Aug 15th, 2014


One of the biggest misconceptions about the Wii U that is still repeated on a near daily basis by those who are not acquainted with Nintendo’s hardware is that it “has no games.” That’s becoming less true over time as Nintendo finally gets its act together and begins debuting quality titles that even gamers who are not hardcore Nintendo fans want to play. If you’ve ever seen a Sony or Microsoft fanboy screaming about Bayonetta 2 being a Wii U exclusive, then you’ve run into that lot already.

Nintendo games always do exceedingly well due to the level of attention paid to both gameplay and aesthetics. Mario Kart 8 recently became the second Wii U game to pass 1 million sales in the US alone, with the first being New Super Mario Bros. U. But what about Nintendo’s other games? What about its stellar Nintendo 3DS catalogue? It turns out, Nintendo-published games tend to sell very well if they’re part of a previously established franchise.

While the Wii U is still sitting at around 7 million units sold worldwide, the Nintendo 3DS has managed to sell 40 million units in the United States alone. In speaking of games that have released on that platform, 41 titles have a Metacritic score of 80 or above. 9 of those games have broken the 1 million sold barrier in the United States as well.

  1. Mario Kart 7: 3.48 million
  2. Super Mario 3D Land: 3.09 million
  3. New Super Mario Bros. 2: 2.28 million
  4. Pokémon X: 2.10 million
  5. Pokémon Y: 2.01 million
  6. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D: 1.39 million
  7. Animal Crossing: New Leaf: 1.36 million
  8. Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon: 1.33 million
  9. The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds: 1.09 million

Given that Nintendo has paid special attention to the Nintendo 3DS to turn it from what would be considered a flop of a launch to a startling success, it’s not hard to see the same working out for the Wii U. When Super Smash Bros. U releases this fall, it will likely be the third Nintendo Wii U title that crosses the 1 million sold line in North America. From there, we could see a huge increase in the amount of Wii U consoles being sold, as many gamers have stated they’re waiting for something big like Super Smash Bros. U before buying a Wii U.

Either way, it’s hard to argue with hardcore statistics, which show that not only does Nintendo make great games, but that tons of people want to play them, too.

What games are you looking forward to seeing this holiday season and beyond?

local_offer    mario kart 8  Nintendo  nintendo 3ds  wii u  
  • But Nintendo is doomed and should go third party.


    • Rinslowe

      They should go second party for Ouya.

      • Epicstuf

        First Party for Microsoft

  • Rinslowe

    Good things are happening for the big N and Wii U owners in the following months and throughout next year, with the software coming. It’s feasible to assume sales will continue to improve, all the way through to 2016 overall.

  • Ducked

    I heard Super Mario 3D World sold around 750k a few months ago. It surprises me that it hasn’t passed a million yet. Also what surprises me is that Kingdom Hearts 3D Dream Drop Distance hasn’t sold over a million. Since it was the only good game out on the 3DS that year too.

    Edit: I misread US

    • 504HotBoy

      I’m sure it’s over 750k. Don’t they have over 2 million units sold worldwide?

      • Rinslowe

        Definitely over 2 million worldwide sales. But genuine US figures to date are hard to come by…

      • Ducked

        I was thinking this article was worldwide. Yeah they do.

    • Mario fatigue. Still no cure.

      • Daniel Gonzalez

        Sounds about right.

  • matthew garcia

    I’m suprised wind waker is not on that list

    • 504HotBoy

      That’s 3DS list.

      • matthew garcia

        Oh crap your right. My bad lol

        • Daniel Gonzalez

          Wonder where the Wii U games are.

          • matthew garcia

            Yeah I was wondering myself lol

          • Daniel Gonzalez

            I figured a few would make this list.

          • matthew garcia

            Mario and friends fan base has gotten smaller and has lost popularity in the gaming market. What’s weird is that I have a big family and there alot of kids but none of them talk about Mario. They talk about games that there not even old enough to play yet lol. It’s like kids don’t wanna be kids anymore

          • Daniel Gonzalez

            Could be that kids these days have different preferences and tastes, and Mario may not fit the bill for them. I just grew bored of them. I still play the older games on occasion, but it’s not the first thing on my mind when in gaming mode. Mario years ago was bigger since Nintendo was basically the only real console out there at the time. Now that there’s plenty of competition, that number certainly decreased over time. Now we have more options and there are other developers out there, plenty make great games just as good as Nintendo.

          • Rinslowe

            “I just grew bored of them.”

            Seems a real shame, you’re missing out on some of the best experiences of the generation…

          • Rinslowe

            “They talk about games that there not even old enough to play yet”

            That’s just a part of growing up really. Wanting to be older and seen as more mature among your peers etc. And looking “cool” in front of the older kids…

          • matthew garcia

            That’s true. I just remember being a kid in the early and mid 90’s and it was cool to talk about Mario. The Times have definitely changed in my eyes

          • Rinslowe

            It’s still cool to talk about Mario. Just depends on your own maturity. Kids have more realistic representations of killing “the enemy” now in gaming etc. So of course they’re going to gravitate towards what feels exciting to talk about, again, according to their age. But I think games like COD online and BF online still have more stylised killing than anything. So it still has it’s moments competitively. If anything theres a gore overload in gaming today that speaks volumes about the immaturity of some developers and the studios they work for. While they pander to the excitement and hype created within the younger crowd, as a way to generate their income. Any mature adult who still thinks it’s a kick to see someone’s face blown off in full graphic detail, as close to real life as is possible. Obviously have never seen the real thing. Or have certain issues…
            Just saying.

          • matthew garcia

            I agree that Mario is still cool to talk about I just feel kids here in America are pressured by other kids to think a certain way. It kind of goes down a latter. Celebrities like movie stars or musicians make these trends up, kids follow, ends up spreading on social media which makes it worse, then all the kids just become sheep that can’t think for themselves. Call of duty is part of that sheep trend that brainwashes kids. Mario is what was made to conserve a kids innocence and let a kids imagination run wild. It’s like a evolution of gaming that is just being bypassed now by kids that shouldnt be passed up.

          • Rinslowe

            “make these trends up, kids follow,”

            This has happened since possibly the dawn of civilisation, or thereabouts…

          • matthew garcia

            Internet definitely took it to a new extreme. Everybody knows everything

          • Rinslowe

            More collectively focused.

      • Guest

        It’s just Nintendo in general actually.

    • Speaking about Wind Waker HD, it’s lifetime sales have been about 1 million worldwide, with about half, or 500k from the United States. Certainly not bad, but we’re looking at titles that cross the 1 million mark exclusively. Smash will likely be next.

      • matthew garcia

        Yeah those numbers are still pretty good. Smash will probably cross a million in the U.S. alone in 24 hours

      • Fred

        But that’s probably physical only. WWHD probably has a higher than normal percentage digital as those that bought it digitally (like me) got it significantly earlier than those that waited to get the disc.

        That’s the thing with these numbers, my purchases aren’t reflected in your list at all as Except for Nintendo Land my games are digital.

        Speaking of Nintendo Land…that one HAS crossed the 1 million in the US mark (at least according to the site you all hate )

        • Generally when we talk about games that have crossed thresholds, we don’t include any game that the console is bundled with. Wii Sports was the highest selling game of all time on the Wii because it was bundled with all Wii consoles.

          Nintendo has actually had to branch out and have multiple SKUs for the Wii U in order to entice consumers to purchase.

          • Fred

            But for the car majority of people Wii sports was THE reason they bought a Wii. If it hasn’t come with it they would have bought it separately is a shame not to count it

          • Zach

            Hello, Ashley King. I was wondering if you could help me get back in contact with Rob Jackson. Sorry about the onslaught messages.

          • If it was bundled with all Wii consoles then how did it sell less
            than 100 million copies?

            Were there some Wii consoles that didn’t include the game?

      • Officer Raichu

        3d world will be next then smash then possibly xenoblade and most likely zelda

    • iago parrot


  • disqus_1S1GyNUnq5

    i don’t care what some casual crowd is buying aimlessly together for their kids and granny parties. i haven’t turned my wii u on for more than half a year now and i don’t expect that to change.

    • Rinslowe

      That’s a real shame. It’s a pity to hear when someone buys into something, only to feel as though they’ve spent their money unwisely.

      • D.M.T

        That happens when you don’t think before you buy something. I bet he bought a Wii U because of hype at launch. How come I don’t regret my purchase? Because I knew from the start that Wii U was gonna be my favorite console this gen.

        • oontz

          So you’re saying the wiiu sold on hype at launch? Interesting.

          • Rinslowe

            Of course it did…
            They all do.

          • A – Kuma

            LMAO WHAT HYPE!? Hardly anyone knew the damn thing existed! I only knew about it because i try to keep up to date on the latest gaming news.

          • Rinslowe

            “LMAO WHAT HYPE!?Hardly anyone knew the damn thing existed!”

            Except the Nintendo faithful, obviously…
            3.5m apparently. So what you’re saying otherwise is it sold on merits when no-one knew it existed? lol.

            “I only knew about it because i try to keep up to date on the latest gaming news.”

            And you assume to be the only one? Nintendo fans no doubt knew it was coming. Only everybody else was confused by the name, lack of marketing etc…

          • A – Kuma

            “hardly anyone”, not “no one”. it spread through word of mouth for those who weren’t really keeping up to date and happened to see it or knew someone that saw it. “So what you’re saying otherwise is it sold on merits when no-one knew it existed?” I thought that was obvious and widespread info by now.

            What exactly are you playing at? It would be pretty retarded for anyone to assume they were the only ones trying to stay current. I plainly stated that i only knew about the wii u because I look at the news all the time….

            are you looking for an arguement where no argument is needed???

          • Rinslowe

            3.5m sales on merit? No. Lets be realistic here. It sold on hype for those hardcore Nintendo fans. Hype for the console, whether that came through knowledge of the system online, by word of mouth or whatever. It sold on hype. And the line-up of games goes a long way to proving that at the time of launch.

            “” I thought that was obvious and widespread info by now.

            Nothing sells 3.5m units on “merit” when no-one knows of that things existence. So no to that.

            “are you looking for an arguement where no argument is needed???

            That would also be a no…

            *We can agree to disagree here on this topic.

          • A – Kuma

            ….you just repeated yourself and me. Seriously, what are you playing at?
            Maybe i’m not being specific enough for you or you just don’t understand. But all you’ve said is that i’m right.
            “whether that came through knowledge of the system online, by word of mouth” <— my point you're repeating back to me as yours. "or whatever. It sold on hype." <— extra word i choose not to use in my description.
            The PS4 sold on hype, actual hype. Everyone everywhere either online or through television was going to know about this systems existence. And they confinued that aggressive push to get people hyped.
            The wii u was talked about at the conferences before launch, but anything else about the system near, day of, and after launch was all online info at gaming websites and those people spreading the word. There were still people even a year later, hell even today there still are people, that don't know at all or are unsure of what the wii u is even supposed to be. That is not the result of hype. Now if you still have something to contest in spite of the fact that we're saying the same thing, i really don't know what else to tell you.

          • Rinslowe

            “*We can agree to disagree here on this topic.”

            Take my previous hint above and get over yourself. There’s no need to hold such simplistic one sided views of what is defined as “hype”. There is no convincing stoic fanboys like yourself that such concepts in fact have many definitions. And just as many vehicles to reaching a similar end result.

          • A – Kuma

            …i’m convinced the definition of “fanboy” is lost now. so many people are throwing the term around and a lazy scapegoat that they will literally say it in any topic it seems.
            Look, flexing pseudo-intelligence and randomly flinging “fanboy” at me doesn’t change a thing i’ve said since the beginning, you’re a parrot that wants to win an imaginary argument.
            The bottom line is in spite of the fact that you disagree on my wording(lacking the word “hype”) you’re still saying the same thing as i am but only claiming it as hype instead. if you want to believe it’s hype then fine, i’ll let you do that. next time you decide to engage me in some kind of debate or conflict of opinion, make sure the conflict is clear as opposed to just repeating what i’m saying and adding your own wordage.
            case closed.

          • Rinslowe

            “…i’m convinced the definition of “fanboy” is lost now.

            Nope. You keep it alive, kicking and clearly defined. Seen enough of your drivel to know that at this point.

          • A – Kuma

            …’s official, you went from ignorant to idiot. You want to run around calling people who game on multiple platforms and play games from multiple companies a fanboy, then go ahead and have fun with that. I’m bored with your retarded trolling.

          • Rinslowe

            You still mumbling over there… Lol.

          • oontz

            I know that, just funny to see DMT admit it after his stern views on the success of the PS4.

          • Daniel Gonzalez

            It always starts off with hype. Of course, lack of releases sure makes sales dip.

          • oontz

            Agreed. I just thought it was funny that DMT said this about the wiiu.

          • Daniel Gonzalez

            True. It’s rare to get that sort of response from him.

    • Mr Ninty

      so you didn’t buy donkey kong or mario kart8? and you ain’t going to buy smash or bayo or hyrule warriors?

    • Squid

      If Bayonetta, Donkey Kong, Mario Kart, and even the upcoming smash bros doesn’t bring you in I don’t know what to tell ya.

    • Fred

      What kind of games do you like?

    • D.M.T

      Congratulations on wasting your money! It’s probably your parents money so you don’t care. Next time use your brains, maybe that’s too much asking but do yourself that favor. Stop doing things that you’ll regret later on. Sell your Wii U and go play Call Of Duty with the “hardcore” crowd on PS4/XBO

      • Dialated

        lol this is awesome, I own an x1 since launch and I’ve played my 2 week old wiiu more than my xbox. new super mario, mario 3d world, wind waker HD, nes remixes, virtual console and more coming! woot. although this will be Diablo 3 week for me

        • D.M.T

          You’re a real gamer. I’m happy to know that you enjoy playing games on your Wii U and XBO

    • Daniel Gonzalez

      Buyer’s remorse certainly sucks. Should have been more careful with your money. Not sure what you meant by casual crowd as they’re all on mobiles these days. I think you mean Nintendo diehards.

  • bistricky

    Gamers know quality games and will always support them.
    And Nintendo systems have many of the best games.

  • Will.F. Martinez

    Was trying to stop playing games once the last generation. But pick it back up once I seen the wiiu. Didn’t care what major company had I just knew it was different and the game was going to more interesting to play. The more games I played the more realized Nintendo wouldn’t let me down and the more I realize I was a Nintendo fan even if I have other consoles at home. Sells don’t matter it’s the games being produced and there quality. Nintendo still delivers both

  • Fred

    This year I’m looking forward to #1 Hyrule Warriors & #2 SSB U
    Next year I’m looking forward to #1 Xenoblade Chronicles X, #2 Splatoon, & #3 Zelda U
    (sorry 3DS I don’t really play you anymore)
    They aren’t likely to be the only games I buy, but they are the ones I’m currently excited about.

    • PlayStation4Life12345

      What ??? Your first is Hyrule Warriors and your 3rd next year is Zelda U o_O ??? I know it’s your choice but just wondering … how da heck is HW on your first list but the Real Awesome Legend of Zelda is on third place =.= ….

  • Jon Turner

    Here’s hoping the momentum can continue. Nintendo NEEDS to do everything it can to make WiiU a success and lure possible thirds back (no, it’s not impossible, just very difficult — but while they may not got ALL of them back, I don’t think all of them will avoid it forever. I bet we’ll see improvements on that end sometime next year).

  • Agaton Atienza

    Very promising time for the Wii U especially with Smash, The Amiibos, Hyrule Warrior and Bayonetta coming very soon. I have no questions with the 3DS, I’ve been playing Animal Crossing for a year now, LOL!

  • tux_peng

    Captain toad, Spatoon, Zelda U

  • Christian Schoff

    Ashley you are freaking awesome.

  • Nookling

    2015 will be a really great year for Wii U. And it should be given a running start with Smash Bros driving the winter sales hard.

  • PlayStation4Life12345

    “the Nintendo 3DS has managed to sell 40 million units in the United States alone”. What ? I though that’s a world wide units o_O ? Wait then how much is the world 3DS units sell ?

    Anyways, this is a good news ;D. Congrat Ninty!

    • Shootdatrupee!…

      Its a typo

  • Johny

    Actually Nintendo just announced that MK8 on wii u sold 1mil in US alone also. so props to that.

  • Officer Raichu

    3d world will be next then smash xenoblade and zelda imo
    then possibly pikmin


    Bayonetta 2 of course !! YEYYYY

  • The 3ds didn’t sale 40 million units in the US. That number pertains to the amount software sold in the US