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Super Smash Bros. for Wii U Pre-Order Numbers Eclipse Mario Kart 8

by Alex Osborn - November 12, 2014, 3:05 pm PST
Total comments: 6 Source: Bloomberg

Nintendo's multiplayer brawler is expected to sell incredibly well.

Pre-order numbers for Super Smash Bros. for Wii U are at a record high, surpassing those of Mario Kart 8, Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime confirmed.

“The launch of Mario Kart 8 has essentially doubled our Wii U sales year-on-year,” Fils-Aime told Bloomberg. “Our expectation is that the sell-through for Smash is going to be very strong, certainly on par with what we saw with Mario Kart 8. We think the impact on hardware will be similarly dramatic.”

There's a lot of excitement among Nintendo fans for the upcoming console version of Nintendo's popular fighting game. It will be interesting to see if that interest will result in a significant bump in console sales for the company this holiday season.

Super Smash Bros. for Wii U launches on November 21.


For chrissake Bloomberg, surely you guys have access to the actual NPD numbers or even Nintendo's financials... why are you citing Tales From My Ass?

rlse9November 12, 2014

That's pretty impressive, with Nintendo announcing the free game promo with Mario Kart 8, I'd imagine the pre-order numbers for MK8 were pretty high.  I have Smash Bros. pre-ordered through Kmart with $40 back in rewards points, but I'm guessing the order will get cancelled like most pre-orders through them have been recently.

Luigi DudeNovember 12, 2014

Makes sense considering the Wii U is a system like the Gamecube where it's mostly appealing to the core Nintendo fanbase.  Smash Bros appeals more to the core Nintendo fanbase then any other series, so I'd imagine most of the current Wii U owners would have the most interest in Smash Bros.

Of course it also helps that Mario Kart 8 did increase the userbase for the Wii U in North America by a few hundred thousand.  So if everyone who had Mario Kart 8 pre-ordered, also went and pre-ordered Smash Bros, just add some of the new owners since Mario Kart and boom, more pre-orders.

Either way, the Wii U version of Smash Bros is looking to have some good sales in North America this holiday.

Ian SaneNovember 13, 2014

Reggie says "We think the impact on hardware will be similarly dramatic" but I'm guessing that SSB and Mario Kart have a lot of fans in common.  So anyone who bought a Wii U for Mario Kart isn't going to buy a Wii U for SSB because, well, why would they buy two?  SSB probably stands a good chance of being the best selling Wii U game and probably also bumping up the system sales more than their typical monthly average.  But I doubt it will be a Mario Kart level bump because of the fan crossover.  A lot of the fans for which SSB is a system seller probably already bought the Wii U for Mario Kart.  They probably bought it for both games since they're coming out so close together but naturally the first of the two titles released is going to create the sales bump.  The system sales potential here is for those for which SSB is the system seller and Mario Kart is not.

This can also explain why Super Mario 3D World didn't move systems like they hoped.  The audience for that title is pretty much the same audience for NSMB U.  So a fair chunk of that audience would have already bought their Wii U for NSMB U and would naturally not increase system sales figures when the later Mario platformer came out.

I imagine for Nintendo fans the real killer app is the accumulation of first party titles.  Eventually you're missing out on enough of your favourite Nintendo franchises that at some point the latest first party release puts it over the top for you.  Like you weren't going to buy the console for just NSMB U or Pikmin 3 but now there are enough titles that it seems worth your while and Mario Kart 8 was probably the turning point for a lot of Nintendo fans.  Nintendo's best hope for SSB is that there still are a lot of Nintendo fans that just haven't hit that point yet and SSB will be that title for them that puts it over the top.

cubistNovember 15, 2014

The Wii U line-up in its second and third holiday season (this year) is crazy good. If the Big N keeps pouring more titles in post-Smash release, then we will see exactly what Ian Sane is talking about. The accumulation of first party titles that will hopefully overwhelm the so-called "hardcore" gamer on PS4/XBOne to pick up a Wii U as their second console.

From here , it's all on Nintendo to release more titles post-smash and flood the market with more first party efforts. The biggest first party games on the way are Xenoblade Chronicles X and an original Legend of Zelda. Will titles like Captain Toad, Yoshi Wooly World, and Splatoon be big enough? Nintendo needs to solidify this line-up with more and hopefully they have some release announcements for 2015 at E3.

Mop it upNovember 15, 2014

I'm not surprised, I would think just about anyone with a Wii U would get this game.

I don't think it'll have much impact on system sales though. Everything sells around the holidays, so I expect to see similar hardware numbers as the last two holidays.

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