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Nintendo Misses Its Own Lowered Hardware Expectations

Maybe next year, Mario.

Super Mario 64/Nintendo

Nintendo’s earnings for fiscal year 2013 are in, and they’re even a little bit worse than previously expected. Faced with tepid interest in its latest hardware, the iconic Japanese gaming company reported a 10 percent decline in net sales for the year to $5.6 billion and an operating loss of $457 million.

It’s the third consecutive annual loss for Nintendo, which warned in January that it expected sales of its Wii U console and 3DS handheld to hit 2.8 million and 13.5 million, respectively. In fact, Wii U sales between April 2013 and March 2014 totaled 2.7 million units worldwide, while the 3DS reached 12.24 million. Factoring in other available hardware like the eight-year-old Wii and 3DS spinoff devices like the Nintendo 2DS, Nintendo moved 3.94 million consoles and 22 million handhelds in the past 12 months.

By contrast, in fewer than six months, Microsoft has sold five million Xbox Ones into stores while Sony has sold seven million PlayStation 4 consoles through to consumers.

Overall hardware sales were down 20 percent year over year, but software sales increased 7 percent last year. In its forecast for the next fiscal year, Nintendo admits the Wii U will still face a “challenging sales situation,” but expects to run $393 million in operating income thanks to big new software titles like Mario Kart 8 and Super Smash Bros. The company currently has $3.3 billion in cash and cash equivalents in the bank.

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