Nintendo has announced that it will be phasing out production of the Wii U gaming console in Japan. There is no word on whether or not this will affect the availability of the console in America, but Nintendo has listed that both the White 32GB version and Splatoon 32GB version will be the consoles affected in the Japanese region. This news comes after it was mistakenly announced that the console would be ending production as soon as last Friday. Nintendo has only told North American customers considering buying a Wii U to “communicate with their preferred retail outlet to monitor availability”.
This news arrives a few weeks after the announcement of Nintendo’s latest console, the Nintendo Switch. The console aims to be more successful than the the Wii U, which failed to meet the sales expectations Nintendo had set for it. The Wii U has also failed to perform as well as Nintendo’s other console, the 3DS, which sells for a more affordable price. Despite the dismal sales figures for the Wii U, the system has seen a few quality titles over the past few years that gamers have reacted positively towards. The latest entry in the Smash Bros. series has sold over 5 million copies, and their new original IP in Splatoon has sold more than 4 million copies.
With many diehard Nintendo fans looking forward to the release of the Switch, it seems like now is an apt time for the company to begin the process of dropping support for their past console. The Wii U had a rocky launch due to the lack of appealing titles available from day one, but the gimmicky nature of the gamepad and confusing name may have also played a part in it’s failure to attract consumers. However, the console has supported a fantastic array of games over it’s lifetime, including Super Mario 3D World, Mario Kart 8, Bayonetta 2, Nintendo Land, and Xenoblade Chronicles X. Though Nintendo may have viewed the console as a disappointment, it’s been a success for gamers who appreciate the company’s unique approach to extraordinary gameplay experiences.