As the predecessor to Wii, the GameCube was Nintendo’s worst selling console ever. During its six year life, it sold only 22 million units worldwide. Despite this, Nintendo reportedly turned a profit on the little purple box, thanks to a strong lineup of first party games and low cost hardware.
That said, I can’t help but wonder if Wii would have materialized had the GameCube operated at a loss. Would Nintendo have invested the necessary research and development costs on Wii had it not been for said profits? With access to enormous credit lines, they might have.
But the underwhelming success of GameCube coupled with its modest profits might have been just the thing to encourage Nintendo into rethinking its approach. What do you think? What if the GameCube was a complete bust? Would there even be a Wii? Perhaps something more desperate?