Slow Wii U development due to concentrated development effort for 3DS post Earthquake

Yahoo! Japan has posted an interview in which Nintendo has explained why development of Wii U games has been so slow. Other than the previously explained troubles with HD development and slight staff shortages, in 2011Nintendo was forced to concentrate its development efforts on 3DS. This is because of the impact the Tohoku Earthquake of 2011 had on 3DS sales in Japan. Nintendo was forced to increase its 3DS software output as quickly as possible and so they couldn’t allocate as many resources to Wii U development. The following is a translation of Yahoo! Japan’s interview provided by

We launched the Nintendo 3DS on February 2011 and sales were strong. Two weeks later we were hit by the Great East Japan Earthquake (Editor’s note: that’s how the Japanese call the 2011 Tohoku Earthquake) and that stopped the momentum. In august of the same year we lowered the price from the initial 25,000 Yen to 15,000 Yen, and enhanced software development at the same time, to enrich the game line-up.

That paid off and we regained momentum in Japan, but due to that we could not spare many developers for the Wii U (released in November 2012), and that led to the slow start of the console.


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