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The curious case of the missing Wii U games

If you follow the site regularly, you know that I had some trouble when I went to pick up Injustice: Gods Among Us on release day. I live in a relatively small community of about 10,000 people with the only video game retailer in a 30 mile radius being Walmart. The local Walmart is typically pretty good about having new releases, so I didn’t think anything of it when I strolled in. However, when I got there, I realized that there are multiple factors as to why the Wii U is failing to move units and games alike. Customers can’t buy them if they aren’t there.

CAM00026This is the current Wii/Wii U section available at my local store. As you can see, the Wii U games are rather haphazardly thrown in with the Wii games with no regard for organization. There are a total of 11 Wii U games available, with only one of them–Lego City: Undercover–having come out this year. This is appalling for a display for a new console. First, the Wii and Wii U games should be separated. The manner in which these games are thrown together makes it appear as though Wii U games are able to be played on the Wii. I’ve had to answer that question more than once just from random people emailing our tip line asking if that was the case.

Below the games shelf are the Wii U consoles.. obstructed by black Wii consoles the store hasn’t sold yet. You can’t even determine whether or not the store has a Wii U in stock, since its hidden behind hardware from 2011. So how does the Wii U display compare to the Xbox 360 and PS3 counterparts? Quite poor. As I strolled down the aisle, I noticed that each section was given proper display area. There were no Xbox 360 games mixed in with PS3 games.

CAM00027 CAM00028Several new releases lined the Xbox 360 and PS3 shelves, including the very game I had made the trip to the store for–Injustice: Gods Among Us. Walmart had chosen to order copies of that game for the PS3 and the Xbox 360, but had neglected to do so for the Wii U. Wondering if it was a fluke, I waited a day and went back last night just to see if there would be a Wii U version available on the shelves. Sadly, there was not.

All of this is certainly chalked up to limited shelf space and living in a smaller community, but if you consider the amount of Americans that live in rural communities exactly like mine, the number adds up. From the 2010 US census, it was determined that around 18% of Americans live in rural areas, with rural areas being classified as towns less than 50,000 people. The current US population is hovering around 315 million. 18% of 315 million is 63 million Americans. 63 million Americans walk into their local Walmart or other supermarket that deals in video games and sees what I see when it comes to the Wii U offering. That’s abysmal.

Certainly some of this is alleviated by having dedicated stores like GameStop in larger communities. I could have driven for 30 minutes and hit up the GameStop in a larger town if I wanted to do so. The problem there is that GameStop has been notoriously bad about getting Wii U releases in as well. When Lego City: Undercover was released last month, there were reports of people who pre-ordered through GameStop being unable to get their game because of delayed shipments and lack of stock. Tell me how it makes sense for someone to pre-order a game to guarantee a release date copy, only to not have it when the release date arrives?

Overall, the situation with Wii U games and retailers needs to be rectified. Retailers need to do more to differentiate between Wii and Wii U games, so general consumers will stop assuming that the Wii U is just an accessory for the long available Wii that’s already sitting in their home. Nintendo is doing all it can to build up a bulky fall catalog to try and compete with the likes of Microsoft and Sony, but if retailers aren’t giving the Wii U the shelf space it deserves, then it’s going to remain a problem.

What are your experiences in buying Wii U games in your community? If you live in larger suburban and urban areas you’ve likely not experienced the same problems I have, but I’m eager to know what your shelves look like at your local Walmart, Target, or other supermarket.

 

 

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  • Kuzon

    Don’t mark it up for living in a small community yet. I have a large busy wal-mart in my city and this is exactly what it looks like. The top half shelf on the Wii section is Wii U games missing half of the game titles and Wii U’s mixed in with Wii’s on the bottom shelf.

  • MetroidZero

    Fools still think Wii and Wii U are the same. Hopefully the unveiling of 1st Party titles will fix this.

  • Zuxs13

    Well this honestly has been going on in most stores since the gamecube era. In most gamestops even until they hay day of the Wii, Nintendo games were stuffed in the back of the stores. Most retailers shun Nintendo product space in the US despite its popularity and sales.
    its either Nintendo doesn’t pay them enough “display case” money ( which I know Sony pays a lot out)
    or they still fear sales losses from the n64-gamecube days.

  • Alexandre Colella

    Here in Brazil, the same thing.

    Wii U games are mixed on the same shelve of Wii games. No mention that there are Wii U games.

  • Destiny64

    idem in italia

  • incoherent1

    I wonder if Nintendo can influence this — e.g. working more closely with retailers or possibly even moving the Wii into an end of life (EOL) at brick and morter retailers by the end of 2013… I know they’re still enjoying Wii sales, but making the Wii and Wii games available through online sources only would help to create a clear product line.

  • Cerus98

    Unfortunately it has little to do with your small community. There are three super Walmarts and one regular Walmart within 15 miles of my house. Two of the supers are only about a year old as well since they both decided to build new locations across from their old ones. The situation is the same at all of them and always is when a new console comes out. It took them at least a year when the Wii launched to clear out all the GC stuff. They all have WiiU consoles in stock but they’re all stuffed in with black Wiis so its difficult to tell whats what without looking closely.

    I can understand not having enough U games to fill in one section but the organization and distinction needs to be better. They also need to stop stuffing the bottom sections with games that you can’t even browse. They do this for all the consoles too, not just Wii U. One of my stores even used up an entire row to put in things like those four packs of multi colored styluses that cost like 10 bucks. Apparently those are worthy of being in a locked display case even though the rest of their stock sits in its regular place on the accessories shelf.

    Walmart is just terrible when it comes to maintaining stocked shelves, organization and displays.

    • AAAkabob

      Best/only way to remedy this is with complaints directly to the organizations via Email or w/e.

    • The Clockwork Being

      I’ll laugh when more games come out for the Wii U, customers go to get the new games at Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart will look like idiots saying: Oh sorry we didnt think Wii U would have much titles or sales. My response would probably be: ”Oh really, Fine, im going to (name brilliant and equal Wal-Mart competitor) and tell my friends to do the same. That will save them some time”

  • Robyn Hermann

    This is why I order my games online, I can’t find them anywhere. Went to Gamestop looking for a 3ds game (Luigi mansion) and they only had a digital copy, was told they were only given two copies of it.

    • http://about.me/overlordror Ashley King

      That’s typically what I do. My Amazon Prime membership has been more than enough to keep in inundated with new releases.

  • http://www.facebook.com/InfamousBLG Bryan Guthrie

    Yeah its like this all over.

  • Nintedward

    Retailers are just ignorant assholes that’s all.

    My local game store , My friend works there and his family own the store. The idiot was trying to tell me that 3 , yes THREE copies of Lego city and Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate would be enough. I said lol no. I was there I bought a Copy of each and whilst I was there the other 2 copies sold within Half an hour. And they have sold about 15 copies of each game.

    Retailers are ignorant shmucks. I wish I had my own gamestore. I would have a nice 3DS and Wiiu shelf with all the best games in order of greatness :)
    Seriously if I had my own game store (which would be $^”^ing sweet) the games would go from order of greatness. And I would have a section called shovelware in a big box that you have to dig through. There would even be a plastic shovel for you root through all the games ”Oooh Fling smash , $5!!! wooopeeee!!!”

    • Mickey Mouse

      I just don’t bother with the high street.

    • Fred

      Talk about ignorant, my local best buy loves to do bundles in the store. They ALWAYS bundle an HDMI cable with the Wii Us drives me crazy to charge someone for a cable that’s going to come with your system!!!

      • Nintedward

        lol. That’s like bundling some cardboard with the Wiiu.

      • Cerus98

        That surprises you? They’re also the store that tries to sell customers the $50+ gold plated 3D HDMI cables as a necessary item. I’ve also witnessed on many occasions, employees trying to sell customers the “latest and greatest” super high speed wireless router for their laptop that only has a standard 2.4 wireless N adaptor. Customers walk away thinking that they’ll reach those claimed speeds. I’m willing to bet that 99% of those people don’t even have an ISP connection faster than 5mbits which makes those routers even more unnecessary.

        • Fred

          Yes it surprised and enrages me! Why can’t they just be straight with people!
          I pointed it out to an employee hoping that it was a simple mistake and they’d fix it, but they gave me some lame excuse and refused to do anything!

          • Cerus98

            I think it’s part stupidity and part job description. My wife and I were in BB a couple months ago and overheard a store manager trying to sell another couple some flat screen with the super high refresh rates. They walked away to discuss and I just couldn’t take it. I told them to get a better quality and/or larger screen and to not pay attention to the hype of hertz. I explained what the numbers really meant and they were extremely grateful. Unfortunately people get sold something based on a lie every day and what the few of us do in those situations doesn’t even make a dent in the problem.

          • A.Barton

            Refresh rate doesn’t matter? Maybe if you just watch cable. If you like action movies or ESPECIALLY video games, you need at least 120hz. 60 just isn’t good enough. The greatest tragedy in the world is a giant, beautiful TV with a bad refresh rate.

          • Cerus98

            Never said they didnt matter. I also said “super high” which 120hz is not. Anything above it is a compete waste of money. The manager was trying to sell some 240hz TV to the couple….total rip off.

            But you don’t “need” 120hz either and some 60hz TVs perform better than the 120s. You also don’t need it for gaming unless you are having lag issues. My TV has a game mode which I don’t use because I don’t need it. For sports it’s good and for 24p Blu Rays its good (120/24=5=better pull down) but beyond that and above 120 its a marketing gimmick.

            I don’t think I’ve even seen a non 120hz in ages. It’s all about pushing 240+ now. But you’re much better off sticking with 120 and getting a larger screen, newer model or a 3D model. Which is what I told those folks.

      • Game Master

        Why is that bad? I call that a win, with everything in HD

        • Fred

          The Wii U comes with an HDMI cable so if they buy a Wii U AND buy an HDMI cable then they’ve wasted $25 on that second one it’s dishonest in my opinion!!!

    • oh yeah

      fling smash was fun!!!!

  • Paul Tanner

    same here in the uk, game and graingergames as a few games on but thats it, i bought mostly through ebay and shopto…

    • SYates

      I’m from the UK too! Quick question: Have you seen any Wii U adverts at all recently? Because I haven’t seen one since Christmas… :/

      • Paul Tanner

        no wii u ads since xmas, even uk shops dont advertise games for the wii u

        • SYates

          No wonder it’s not selling as it should be here. I hope they know what they’re doing.

  • Nintendofreak

    well its Walmart second its a big bad ass shop or whatever so they always go for what they think will bring them money….like last year i was looking for the loz skyward sword limited edition cuz im a geek like that so i went to Walmart and there was no loz, there was only lego, some deadlist catch , and some i carly games on the wii section i asked the dudes why the fuck there was a i carly game but no loz and he didnt even know what loz…they just pust what is “popular” he thought they dont know shit about games…they didn’t even have starcraft 2 heart of the swarm but they had like a complete section of sim 3 and all of the expansion even with a cardboard thing ad….so yeah walmarts is full of idiots and plus they treat their employees like shit

  • jjmesa14

    I live in a town of about 200 people and the nearest GameStop and department stores are about 1 hour from my house. I have not seen any problems with shortages or unordered Wii U games but I did have a problem with getting Pokemon Black 2. I went to Taget and Walmart the day of the release and they did not have it anywhere in the store, even in the back. I do however see problems with sorting. Nintendo needs to meet with retailers to discuss displaying their products.

    Advertising also needs to be better on Nintendo’s part. I see twice as many 3DS ads than I do Wii U ads. I feel Nintendo will step up their advertising this fall when all of the great games come out.

    • thedeciderU

      nintendo absolutely sucks at advertising the wii u, and it’s their fault. they’ve had a long time to create hype and inform consumers. now they’ll have to pay the price.

      • jjmesa14

        They showed the Wii U off in E3 2011. Almost 2 years ago!

        • thedeciderU

          when people are confusing their cutting edge new console for the original wii, something is wrong. just because they made something doesn’t mean it was advertised. i have a wii u and i want it to succeed, but where is their advertising campaign? i’m sure some of what this article discusses is retailer at fault, but nintendo needs to spend the money and convince people to buy this system before the fall.

  • Scott Duperree

    I noticed this at my walmart too. In fact, the light in the game shelf wasn’t even on, and it was the only light not on. I also don’t think Monster Hunter 3 Unlimited was available at that Walmart. What is the deal? Do they even want to sell their own products?

  • Adrian

    Things are fine in Seattle!

    • tronic307

      But Nintendo is in Redmond. They have more direct influence over retailers in Seattle.

      • ConCity Soldier

        Well, Nintendo Of America that is…

      • Adrian

        Yeah, I might try to work there some day :).

      • Ace J

        not exactly, i live in Tacoma which is near Seattle and Redmond, but i went to the walmart in Lakewood and their wii u case display was a mess. same thing goes for the bx on base. but that was months ago so thingx could have changed

        • tronic307

          Well then, the big N needs representatives on the ground, making sure each platform gets its own shelf space. I volunteer, not only because I like Nintendo, but because I LOVE to reprimand people! Tactfully, of course…

        • Adrian

          That’s because Lakewood is GHETTO! Haha jp, I actually don’t even know where Lakewood is.

  • tronic307

    Wii U lumped in with Wii, eh? Is this not what Nintendo wanted? The letter U is a head scratcher, not a sequel designation.
    Dear Nintendo: Wii 2.

    • Only a few are true gamers

      No get it right Wii U

      • uPadWatcher

        Talking to a freaking mirror as always, a True Troller?

        • Only a few are true gamers

          No You see i am a real gamer and how old are you again troll..But keep trying trooper

        • Only a few are true gamers

          Oh and if your going to try and troll me come better prepared because your comments were like that of a 6 year old

    • Jimmy D. Fugate

      Xbox 2? No Xbox 360.

      • tronic307

        At least that’s a number. Plus, Xbox 2 wouldn’t have looked so good next to PlayStation 3.
        Wii U: I get it; I’ve got it. The trouble is not even retailers get it. How can we expect the general public to get it?

        • Jimmy D. Fugate

          Well we should first start by putting games from two different consoles in two different sections. And also get more Wii U demo stations at stores.

          • bizzy gie

            Luckily, at my local Walmart, accessories sell pretty quickly (especially the Pro Controller) and the Wii U demo station is superior to the Xbox 360 and PS3 ones. They use a flat, 1080p screen that’s encased in a white edging that’s much larger than the standard, regular, smaller TVs they use for PS360 stations. The PS360 stations also don’t have controllers anymore and the TVs don’t display anything so if you want play games, you’re forced to play the Wii U. The shelves are still piled with Wii games though wich I hate.

    • bizzy gie

      Well, like you stated yourself, Wii 2 would look bad next to PlayStation 4. Plus regular consumers might think the console is Nintendo’s second home console which would be horrible considering the Wii U is their 6th (or 8th if you count Color TV and Virtual Boy). Honestly, Nintendo should have done what it’s been doing all along and just change the name entirely. Or even do what did with the SNES. ‘Super Wii’ sounds more new console than Wii U.

      They wanted to attract more hardcore gamers, but saying “Wii U” sounds more like an ambulance siren than a video game console.

      I can’t even blame people for thinking it’s a tablet add-on. Nintendo released a uDraw tablet for Wii.

      • tronic307

        Nope, uDraw was THQ. They made far too many and couldn’t sell them. That was just one of many nails in THQ’s coffin.

        • bizzy gie

          THQ has been failing lately hasn’t it?

          • Daniel Gonzalez

            THQ is no more since jan. 23rd of this year.

          • bizzy gie

            Can’t say I’m sad to hear that. They weren’t very strong Wii U supporters. They had no plans on releasing Saint’s Row IV on Wii U so I doubt we would’ve missed much of anything.

          • stratisifre

            they were going to put metro last light onto the wii u, and they never announced saints row 4 until deepsilver got their hands on it. kindof sucks that neither of thos games are coming to the wii u, seeing as i can think of a ton of uses for the gamepad with both of those games.

          • bizzy gie

            Metro is coming to the Wii U.

  • Revolution5268

    In Chicago I have the same problem…and retails are wondering why it is not selling well.

  • ConCity Soldier

    I went to Gamestop with a friend of mines, and I told him where the hell are the games that just released. I also told him I’m glad I bought those games at Hastings, but how in the world would Gamestop not have it. Hastings had almost everything, but my local famous Gamestop was missing s*** everywhere. Now Hastings did mix their Wii U and WIi games on the same shelf, but at least they had the games there. My local Gamestop doesn’t even have Wii U games on the shelves, while Hastings does. As luck would turn my local Hastings is closing down where I live now. :( This Gamestop didn’t even have Monster Hunter, Lego City, Need For Speed, or even Call Of Duty, or Batman Wii U. Now COD & Batman was there before though, but they should still have those in stock. Once again no MH, LC, or NFS after release. WTF!! I kept thinking no wonder people are saying their aren’t any games. I had Wii U games at home that wasn’t even at this Gamestop. That’s just sad!!

  • Justin Carlson

    My local Target stores have had their own Wii U section since day 1.
    Walmart on the other hand is a confusing mess.

    • JuleyJules

      Target here in Canada is new and they do not have a separate section. The Wii U games are kind of off to the side of the Wii games but there is no label that says Wii u – only Wii. I have not looked for games In Walmart but it’s often like Target. Nintendo should have made sure this would not happen. EB Games (Gamestop in the US) does have them separated but they just sell games so I’d expect them to know what they’re selling. Hopefully Nintendo steps it up after E3 as they start to release more games more quickly to make sure everyone knows it is not an accessory for the Wii. They also need new advertising on tv and their own website. Whenever I go to the website ‘Sing Party’ is the game that shows off the bat. Really? You want to sell more units by advertising Sing Party? What is up with that? Don’t get me wrong I love the Wii U but seriously the marketing department at Nintendo needs to change things and quickly too.

    • dylanbob121

      walmart is a place to get clothes and poptarts,not video games

  • Only a few are true gamers

    Same problem here…It’s sad

  • Jon

    retail stores are stupid, though game stores they are not combined at all, it is obvious sections for the games.

  • Rick van der Linde
    • tronic307

      Your country’s educational system actually works.

  • MrBuney

    Skrew retailers.
    No Tax PLUS $5 back from the DDP? I’m glad I went digital with my Wii U.
    DOWN WITH GAMESTOP AND THEIR RIDICULOUS PRE-ORDER BONUSES!

    • Cerus98

      There’s tax on digital downloads. I’ve always been charged for it.

      • stratisifre

        while there is a tax, at least you actually get the damn game lol. and the digital promotion is pretty sweet

        • Cerus98

          True. I still go for a retail copy though even with the 10% promo. Something about having the cases to collect. Even if digitals were 10 or 20 less I’d probably still go retail. Call me crazy but I like collecting and I’ve always taken excellent care of my discs. I finally tossed some CDs I still had after ripping. Most were from the mid 90s and in perfect working condition. Don’t ask me why I still had them, I ripped them years ago haha.

      • MrBuney

        @Cerus98 and all who downvoted, put your zip code as 95501 (Anchorage, Alaska) and there is (drumroll) ….NO TAXES! Do your freakin homework

        • Cerus98

          Tax does exist for digital downloads. Obviously the five or six states without a state sales tax aren’t included in my original statement. You’re OP touted the e-shop as the place to go over retail shops because they didn’t charge sales tax like some internet retailers. I merely pointed out that they do in fact charge tax where appropriate. Didn’t think the obvious needed to be stated. You say screw retailers because digital is no tax plus $5 back. You’re local gamestops wouldn’t charge tax either.

          • MrBuney

            Ok well anywayz i live in cali and changed the zipcode. Simple as that

  • http://www.mpt-online.eu/ Sylux

    Pretty much the same story in the Netherlands. Only Intertoys and Foregames (my fav local game store) have separate sections for Wii and Wii U. Pretty much every other store has Wii and Wii U on the same shelve. And the Wii U boxes tucked away behind or underneath Wii and yes even underneath Xbox and PS3 boxes.

    • D.M.T

      I’m from NL too so what you’re saying is true

  • Jimmy D. Fugate

    Every day-one buy that I’ve attempted has come up successful. In fact retailers such as Best Buy, Target and Toys R Us always have a full library of Wii U titles. But the Walmart near my house has a Wii U display just like yours, Ashley.

    • Nintedward

      Fucking Walmart…….

      • Jimmy D. Fugate

        Hahahahaha….

    • https://www.facebook.com/BlueLightningTechnicalServices Bob Wilkerson

      Target and KMart are also light on the Wii U games from what I have seen. I understand that there are only about 60 or so titles available at the moment that come on disc but having only 11 on display is ridiculous. I usually buy most of my products online anyway and have them shipped. It’s just easier and more convenient.

  • http://people.ign.com/returnofthetruth2 ReturnoftheTruth2

    Ah well, that’s what Nintendo get’s for calling it “Wii U” with nearly identical logo and packaging.

    • tronic307

      Thank you, Captain Obvious! *slow claps* You win your first upvote!

    • Ace J

      i didn’t know wii games came in blue packaging. color blind much?

      • http://people.ign.com/returnofthetruth2 ReturnoftheTruth2

        You people find anything to use as an excuse. Clearly everyone who did not buy the Wii U must be color blind too.

        • Ace J

          its not an excuse. i would have a agreed with until you said packaging. wii games come in white and wii u comes in blue, simple packaging difference. as for the logo and name, yes they look identical. They could have come up with something better then throwing in a “U”. same goes for playstation. i can see my parents(or grandparents) getting ps4 games mixed up with ps3 games because of the logo. it happened with the ps2 and ps3. xbox on the other hand did a pretty good job making their logos look different

          • stratisifre

            that’s an other area i think they really dropped the ball. i just think they need to really emphasize on the packaging of the system, games, and accessories that they are not compatible with the wii, so people will subconsciously become aware of the differences, seeing as the average person doesn’t have the time to google it. they need to spend some of there mass amounts of money on some top of the line marketing, because what they’re doing right now clearly isnt working.

  • chaossakura

    I have a similar problem where I live and I have a good five to six retailers in my city. My local GAME stores has it’s own Wii U sections, but they are right next to the Wii games and they rarely get smaller titles, like The Amazing Spider-Man: Ultimate Edition for example.

    CEX love to throw the WII U in the Wii and my local supermarket doesn’t even have Wii U games, just a tiny, little Wii section. I think retailers seriously need to up their game, the fact that they are complaining about Wii U not selling is in part, their fault.

  • Metal_Man_v2

    Meh, I don’t see this as a significant factor. Does it hurt? Sure, but maybe just a little bit. I’d be more concerned if it was a video game retailer like Gamestop or GAME that didn’t know what they were doing. And come on, it’s Walmart, they’ve never been organised…

    • DANCRAD

      Thank You! Someone that finally understands my frustrations with Walmart and its stores.

  • Adam Neighbors

    I really hate how they mix in the Wii U games with regular Wii games. It’s so annoying to look through them.

  • TMorg

    Actually, 63 million is 20% of 315 million. 18% = 56.7 million which significantly less than 63.

    As an actual comment to your article, though, Walmart doesn’t care about anything – especially video games!

  • darkstar18

    im sure when the ps4 comes out it woukd have its owns shelf and they would make SURE ppl knew the diff -_-

  • sonicfan1373

    Walmart (and other big multi-purpose retail chains) are known for not properly displaying their products. Here are a couple of glaring incidents that I experienced here in Toronto Canada where I live.:

    1. Our local Zellers (now Target) clumped up 3DS and DS games and consoles together (many recently released 3DS games were also missing from the lineup).

    2. Our local EB Games store has an Xbox 360 display unit, a Playstation 3 display unit, and it used to have a Wii display unit (which was removed a few weeks before Wii U was released) and a PS Vita display unit. There are no Wii U displays or 3DS displays (despite people purchasing 3DS games almost every time I go there).

    3. One staff member at an EB Games store location told me that the Wii U was a portable console and it was not compatible with Wii accessories.

    I think Nintendo should monitor this situation and perhaps pay for a few displays (and make sure retailers actually put the space to good use). The fact that EB Games has a Vita display unit and a separate section for Vita games (whereas all DS and 3DS games are on the same shelf with no display units despite the fact that 3DS systems and games sell more than Vita) states that Sony is obviously paying for these display units and separate shelves.

    Apple also had a similar problem in the 1990s when the Macs were being shunned aside in dank little corners of retail stores with employees not knowing much about the computers and mixing the software for the computers with regular PC software. Apple responded to this situation when the management changed in 1997; they started by working with retailers and hiring special “Mac Experts” to tell people about their computer line. This strategy worked well but Apple wanted retail stores dedicated to their products, which why they started to introduce the Apple stores in 1999. I have seen the Nintendo World Store in New York and I think Nintendo would really benefit by making smaller versions of these stores around the world. Also, I think having retail games available in the eShop is great benefit for those in rural places.

  • isaac lopez

    I fully agree. I live in California in a big city and when I went to pick up need 4 speed for the wii u they only had one store copy. Why would gamestop even open a game for display if they only had one? Sad considering that this has been a much anticipated release. No one else in town had it. Same for injustice. Nintendo needs representatives checking on these shelves. I’m starting to think about trading in my wii u if this doesn’t change or if there’s not a good showing at E3. Sad because I grew up playing nintendo consoles just like the rest of us.I recently got rid of my PS3 and 360 to get ready for next gen and wii u is the first out. Ive already planned on buying the next box or ps4 or maybe both but when I buck up over $600 dollars plus just to come home with the system couple of games and wiimote I expect this company that I have grown up on like the rest of us should spend more time on there public relations and at least make sure that more than one gamer can walk in to a store at the same time and purchase a title that’s the killer app for the wii u.

    • stratisifre

      what’s funny, is that i would actually buy more physical wii u game IF RETAILERS ACTUALLY HAD THEM. far too often now have i gone over to gamestop or walmart to try and get a enw wii u game, just to see that they only have the launch games STILL. they wonder why they aren’t selling any wii u games, but they’re not even ordering any wii u games. i’ve ended up just getting an external hard drive and buying most of the games digitally. thank god most of the games are beign released digitally and physically simultaneously.

  • iPedro1000

    Sounds like Reggie isn’t doing his job. It’s his responsibility to hire competent managers who work with retailers to get exposure and proper merchandising in stores. They’re the front line. Why do you think Apple decided to just go ahead and make their own stores? Because retailers were the bottleneck. They didn’t know how to sell Mac’s, they’d be an after thought in stores and customers had frustrating after sale experiences.
    I’m not saying the Big N needs to open Nintendo stores everywhere (that would be sweet though) but they do need to ensure they’re getting proper exposure, merchandising and that front line workers who are going to sell their product know the key features — or at least that the Wii U and the Wii aren’t the same console.

    • stratisifre

      i think they should put symbols on the wii u games saying “can not be played on the wii” then people would just look at a game, and connect the dots. simple. also they need to make more demo stations, and while people aren’t playing the demo it should play a promotional video talking about “nintendo’s new home console” and “experiences we were never able to have on the previous wii” they just reeeeally need to shove the fact that this is a separate console, and that this thing exists down peoples throats. three of my friends that have bought the system didn’t even know the thing existed until i told them about it. a TON of the poor sales is due to nintendo’s retarted marketing strategy. it doesn’t take a brain surgeon to figure out how to tell people that it’s not a wii lol

  • FlyingBoat

    ive noticed something similar where i live as well (in australia). there are quite a few eb games dotted around the area, and they all seem to have pretty good displays of wii u taking up a wall and their consoles beside it, and in the local jb hi fi the games are given their own space and seperated, but kmart has like, three wii u games scattered amongst wii games, and i can never find a console. its like they thought wii u would be a passing fad. but confusion is just stupid, i think, just because theyre similar names. i dont remember anyone thinking that an xbox 360 was an xbox add on. goes back to advertising, i guess

  • thedeciderU

    nintendo products are always shoved in the worst display in any retail store (that i can remember). every time i go to the stores i just get pissed haha. is this due to nintendo not spending money on display or is it just retailers being elitists with other companies? does anyone know?

    • thedeciderU

      and this whole thinking wii u is an accessory of the wii is ridiculous. i wish nintendo would step up and do more than they have. more ads, jam them down the public’s throats!sales are okay but they have steep (i think) competition arriving this fall.

  • Jim

    This also goes for eshop points. Walgreens, CVS, and even Target don’t have Wii U eshop points. All they have is Wii and DSi points. Gamestop is the only store I know to have them, but i’m sure best buy has them as well.

  • That_one_guy99

    I live in a community of about 8000 and we only have a walmart for video games and they only have nintendo land, mario, black ops 2, zombi U, assasins creed 3 and just dance. I went to the store to buy monster hunter 3 a headset and batman but they had none of then

  • brian murphy

    @ Ashley King you notice most of those wii games been there since black friday

  • Only a few are true gamers

    I buy most of mine online or thru the eshop than there is no problem. But like i said before ive been a gamer longer than most on this site and nothing beat the old games back in the day but wii u is bring that feel back but the few trolls are to blind to see it

  • Johny

    in my local electronics store, there are 2 shelves. one with pc games, and one with ps3 and 360 games on each side. when i looked at the shelves, there was ONLY ONE WII U GAME COPY THERE… ONLY ONE LOUSY COD BLOPS2 game copy mixed with 360 games… its sick… its ridiculous.. and that copy has been there for months.

  • Michael Jurado

    this is why i buy games online

  • fireheartis1

    Wow I can’t believe I’ve never seen this article before now. Being I work at Walmart I know why they do this. Until the game library starts to grow they will mix the games with the older games from that company. It’s the vender that we go through who makes that decision and it’s kind of stupid. We don’t even stock the video games they do. When the Wii came out they mixed the games with the GameCube section until the Wii library started to grow the next year. This is terrible for the Wii U though because the name is so close to the original Wii. Once the Wii U hits at least 30 titles or more the vender will then separate the games and give the Wii U it’s own space. Lucky for us at my Walmart we had enough space to separate the Wii U console from the Wii. The sad thing is like I’ve mentioned before people look at it and think it’s a new controller because the Wii U’s shape is somewhat similar to the Wii. The average consumer and casual gamer cannot tell the difference for some stupid reason. That’s why I had to explain to that lady that it’s a brand new console not a $350.00 controller. Man I love Nintendo but the Wii U’s name has to be the stupidest name they have come up with for a console. Wii 2 would have been better at least people could tell the difference.

    • stratisifre

      didnt they launch with close to 30 games?

  • fireheartis1

    LOL I have to mention as soon as I saw those selves I knew right away that it was Walmart. Man working for that company for 8 years I can tell a Walmart from any other store right away. Dang man I’ve been there way too long it’s not funny. Anyways I guess my rural town is pretty lucky because we got a GameStop in our town. I just wish we got more to do lol. Well I go into work tonight so I’ll keep an eye out for Injustice: Gods Among Us and let you know if we have it. Our stupid vender sometimes doesn’t order games for newer systems until a week later than the systems that are already out. I think it’s time Walmart does something about this company. They’ve been doing that kind of crap for way too long now.

  • Matthew Stapleton

    Unfortunately its not so much Wal-Marts fault. I work for a Wal-Mart in PA, in the Electronics department. We never order our games at all, the games are ordered through our distributor. They send us only what they think will sell. My store has a little over half the release titles of the Wii U. Although with the organization problem, that IS Wal-Marts fault lol. The home office is only utilizing about basely 2 of the 3 cases set aside for Nintendo in my store. Yet we get all releases of the 360, but only MAJOR releases of the PS3. I wish we ordered our own stock, our games sales are dismal at best. We mostly only get a few copies of certain games. Yet loads of copies of the commercialized games like Just Dance 3. We have so many we can’t GIVE them away lol!

  • Ducked

    I have the same problem at the Walmart I go to. But Target has had the Wii U section ever since it came out.

  • Dominic Coradazzi

    And this is why I don’t buy games at Walmart
    I go to Best Buy, Target, or Gamestop if I want to see some respect to the Wii U; ‘course I live in a relatively well-populated area

  • http://twitter.com/tothcharles CharlesToth

    people at my school laugh at me for having a wii u i live in a pretty small community and about 2% of the population gives a damn about Nintendo. I find it sad that people who even grew up with a Nintendo are just sitting by watching the company they grew up with go to hell. Ive almost given up hope on Nintendo because people wont even concider interest in anything that has there seal of approval on it. :(

    • Agent721

      Theyre idiots!

  • Jake Cooper

    Sadly, The Wii-U suffers from the same curse the Wii did, if you want the good games you have to go online because stores only stock the kiddy ones. It’s a real shame that they aren’t giving the Wii-U a chance to shine but hey, high street retailers are dicks. :p

  • kutral

    First World Problems, if i find a Wii U game on my local gaming store is a treasure

  • Scott IsMe

    The simplest explanation that comes to mind is that retailers have to get rid of as much of their older system stock as possible. If they prominently display the new console, they’re likely to have product that will have a much more difficult time selling.

  • Kaihaku

    First, insightful article. Thanks for offering some analysis instead of more doomsaying.

    It’s the same situation at the local Wal-Mart and K-Mart here. Of the stores I checked only Target was giving the Wii U the new console treatment. Granted, I do most of my game shopping online so…it doesn’t affect me but I can see how it would affect Wii U sales.

  • alex

    the same story for me i did not preorder the game at GS and i dicede to go on realese day and get it…for my surprise GS only ha ve 3 copies to for preorders and just one for the floor but have more than 30 forr ps3 and xbox…same situation with neeared for speed most wanted they think the realese day of most wanted was change because they cant find my copie they only recive 2 and both was preorders is like they retails are giveing up on the wii u and this was in diferent GS. i love my wii u but nintendo need to fix thisey the 3ds is fine and they are doind an exelent job there but the u is in the showdows and i dont see nintendo doing nothing

  • MujuraNoKamen

    Fortunately the game stores near me have a fairly good selection of Wii U games, they have demo stations (but sadly those aren’t so great) and Wii Us shown prominently and separate from Wii stuff.
    Why is that so many retailers treat Nintendo like this, one of my stores (not a specialist game store) has no Wii U stuff period and I have seen before games/consoles hidden away with only a poor selection on show. Particularly with Wii stuff, OK the console has a focus on casual gamers so give some spotlight to Wii fit and Mario Party that’s fine but don’t hide Skyward Sword, Xenoblade and Metroid Prime trilogy and put tons shovelware on show instead!!!

  • SideScreamer

    So what I’m getting from this is, this is some guy’s rant because he couldn’t get a copy oc Injustice on release date. In that case, he should have pre ordered. That way the store will be sure to order copies. Be thankful you can even get your hands on a copy. The rest of us outside the states can’t even get a Wii U copy of Injustice until next week.

    Also, of course the Wii U is hiding behind Wii units at retail stores. Do you honestly think the forty year old woman at Walmart, Best Buy, Target, Kmart would understand what ghe console is? Or care for it? They go to work. Scan stuff. Put stuff on the shelves. Go home.
    Unfortunately, the only way you find great customer service to do with games is at GameStop or EB Games. There aren’t as many excited or passionate people working at retail stores who have a clue as to what they’re selling you.
    Honestly. You have no idea how many idiotic staff I’ve had to correct at work. Even one’s who don’t work in my store.

  • Martin Brentnall

    I also live in a town of around 10,000. My experience is that Amazon are always wonderful about delivering my Wii U games on time. :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/UncannyCaleb Caleb Turner

    Target has all the wii u games

  • fireheartis1

    Well just got off of work and yep my Walmart has it in stock. I’m not sure what’s up with the other Walmarts but at least it’s in stock at a Walmart somewhere lol. Anyways it’s too bad I’m paying off a College Class right now, or I would be picking it up right away. The best thing about Walmart though is when I do have the money I’ll be getting a 10% discount when I buy the game. I hope that everyone who wanted the game as a retail copy got it from somewhere.

  • clairvius

    yea the Walmart here is trash also i am lucky enough to have a Best-buy and GameStop our local GameStop doesn’t show much wii u love either they get a couple copies of the games then refuse to restock them last three times i went in to buy a game they didn’t have Darksiders, Zombie U, or Lego Underground in stock had to grab them at Best-buy don’t really like to cause there alittle higher price wise there carry great stock and have a dedicated wii u section with a huge area where a system is on display with a playable game not just videos like the walmart display

  • JumpMan

    i don’t really know the classification of my community, so props to you for actually finding that out! haha, but even in my town of roughly… i dunno, maybe 40,000 people? the Wal*Mart’s & Gamestop’s have embarrassingly minuscule Wii U & 3DS sections. especially Wal*Mart. i want to complain to them about it, but i’m not really that type of person, and i’m 13, so they wouldn’t really take my opinion… i just wish that people understood the potential of such amazing gaming systems! ok, rant done.

  • David Tims

    This is completely true and something I have been trying to convey to people and I’m glad you wrote an article about it. My local gamestop, when both lego city and monster hunter cam out, didn’t bother putting them on the selves. Same with NFS. It’s like they don’t want people to see the software or be interested by the wii U. I asked if they were getting monster hunter in and she said “yea we have a few” and got it from under the desk…I wanted to ask why they weren’t putting out empty boxes to advertise like usual but wasn’t bothered. I genuinely think journalists and retailers are out to get the wii U together. Take down Ninty first. Then Sony. Then the west makes all the money with Xbox.

  • steve

    i live in the uk and the local game stores including the big retailers including game have a very limited wii u supplies and did have games on release, i didnt even know of injustice being on the wii u until this post, its damn disgusting, i thought it was slow for a console to have no releases but now i see its the high street that isnt supporting this console…i guess its direct downloads from now on

  • CCM

    Same exact thing at my Walmart, also in a smaller community. The biggest part of the problem is shelf space or lack thereof. Its up to Nintendo themselves to send out a memo to all Walmarts to shrink the Wii section in order to make more room for the Wii U section. Right now they more or less occupy the same, limited shelf space. The Wii sold 100 million consoles, so many people still buy and play games for it. The same thing happened when the PS3 launched, the PS2’s popularity and staying power meant that the PS3 had to share the spotlight, so to speak with the PS2. Whereas pretty much the day the Xbox 360 and Wii launched the original Xbox and GameCube quickly vanished due to being thoroughly trounced by the 150 million selling PS2. Time for Nintendo to start phasing out the Wii by ordering retailers to put more games in the bargain bin to make more room for the Wii U section.

  • Agent721

    I live in L.A., and the problem ive run into is some stores being sold out of new releases. When Legocity came out, my local Best Buy was sold out by noon! I literaly got the last copy. Either they sold out fast, or they barely had any to begin with. If anyone wants to game online, Agent721 is also my Wii U id. I got COD & NFS.

  • disqus_2w1dV4EU3T

    Ah, how digital distribution has made our lives so much easier!!

  • http://twitter.com/joaohenriquep João Henrique

    The problem also goes for online stores – I bought my wiii U with amazon, then started receiveing offers on wii games…

  • Zombie Boy

    In the UK, Tescos (the leading supermarket chain here) sells NO Wii U games, despite selling games for the Wii, 3DS, XBox 360 and PS3. That’s right, NOT ONE WII U GAME!!!

  • Jack R

    My local Walmart is the same. I too live in a small community and Walmart is almost the only place to get console games. The Wii and WiiU games and consoles look exactly like that. I went to go check out when a couple games got released in March, they didn’t even have them facing the front, I thought they didn’t have them, when I realized a few that they had stacked on their side, like extra stock beside the front facing ones. There was all the new games that JUST came out, and the one’s that have been out since launch were facing the front like brand new games. It’s ridiculous.

  • TCar

    I waited for one month to get Need for Speed for the WiiU at both of the local Targets. I live in a town of about 146,000 people. Ever sine the release on March 24th, 2013, they don’t have a shelf space for the game (but have two spots for Madden or AC3), and haven’t received any shipments of this game. I checked online and there is no store in the state of Colorado that has this item in their stock. Eventually I went to Gamestop where they had one copy left. When I checked the local Walmarts, they too had the games mingled but the WiiU games took up the top half of the shelf, not all over the place as shown above.

  • AlCaPWN

    I went to my local bestbuy, which is only acouple minutes from my house, to buy several of my wiiu games, and they have like a whole area of the store dedicated to wiiu xD its pretty nice

  • Kylexile

    I have the same issue Ashley as I live in a rural area. You should just do what I do now. Order all of them from Amazon with Amazon Prime. Then I get them the day they come out and don’t even have to worry about making a trip to the store for a game that they likely won’t have.