Nintendo of America's Reggie Fils-Aime has rejected the notion that the Wii U's name -- a name that fails to really distinguish Nintendo's new console from its predecessor -- is responsible for the console's failure at retail, instead pointing to the lack of games.
"The challenges we're facing with Wii U are not issues of the name," Fils-Aime told Kotaku, also admitting that sales of the Wii U in the U.S. are only at 1.5 million units, roughly half the number that the original Wii shifted in the same space of time.
"The issue is the lack of a steady rate of software launches to motivate the consumer to drive buzz and engagement and to highlight the wide variety of uses of the GamePad. That's the issue."
There's no doubt that Nintendo have dropped the ball there, but surely the branding has something to o with it? After all, many of the people we've spoken to have no idea that the Wii U is even a separate console. Reggie, however, is unmoved.
"As we sit here today again I would say that's not the issue," Fils-Aime said. "The consumer understands that we have a new system. But the consumer is saying: 'What am I going to play? And what am I going to play that's a new and unique and compelling experience vs. what I can do today, whether it's on the Wii or any other system?'
"And that's why experiences like Pikmin 3, like Wonderful 101, like Zelda Wind Waker HD, with the off-TV play, experiences like Super Mario 3D World—that's why it's critical that we launch those, have consumers experience them in malls across the country, which we'll be doing. It's critical that the consumer see for themselves the range and breadth of compelling software for the system."
One would that Nintendo might have realised that you need games on a games console, that this is what the people really want from their games consoles, before they launched the Wii U. Still, better late than never, eh? In any case, the Wii U won't be getting a name-change any time soon.