Iwata says Wii U price cut not an easy option to take

Nintendo president hopes to attract more third party support for console

Nintendo global president Satoru Iwata has reiterated his resistance to cutting the Wii U price in a bid to boosts sales of the underperforming console. Nintendo already prices the system below its manufacturing cost, therefore making a loss on each unit sold, and Iwata told CNBC at E3: “Because from the very beginning we came up with a very aggressive price point. We do not think [a price cut] is a very easy option to take.”

Elsewhere in a frank interview, Iwata said Nintendo has failed to sufficiently promote Wii U’s unique capabilities, or to come up with a killer app like Wii Sports was for the company’s previous console. "We are to blame," he said. "We relaxed our [marketing] efforts, so the consumers today still cannot understand what's so good and unique about the Wii U.

"As long as people have hands-on [experience], they can appreciate the value of the Wii U, but because there's not software that's simple and obvious for people as Wii Sports for the Wii, potential consumers do not feel like trying the Wii U. Our challenge today is with the software lineup we are introducing now, we have to encourage [people] to experience the Wii U in the first place."

Two of the world’s biggest third party publishers, EA and Ubisoft, said last week that Wii U sales need to improve if they’re to dedicate more resources to the platform, having both scaled back support for the console since last year’s launch. But Iwata added: "I do not think we should become too pessimistic about the current situation with the Wii U. I think we should pour that time and energy into our [development] efforts, so eventually we can encourage third-party [publishers] to want to support Nintendo."

During its Nintendo Direct E3 webcast last Tuesday, the platform holder revealed new Wii U games including Super Mario 3D World, Mario Kart 8 and Donkey Kong Country Returns. Release windows for Nintendo’s upcoming Wii U and 3DS titles can be found here.

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