Wii U "could be relegated to a first party only platform"

The second half of 2013 will be crucial to deciding the ultimate fate of Nintendo’s Wii U, one analyst has stated.

And while Nintendo itself is not hosting a press conference at next week’s E3, the LA convention is still of vital importance to the struggling console.

We believe the Wii U release slate on display will be a key determinant of the console’s long-term staying power,” Michael Pachter told investors. With the more powerful PS4 and Xbox One launching later this year, Nintendo risks losing additional share to its console competitors if the quality and volume of content available for Wii U does not pick up markedly in the near-term.

If the Wii U’s popularity does not improve by the end of the year, many third-party publishers may pass on producing games for the console.”

Pachter went on to make an even graver prediction – that all third party publishers could eventually walk away from the machine.

EA recently announced that it had no Wii U games in development, and it remains a possibility that the publisher will abandon the platform entirely,” he speculated. Should other third parties follow EA’s lead, the Wii U could be relegated to a first party only platform.”

Of course, there’s always the tried and trusted price cut for Nintendo to fall back on if all else fails.

Added Pachter: Nintendo may look to spur Wii U sales through either a hardware price drop of $50 or a bundle that includes some of its more popular software.”

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