This Week In Imports: Wii U Launches In Japan With A Monster Behind It

By Spencer . December 3, 2012 . 4:41pm

image Nintendo is getting ready to unleash Wii U in Japan and the system has backing from Capcom with Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate as a launch title. New Super Mario Bros. was a system seller for Nintendo DS, so we’re curious to see if New Super Mario Bros. U drives sales too. How do you think the Wii U in Japan?


Wii U
Assassin’s Creed III
Batman: Arkham City Armored Edition
FIFA 13: World Class Soccer
Mass Effect 3: Special Edition
Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate
New Super Mario Bros. U
Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor’s Edge
Nintendo Land
Tekken Tag Tournament 2 Wii U Edition
Warriors Orochi 3 Hyper


PlayStation 3
Saints Row: The Third – The Full Package
Yakuza 5


Xbox 360
Saints Row: The Third – The Full Package


Nintendo 3DS
Paper Mario: Sticker Star
Pika Pika Nurse Monogatari 2


Key European Releases
Mass Effect Trilogy (PlayStation 3, Xbox 360)
Metal Gear Solid 4 25th Anniversary Edition (PS3)
Paper Mario: Sticker Star (3DS)
Power Rangers Super Samurai (Xbox 360 Kinect)


Key Domestic Releases
Far Cry 3 (PS3, Xbox 360, PC)
Guilty Gear XX Accent Core Plus (PS3 – PSN)
Marvel Avengers: Battle for Earth (Wii U)
Mass Effect (PS3 – PSN)
Mass Effect Trilogy (PlayStation 3, Xbox 360)
Uncharted: Fight for Fortune (Vita – PSN)

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  • Taylor Greene

    I predict phenomenal launch.

    • They do have MH on it. Also on the MH topic… does anybody know why GameStop (as terrible that it is) doesn’t have the 3DS MH3 game listed while Amazon does (as it was confirmed to be coming too).

      • Spider-Man

        Gamestop is Gamestop. It’s no surprise. Pre-ordered mine on good guy Amazon.

    • Same. I think the Wii U will do good in Japan, knowing they are releasing the system with a good launch line up (or one that definitely appeals to their crowd in Japan).

      We’ll know in a couple of days for sure tho.

  • ronin4life

    To me, this is kind of a hard read…
    I mean, it is monster hunter… but this is its 3rd iteration(5th, if you count the ps titles). There has to be fatigue with this entry.

    I do suspect a great launch though.

    • You underestimate the Japanese people’s love for MH. I myself never played 3. I have only played Freedom Unite.

    • PreyMantis

      Not in Japan. Not to me, either.

      • ronin4life

        I KNOW monhun is far from tired in Japan. But monster hunter was always more powerful on handhelds *and* this is is this entries 5 remake in Japan. Which is why I can’t assume that it will do great. Good, absolutely. But dedicated system pusher… incredible relative sales? That’s where I am having dfficulty predicting.

        As for me, I bought the wii tri(didn’t play it much though) freedom unite and the Japanese triG. Will be getting 3U, but unsure if I should get it for wiiu. ^อบ^;

    • Street Fighter II did it as well.

    • Brian

      I have not played monster hunter myself and I am looking forward for this release. Also I think from what I have read there is a good amount of new things in this iteration that would make this game a must buy for any monster hunter fan.

  • James Beatty

    A monster hunter, nsmbu, and the dragon quest X HD beta should mean the wii U will have a healthy launch in Japan…well for a console that is. I wonder if devs will make cross platforms games with the 3DS and wii U. Something like the whole MH 3G ultimate on 3DS and wii U? I think that would help

    • kylehyde

      I think that DQX was going to make something across platforms between Wii U and 3DS, but I don’t remember well the details. Maybe the next smash bros would be the next on doing this, but certainly it would be cool to see another titles with that aprouch.

  • I wouldn’t expect too much from Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate on Wii U. It’s Monster Hunter, yes, but it’s also the fifth iteration of the third generation MH games. It won’t do “badly,” but it probably won’t even reach then numbers that Tri did. For reference, Monster Hunter Portable 3rd HD Ver. sold about 288k in its launch week.

    Monster Hunter’s importance is more of a long-term question. Will MH3U and DQX and Monolith’s new game (whenever that comes out) create a market that convinces other Japanese developers to support the Wii U with their marquee titles in the years to come? That’s the more interesting question here.

    • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

      This is what i think too. I mean, it is almost guaranted that Wii U will sell well there but whether those three big IP(Mario, MonHun, DQ) will be able to keep the machine keep selling to lead many developers to come join the market is the biggest question.

      What i wanted to see here is whether Paper Mario will do well or not. Does Paper Mario do quite well in Japan before?

      • Wii U I think will sell as well as one could expect any console to sell in Japan in this day and age. Features like the off-TV play and Miiverse are going to be important in Japanese homes and communities. It won’t sell like the Wii, of course, but I think it will do okay.

        I pointed to Monster Hunter, DQ and Monolith’s next title specifically because those three games are (or have the potential to be) genre leaders. They’re the kinds of games that can create a market for other titles within their respective genres to succeed.

        For example, the home console that gets a numbered Final Fantasy is pretty much guaranteed to be where the majority of Japanese developers put their role-playing games. The Wii U doesn’t have an FF game (yet), but Dragon Quest and the Monolith game are important titles in that they can help create an audience for those kinds of games, too.

        On a related note, Xenoblade and The Last Story were supposed to serve that purpose on the Wii. They were supposed to come out a lot sooner, establish an RPG market on the system, and make space for other RPGs to succeed. Unfortunately, both games were delayed well beyond their initial target dates, by which time the Wii market for core games was a wasteland.

        • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

          Ohh this is nice ways of seeing this. So, if those three IP did really well for Wii U, many game developers will then consider on developing that specific genre to that consoles.

          • It’s certainly a possibility. But it’s still very important for Nintendo to get a Final Fantasy on that system if they want RPG support, regardless. FF isn’t what it used to be, but until another series can definitively claim the throne, it’s still the genre leader. :)

          • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

            Don’t you think Tales can take that position? Considering the game has been getting better each year?

          • Tales has just gotten really, really lucky this generation. Microsoft helped them get started with HD development using Tales of Vesperia. Following that, FFXIII failed, which means fans needed something to fill that gap.

            The PS3 is a Blu-Ray player, which means the anime community owns the device. Namco stepped in with a decent game, made a big deal out of the 15th anniversary, and sold a lot of copies of Xillia. :)

            Next time may not be that simple for them. Tales is recognizable enough at this point certainly, but I don’t think it’s genre leader material quite yet. I don’t think Final Fantasy has fallen that low just yet.

          • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

            Hooo. So Tales is still not as strong as FF there. And do you think that many Jrpg franchise/genre is also kinda dying in Japan?
            Other than FF,DQ and Tales. Suikoden, Grandia, Lunar, Legend of Legendary Heroes, it seems many of the game have moved to handheld and being happy with smaller market(I know in Japan is big but outside of Japan is considereably smaller.) and sells lesser?

          • Wait what?? My favorite light novel has a game? When Did densetsu no densetsu yuusha get a game?

            Yeah I get the Sony preference for consoles but on the handheld market going with the Vita isnt really a smart decision and its not like Tales of Hearts will be a system seller

          • So I just looked up the game and its a 3D First person RPG… on the PSP, they should make a 3DS sequel … and a new anime!

          • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

            Thats why you should not underestimate Japan.^_^ Everything can have a game lol.^_^

          • In my opinion Namco bandai doesnt have money to waste.

            Honestly the problem with Tales of Series in general is the
            marketing team considers themselves as a niche market so they advertise
            accordingly and its really a waste. Its the reason why FF is still so
            predominant.(even though its quality has evidently deteriorated lately)

          • Sorry, I didn’t have time to reply to this until just now!

            JRPGs… from what we’ve seen, aside from Tales, Final Fantasy, and whatever Nintendo are pushing, JRPGs are moving away from home consoles and largely onto portables, yeah. The ones that are staying on home consoles are either because:

            1. They’re meant for a worldwide audience, so being on a console is important.


            2. The fanbase in Japan prefers them on a console (as appears to be the case with Tales until a future game can disprove this theory).

            Those games aside, I think the JRPG market has shifted more or less to portables, yeah.

        • Skyer Ist

          I’M VERY HOPE THAT SAKAGUCHI WILL MAKE ANOTHER GAME FOR WII U WITH NINTENDO. PLEEEEASE. oh, sorry, just a very very big fan of his works!!

    • malek86

      I’m not expecting the Wii U to do overly well in Japan, frankly.
      It will do ok – possibly surpass the PS3 as a whole – but the console market is just not as good as it could be. The Wii U, while its Gamepad has some portability factor, is too tied to the normal console system to really make a breach imo. After all, you need to be within the system’s range (and having tried, it starts stuttering after I go past just one wall in my house). So it’s still a home device. Add to it the problem of explaining the concept of the Gamepad to players (especially with mostly being families who bought the Wii, while now their target is changed again) and it makes for a difficult situation. At the very least, the price being closer to the Wii than the western countries, might be a good thing.

      That said, I think it will garner quite a bit of support (due to MH and DQ, and maybe that Monolith game although I think that will be an after-thought for most), if anything because of multiplatform games in the beginning, and if Nintendo is lucky, they’ll also keep making them after the new consoles come out. Sales will also be helped by the success of the 3DS, I think – right now Nintendo is certainly in a good moment for the brand. It helped the Wii too at first – the problem with the Wii U will be actually keeping that momentum, and whether multiplatform games can do it.

      I’m not expecting many developers to support the Wii U exclusively, unless Nintendo really starts waving around money and development/publishing support like they are doing with the 3DS – except that Wii U development will certainly be much more expensive and many big companies won’t be willing to forgo the existing huge 360/PS3 overseas market, or for the smaller companies, the fairly large and hardcore-driven PS3 market in Japan.

    • Skyer Ist

      well, knowing nintendo, of course they’re going to hire developers, support them financially etc. i can see wii u selling as wii in japan lietime (just 12M), it’s good number. it has dragon quest (and X not going to be alone, because last gen all dq games was for nintendo platforms and this time >> 3ds/u), it has mario (nsmb wii – biggest selling console game ever in japan, just behind original nes release), kart, etc. it’ll have ssb, monolith soft projects, etc etc. we don’t know much, but of course nintendo preparing a lot behind the scenes. and the message they’re sending with mh and dq – is very clear.

      p.s. i think monster hunter will have opening of 100K+, and lifetime 500K+. which is gread for 5th iteration and home console.

  • Yakuza 5 is going to be interesting to see, too. Curious to see if Sega can keep interest up in the series, having released so many Yakuza games this generation.

    • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

      You think there are possibilities of brand fatigue there?

      • Nitraion

        Sadly yeah i kinda seen it…..after playing yakuza 5 demo…
        the more interesting part is now kiryu can go rage mode pressing R2 button and more mini game and dating sims…. not sure if still interesting in here hmm i kinda worried….

      • Hmm, not brand fatigue, no. If this had been 2011, I might have been worried, since it looked like they were about to annualize the series for a bit, but it’s been two years since Yakuza 4, so I think it’s okay. I’m just curious if they can keep launch sales relatively stable (around 375k).

    • Nitraion

      Yep Sega making so much yakuza game in this gen i tried the demo…
      The battle still fun but not really have new feel….the new one is more mini game and hostess dating sims….the grapic style kinda look dated now but still have its charm.. majority i play yakuza because of substories….

  • Nitraion

    Hmm i have to say wiiU game on here doesn’t really have good impact… ._.
    i surprised the launch games have low review….like zombiU for example

    • kylehyde

      Generally most of the launch games on any consoles tend to receive low reviews.

    • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

      I am not really sure about ZombiU there. I tries to see the review from both sides here and it seems ZombiU is not game for everyone.(Just like how shump and beat’em up is not for everyone.)
      That game is very difficult and not like maybe many of the reviewers hope for as the game ask you to run away and tries to stock as many bullet as much as possible.(Not like L4D.)
      For the other games,…… not really good indeed.(I would love to get Tank! Tank! Tank! though. I played the hell of that game in arcade with my friends.^_^)

  • Alex Cattaneo

    Yakuza 5>> every wiiu game.

  • Skyer Ist

    I hope Nintendo prepared as minumum as 300K Wii U or so for Japan. Good luck with launch! NSMB U, Land and MH tri G HD will drive to the sky!

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