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Sad Mario

Poor old Nintendo. A few years ago they were being credited with transforming the gaming market, with the Wii and DS both appealing to a much broader range of people than most videogame consoles. Big profits ensued. But by the end of last year, the Wii's popularity had faded and the DS was well overdue for replacement, and the iPad and iPhone had come from nowhere to dominate the gaming scene.

So perhaps we shouldn't be too surprised that Nintendo have just announced some pretty crappy financial results. For the financial year that ended on 31 March, Nintendo had revenues of $12 billion, down 29% from the previous year. Profits were $947 million, down a whopping 66% on the previous year.

So is it game over for Nintendo? It's unlikely. Reduced profits are inevitable when you're investing in new hardware but not selling it yet. Mere days before the period covered by these results finished, the 3DS, the sequel to the sequel to the sequel to the original Game Boy, went on sale. Nintendo say they've sold an impressive 3.6 million of them, so next year's results will be better. Then there's the small matter of the sequel to the Wii, expected some time next year...

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