The latest sales for North America hardware and software have come in from the NPD group for January 2013 and they do not look pretty, especially for Nintendo. Following a down year, 2013 kicks off with a 5 week January that while on the surface would indicate a rise over last year, factoring out the extra week continues the slump. For the gaming side Call of Duty: Black Ops II continues to reign supreme, despite sales dropping faster then Modern Warfare 3. Ubisofts December release of Far Cry 3 managed to stay up in the charts at number 2 while Just Dance 4, NBA 2K, and Madden round out the top five. Capcom’s DmC reboot managed to squeak into sixth, but its sell through appears to be around or below 200k. Meaning little had interest or faith in a complete series overhaul, just like I predicted they wouldn’t. While only on the charts for a few days, Ni No Kuni managed to be the eleventh best selling game, and seventh counting individual SKU’s. If you own a PS3 and not that game there is something seriously wrong with you.
Now for the really bad news, Sony’s Vita floundered with a meager 35k units sold in January and whatever hopeful buzz around the Christmas bundles is gone. Much worse however is the Nintendo Wii U which sold an abysmal 57k units in January. This is not due to any limited supply problem either. This puts Nintendo in a very, very tricky situation as word out of DICE was that publishers and developers are canceling projects for the system due to poor sales performance. While this adds plenty of fuel to the fires of the doom and gloom naysayers, reality is if these sales number stay this bad you could be looking at a system underperforming even the Gamecube. Still panic mode Nintendo tends to be good for consumers so I look forward to a price cut and actual games being released. This staggered game launch idea has backfired on Nintendo in a huge way.