighted and the titles we introduced then were only the ones to be available at the launch time and within the launch window period, which might make you wonder, 'What will become of the software in the next year?'
"It is our intention to convey a strong message this fall with the information about the price and the launch date and then to create momentum good enough to convince our consumers to buy (the Wii U), but currently, there must be some concerns.
"Overall, we believe that the current share price has been determined based on what I mentioned today. In the near term, with the introduction of the Nintendo 3DS XL followed by new software titles in July and August, the most important issue is to what degree we can change the business momentum of the Nintendo 3DS in the world. Then, subsequently, when we launch the Wii U, we intend to announce the next step by saying what will happen in the future, and by doing this, we would like to change the evaluation in the market."