According to Nintendo of America president, Reggie Fils-Aime, the Wii U home console is selling at a rate of four-times the amount of what it used to on a daily basis thanks to the hot release of Mario Kart 8.
GamesIndustry.biz picked up quotes from an interview with Venture Beat, where Reggie told them that...
"In the two weeks prior to the launch, versus what we've seen now following the launch [of Mario Kart 8], we're selling at a daily rate four times higher than where we were before,"
Very careful wording by Reggie dictates that we can't use the NPD figures from March or April. We don't have any hard figures for April, only more careful wording by sales reports, even from in depth sources like PC Mag. And if we use March's numbers, as reported by Wii U Daily, then we're looking at the Wii U's daily sell-through rate of approximately 2,500 SKUs a day. Even at a factor of four, that would mean the Wii U is only selling 10,000 units a day, which is marginally impressive.
However, if we go by VGChartz, which represented the Wii U at approximately 63,000 units sold in the U.S., during the month of March, versus the NPD's 70,000 (undercutting the sales of the console by a sizeable margin) we can see that we get a rough estimate of what the Wii U could have been selling within the time period that Reggie mentions.
According to VGChartz, if we breakdown the Wii U's numbers on the sales week ending on May 17th, we find out that we get a daily sell-through rate of 4,059 SKUs.
So within the time-frame of mid-May sales, Reggie is saying that the Wii U is currently selling four times that amount – and keep in mind that VGChartz is known for undercutting the sales of the Wii U, so the numbers could be much higher – so we end up with a daily sell-through rate of 16,236.
If these numbers turn out to be true (or remotely close to the actual targets) then we're looking at weekly Wii U sales numbers exceeding 113,000. If it manages to maintain that sales rate then we could expect Nintendo to finish June at around 454,000 consoles sold the world around.
Of course, that's a lot of guesswork based on vague numbers and potential sales trends.
What we do know is that the Wii U has been consistently selling well since the debut of Mario Kart 8, with Nintendo Enthusiast reporting that the week ending on June 8th still saw the Wii U moving 13,766 SKUs in Japan, still above the PS4, which only managed 9,466 units sold. If the Wii U even manages to keep its sales pace throughout June in Japan, the system could see just over 50,000 units sold for the month of June.
Nevertheless, Reggie makes a very compelling point about the state of the Wii U, and how software can move serious hardware when it's made right, saying...
"This is what makes us different from all the other publishers. We have launched Mario Kart 8 roughly a year and a half into the life of Wii U. That game is going to sell in big numbers now through the end of life. That's a very different proposition than what many other publishers do. They annualise their content. They launch and the content is gone four months later. Because of the high quality of our software, because they really are system-selling must-have games, they sell for years and years.”
This is very true, and hopefully the momentum of Mario Kart 8 keeps up until Nintendo can get Hyrule Warriors and Bayonetta 2 out onto the market. From there, they just need to hold on tight until Super Smash Bros. launches.