Eight years ago today on the 18th November 2012, Nintendo’s Wii U hit the market in North America. Coming off the back of the Wii, Nintendo’s most successful home console of all time, hopes were no doubt high for this latest system, but we all know how the story goes from there.
With its blocky GamePad controller and HD visuals – a first for Nintendo at the time – the Wii U soon appeared in Europe on 30th November and in Japan on 8th December the very same year. Customers could opt for either a ‘Basic’ white set with 8GB of memory, or a ‘Premium’ black set with 32GB of memory and a copy of either Nintendo Land or ZombiU.
Of course, the Wii U sadly turned out to be something of a flop going by Nintendo’s usually lofty standards; now discontinued, the console only ever shifted 13.56 million units worldwide. There are plenty of theories behind this – the branding was confusing for customers, third-party support wasn’t as strong as it might have been – but ultimately, Nintendo decided to wrap things up earlier than expected and launch itself into a new generation with the Switch, which has already demolished Wii U’s lifetime sales.
While some Wii U owners might feel a little aggrieved, the Switch has also given Nintendo the opportunity to rerelease some of the failed console’s best titles, offering them up to a much larger audience. Looking back at Wii U’s best-selling games, there are plenty of fantastic titles available for the system – in many ways, it’s a shame it never took off as Nintendo might have hoped.
Did you buy a Wii U? Do you still have it to this day, or did you regret picking one up? Feel free to share your Wii U memories with us in the comments.