Nintendo’s new Wii U has been labeled a flop with estimated sales of only 55,000 units domestically in the month of March. Nintendo of America’s chief executive Reggie Fils-Aime isn’t worried, however. The executive told GamesIndustry.biz that digital downloads are soaring and fast becoming a “notable contributor” to the company’s bottom line, a trend he believes will continue.
“We have 15 Nintendo-published titles available, both physically and digitally [on the 3DS],” he said. “So far in 2013, of those 15 available in this format, 11 percent of sales have come through full digital downloads of those games.”
Nintendo’s 3DS handheld has been a surprise success for the company, selling 8 million units in the U.S. in its first two years of availability. Fils-Aime revealed that the hit 3DS game Fire Emblem alone has seen digital sales of around 80,000 copies.
The executive wasn’t keen on talking about the rocky performance of the Wii U, though he said that the company is disappointed in the current pace of availability, noting that “the pace of launches for Wii U is going to dramatically increase.”
Nintendo will face another major hurdle when Sony and Microsoft release their next-generation consoles ahead of the holidays this year.