The Nintendo Switch has already proven that it will be the console that catalyzes a Nintendo resurgence in the video game industry—now, analysts and competitors are waiting to see just what that means for the Japanese gaming giant. While the life cycle of the Switch will inevitably see some fluctuation in sales, however, the console's incredibly strong start has now led to a truly bizarre circumstance. According to a financial report released by Nintendo Japan earlier this week, the Switch is now set to surpass the Wii U in total sales by 2018.
According to Nintendo, the Switch has sold just over 7.5 million units thus far in its life cycle, while the Wii U sold just 13.5 million over its entire existence. The Switch is now being projected to hit 14 million sales by March 2018, meaning it will soon eclipse the Wii U's lifetime sales in an unprecedented amount of time.
It's important to contextualize this news, of course. The Switch surpassing the Wii U's lifetime sales in just over a year is impressive, but it's nothing like what that would mean for a Sony or Microsoft console. The Wii U was a failure in every sense of the word, with early adopters and Nintendo diehards alike abandoning the platform a few years after its release thanks to a poor launch lineup that never truly materialized into something better later in its life cycle.
Still, the news is big for Nintendo, as the company could ill-afford another flop on the scale of the Wii U, and has instead completely revitalized its presence in the gaming community. The Switch has featured one of the most incredible year one games lineups in the history of the industry, with most critics discussing the merits of a Game of the Year accolade between The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Super Mario Odyssey—two Nintendo exclusives in the Switch's year one library.
Nintendo won't be able to pump out two Game of the Year exclusives for the Switch every year—although, given the company's magic touch in 2017, who knows—so it will be interesting to see how the Switch's sales saturate once the initial hype around its amazing games library begins to die down a little. For now, though, the Nintendo Switch is proving to be every bit the juggernaut the Wii U wasn't, and Nintendo fans couldn't be happier.