Get the latest news about PS4 at PS4Daily.com and Xbox One at XboxOneDaily.com!

Reggie discusses how Amiibo could super charge Wii U sales

reggie-amiibo

One of the biggest announcements for Nintendo at E3 was the announcement of Amiibo figures, NFC-enabled figures of famous Nintendo characters that can be used in multiple games. To start, Nintendo announced five games these figures will be compatible with, which already differentiates them from Skylanders or Disney Infinity figures, which are only compatible with current releases or one back. According to Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime, Amiibo is Nintendo’s strategy for success from the Wii U console.

“I think Amiibo can have a significant impact on driving the install base for Wii U on the sales of figures themselves. I think this could be a significant business opportunity. We will continue to make new figures available through the balance of holiday 2014 and then we’re going to continuously launch new figures throughout 2015. For us, we’re not putting a numerical limit on how many varied figures we can launch. Our potential catalogue of figures in the space is quite broad.”

Aside from the fact that Nintendo seems to be comfortable with multiple character figures for their Amiibo service, Reggie also talked about why it’s taken the company so long to announce the NFC figures, despite the console launching in 2012 with NFC capabilities that have not been used outside of the oft-forgotten Pokemon Rumble U game.

“One, we wanted to be thoughtful in our approach. In our view, going down this path you have to have differentiation. Second, we wanted to make sure that we would launch the concept with a big franchise, and certainly Smash (Bros.) fits that bill. Smash is really perfect. All the various characters, the gameplay that Mr. Sakurai has created is fantastic. So for us it was really making sure we had the right approach and the right method to launch it.”

The real question here is whether or not there is a market for these figurines outside of the already hardcore Nintendo fanbase. Traditionally the Skylanders and Disney Infinity franchises have done exceptionally well on Nintendo consoles thanks to their kid-friendly gameplay approach. Will Nintendo find the same success for their figures this holiday season when the only games compatible with them will be Super Smash Bros.?

[via Polygon]

Continue reading:

TAGS: , , ,



  • tom

    This seems like a big risk. I hope it pays off.

    • matthew garcia

      I don’t think this is gonna work for the non hardcore Nintendo gamers. It’s to kiddie

      • Liam

        Have you ever considered that there are lots of kids in the world?

        • matthew garcia

          Must not be to many kids with the bad Wii u sales

          • Liam

            There wasnt previously much of a reason for kids to want it

          • matthew garcia

            There is it’s just kids are losing touch with Mario and friends these days

        • Jonathan Robitaille

          I know right? It’s baffling the amount of trolls allowed on here

      • ScorpFrix

        Believe me. I’m 18 and i really want to get these things, not only for playing but for collecting as well, always wanted a nintendo figurine world :P

        • koopapoopas

          Yeah. I keep saying I want one or two, but the more I think about it, I’d like to have all my favorite Nintendo characters.

          I hope they have a Snorlax some day.

      • koopapoopas

        Gamers who worry about being “kiddie” are forgetting that they are playing games.

        I’m an old man and I want at least a Samus Amiibo, and maybe who knows A Yoshi and a Rosalina one too.

        • matthew garcia

          But that’s not what this discussion is about. Its about it helping the Wii u with sales and I don’t think this will

          • lonewolf

            But you are the one who brought up the “kiddy” topic for amiibo he told you that there are alot of adults like him willing to buy (which is no brainer) the amiibe and then you go to say ah we were talking about sales. Why did you changed the subject that you yourself brought up?

          • matthew garcia

            I’m talking Kiddish is cuz that’s already how the media portrays Nintendo which effect it’s sales. Also I’m sure there are adults who Will buy it but only hardcore Nintendo fans. It won’t sale to new buyers

          • lonewolf

            You’ll never know.

          • Yen

            Look at it this way, Disney Infinity and Skylander are both mostly aimed at children and they’re doing pretty well. So even if it is “kiddie”, it doesn’t mean it won’t be successful. If it can grab the hardcore Nintendo fans, AND appeal to children (who will ask their parents to buy them). Then they potentially just started raising a new generation of Nintendo fans.

          • koopapoopas

            I’m saying that it will help sales.

            Sure. Not as much as Mario Kart, but when you consider how Skylanders and Disney Infiniti are making money, amiibo could also be popular.

            I’m assuming that in awhile, there will be some Pokemon besides just Pikachu.

            Also the peripheral for the 3DS to read NFC would make it fun to use one amiibo on both the 3DS and WiiU.

      • companyoflosers

        Nintendos games cater to all age groups. Yes they LOOK like kids games, but anyones who plays them knows they require skill. Plus i prefer a colorful game over all the grey and brown games on everything else. Give me splatoon over cod or battlefield any day.

        • matthew garcia

          I hate call of duty. Just give me western or Japanese rpgs

      • Nookling

        But these aren’t really that kiddie. Collectible straight from N

        • matthew garcia

          I doubt most grown men would buy them. Just a few kids or grown men who have a problem getting laid

          • lozman1122

            Right… Cause that logic makes so much sense.

          • Nookling

            Well in that sense all grown men playing video games are in that boat

          • El Ortega

            Lol, sorry man but that comment was stupid. Note: You MUST have problems getting laid to even think of writing a comment like that.

      • disqus_f0m0KOHNzQ

        hardcore gamer is a bs word not all hardcore gamers play m rated games

      • TaintedXGamer

        Hardcore gamers? Never heard of em!
        (then again I i was playing wii even when all the naysayers were literally calling nintendo DOOMED! so does that make me hardcore :3?)

    • Joseph Oliveira

      I think it will. Every collector will want them. Gotta collect em all!

  • Dan Hutt

    Kind of useless article. It doesn’t discuss at all *how* the amiibo is going to boost sales of the console or even games for that matter. The only reason I’m even thinking of getting one is for a cool item to collect from my favorite franchise.

    I see no other reason to get it other than storing data about your character, which honestly should be a non-issue through their online account system (yet it is an issue, because their system is very outdated).

    This is simply a money grab, nothing more at this point.

    • Capt. Smoker

      What dya expect, it’s an Ashley article, everythings copy and paste lol so bland, so robotic, so boring, and I completely agree with you, just a money grabbing scheme.

      • FutureFox

        Hard to call it a “scheme” when the NFC tech is cooked into the product. I would agree if they came out with a separate hardware peripheral to allow NFC.

        • Capt. Smoker

          Sorry, poor choice of words on my part, I meant, just a way for Nintendo to rake in the imaginary golden coins :)

  • Crillan

    One comment on the article. In the last sentence, it says it’s only going to be compatible with Super Smash Bros. this holiday season. It will also be compatible with Mario Kart 8.

    I personally agree with Reggie because I know how much Skylanders sold and we’re talking about Nintendo here with so many great characters and they’ll be compatible with many games, not just one game series. I plan on buying many of these things.

    • ScorpFrix

      And don’t forget Captain Toad’s game

      • shanafan

        And Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. Wait.. ;)

        • TaintedXGamer

          I’m done with COD games, The last game i Brought is BLOPS2
          and i’m ain’t sucking it up no more. I can’t wait for Splatoons.

        • bistricky

          ROFLOL

        • Crillan

          That would be pretty funny dropping Mario in as a combat buddy lol. Not that I’d miss a CoD game. I’d rather play Borderlands on my PC :)

  • larz_1234

    I have a question to ask everybody in the comments..if you could buy only one amiibo figure for a smash bros character who would it be? my personal choice would be Fox.

    • koopapoopas

      Kirby or Samus for Smash Bros.

      But I’m also dreaming about having a Link character work with both a WiiU and 3DS Zelda games. Of course, at this point, we don’t know how much Nintendo is going to use amiibo for other games.

    • LevenThumps

      I would say Luigi, but he’s not in the initial wave of figures.

      My second choice would be Ness, but he’s not even officially confirmed for the game yet.

      My choice then would have to be Yoshi.

      • disqus_f0m0KOHNzQ

        i think it’s funny how they had that whole year of the Lugi last year and they don’t put him in the first wave of figures

        • LevenThumps

          Yeah, Luigi gets one year in the spotlight, and then it’s back underneath Mario’s shadow.

    • Daniel Carvalho

      I would get a Zelda Amiibo! If Nintendo doesn’t want to give the princess more participation in the game, I’ll give her more participation in my collection!

    • steveb944

      Grown up Link.

  • Officer Raichu

    I think this is an idea for kids to get interested in these figures while also getting interested in the wii u we wont know if it works though

  • greengecko007

    I hope it does work out for them, but to me it seems like a waste of resources. I’d rather see another game coming to the Wii U than these figures which will have obscure uses in games. Prove me wrong Nintendo and show how this is a must have product.

    • Yen

      I mean, Skylander and Disney Infinity did pretty well with figures. These Nintendo figures do even more than those so I think it’s possible. I think the biggest draw will be how they are used in games other than the ones they were modeled from. Like how will a smash bros Mario figure work in Mario Kart 8 or even Mario Party 10. If a figure can be used for more than just one game, it’d be worth the money to get a few.

      • greengecko007

        The difference is that those toys are integral pieces of the games. You can’t play the game without having the toys. Now, I’m at least glad Nintendo isn’t copying that blatent cash grabbing strategy, but because they aren’t, I don’t see how many people will buy these things. I’d rather that the time and resources used on these were put into more Wii U games.

  • verymetal

    Before the Wii U was even released I read that it was going to have NFC communication. Well, looky here. We actually see it happening. How long did that take? Im going out on a limb here, but maybe just maybe, having a Pokemon game for the Wii U with Amiibo Pokemon figures would sell more systems. I don’t think Nintendo realizes this, because I haven’t heard any announcement regarding this from them. Who the heck is in charge there?

    • greengecko007

      A Pokemon game on the Wii U is the obvious answer, but unfortunately, Nintendo can’t make Game Freak do that. Just like any company, Game Freak wants to make money, and as much as possible. I’m sure they’d much rather keep pumping out handheld games where they can have lower development costs and higher sales.

      • TaintedXGamer

        I waiting for the moment Game Freak says “Oh we lied about Not making a home console Pokemon Game for the Wii U (Super rumble doesn’t count) We been working on it in Secret and now it’s time to Reveal it” ………..well one can dream ryt?

        • greengecko007

          I’d never stop playing my Wii U if that day came. Unfortunately, reality…

  • Ben Ifits

    to the naysayers proclaiming this is just a “cash grab” know that by using figurines with games like MK8 and smash bros your amiibo will learn your play style so you can later play against yourself instead of the age old CPU. also i would bet that you will be able to create ghost data to play for you against friends when you’re away or online like in LoZ Link between worlds. pretty useful if you ask me.

    • T J

      I don’t know. Since the people behind Skylanders originally came to Nintendo to publish the game, and Nintendo said “no thanks”, I can’t help but feel that this seems semi-opportunistic to get into the NFC game now that they see what a cash cow it is.

      • Daniel Carvalho

        It certainly is. Nintendo has been on red for 3 years in a row now, so it’s not weird for them to go after some sure cash. But just because they’re doing that doesn’t mean we won’t have any advantage on this. The way they’re crafting this Amiibo system seems pretty promising, and will surely sell a lot.

        Remember: Nintendo is a company, and like any other company, they need money to keep on living.

        Anyway, they made a pretty stupid move in not forming that partnership with Activision, and are way behind the other two on the matter. Now they have to catch up.

      • Fred

        First people complain that Nintendo doesn’t listen to it’s customers. Then when they see they made a mistake with Skylanders and they go back and offer NFC you guys get made at them and call it a cash grab.
        Holy crap people get a life

        • T J

          Hey, i’m not really bothered by the situation, I’m just explaining why people would call it a cash grab. There’s evidence for that claim.
          I’m happy they are implementing it the way that they are. I was afraid they were going to do something along the lines of “Unlock-able Character: Buy ____ figurine” or something like that. The fact that the figurines are multi-game compatible adds even more value to them.
          So I have to pat Nintendo on the back for how they are implementing this. They are still one of if not the most honorable companies in gaming today.

      • Alessandro Previti

        I suppose Nintendo observed Skylander as a test case, they anyway know that while people might forget skylander soon or later, Nintendo characters are much more solid. On a business side, they did the most intelligent thing.

      • Jonathan Robitaille

        so getting online and improving in that capacity…going by your logic, is them being semi-opportunistic because Microsoft and Sony did it first and better?

        • T J

          ? No, I’m saying Nintendo had the opportunity to be the industry leader in regards to the NFC market. They turned Activision down.
          To do an about-face years later makes me think that they are doing the NFC thing, not because it is the innovative/fun new direction to go, but because it is a safe bankable market decision.

          http://www.nintendolife.com/news/2014/04/skylanders_spyros_adventure_could_have_been_a_nintendo_exclusive

          Again, I don’t really hold anything against Nintendo. I just think it is a little bit naive to believe that the NFC route is being explored this late for the sake of a better game experience.

          • Jonathan Robitaille

            NFC was designed into the console…something I imagine goes back to 2009 when it was being developed. Maybe Nintendo saw what Skylanders was doing and thought they could up the ante and do it better and have spent the last few years perfecting it. The successes in this world come from somebody perfecting and marketing an already existing idea better than the originator. I am positive Amiibo is innovative and different enough where it isn’t really copying Skylanders too much anyway

  • Gameonfool

    This is why they turned down skylanders, they had their own plans.

    • Yen

      If that’s the case wouldn’t they be more likely to want to include them?

      • Gameonfool

        The wii u launched in 2012 with NFC so I think something like this had been planned for a while.

        • Yen

          I know they have been. They made the figures for Pokemon Rumble U. I meant the fact that they were planning on pushing these figures so hard should be more reason for them to work with Skylander.

          • Gameonfool

            Yeah I thought that after I posted, I don’t think Nintendo would want to share the piece of cake or mix their ips with another when they have plenty. They want to push their own characters and interest in Nintendo.

  • bistricky

    The amiibo will be a success or Reggie and company will be out of work.

    While many gamers here question if there is even a need for amiibo …. the actual target market in the beginning will not be us ……

    As Reggie said ” I think Amiibo can have a significant impact on driving the install base for Wii U on the sales of figures themselves.”

    In other words, Reggie is saying we are making these amiibo’s to draw new customers to our other products which are our games and gaming consoles.
    They are taking a marketing calculated risk …. using these toys to bring a stronger presence in stores, which will hopefully draw more attention to their other gaming products (like the Wii U).

    Yes, they want the 6.4 million Wii U owners to buy amiibo also …. but amiibo is the tool, they believe, which will finally sell Wii U’s to moms and dads and grandparents.
    And if it succeeds in growing the install base, which intern provides more game makers to make games for the Wii U, then all the better.

    Cheers :D

    • Pablo Lavín

      The problem, is that I know people who dont even have a Wii U and want the Amiibos just for collection. Hate them.

      Why to keep em’ boxed if they can do another things? And, I’m not thinkin’ about reselling them, so, why to keep them boxed?

    • TaintedXGamer

      I want the peach Amiibo, i used her as an main in Brawl. I can’t wait to try out the other characters/ newcomers. nintendo e3 Blew my mind. Repeatedly.

      • bistricky

        E3 2014 was pretty amazing for Nintendo ….. I was shocked how well they did and all the games and ideas they have for the gaming community in the future …… cheers :D

        • TaintedXGamer

          yeah! :D NINTY FTWIN!

  • Nookling

    I know for sure I will buy Villager and Peach, but it will be difficult not to buy the likes of Palutena, Lucario, Toon Link…. Basically everybody! I know that just them being figurines released by Nintendo themselves makes people want them, but then there is this huge add on of them working with games.

  • MerryBlind .

    Mehh maybe this gather to a certain audience, but I am definitely not part of that audience. I guess it has potential, who knows, maybe it will be amazing, but I just don’t feel like putting money into yet another kind of peripherals.

  • Will the3rd

    I think Nintendo may be making its typical mistake of focusing in something no one* (*me) cares about. Unless they do something heart breaking I won’t buy any figure, not even for collection as they look really poor.
    To fight against myself? To race against my ghost? Unless they use them in an open world Pokémon for something revolutionary (first they should release a Consolémon, which is not going to happen for hardware capabilities), I won’t buy any figure, and I don’t really think it will suppose a big impact in the company, just some extra money like a Luigi U can also mean.

  • LevenThumps

    I think it is a very smart idea to launch these figures with Smash, and that will hopefully boost sales for Nintendo. I know I’ll be buying at least a couple of figures.

  • Fred

    “Will Nintendo find the same success for their figures this holiday season when the only games compatible with them will be Super Smash Bros.?” you don’t know Smash will be the only one this holiday compatible with Amiibo. Mario Kart 8 will be getting it (maybe this year) Toad’s Treasure Tracker will be getting it and it’s coming out this year. Nintendo may have 3 NFC games by christmas.

  • leo

    what’s next? Will Nintendo be selling us cards? oo wait…

    • TaintedXGamer

      I wouldn’t mind a NINTENDO TCG lol :3

    • Don Tusk

      Each skylander comes with a card, nintendo should do that too.

  • Daniel Gonzalez

    Nice job, Nintendo. Cash in on an idea that you turned down originally.

    • Jonathan Robitaille

      your point?

      • Daniel Gonzalez

        The point was already made.

      • Don Tusk

        In case you are not aware, activision wanted skylanders to be Wii exclusive, but nintendo refused. And today here they are copying that skylanders lol.

        Btw Skylanders Trap Team is the ONLY game to come out for Wii this year, and it’s the best selling third party franchise on that system.

        • Jonathan Robitaille

          thanks, I was talking to a troll and being facetious,

  • Frosti

    I wonder…will nintendo make the series of amiibos limited…like make a certain amount of series one then retire? I use to play skylanders but what made me mad was whenever a new one came out I had to go buy new pieces because the previous game pieces not all were supported. IF they make it so each series can forever be used it would be awesome. Yes their maybe figures in one series you don’t care for now, months or years down the road they may introduce a game that older piece would be perfect for. That would drive people with a must get all of the series since limited printings.

  • Rinslowe

    All the best to them with this idea…

  • Guru

    The real reason for Amiibos… They will be Nintendo’s form of achievements. When you link your Amiibo to certain games it will allow a leveling up and allow you to have a personalized experience from game to game. It truly is a game changer.

  • gregthecanuck

    Nintendo is doing exactly what Apple does. Let someone else enter the market (Skylanders) and see how they do. Then come up with something much better after learning from the market’s acceptance of the first to enter the market.
    They did this with iPhones, iPads, iPods and soon iWatches. They seem to be doing OK. Nintendo is likely following the same playbook.

  • El Ortega

    There are 63 comments in this moment and we’re still at the same place. We don’t know what will happen with amiibo. So I’d say this is a matter of good old: “let’s wait and see”.

  • Αίας Ταρνάρης

    Can’t get the concept so can’t see why I should buy figurines ! WTF

  • Darkness

    Complete waste of money on toys lol. Nintendo is getting desperate at trying to find a way to bring profits off of a money loser system

  • Chase U

    I’ll be buying Mario and Peach ones since those are the only characters I use in Smash Bros. (Besides Wario, but they haven’t announced him as a character for this one..)

  • Don Tusk

    I like the idea but i don’t like how they try to shoehorn this in to smash bros.
    Just create a separate game around the concept, you know, like skylanders and disney did.