UK supermarkets are ready to drop Wii U unless Nintendo can drastically turn sales around.
But specialist retailers, including market leader GAME, have vocally backed the struggling console.
Asda and Morrisons both told MCV this week that they have no plans to stock Wii U or its games in the near future – although Asda will support the machine online.
Tesco continues to stock Wii U but warns that it will only support it “to the levels that its market performance dictates.” In better news, Sainsbury’s has vowed to keep selling the console.
Wii U has struggled since its debut last November. But Nintendo hopes to boost sales over Christmas with the help of its blockbuster IP: Mario, Donkey Kong and Zelda.
And specialists and online retailers have backed Nintendo to turn it around.
“We fully support all Nintendo products, including Wii U. We’ve just seen very strong release performances of Pikmin 3 and New Super Luigi U and Nintendo’s digital offering is also going from strength-to-strength,” GAME CEO Martyn Gibbs told MCV.
“Nintendo has proven time and again that they are experts in the market. The incredible growth of the 3DS over recent years is testament to that and we are looking forward to their plans for developing Wii U over peak and through 2014.”
HMV’s Phil Browes told MCV that the retailer hasn’t finalised its Q4 space plans yet, but says that Wii U is currently in the range. And The Hut is already working on ‘multiple initiatives’ to help boost Wii U sales this Xmas.
Meanwhile, ShopTo purchasing director James Rowson said: “We are in no doubt that Nintendo will remedy the poor hardware sales with excellent new titles for peak and into next year.”
A Nintendo spokesperson said: “As we’ve seen with 3DS, software sells hardware, and with titles such as Zelda: The Wind Waker HD and Super Mario 3D World this year, as well as Pikmin 3 and New Super Luigi U having reached No.2 and No.6 in the charts, we’re looking forward to the year ahead on Wii U.”