OCT. 7, 2014 • Having already amassed sales of 1.42 million in Japan since September 13, Super Smash Bros. 3DS was released in the Americas, Australia and Europe on October 3 to strong consumer demand. Purchases in these additional markets have boosted total worldwide Super Smash Bros. sales of the game to 2.8 million. The strong performance has led Nintendo Co. Ltd. to announce the Wii U version of the franchise will appear in North America on November 21 and the first week of December in other global markets. The Wii U release is significant since the first set of 12 Nintendo’s interactive Amiibo figures will launch in November, with the second set of six arriving in December. Each figure will retail for $12.99.
Impact: DFC Intelligence is not surprised that Super Smash Bros. 3DS has opened strong outside Japan. The demand for compelling portable-centric franchises remains large globally. As Sony Computer Entertainment is not as well focused on supplying unique content for the PS Vita, the 3DS platform retains the edge for consumers looking for dedicated on-the-go core content. But what is most intriguing to us about this latest Super Smash Bros. news is the Amiibo component and what it means for the Wii U. We are still amazed that Nintendo passed on partnering on the Skylanders franchise that has proven so successful for Activision Blizzard. Amiibo is the gamemaker’s attempt to challenge Activision Blizzard and Disney Interactive in this new game/interactive toy segment. Luckily for Nintendo the company has a stable of recognizable characters to boost consumer demand. At face value these Amiibo figures have the potential to drive serious ancillary revenue. These figures not only add characters into a game, each one possesses additional stats and the ability to learn more quickly than standard NPCs. The trend so far is that blockbuster Wii U titles are not driving new console sales. But if Nintendo can sell several Amiibos at $12.99 per each Wii U game sold, that will add up to some sizeable additional revenue. Following Super Smash Bros in supporting Amiibos are Mario Party 10 and Yoshi’s Woolly World. The currently available Mario Kart 8 will gain Amiibo support via an upcoming software update. With the Xbox One and the Wii U still vying for second place in console sales this generation, Amiibos may be just the feature to keep Nintendo’s console relevant.