Talk:List of commercial failures in video gaming/Archive 1

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Rise of the Robots

Good graphics, lots of publicity, but bad reviews in computer and video game mags. Can someone add a paragraph about it here? (talk) 08:20, 11 December 2007 (UTC)

Despite being crap, I think it sold pretty well. More of a critical failure. Also this is wiki, you don't need people to do things for you. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)


I question the idea that Shenmue was "not well-received". It definitely was delayed and cost a lot to make, but the reviews were pretty good. A quick glance at Metacritic shows it has an 89% average from critics ( I have no doubt that it didn't sell like hotcakes, but it was also a weird new RPG/adventure hybrid on an underadopted system and came out right around the same time as the widely popular PS2, so financial failure maybe, but hardly a critical failure, and clearly Microsoft thought enough of Shenmue to convince Sega to can the US Dreamcast release of Shenmue and put it on Xbox exclusively.

Also the comments about Shenmue II are confusing. Better wording might be, "The sequel, Shenmue II, was released on Dreamcast in Japan and Europe, and on Xbox in the US." Furthermore, even if there is no Shenmue III, there's still Shenmue Online, right?

Furthermore, can a game really be considered a commercial failure if it got a sequel?

Casio Loopy? NEC PC-FX?

If some of the included consoles on this article are "failures", Loopy and PC-FX must be bottom-line. The Loopy had very few games produced, and little information on the machine is even available on Japanese websites. Casio also produced a PV-1000 that failed previously.

Planescape Scott Warner wrote: "We did sell-through around 400k worldwide on Torment. There seems to be an ongoing legacy that the game did very poorly at retail, which isn't true. It actually sold more copies than the Fallouts did. Those aren't Final Fantasy numbers, but it certainly was profitable for the company." Removing it from the list.


The pelican article is confusing. Its like two sentences and the second is a run-on that makes absolutely no sense. I'm not sure how to fix it, though, as I don't know anything about the console 15:46, 3 May 2006 (UTC)

Live and Reloaded?

I don't see why Live and Reloaded is on the list. The game has been out only a few months and has neither been a huge success nor a huge failure. ShadowMan1od

It should be on the list, as it has sold very poorly (admittedly nowhere near as badly as Grabbed by the Ghoulies, but still nowhere near a success). Please see the Rareware article for more information! NP Chilla 12:31, 28 May 2006 (UTC)
Someone removed this without explanation. I'm putting it back. Ace of Sevens 18:33, 12 July 2006 (UTC)

Y0.u's NPOVing

I think that the NPOVing that Y0u made today was unnecesary, and just adds weasel phrases (as I saw them called...somewhere, don't remember where). It doesnt really have a point. I thought I would look for other opinions before reverting. What are your thoughts? Kertrats 23:44, 8 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I feel that this was needed. For example, "Failed to live up to its hype," "severe gameplay problems," and "almost unplayable" seem to be opinions. While my "weaseal term" rephrasing was not ideal, I feel that it was an improvment. You 00:06, Jun 9, 2005 (UTC)

Master System a failure

Isn't this a bit of a US-centric view of the console, given they've sold pretty well in 3 out of 5 markets? Over that, I could argue Nintendo 64 should be on the list, after failing to do anything in a large part of the european market (thanks to their third party localized distribution). wS 05:24, 13 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Yes, I agree, SMS was a success, even in the US it was a great system, NES just outsold it. People who had a chance to play SMS and NES here (New Jersey) that I know all love the SMS more. --Tonsofpcs 05:34, 13 Jun 2005 (UTC)
As it carried over from the commercial failures article, I'll remove it from the list until Sunday, unless anyone opposes. The identity of the original editor should now be buried under dozens of edits to ask directly. wS 12:08, 16 Jun 2005 (UTC)
That would be a nice feature to have in mediawiki, to take some text from an article, and get the software to show you when and by whom it was introduced into the article. Jacoplane 14:42, 16 Jun 2005 (UTC)
That's not really feasible, which is why users should ALWAYS use the edit summaries when they add or remove something (whether major or minor). I usually end up maxing out the length allowable (hope they allow even longer one day!), but it means anyone looking over the history has a good idea of what I changed; sometimes my summary is longer than the edit itself! So if the summary had been filled in with great detail you could merely look and see "added SMS to list, b/c it failed abysmally here in US" or whatnot. Master Thief GarrettTalk 00:38, 21 Jun 2005 (UTC)
The SMS was very, no, ludicrously successful here in NZ; absolutely everyone had one, it was even more common than a VCR or stereo; on the other hand I've never ever seen a NES here so maybe they had no alternative purchase? But then again it was a hella cool system, so even given a choice people might have chosen it over the NES... Master Thief GarrettTalk 00:38, 21 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Dreamcast GD-ROM a failure

I really don't see how this was a commercial failure as the GD-ROM was never a commercial product. It was merely the proprietary format of a failed game console. It's a bit like saying Gamecube's reverse spiral mini-DVDs are a failure because the Gamecube is isn't as popular as PS2 or Xbox (at least outside of Japan). The GD-ROM as failure should be removed.

Game Gear a failure

How was the Game Gear a failure in North America? --Tonsofpcs 05:37, 13 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Its article says "Today, the Game Gear is widely considered to have been a failure"; Perhaps it was a partial success (probably the third most successful after the Gameboy and PSP), but, like the Saturn, it never gained any purchase in the market for long. Granted, I'm tempted to simply make an entry for "All handheld consoles other than the Game Boy series and PSP" and be done with it. Nifboy 16:59, 13 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Well, the Game Gear was crucified in sales by the Game Boy (as was the Lynx), so I'm not sure why it was removed from the list. Oh, and Nifboy is mistaken about the Game Gear being the "third most successful [handheld] after the Game Boy and PSP" - the Nintendo DS has sold far more than Sony's system in all territories. NP Chilla 16:59, 31 May 2006 (UTC)
I consider the DS a GB system, regardless of whether it has a "Game Boy" appended to it or not. Also mind that my comment was made in June of last year, when the PSP had been out for less than three months and we didn't have good sales numbers yet. Nifboy 18:58, 31 May 2006 (UTC)

The Phantom

I'm wondering if I should add The Phantom to the article. After all, their story is the mess that we all know, and it's unlikely it will ever launch. Still, it is not discarded from launch (ha-ha! -ed), so, any comments ? wS 11:35, 13 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I think we should keep unreleased consoles off the list, mostly on matter of principle. Nifboy 16:45, 13 Jun 2005 (UTC)
I was thinking about adding the Indrema L600 to the list. However, it was never released either. Do you also have objections to this? Jacoplane 21:20, 13 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Duh. It's already on the list ;) Jacoplane 21:22, 13 Jun 2005 (UTC)
When it is consider "vaporware" and hasn't been released it. It is like saying that Duke Nukem Forever is a commerical failure when it hasn't been released to th public. --Chill Pill Bill 15:21, 16 Jun 2005 (UTC):-P
Duke Nuken Forever was never announced officially, with photos, press releases or presentations in the E3 --Mateusc 22:01, 16 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Yes they did, that why it's funny. They had a booth about Duke Nukem Forever at e3 1998 (using the Quake II engine) then again they appeared at E3 in 2001 using the Unreal engine expecting to release it for their 10 year anniversary :). But I do agree that neither DNForever nor Phantom should appear on this list. - UnlimitedAccess 15:11, 12 August 2005 (UTC)
The Phantom should not be on this list. Bad press, vaporware or not, it has not been released yet. Some would say the Nintendo Revolution is a failure, yet it hasn't been released either.
The Phantom is a failure before it left the gate. It will be expensive, it will contain Pong 4010 (gasp) and it will be created by a company composed of several former employees of our favorite companies (an example being WorldCom). -- A Link to the Past 22:34, July 22, 2005 (UTC)
You may think it's going to be a failure but no one can ever be sure until it is released. Wikipedia is not a crystal ball, so until it actually does fail it doesnt belong on this list any more then Duken Nukem Forever does. - User:UnlimitedAccess
It's a commercial failure because it's a scam. - A Link to the Past (talk) 21:43, August 26, 2005 (UTC)
Whether a scam or not, that doesnt qualify it for a failure. Either way its your POV it's a failure. It's obscene that the Phantom is still on this list, vaporware is not a commerical failure. Its cant even be commerical unless released commerically, which the phamtom is not....! - UnlimitedAccess 16:54, 12 September 2005 (UTC)

What is a commercial failure?

I've been editing the list, but especially regarding the software titles it's hard to say what qualifies as a real commercial failure. I added Battlecruiser 3000AD, Custer's Revenge, Full Spectrum Warrior and Ultima IX, but I don't know what the sales figures for those games were (nor what kind of sales the publisher expected). I've selected these titles mainly on how the response to those games was in terms of reviews and consumer response. If anyone thinks any of these games shouldn't be on the list then make the edit, I thought I'd just keep adding, seeing as deleting is easier than adding. Jacoplane 00:23, 14 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Yes, I suggest adding all games that might qualify, and around, say, Friday, we start deleting entries that do not qualify as failures. Yet, failures to me fall into:
  1. massively hyped games that bombed
  2. games that spent over 5 years in development, and then bombed
  3. sequels of successful games that not only were worse that the predecessors, but also, well bombed.
bonus points for combinations!
wS 00:34, 14 Jun 2005 (UTC)
I think that if a notable game is released in a very buggy state then that should also count Jacoplane 00:46, 14 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Only if that interferred in the market. Championship Manager 4, for instance, had quite a hefty number of bugs from the start, yet was a top seller. wS 00:52, 14 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Superman 64 is also a commercial failure, right? I don't know the sales, but the reviews were horrible. Thunderbrand 05:02, Jun 14, 2005 (UTC)
Was Master of Orion III a comercial failure? The game did not live up to the hype generated by fans of the series. The original team that was developing the game were sacked durring the devopment stage, and it was picked up and completed by different people. As a result the game had so many bugs, especially in AI diplomacy. According to the (Wiki) aricle, it was a "moderate seller." But the game didn't "bomb" completly. So, Would MOO3 be a comercial failure in computer and video gaming? —Kjammer 09:36, 14 Jun 2005 (UTC)
I was going to add it because of the huge amount of time it spent in development, followed by the absolute reaming it got by critics, plus the expectations of its predecessors. I think a lot of the games on the list now could be described as "moderate sellers." Nifboy 17:45, 14 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Depends on the production values, IMO. While a game with low/moderate production values and equal expectation (like, say Salt Lake 2002) can bomb or miss expectations in the market without becoming a notable miss, games with large production values or that were hyped as "the next big thing" simply can't do anything else but succeed, risking being added. For instance, I've added the whole lot of footy managers since 99, and while collectively they are worth mentioning, individually neither of them qualify. wS 04:35, 15 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Has anyone added the bomberman game for the xbox360?

Article layout

My mistake removing those italics for software titles. However, I feel that the edits made by User:Chill Pill Bill that removed the TOC are not really an improvement. I think the list is too long to not have a TOC. So I suggest adding the "===" before and after the title of each item of the list instead of "; ... :". What is the consensus???? Jacoplane 02:02, 17 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I think the page's function as a list takes priority over its function as describing each individual failure. Each entry is not supposed to be terribly long; if it is, it should be moved to the relevant article. And since it's a list, it doesn't get a TOC, since the list itself effectively is the TOC. Nifboy 02:24, 17 Jun 2005 (UTC)
I agree with Nifboy. :-) Anyways if you want to compromise, we could add two more subsections like separating the console/handheld systems and peripherals and in addition make a new section called failed game companies like ION Storm even though it will get redundant because of ION Storm/Daikatana. Then the "table of contents" will then appear in this article. --Chill Pill Bill 04:37, 17 Jun 2005 (UTC)
No I'll go with the reasoning of Nifboy. I guess that makes sense. I've been looking around and very long lists seem to have the "compacttoc", but that won't work as this. So I'm fine with leaving the article like this. Jacoplane 13:22, 17 Jun 2005 (UTC)

As the sections are sorted alphabetically, I think it would be great to have the release year included in the name of each item, or perhaps in a small font below the title. When looking at the list it would be nice to have some historical reference of what era of gaming each item fits into. --Ejkook 14:47, 21 April 2006 (UTC)

jvc x'eye

this was a sega genesis/cd clone that shipped with a few sega games and a karaoke system.


Well, this article is about commercial failures, so I don't think this game really belongs here. Sure it might have been overhyped, but it sold very well, and most of the reviews were good, eg gamespot review. Jacoplane 7 July 2005 11:44 (UTC)

It's a Molyneux game. Everything the man touches turns to hype. I agree, it's not nearly so much a failure as the others. Nifboy 7 July 2005 17:00 (UTC)

The line between a failure and a downright awful game

Hm, what is Big Rigs: Over the Road Racing doing here ? While it is indeed one of the top contenders to the worst game ever, it was on a budget range label that sells their games for $19.99 or less, and (as it is easy to tell) very cheaply done. Looking at the Activision Value, I'm sure a lot of those games sold worse than Big Rigs while having higher production values. wS; 05:22, 30 July 2005 (UTC)

Agreed. This is more or less why a similar list of video and computer games considered to be the worst ever or whatever was proposed; stuff like Big Rigs and Custer's Revenge simply doesn't belong here. Taking it off now. Nifboy 06:30, 30 July 2005 (UTC)

Holy crap!

This is so going to me a mess of an article.

Firstly your going to have to have a much better method of criteria to define what belongs in here!

If Commerical Failure is the primary key, then slap Microsoft Xbox onto the list, because the Xbox division at Microsoft have lost somewhere between half a billion to a billion dollars on the Xbox including hardware and software sales. You will have a tough time fighting the rabid Xbox fans to let that one fly! Clearly we need a better definition.

Sticking Infinium Labs Phantom console in here is just plain silly, your prempting it's failure and "Wikipedia is not a crystal ball". If your including it because its Vaporware, then your going to have to include every example of Vaporware and that is clearly outside the scope of a "list of commerical failures". If your including it because people believe it has been cancelled/forgotten, then you will have to include every entry from the List of cancelled video games, which is also silly. Putting hardware and video games that are still in development no matter how delayed (ie Duke Nukem forever) is just silly.

Why is Earthbound a failure because it failed in the West? It was highly successful and commerically successful in the East? IF a game has to succeed in the West to be "commerically successful" then rename the list to; "Commerical failures in computer and video gaming in the west", otherwise remove Earthbound, as far as I know it did quite well.

The Sega Game Gear being a failure is highly suspect too. Just because Sega didnt continue to pursue the hand held market could just imply it wasnt as commercially successful as they would of liked, not that it wasnt commerically successful at all! It did quite well in Asia and Australia and some of Europe.

The Nintendo peripherals such as R.O.B., the Power Glover, Infrared wireless controllers, Dance matt, Zapper, Famicom Keyboard, Famicom MODEM, Famicom Tape Recorder, Famicom Family BASIC, Famicom Voice Recognition Controllers etc etc etc etc were NOT failures. They did exactly what they were ment to do resulting in 75% Market dominance in North America and much higher in Japan, for a time "playing Nintendo" reffered to playing ANY video game. The success of the console in Japan largely revolved around many of these peripherals and the NES Zapper, the Power Glove and R.O.B. were all designed to, as the article says "marketing gimmick to convince investors that the NES was different than Atari's consoles of the past", it did just that.... I dont see a failure. The only NES peripheral that comes close to a failure is the Nintendo FDS. Edit: Thinking about it, almost all peripherals released for a Console never return a profit on their own sales, but are ment to make one platform more attractive then the compeition, thus making it profitable in the long run. Also games like RPG's generally flop when first released, but continue to sell well beyond the general life span of most other games and in the long term return a profit.

What do you think? - UnlimitedAccess 23:24, 9 August 2005 (UTC)

Xbox: Most consoles developers these days (if not all) are expecting a hit from selling hardware. Remember that Xbox is a brand that includes the machine, online services such as Live, game licensing and Microsoft's own game sales. Given how insanely popular games like Halo and Forza Motorsport are (developed and published in-house), I believe the massive consoles losses are supported by the remaining assets of the brand

Phantom: It is by far one of the most controversial items on the list, but AFAIK no other console went over their initial budget so many times without even having a final prototype, not to mention features and specs were changing frequently. But yes, it is controversial, and that's why I've asked the opinion about including it a bit above.

Earthbound: Always had the idea it was, at best, a "silent hit". I don't see any reason why it should be here, 'to.

Game Gear: Also a bit dodgy after talking about it with someone that ran a store in Germany (and later in here) when the GG was still on sale; it achieved average sales, but like the Atari Lynx, while being superior to the GameBoy, the software was much inferior. The same guy said most people bought it as a car TV, so go figure. But it is another that we could live without in the list

Periphals: Sorry, but I doubt they've done that much for the console - The NES was much superior to the Atari 5200/7800, Colecovision or other crash era consoles, and featured "the" killer app of the 80s - Super Mario Bros, not to mention all the buzz about it (which led to some of the most embarasing TV moments, may I add so). Calling the Japanese sales into issue is not a point - the 1983 crash, the main reason why the industry entered a void that potentiated a company with a clean record, had no impact there, and in there, and home gaming was pretty much introduced with the Famicom. wS; 23:50, 10 August 2005 (UTC)

Cool. Oh I wasnt suggesting the Xbox should be listed (clearly it shouldn't), but despite the Xbox being highly popular, it wasnt commercially successful for Microsoft, and its questionable whether the next gen one will be either, so I think their needs to be some definition of what a commercial failure is that allows a loop hole for the Xbox to remain off the list, or will it be the giant elephant in the room no one mentions :).
About the Famicom/NES peripherals. Firstly, after the 1983 video game crash, US distributors and stores were reluctant to embrace Nintendo, the peripherals proposed for release in the US like the Zapper, R.O.B. and the power glove went a long way to helping it distinguish itself from the Atari (for investors, distributors and consumers). Before Nintendo could rely on it's "killer apps", they needed "killer gimicks" and the peripherals did just that. In Japan the peripherals played a much more vital role because the Famicom was marketted their as literally a "Family Computer" with some of the peripherals being the famicom keyboard, programming software, voice recognition controller, 'dance dance revolution'-esque exercise matt, backup tape (for saving applications), non game releated applications, games were downloaded via Nintendo vending machines at shops onto blank carts and used on their Famicom, MODEM peripheral to download weather reports, the news, jokes. These were important in Japan because Sega already had a presence back then, with its SG-1000, SG-1000 Mk II, SG-1000 Mk III, SC-3000 and the SF-7000. Additionally all of these addon peripherals (and the software) made the Famicom the most successful console to hit Japan (even to this day), and they only stopped producing new Famicoms in 2002, ie they had an uninterupted run for 19 years (yes you could buy brand new Famicoms in Japan). I think your under valuing the importance the peripherals played in the success of the NES/Famicom (particarly the Famicom). - UnlimitedAccess 19:22, 11 August 2005 (UTC)
I think Earthbound was clearly a failure in english-speaking markets. Given that this is english Wikipedia, its presence on this list is appropriate. Signs that the game was a failure include: massive marketing blitz in the US, but poor sales. Marketing literature referring to Earthbound 64 coupled with the failure to ever deliver the product. Basically, this meets the sniff test. The reason this belongs on the list and the Xbox doesn't is that it sold less than planned: that's what makes a product a failure. Microsoft has bled money through the Xbox product, but they understood that they would be doing that going in. Contrast with Earthbound: many copied of Earthbound were left on the shelves and eventually returned by retailers to Nintendo. Nintendo dramatically missed its own sales plan with respect to this product, and thus I've restored it to the list. I think the argument about the peripherals not being failures because they were designed to help support the NES as a "system" is more persuasive, and agree with removing those until someone can demonstrate otherwise. --Nandesuka 12:04, 14 August 2005 (UTC)
I understand that Earthbound most probably failed in the US, and this is the English Wikipedia but I dont think that is cause to see the English encyclopedia intentionally have an anthrocentric pov in it's articles, it would be like listing Half-life on the Japanese wikipedias "List of commercial failures" since it was a huge flop their despite it's huge marketting budgets. However that being said I do concede that it's the "norm" on wikipedia to have a skewed Western perspective on every article (just as much as their would be on every language wiki) so I will drop it, I'm content with the introduction ("Although highly popular in Japan...") and am not the type to lead an (ultimatly flawed) crusade against the defacto ethics of wikipedia :). - UnlimitedAccess 15:23, 15 August 2005 (UTC)

Btw, your definition of a commericial failure as sold less than planned is a good definition when combined with "and did not return a profit". A commerical failure is;

  1. A released product or service that sold less than expected and;
  2. Did not return a profit.

Making all entries have to qualify both points would go a long to clarify this page and I believe it would be a good addition to the introduction somewhere (of course more diligently written). It would clearly exclude things like the Nintendo peripherals because they sold as many as expected and contributed hugly to the success of the platform and would elimiate erroneous entries like the Phantom from appearing here too. What do you think? - UnlimitedAccess 15:23, 15 August 2005 (UTC)

  • Agree. There are a ton of entries in here that are products that people just didn't like. (I just removed Full Spectrum Warrior, for example.) Also I think that we can make this a rigorous article by requiring that each item list how much money was lost. This is of course difficult to estimate; video game publishers never discuss the budgets of their games, and also don't break out revenue from their games; though the latter can be estimated based on retail sales data published by TRSTS and other services for international sales. Despite this difficulty, I think it's the only way this mess of an article can be remedied. Currently it's a long list of anecdotes. Tempshill 18:19, 6 October 2005 (UTC)

I've made a first attempt at trying to repair the hardware section of this page which is loaded with U.S. centric POV as well as opinon by writers who were likely not even old enough to have used the systems when they were launched. I have removed the entries for the TurboGrafx (this system was ranked competitive with Nintendo with Sega holding third place, directly opposite to standings in the U.S.), the Dreamcast "proprietary media format" (since that's just stupid, a media/data format is out of scope of this section, and not relevant anyways), and the CD-i (which sold phenomenally well in the market it was targetted at, kiosks and edutainment installations. Later in life, they faced some competition from the M2, but by 2000, standalone, lower-priced PC based kiosk systems replaced them in the market) Grrr... I'll be back to work on this more. bcRIPster 19:23, 26 October 2005 (MST)

  • After adding a scope statement to the hardware section and after alot of thought, I've also removed the Game Gear as it was not a failure. It just didn't outsell the Game Boy. If anything I would be tempted to add the TG Express but I do not have enough first hand knowledge of sales outside of the U.S. of that platform to make a definitive statement. I also removed "Sega Accessories" from the list since if you're going to list that, you might as well list ALL console accessories. bcRIPster 20:11, 26 October 2005 (MST)

A way to solve an objection on the FLC:

Move it to List of major commercial failures in computer and video gaming. Thusly, a game that lost a company one dollar won't be listed in the same article as a game that destroyed a company. - A Link to the Past (talk) 21:49, August 26, 2005 (UTC)

XBOX 360?

Why is the XBOX 360 listed on this page? It hasn't even been released.

Because User: doesn't like the XBox 360 and decided to vandalize the page with false information. Nifboy 00:17, 27 October 2005 (UTC)
Now that we know of the 360's high rate of failure, shouldn't it be listed on the page now?
No, because those are technical failures, not commercial failures; besides, I think such reports are anecdotal more than scientific (a few people reporting problems doesn't mean everybody is having problems). If the 360 peters out and can't even reach the sales of the original, then it would belong here, but it'll be at least a few years before we know if the 360 is a bomb or not. -- VederJuda 17:09, 26 June 2007 (UTC)

Bandai Pippin

The Apple/Bandai Pippin seems like it might be a good addition to this list. Unfortunately I don't know enough about the reasons behind its failure to make the addition myself.

That's a good call. Let me dig through my notes and see how to best summarize this. It was pretty much a dead product before it even launched in the U.S. becuase the management and designers had absolutely no knowledge about the market they were trying to enter, didn't understand their prospective user base, and had no clue there was any kind of competative technology already established in the market, which caused all kinds of awquard question/answer moments. ...and the Mac OS implementation constantly crashed at all the demo kiosks with the little Bomb errors, so they kept having to reboot the machines. It was a hilarious product announcement event... They over-booked the diner party where they had Sheryl Crow playing and the fire marshal came and locked down the dining room preventing many of the guest from watching the show. A real disaster from the starting line. bcRIPster 10:50, 27 October 2005 (MST)

11th Hour

The 11th Hour wasnt a commerical failure... it returned a profit, quite decent sized too, in fact it has been described as "block buster in size", especially in compared to most games but clearly underperformed especially in light of Trilobytes early game the 7th Guest (the the most or second most successful game of all time). Trilobyte was poorly managed and tried to create multiple projects at once all with larger budgets than 11th Guest had, plus the two founders stopped communicating and the company frivilously spent money and the company soon fell apart. This is a list of commerical failures and 11th Hour on the list is deceptive. Hell it would be better to list the titles that actually were commercial failures that led to Trilobyte closing such as Uncle Henry's Playhouse that internationally sold 176 (im not joking) and Clandestiny that sold a reported "close to 20,000" copies, lets not even mention the other projects that were cancelled after hundreds of thousands were sunk into them. The 11th Hour kept them afloat as long as they did.

"All told, the cushion of revenue from The 7th Guest and The 11th Hour was no more. The success of those games was a distant memory, as were millions of dollars in revenue that evaporated in just a few short years."

Also the definition of a commerical failure on this very page describes "This definition should be applied internationally, and not based strictly on the success or failure of a platform in any one given market." Why the hell is Earthbound on here because it failed in one given market, ie the US?! Internationally Earthbound is hugely successful, again its inclusion on here is deceptive.

11th hour perhaps got the most press as the turning point of Trilobyte's fortunes...although it is better to consider it a dissapointment (below expectations) rather than a failure.


The listing is counterdicting itself. It can't havesold over half a million units and be a commercial failure. Can we prove the sales data on it. --User:Jedi6 11-26-05


I'm not saying that Killer7 wasn't a failure, it probably was, but could someone please provide some sources on that or game sales and rentals of it. If not for the article, then for my own desire. Thanks. Gold Stur 03:52, 27 November 2005 (UTC)

Well that's what's difficult about this article. The NPD finds all the sales data but charges $1200 to get the info. So you can't ever prove any of the info. on this page. The only way reason I know is because I have an "insider contact" and Matt from IGN stated it sold that bad in one of his mailbags.--User:Jedi6 November 27, 2005
I wouldn't have included killer 7 in the list. I just don't think as a flop it was a big as the others here. Sure, it didn't sell that well, but it didn't break any companies did it? And is NPD the only company which supplies software charts for the US? Chart-Track do supply chart position information for UK and European games for free, but for details like how many units sold in which areas etc, you have to pay. - Hahnchen 14:22, 10 December 2005 (UTC)
NPD has a monopoly in America. Also Killer 7 did flop and pretty bad too. The company lost money on the game. Jedi6 23:53, 12 December 2005 (UTC)
Prove it. Perhaps it did in the USA but how about in Japan?... hell even crap sales around the world can allow it to break even or be a commerical success. Also, Arthouse games and RPG's tend to have long shelf lives, i.e. they dont sell in large quanities immeditely but sell large quantities slowly after longer periods of time, this is particarlly true in Japan. Block buster mentality where if it doesnt succeed after a week, it flopped is flawed. It's the out dated hollywood mentality. - UnlimitedAccess 05:40, 1 January 2006 (UTC)
1 The game sold around 10000-20000 in the U.S. and even less in Japan. The games sales have virtually dried up. It did bomb no matter how you look at it. Jedi6 01:54, 2 January 2006 (UTC)

PSX and PS2 Linux

They cannot be considered failures because was not mainstream products. PSX shipping until today in Japan to High-tech Home theater segment and PS2 Linux is a programmer tool. --Rick Browser 14:54, 15 January 2006 (UTC)

Regarding the PS2 Linux, you are right since it was just an add-on for the regular PS2. On the other hand, the PSX (DVR) was designed to be a mainstream product and its a good thing Sony didn't release it elsewhere after it wasn't doing well in Japan. --GoldDragon 19:54, 15 January 2006 (UTC)

Isn't a mainstream product, isn't a regular videogame console, it's a piece for home theater segment. DVD Recorder and HUGE HD inside doesn't mean mainstream. --Rick Browser 16:26, 16 January 2006 (UTC)
The PSX was meant to be a mainstream console but it sold poorly so Sony cut it off. It is just like the Nintendo 64 DD Jedi6 21:07, 16 January 2006 (UTC)
Read the sources which show why it was not just a niche product[1], as well as how its failure had wider implications[2] for Sony's strategy as a whole.--GoldDragon 20:10, 16 January 2006 (UTC)
This is original research. PSX was never mainstream product or home console substitute model. --Rick Browser 14:25, 17 January 2006 (UTC)

Dreamcast Sales?

As I recall, Sega of Japan was losing money hand over fist, and the retired president donated millions of dollars of his personal forture to keep the company afloat, Sega of Japan killed the Dreamcast because of their years of miscalculations and financial problems even though it was doing modestly well in the US at the time. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 08:57, 14 March 2007 (UTC).
I doubt the Dreamcast sales that are listed here. If it had sold 10 million they wouldn't have cancelled it so quickly. Also didn't SSega say they needed at least 5 million sales to stay in the business? Jedi6 21:37, 16 January 2006 (UTC)
This was way more than sales that were the issue here behind the Dreamcast being terminated. Although you can't really call it a failure. It did develop a rather large library of titles in a very short time, and it had good sales in generall. It was later on when third party developer support was lacking. Followed by Microsoft gearing up for XBox and abandoning CE/DirectX support for the platform beyond release (so you were locked into development using Visual Studio 6.0 only)... let's face it Microsoft used Sega to get their feet wet before jumping in. Also factored in was the poor health of Isao Okawa (who used his personal funds to bankroll the launch of the platform) and the persistent demands of the CSK board of directors to dump Sega operations. Dropping the Dreamcast was an effort to appease both the board and shareholders. Isao was the driving vision of keeping Sega going and if you'll note, CSK dumped Sega almost immediately after Isao died in 2001. In several interviews before he died he protested challenges from the Board, spoke of his vision for Sega and lamented the likely future as he knew was in store for the business as his illness was getting worse and he knew he didn't have long to live. It's pretty sad really. BcRIPster 17:08, 14 March 2007 (UTC)


I've added a brief section on the Gizmondo, whose parent company Tiger Telematics have just gone into adminstration. It could do with more specifics about why it failed, and what the status is in other countries.

Nintendo 64DD

Does this count as a true game system, or as an accessory? NP Chilla 13:58, 18 February 2006 (UTC)

I believe it's more correctly identified as a peripheral, as it needed the N64 to work, much like the Sega CD/32X.Rob T Firefly 01:04, 1 March 2006 (UTC)


  • BSX Satellaview
  • X-Band
  • Star Wars Galaxies in Japan, console attempt
  • Xbox in Japan
Please give references. Jedi6-(need help?) 03:43, 18 March 2006 (UTC)

A note on grammar: By the way, assuming that Wikipedia cares about grammatical correctness, someone should go through the article and correct all the misspellings of the word "its" (written incorrectly as "it's" in the article). There are plenty.

Maybe it is worth noting how badly both Xbox systems have sold in Japan, as even the GameCube is outselling both systems put together (according to the latest Nintendo Official Magazine UK). Such a colossal failure could be worth a mention - if we can group together lots of Sonic the Hedgehog flops, perhaps we can do this for Microsoft's systems (both of which are currently selling for a loss in profit). NP Chilla 12:49, 20 April 2006 (UTC)

Nintendo GameCube Network Adapters

Are you sure about this? I mean, Nintendo never actually bothered using these at all, and virtually only manufactured them 'cos Sega asked them to. In fact, this isn't a commercial failure at all - Nintendo never thought they would sell a trillion adapters, and they still made a profit on every adapter sold. NP Chilla 20:10, 2 May 2006 (UTC)

Yeah. I wouldn't call it a "failure" since Nintendo never planned on having any real online support in the first place. Removing it now. Nifboy 22:43, 2 May 2006 (UTC)

Amstrad GX4000

Didn't see it on the list but it's one of the all time failures. Possibly UK only, but still, definitely ripe for inclusion:

Grim Fandango

Sorry, but shouldn't Grim Fandango be on the list? It was heralded as one of the greatest PC games ever made and, as far as i'm sure, it didn't even break even.


The entry for Psychonauts states that it "has led to the recent demise of Majesco". Aside from being in the immediate tense, this strike me as innacurate because to the best of my knowledge Majesco was on the rocks even before the game flopped, in which case 'led' is too strong a word. Can anyone confirm this? --Tom Edwards 13:46, 31 May 2006 (UTC)

Intellivision Keyboard

This ought to be listed since it was undobutably a factor in the fall of Mattel Electronics during the crash. Endlessly delayed, overpriced, underpowered, and it brought about legal action against the company. Details: --Paul Soth 06:52, 10 June 2006 (UTC)

Planescape Torment

The German Wikipeda Says the Game sold 400,000 copies.

Mourning Online / Thrones of Chaos

The game has been retitled and is being redeveloped as (for all intents & purposes) a new MMO. The major failure occurred when the game was called Mourning or one of its variants. Ergo, the failure should be listed under that name. I added a paragraph outlining the redevelopment and the new name, which should suffice. Doggie Yum Yums 01:27, 6 July 2006 (UTC)


I don't think Unity should be on here - unlike pretty much everything else on this page, it was never finished, let alone released. Also, even if it had been released and sold poorly, I don't think this would warrant being classed as a "major commercial failure". Being developed by one person, it presumably wouldn't have had to sold many copies to break even. Plus, as a somewhat unusual/niche game, few would have expected it to sell vast numbers. Arganoid 17:32, 9 July 2006 (UTC)

Agreed, removed. Nifboy 00:02, 10 July 2006 (UTC)

Amiga CD32 vs CDTV

Implying that the CD32 was a commercial failure contradicts the wikipedia article which states "While the console was fairly successful during its lifespan and managed to be the best-selling CD format console in 1993, it was not able to sustain its growth, with Commodore filing for Chapter 11 just a year after its release after not being able to secure additional CD32 shipments for the holiday season". Commodore went into bankrupcy, this is true, but it was not because the CD32 was a commercial flop. While not successful in the US, it sold a respectable number of units across Europe.

However, the CDTV really was a commercial failure; it used outmoded technology that paled in comparison with the Amiga 1200 which was around roughly at the same. Also, people were less inclined to by a comptuer that looked like a hi-fi unit.

VanillaBeach 09:33, 27 July 2006 (UTC)

I agree. Furthermore, this fails "All items on this list should currently have at least one reference link, at least one of which must specify the title as a failure"; the only reference [3] talks about its difficulties for the US market, but does not seem to describe it as a flop or failure. Indeed, it says "Launched in Europe during 1993 it quickly grabbed a large portion of the prototypical CD market, even beating PC CD-ROM." and "it remained popular for several years".
Note though that the Amiga CDTV is included at List of commercial failures in computer technology instead of here. Mdwh 22:54, 25 August 2006 (UTC)

Playstation 3

Why is this section blank? While the PS3 has many faults and glories, the cloudy future of the console should be more apparent at the end of 2007. I expect it to fail hard, but I won't deny the possibility of something else happening, like not failing. I believe the 360 already has too much momentum, and the PS3 only has one good exclusive, which is underrated and shadowed by Gears of War. --Can Not 08:39, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

Tapwave Zodiac

Should the Tapwave Zodiac device be on this list? It wasn't a commercial failure in itself, but because the company closed shop.

Original research

This article is all original research, no? It should be deleted, right?--Jimbo Wales 19:25, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

Little, if any of this is OR. Most of these are sourced in the linked articles. It would be worth doing a clean-up, though. Ace of Sevens 19:32, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
Ugh yes, this one's ugly. To begin with, the definition of "commercial failure" given in the article is entirely worthless; second, most entries don't even describe commercial failures by any stretch of imagination, they describe games/systems that someone thought sucked. I've removed all entries lacking references -- including entries with references that supported claims other than that of being a commercial failure. Feel free to add back any items, with references. Fredrik Johansson 19:51, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
Definitely needs to be cleaned up. At this point I do see no point in this article, but if we add more flops and sales data, then we can definitely keep this article going. just no OR.--guitarhero777777 22:46, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
Err, Who deleted all of the content? Never heard of the {{Fact}} tag? Dwayne Kirkwood 03:21, 10 August 2006 (UTC)
[citation needed] is not the proper solution to an article that sucks as badly as this one is permanently destined to suck. The right answer is to delete it. I really hate the overuse of [citation needed] as an excuse to keep, for even one second, total garbage.--Jimbo Wales 22:11, 19 August 2006 (UTC)
Thanks. Can we have a policy page on this? Fredrik Johansson 22:56, 19 August 2006 (UTC)
I think certainly that the article ought to be moved, as suggested, inter al., at its AfD, to Computer and video games that have been considered to be commerical failures, after which, of course, the ascription of the subjective term commerical failures will no longer be made by the project but by reliable sources to which one might link, à la Films that have been considered the greatest ever or Films considered the worst ever, such that WP:OR and WP:NPOV concerns should be allayed. I tend to look with disfavor on such lists in any event (WP:NOT), but there seems to be a clear consensus for their inclusion, so it would surely be sensible for us to rework the article in order that it should be consistent with the several extant considered to have been articles. Joe 04:47, 10 August 2006 (UTC)
I agree with you on both points, i.e. that (a) I tend to look with disfavor on such lists in the first place but that (b) if we must have them, we must require that we work from extant lists compiled by others.--Jimbo Wales 14:03, 21 August 2006 (UTC)


Unless citations are added, I am considering removing PSP. Since the unit is still for sale, being developed for, on shelves in stores, and according to Sony, selling well, the console can't be considered a failure yet. However, perhaps a section on UMD Movies could be done. Or, otherwise, the PSP article could be cited, in which cause it can stay. Otherwise i'll remove it later today. Dwayne Kirkwood 19:43, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

I was thinking about adding UMD, since that has failed and almost every movie studio has dropped support for the medium. The PSP itself, however, has sold millions in the U.S. alone, therfore not making a failure. However, in the eyes of the gaming world, it is seen as a failure because it hasn't beaten the DS yet. guitarhero777777 19:52, 10 August 2006 (UTC)
Do UMD movies really belong in an article about video games? Ace of Sevens 04:10, 11 August 2006 (UTC)
Gaming accessories. It was basically an accessory inside the PSP.guitarhero777777 04:32, 11 August 2006 (UTC)
Yeah. We could either put the fact that the UMD is not as popular here, or (perhaps more suitably) in the same list where Betamax et al are listed (the name of the list temporarily eludes me). We probably should remove the PSP (even though, according to Nintendo's official figures and the articles for each system, the DS is thrashing it in sales). NP Chilla 16:15, 11 August 2006 (UTC)
UMD was a proprietary format that died because of how useless, expensive, and proprietary it was. PSP did not fail, because you can play old PS2 games or illegally play other games, depending on what side the game spectrum you live in. --Can Not 13:05, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

Arcade Games

Since arcade games are unique in that - being built as hardware units dedicated to running one specific software program - they could fail for either hardware or software reasons, and because they have a totally different market dynamic than games and consoles purchased by household users, I created a separate section for the arcade games on the list so that we don't have to worry about whether to list them under "hardware" or "software" (as we previously had them in both areas). I also got rid of the section on Laserdisc games - I wrote it myself some months ago, and while I do have sources I think that the Laserdisc video game article is sufficient to cover the topic. What I was thinking about though, was since this article is getting ridiculously large now that we're adding all these citations on top of all these games and consoles, maybe we should instead of deleting the article consider spinning off the various parts of it. So that instead of one big article, we have a smaller article listing hardware failures (or "perceived to be" failures, however you want to word it), another listing software failures, another listing arcade failures, and so on. Thoughts?--Zequist 17:54, 11 August 2006 (UTC)


Without citations for a lot of the entries, this article borders closely on OR. Many of these listings however are well known examples of failures in the industry. But until someone references outside material, the entries will look completely abitrary(A Fork in the Tale entry comes to mind). Since the CVG community has deemed this an important article, I'm suggesting we move all unverified/uncited entries into List of commercial failures in computer and video gaming/Unverified until they have been verified. That way this article won't look like some abitrary fanboy bashing list. --Mitaphane talk 15:49, 12 August 2006 (UTC)

Article split and rename

Now that the AfD has passed, it's time to consider an article split, as it's 67k at the moment and is only going to get larger. Some editors at the AfD wanted to excise the software portion completely, however, I think it's worthy of its own article, but again - citation and sources being absolutely required for each entry. Many, many games are commerical failures, it's worth mentioning titles like Pac-Man and ET for the 2600, Dominion and Psychonauts which significantly contributed to bringing down companies and/or were often cited as major failures in the media.

Also, many didn't like this article's name either. So, what should these articles be named? List of major commercial hardware failures in computer and video gaming (and replace hardware with software for the split article)? It's probably going to be a pretty long title for clarification, I suppose. --SevereTireDamage 11:09, 16 August 2006 (UTC)

The Last Express rewrite

Seeing all the debate about citing sources on this article, I dedided to completely re-write the section on The Last Express, removing some copyvio material, and extensively citing sources. What do you think? Anything missing? Green451 18:58, 19 August 2006 (UTC)

Stabby Stab

In the interest of being honest with ourselves, I've removed every article lacking a reference, and am instituting a "Refs or GTFO" policy, cribbed from the list of Wii games. Yes, this means Daikatana is no longer on the list, but honestly, it shouldn't be that hard to find a decent reference for it and pull old prose out of the archive (or write even better newer prose). Nifboy 01:00, 20 August 2006 (UTC)

Neo Geo

Where's the Neo Geo for console failures? JAF1970 22:46, 25 August 2006 (UTC)

Curiously, it wasn't even in the list before I killed all the uncited entries. Remember the big green box at the top of the page. Nifboy 05:56, 2 September 2006 (UTC)
I don't think the any of the Neo*Geo systems were ever actually considered to be failures though. While they had a home market, they never pretended to compete with anyone... so I really don't see it fitting on this page. The hand helds had a reasonably sized user base from what I recall and a decent library (especially in Japan)... but they did launch it in hopes of competing with the GameBoy... You would have a better case for the Neo*Geo Pocket Color of all of them as the company tanked not to long after launch... but then again I don't recall any formally calling it a failure either. BcRIPster 22:43, 31 January 2007 (UTC)


I remember Toonstruck being featured in Next Generation magazine as one of the costliest commercial flops. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Arcadina (talkcontribs) .

It was, once I finish up with its entries in the magazine project. I will start adding content and references from that article. —Mitaphane talk 00:32, 8 November 2006 (UTC)
Would it be possible to have an article on "lost video game" technologies or consoles and games that were never to be? There are separate articles on some of the big ones, but perhaps a list type of article would be helpful? I'm thinking about the unrealeased Jaguar II, the never finished SNES-CD, the cancelled Thrill Kill, etc. There's many examples of consoles, add-ons, and systems that were planned or even developed past prototype phase and a really fascinating article could cover the unrealized gems of video game history, or at least a helpful list of unrealeased but planned consoles and the same for games? Best, -- 01:10, 15 November 2006 (UTC)
Well we already have the article Vaporware and its related list. —Mitaphane ?|! 21:17, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

VB info and Gunpei Yokoi story arc

This has been removed to varying degrees over time and added back. For gamers who followed the history of the Virtual Boy or are Nintendo fans, the whole story of the Virtual Boy is a sad tale from start to finish and left everyone scratching their heads (and rubbing their eyes for many reasons) throughout. Both stories were tied together in the media at all times when Mr. Yokoi died, and it was that note of final tragedy that added an extra layer of myth to an already puzzling product. If you're not going to mention his death, then don't mention him. And if you're not going to mention biographical info on the creators, then that data should be stripped from the descriptions of every item on this page. I'm ready for an argument here to figure this out, so jump in with your thoughts, I'm all ears. BcRIPster 22:41, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Ok, '"tragically" is pov' is something I can understand. Please forgive my outburst :) BcRIPster 22:58, 1 February 2007 (UTC)
I haven't had anything to do with this, but the death is irrelevant. If someone wants to find out more about him, they can click on his name. It's like adding something like 'he later got divorced' Chopper Dave 23:09, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

PS3? Why is it not on here?

After all, it is basically failure in a solidified form. I'm completely objective here. It has sold less than the Gameboy Advance, which has been out for several years now. Even its best games are really mediocre. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think this ranks up there with the Virtual Boy. Let's just be honest here. I don't see why not. Wikipedia is all for unbiased reporting of the facts, right? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 00:53, 25 April 2007 (UTC).

Wait for Konami or Rockstar to pull support from the PS3, THEN come back and add it in. Nifboy 01:23, 25 April 2007 (UTC)
Aye, captain. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 01:32, 25 April 2007 (UTC).
The Game Boy Advance was a colossal success. Whatcha talking about, Willis? ;)
Anyhoo, you're right that the PS3 is selling very badly at the moment, but let's leave it a wee while longer - it might actually start selling (it probably won't, but anything's possible). - NP Chilla 08:41, 25 April 2007 (UTC)
Putting the PS3 on here right now would definitely be fanboyism and not unbiased. Wait until the product is pulled off the shelves before deciding it is a failure. guitarhero777777 05:28, 27 April 2007 (UTC)
That's what I'm saying. :) - NP Chilla 10:15, 27 April 2007 (UTC)
While I do agree that the PS3 is hopelessly overpriced, and is doomed to failure, it doesn't quite belong here yet. Just whatever you do, don't wait until Sony admits it's a failure, that'll never happen. =)) 17:28, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

let us not forget that the first psx had a really slow start. And i am bound to believe ps2 might have had a slow start as well. We all know that doesnt mean anything now

The PS3 is not on here because it's not a failure. At the time of this posting, it has already sold more systems per month that the 360. Speaking of which, Both Xboxes failed in Japan. Should that be in here? (talk) 03:27, 8 February 2008 (UTC)

What about the Xbox?

In shear commercial terms, shouldn't the Xbox be listed as well? I don't have a source for it on hand, but I could've sworn that I heard on G4 (ugh.... I hate saying that) that Microsoft technically lost money every single quarter that the Xbox was on the market. RPH 17:49, 26 April 2007 (UTC)

Towards the end they started to make money. Anyhow, without a good reference, no new entries will be added to the page. Chopper Dave 19:10, 26 April 2007 (UTC)
Losing money != failure. Particularly for Microsoft, which can afford to bleed money for years if it'll eventually give them a leg to stand on. Nifboy 19:43, 26 April 2007 (UTC)
Nifboy is right. The success or failure of a console involves many factors, of which money is only one (otherwise almost every console ever made would be a failure). There are also issues like: did the number of units sold meet expectations? If sales were bad, were they bad in every major global market, or just in North America? (a flop here that became a runaway success in Japan and Europe wouldn't generally be considered a "failure") Were the customers who did buy it generally happy with it? Was it easy to the average person to plug in and use, or did you need a masters in computer science to get it working? Were the controllers both durable and user-friendly? How big of a game library did it have - did it get a lot of third-party developer support, or did it only have a handful of games because it was too difficult to design for? And there are plenty more things you could take into account. There's a reason that only a handful of consoles are on this list out of the dozens and dozens released in the last 30 years - only a select few like the Virtual Boy and Jaguar have been complete and total failures. Philips, for instance, even managed to partially redeem the CD-i after that flopped as a game console by selling it as a multimedia player to other niche markets.--Zequist 22:00, 26 April 2007 (UTC)
Yes, but as you said, there are multiple types of failure. This article's about commercial failure, so a product that loses money would have to qualify. Here's an article on the recent failure of hte 360 to turn a profit, and I'll look around to see if I can find a citation one way or the other in regards to the original Box itself: RPH 04:29, 27 April 2007 (UTC)
If we added that, we would have to add almost every other console in here as well. Every single console loses money. They are actually all made to lose money. The console producers hope to make that profit back through the game sales. Also, in sheer sales numbers, I believe Xbox sold 13 million units worldwide, which would constitute success. guitarhero777777 05:26, 27 April 2007 (UTC)
Actually the Wii's making money right off the bat, but that's besides the point. I know that the vast majority of consoles lose money on console sales alone, (and I'd never claim that the Xbox or the 360 were failed systems, I love my Xbox for instance) but what I wanted to point out was the notion that Microsoft lost money even when you take into development their 24 million console sales and all the games they licensed, produced, and distributed, which is a relative rarity for a commercially viable product. A number of game blogs, such as Kotaku and BenHack have brought up the point that if any other company besides Microsoft (with their infinitely deep pockets) were behind the Xbox, they probably would have folded right off the start. No point going on about it now though, as I'll be unable to really hunker down and look for citations supporting or detracting from my claim on the matter for a few more weeks either way. RPH 19:33, 27 April 2007 (UTC)
Most consoles systems are not priced to lose money per sale actually. The Xbox was an exception, it was made from a modified open architecture of PC's at the time. As such the hardware in it costed more to make than the price of the console. So in this it was a commercial failure. Microsoft figured the price and number of games they would need to sell in order to clear a profit. The figure they used was the average gamer would buy about 10 (IIRC) games for the life of the console and set prices according to that. So the XBox and games as a whole didn't clear a profit until around the time the XBox 360 came out, 5 or 6 years later. As for the XBox itself, that would constitute commercial failure, one that Microsoft could afford, however.Orthuberra 21:01, 19 June 2007 (UTC)
"This article's about commercial failure, so a product that loses money would have to qualify." Not necessarily. There is more than just pure cash at stake in a commercial venture. There are things like the value of the brand equity built up, the cultivation of a loyal customer base, and the technical innovations that can be applied to other current and future products (in this case the Xbox Live service, for instance). Also, we have a scope definition right on the front page here that says, "a commercial failure for a video game hardware platform is...a system that either fails to become adopted by a significant portion of the gaming market place, or fails to win significant mindshare of the target audience." That's our current standard for judging failure here, and with an installed user base of almost 30 million and plenty of space and coverage given in the gaming press and in the stores, the Xbox was tremendously successful on both of those points. Consider that over two dozen companies have tried to break into the console market in the last 30 years, from RCA and NEC to Pioneer and Philips, and only a handful of them have survived long enough to launch a second generation. That Microsoft accomplished that much is almost a success story in itself.--Zequist 00:08, 28 April 2007 (UTC)

N-Gage influence

Quote from the article: "The N-Gage failed to reach the popularity of the Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS or the Sony PSP, although the N-Gage's pioneering of mobile online gaming likely influenced the DS and PSP to include that feature."

I don't believe that for a second.

XOR patent infringement

Isn't there any reference to this lawsuit? Can't find it on google. --Lo'oris 02:04, 15 June 2007 (UTC)


The wikipage for Daikatana links to this page, claiming that Daikatana was a flop (which it was), yet this page has only a fleeting reference to it from the Dominion: Storm Over Gift 3 section. 09:20, 2 July 2007 (UTC)

Does the N-Gage deserve a place here?

I'm not so sure that the N-Gage is really entitled to be listed in this article, I mean the N-Gage was barely even ever released. If I put together a motorola processor and hacked a screen and memory on to it and tried to sell that would it also be listed here? Just because it's a big company =/= it was big enough to be listed here, or indeed that the company even wanted it to be a big thing. -- Anonywiki (talk) 17:32, 16 November 2007 (UTC)

  • The N-Gage is a video game system, and it was a commecial failure. Just because no one adopted the system doesn't mean that it shouldn't qualify. In fact, it makes more sense. Kalga (talk) 17:09, 21 November 2008 (UTC)


MMOs are a very hit and miss market, and I was thinking that maybe Vanguard: Saga of Heroes and Tabula Rasa should be added. Opinions? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:12, 26 February 2008 (UTC)

Tabula Rasa is not a candidate, but the monumental failure of Vanguard:Saga of Heroes, and the later statements from former Sigil employee's would definitely fit there!

NPOV on PS3 section

Seriously, this section reads like something written by a Xbox fanboy, or at very least someone who hates the PS3 to some massive degree. The PS3 has been doing well lately, and has even surpassed Xbox and Wii sales in Asian countries in the last quarter.

This section needs to be edited or removed.

I decided to be "bold" and remove it. It's still being sold, there's still considerable developer interest, and the console wars for this generation are still not considered decided. --Damiel (talk) 03:34, 20 April 2008 (UTC)

3 % of PC Games.

Is this including online sales or strictly store sales, because most PC games are purchaced online. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:40, 27 April 2008 (UTC)

Do Sega Saturn and N64DD deserve a place here?

Sega Saturn became a failure in the west and N64DD became a failure in Japan. Laughreach (talk) 20:57, 30 May 2008 (UTC)

While the saturn was a failure in the west, it wasn't exactly a disaster, but by all means add the 32X. I agree with you about the N64DD though. ʄ!¿talk? 03:28, 1 June 2008 (UTC)

"Commercial failure" implies that the manufacturer actually lost money on it. I don't think that is even remotely true of the Saturn (a huge success in Japan and moderately successful in the West), though it may be true of the N64DD and 32X. (talk) 14:08, 20 July 2008 (UTC)
I entirely agree, although note that Saturn doesn't appear to be in the article anymore? The lead implies commercial failure means failed to be profitable (and that would be the most obvious definition of the term). People seem to have been placing consoles here simply because "they weren't massively successful" or "they weren't no. 1" - or possibly they are placing them here simply out of POV. Similarly, I have no idea what the CD32 is doing here. There is no evidence cited that it lost money, and most of the paragraph is POV original research about why someone things the CD32 didn't do well. The CD32 was discontinued when Commodore went bust - obviously, as were all of Commodore's product, but it doesn't make sense to label them all "commercial failures" because of that. It also doesn't make sense to criticise it due to the lack of CD32 only games - it was an Amiga, so there is nothing strange that the games released were the same ones released for the A1200 and other Amigas. I'm removing this. Other consoles probably should go too. If anyone wants to add them in, please add a reliable reference that states that these consoles lost money. Mdwh (talk) 17:30, 20 July 2008 (UTC)
Read the Legacy section in the Sonic X-treme article, it says that the Saturn was a failure in the west. And, if the 32X is bad, add the Sega CD also, as well, I agree with Fenessy, also add CD-I, Atari Linx and Intellivoice. Im Jejeman, if someone don't know.-- (talk) 00:21, 9 September 2008 (UTC)

Ok, this is silly. The Saturn didn't do great in the West, it was far from being a failure. Also it sold extremely well in Asia and had a large library of software support in both markets. The SegaCD was also a very successful product internationally. Plus there were a enough all-in-one Genesis/CD models released (JVC X'Eye, Sega CD-X, Pioneer CLD-A100 and Aiwa CSD-GM1) to allow it to be classified as a stand alone platform.

The 32X would certainly could be considered a bust though due to both low hardware sales, limited library and poor consumer acceptance, but technically it is an extensions like the N64 memory pack, etc...

You can not add the CD-i here though because as I mentioned below, even though the system did not have market penetration in the gaming space, that wasn't what it was originally sold for (yes for a couple of years they did try a small push into video game market), but that feature was value add to help sales in the home entertainment system market (competing to be the VHS killer)... Just ask anyone who actually attended a tradeshow in 94-97 about the Philips booth. The CD-i was *very* successful in it's primary market of multimedia kiosk though, and maintained sales in that market through out the 90's. Don't forget though that there were over 150 games released for the CD-i... so, that's not all that bad considering.

The Lynx couldn't be considered a true failure either as it sold quite well, supported multiple generations of hardware, sold for several years and had a significant library of software released.

As for Intellivoice... I'm going to lump that in with the other expansion items. Expansions/peripherals rarely sell well, and this page is really meant to document failed platform/systems.BcRIPster (talk) 06:05, 7 October 2008 (UTC)


The Phillips CD-I was a failure due to those epic Zelda games made for the CD-I and that horrible Hotel Mario. I think it must be added.

Laughreach (talk) 00:22, 3 June 2008 (UTC)

Technically the system wasn't a failure. It was not sold as a game console and was not successful in the home market but it was quite successful in it's market niche of multi-media kiosk. It should not be on this list.BcRIPster (talk) 05:21, 7 October 2008 (UTC)

Article Deletions

I've been adding articles to this list (i.e Grim Fandango and Nintendo 64 DD) and I am upset about some of them. So I'm suggesting that an article should be deleted if it doesn't have one reference of commerical failure in it. Am I right? GamerPro64 (talk) 00:09, 7 October 2008 (UTC) I think you should just add references too it. Both Grim Fandango and the 64 DD failed, however good or innovative they may have been. Kalga (talk) 17:09, 21 November 2008 (UTC)

Uru: Ages Beyond Myst

Should Uru: Ages Beyond Myst be added to this list? I'm thinking about adding it to the list, but need a second opinion. GamerPro64 (talk) 03:58, 17 December 2008 (UTC)


I've added an editnotice to this article, based on a hidden comment left in the article. The editnotice is transcluded below: MediaWiki:Editnotice-0-List of commercial failures in video gaming Any comment or suggested modification to the editnotice can be made on this talk page and a change can be requested to an administrator. The notice is located at MediaWiki:Editnotice-0-List of commercial failures in video gaming. Cenarium (Talk) 03:53, 27 December 2008 (UTC)

Okami/God Hand

I'm surprised these games aren't on this page, do they not qualify somehow? (talk) 20:49, 27 December 2008 (UTC)

You can add them. Daikatana could be added, too. — Twas Now ( talkcontribse-mail ) 18:19, 18 February 2009 (UTC)
Daikatana used to be on here but there was no references to it at all. And I agree on God hand and Okami. I'll try to look for references. GamerPro64 (talk) 23:37, 18 February 2009 (UTC)
Daikatana can be put back in so long as it includes references. The article itself should provide ample evidence of its controversy and end results. If I find time, I'll put it in myself.—WhosAsking (talk) 12:16, 21 February 2010 (UTC)

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I am tempted to say that Lair (video game) could count as a commercial failure for Sony's PlayStation 3, with high expectations that were quickly dashed, leading to mediocre to poor reviews throughout and a quick reputation as perhaps the PS3's first bomb. However, I am having difficulty coming up with the required references that state that Lair failed commercially. Was Lair a failure, and if so, can anyone help come up with the necessary supporting material?—WhosAsking (talk) 20:10, 25 March 2009 (UTC)

  • Okay, time to help myself out. Please help me verify. According to vgcharts (link here), Lair's sales only went to about 340,000. For a highly-touted title, especially on a platform where the maker itself says sales probably need to top half a million just to break even, I would consider this return pretty underwhelming and perhaps a strong vote for it being a commercial failure. I'd love to support this with more concrete numbers, but I seem to lack access to numbers from the NPD Group, the only other source I can think of. Would anyone else like to add to this conversation? —WhosAsking (talk) 19:33, 11 May 2009 (UTC)
  • Vgcharts isn't reliable source. Keep searching, you're on to something. GamerPro64 (talk) 20:53, 11 May 2009 (UTC)
  • Not arguing. Figured, though, it'd make a good circumstantial start to the case: try and draw further research I may not know about. How about this article from 1up? It mentions NPD and seems to say it had a bad start, but I'll keep looking for something with a longer-term analysis of the game.

    (Some time later…) I see. Part of the problem is that September was the last month NPD released their monthly figures to the general public. Starting October '07, only paying customers could get access to the data. Still, this chart which shows the overall September 2007 results (first full month Lair was out) doesn't paint a pretty picture, either. Will start looking around for the Q4 2007 results to see what they have to say—WhosAsking (talk) 17:15, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
  • Further update. Found the October and November 2007 numbers. I think what's making data on Lair hard to find on the NPD charts is the simple fact that it didn't make the charts. For the first three full months of its release, according to NPD data, Lair never broke the top ten. Perhaps you can help me follow up on a couple of potential black eyes. Not only do I see a lack of prominent sales for Lair on the NPD charts, but I'm seeing articles like this and this about Sony and Factor 5 trying to save face on the matter (I know--Destructoid articles, but they at least have references in them).—WhosAsking (talk) 17:44, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
  • Guess I'll have to take that as a "not enough proof." Moving to a different tack, does anyone know if Lair had any kind of effect that contributed to Factor 5's eventual liquidation earlier this year?—WhosAsking (talk) 21:43, 2 June 2009 (UTC)

I do not belive

I do not belive that the Nintendo 64 DD had 85,000 units as scrap, that is impossible, it is impossible to produce more consoles then are accuatly sold, the part that stated the Nintendo 64 DD sold 15,000 units may be true, but the part that 85,000 is NOT, I would estimate that between 20,000 and 30,000 were produced, 100,000 IS ludacris, and so is the claim that 85,000 were scrap. mcjakeqcool Mcjakeqcool (talk) 17:54, 16 April 2009 (UTC)

It hasn't even been 24 hours, and you already broke your pledge. You have not provided any substantive basis for your claim. The existing reference has been generally reliable source for gaming hardware information. If you think you have a better source, then offer it. Otherwise, please stop. Dancter (talk) 20:49, 16 April 2009 (UTC)
I agree, and not just because I added the N64 DD to this list. I somewhat work on this article a lot. And though I don't know what Dancter is talking about, I want to see you get a better reference for it. Good luck! GamerPro64 (talk) 03:34, 17 April 2009 (UTC)
Ok, I'll go and surf the net... mcjakeqcool Mcjakeqcool (talk) 15:42, 17 April 2009 (UTC)

Action 52?

I'm just wondering if this abomination of a video game deserves a place here. It was definitely a broken NES game... and it cost $200! The whole idea of buying a game for less than $4 doesn't really fit well.. it was more like buying ways to die. The company that made it even went bankrupt too IIRC. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:22, 17 May 2009 (UTC)

Action 52 is listed among Wikipedia's list of Video games notable for negative reception. But to qualify as a commercial failure, we would need some financial numbers for the game. How many copies did it sell? Is there any estimate on any profits/losses from the game? From what I've read, Active Enterprises continued to operate for several years after the release and in fact stayed a business for some time after, leaving the market rather than going under.—WhosAsking (talk) 16:41, 20 May 2009 (UTC)

N64 DD 85,000 units of Scrap = Ludacriss

The mere prospect of 85,000 units of N64 DD being scrap is ludacriss, to this article, to the N64 DD article and to wikipedia as a whole. It should, and is going to be changed (by me) to less then 100,000 units sold, because for 1, it is IMPOSSIBLE for any product WHAT SO EVER to have more units scrap then sold and also there is ABOUSLUTELY no proof to suggest it. If anyone has any objections WHAT SO EVER, please bring it up on either this, or the N64 DD talk page. mcjakeqcool Mcjakeqcool (talk) 15:45, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

Try telling that to the people who buried all those copies of E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial in '83. It's completely possible, and has happened quite a few times. As I stated previously on this page, MiragePalace has been solidly reliable resource. Your unsubstantiated arguments have not. Dancter (talk) 16:17, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
Agree with Dancter, of course its possible, to suggest its impossible is moronic. It happens in most areas of entertainment, hardware etc, that theres more produced than required. Usually they get sold rid-onk-ulously cheap/massive bundles, but in some cases its cheaper to scrap than sell. In this case, I'm guessing that marketting costs of the reduced price, producing the number of games to match the console (100,000 of each) etc. However, I think the term 'became scrap' is far too informal for an encyclopaedic article. It should just say 'of the 100,000 units, only 15,000 were sold' the rest doesn't need to be said chocobogamer mine 18:25, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
Ok, for the sake of this article and wikipedia as a whole, I will agree with Dancter and you're self. mcjakeqcool Mcjakeqcool (talk) 10:05, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

Pioneer LaserActive?

Do you think this system would qualify as a commercial failure for a gaming system? I mean, it was pricey as anything, even in the day, the lineup was flakey, and it didn't last very long. It was recently featured on #1 on Blistered Thumb's "Top 10 Worst Consoles you Never Heard Of", so I'm using this as a starting point for discussion and further information. Anyone wish to add fuel to the flames? —WhosAsking (talk) 17:39, 27 July 2009 (UTC)

  • Update: Found a couple references and decided to go ahead and put it in. Once you read about it, the story of its failure is pretty easy to see.—WhosAsking (talk) 22:07, 6 August 2009 (UTC)

Pac-Man for the Atari 2600

OK, here is one for debate. Conventional perception is that Pac-Man is considered to be a commercial failure. But even the page about the game specifically notes that it not only sold 7 million copies (2/3 of the hardware install base!), but that it was also the best selling game for the system. Frankly every single person I knew owned a copy of it for their system at the time.

While it is frequently credited with ET as ushering in the '83 crash (even in on this very page), is the game itself really a commercial failure? Technically? Looking at all of the evidence I would honestly have to say no, it wasn't a commercial failure.

Thoughts? BcRIPster (talk) 04:36, 11 September 2009 (UTC)

I partially agree. I think Pac-Man isn't worthy of a separate entry on this page which already has an entry for ET, as the failure of ET was much more pronounced. The two games are considered unsuccessful because of the huge quantities of carts that were made and then failed to sell and were returned in droves. I think the two entries should be combined as Pac-Man was just a lesser-magnitude repeat of what happened with ET.Cverlo (talk) 13:43, 7 January 2010 (UTC)
That was the thing. Atari was so ambitious they put down too much money on the project. Thus, even with terrific sales, they failed to recoup costs. I would class this as a commercial failure but not of the usual sort. ET is the same story but worse: too much money put down on the project, not nearly enough made back; only this time the game really bombed.— (talk) 19:50, 13 January 2010 (UTC)


Apparently, There doesn't seem to be any references to the fact about "a shortage of chips around the launch date resulted in a failed launch and loss of consumer interest", however, the one of the two references say "digiBlast has landed", non indicative of what is mentioned. The other reference is a dead link. While I am not suggesting digiBlast would be removed from this article, I would like to suggest some more (and more reliable) sources and expand the section a little bit. (talk) 13:15, 15 January 2010 (UTC)

A source for use

Whoops! The noughties’ most disastrous games in Develop (magazine). Nifboy (talk) 19:17, 20 January 2010 (UTC)

Some Candidates

"An Elder Scrolls Legend: Battlespire" and "The Elder Scrolls Adventures: Redgaurd" were definately BIG failures. Both of the predecessors ("The Elder Scrolls: Arena" and "The ELder Scrolls II: Daggerfall") were huge sellers, even though critics didn't like them, but both of these games were, like I said, BIG failures. And one of the most stupidist reasons is that they were released on DOS in '97 and '98.

Another is "Doctor Who and the Mines of Terror". The game cost SO MUCH to make, the company went bankrupt! And it barely sold. On top of that, it is buggy and almost impossible to complete.

I think these games should be included.--The Rogue Leader 12:10, 17 May 2010 (UTC)

Sega Nomad?

I believe the unit was only sold through Toys R Us and I'm not sure how well it did. Perhaps someone in the know could elaborate for the article. It was a hand-held gaming system that accepted full-sized Sega Genesis cartridges. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 05:09, 17 December 2008 - (talk) 05:09, 17 December 2008 (UTC)

Duke Nukem Forever?

I was wondering if it's the case to include Duke Nukem Forever in the list, since it was hyped for 12 years, it was never released and caused 3DRealms to go bust.Devil Master (talk) 19:39, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

Litigation is ongoing between the remnants of the company and Take-Two Interactive, then the publisher. If T2 gets its way, they can contract another developer to complete the game, in which case we'd have to see how its commercial results fare in the bigger scheme of things.—WhosAsking (talk) 21:39, 2 June 2009 (UTC)
If Duke Nukem Forever, aquires a devolper, it may be releaced, I'm not saying that's gonna happen, but It might be releaced. So you can't insist on it being a commercial faliure, before it's offialy been cancelled. mcjakeqcool Mcjakeqcool (talk) 15:40, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
I disagree. I think the magnitude of the DNF situation is such that it warrants inclusion. Take-Two Interactive shoveled money into Battlecruiser 3000AD for seven years. 3D Realms shoveled money into Duke Nukem Forever for TWELVE, and the devs apparently had enough spare time on their hands to look at what other people were doing because they kept switching engines. Consider: DNF was in active development BEFORE the Lewinsky scandal broke and it wasn't killed until after Bush left office. It was first in Wired's vaporware contest for four years. I think that's a bit more newsworthy then Grim Fandango. Cverlo (talk) 05:02, 7 January 2010 (UTC)
The only problem is that it is still possible the game can come out and can still sell. That litigation is still ongoing, and the situation is still too fluid. I'll admit, it's going to come to a head, but it could either be an unmitigated disaster…or one tremendous comeback story. Until it can be conclusively shown to be the former, we have to wait.— (talk) 19:54, 13 January 2010 (UTC)
Surely the amount of money that has been spent on it so far would justify a classification as a financial failure? It did pull some smaller development houses down. Argybargybob (talk) 11:45, 24 November 2010 (UTC)

Street Fighter III

A potential candidate? I'm sure as hell it didn't turn a profit, had an impact in the arcade that was nowhere near of Street Fighter II's and half of todays SFIV install base must be skeptical it even exists. I personally love the SFIII saga and think they're the best games in the series, but sales, arcade popularity and critical acclaim compared to SFII says otherwise. Strykie-boy (talk) 01:54, 20 July 2010 (UTC)

Do you have citations to back up SF3 being on this article? GamerPro64 (talk) 14:02, 20 July 2010 (UTC)

Superman 64

Where's the worst video game of all time, Superman on the N64? (talk) 19:10, 9 December 2010 (UTC)

There is a vast difference between a bad video game and one that is a commercial failure. We need evidence of the latter. --MASEM (t) 15:29, 10 December 2010 (UTC)

Sonic Next Gen

Yeah, I know! It is considered as a bad video game, but when you look back, Sega were trying to reach out to the market, and make it the best selling Sonic game in history! But instead, everything turned out backwards! The critics gave it horrible reviews, no one was buying it, and it rarely came off the shelfs! There for, it's a commercial failure! Not that I think the game should be on the list, but I do believe that it was a game that was trying to reach a mass market, and got nowhere! CaptainMario16 (talk) 00:36, 9 January 2011 (UTC)

While I agree it was a failure, I think you'd need some sources as far as what they were projecting to accomplish vs. what they actually sold or something. I'm not sure it's up to the magnitude of failure that most of the things listed in this article. (I mean, it was released during a time where a lot of the Sonic games were relatively poorly received, it didn't doom the XBOX 360 or Sega or anything like that...) Sergecross73 msg me 15:24, 10 January 2011 (UTC)
True, it didn't leave the 360, or Sega in the dust, but if you're aiming for what they were trying to accomplish, do remember that I meantioned they were trying to reach a mass market, and make it the greatest Sonic game in history. CaptainMario16 (talk) 00:29, 11 January 2011 (UTC)

Shadows of the Damned

Game is a big commercial flop,confirmed through NPD.I don't know about it's sales in Japan and Europe,but so far it's sold only 26000 units in NA/Canada. Sugreev2001 (talk) 12:03, 22 July 2011 (UTC)

We need more than a statement on the number of sales. We need something that says "commercial failure" or near equivalent. I know of several more games that had subpar first month sales but wouldn't be on this list. --MASEM (t) 12:46, 22 July 2011 (UTC)

Brutal Legend

Should Brutal Legend really be included when according to the article, it actually did well in the long term (1.4 million sales by Febuary 2011)? --Veyneru (talk) 18:29, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Yeah, and even going by initial sales, Brutal Legend doesn't seem to belong in this article. 215,000 units in the first month is bad for such a high-budget game, but it's not horrendously bad. As the article intro notes, the vast majority of video games have been commercial failures; obviously this article isn't meant to list all of them, just the ones that failed in a notable manner.--NukeofEarl (talk) 17:34, 27 February 2012 (UTC)
Agreed, you can't judge a game a failure off slow first month sales. Without anything else to back up the failure claim, the contradictory evidence that it actually did pretty well and given the tone of the article that claimed it was a failure I think it should be removed from the list. I'm going to remove it. -- (talk) 11:59, 19 March 2012 (UTC)
The inclusion criteria for this list is other reliable sources stating the nature of commercial failure, not our own judgement (that's OR, of course). The article that gives BL this claim (the CVG one) is one written in 2011, two years after BL's release in 2009, so the authors are fully aware of the post-release sales. (I would agree that if it was written one month after release, yea, that's impossible to judge then, but this is full hindsight). Yes, they point out the first month, but this is actually a critical figure - that broke any chance of a sequel and forced Double Fine into looking for another project to stay alive and fast. --MASEM (t) 12:25, 19 March 2012 (UTC)
As mentioned above, though, the overwhelming majority of video games are commercial failures, so the game needs more than a source establishing commercial failure to merit inclusion in the article. Do we have anything like that?--NukeofEarl (talk) 16:21, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
We need a source that specifically calls it a "commercial failure" (or near equivalent), not just a source that points to sales data and leaves it to the reader to make that distinction. We have at least one source for BL that calls it a commercial failure. Most other games don't have those types of sources. --MASEM (t) 16:32, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
Or to take a different angle: games undersell their expectations all the time. But it is the rarer case that a game (or hardware system here) that the undersell has a larger impact on the developer or publisher or creator, and that's what is usually highlighted when reliable sources talk about "commercial failures" and generally what ends up highlighted on this list. --MASEM (t) 16:43, 20 March 2012 (UTC)

uDraw GameTablet

"Revenue from the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions of THQ's uDraw tablet peripheral was a staggering $100 million below the publisher's expectations. Speaking during an investor Q&A earlier today, CFO Paul Pucino revealed that the publisher has around 1.4 million unsold units collecting dust in its inventory. "Revenues were lower by about $100 million," admitted Pucino. "Where that $100m comes from is we have about 1.4 million units still in inventory that we haven't sold that we planned on selling. If you think about an average price of about $56 or so, that accounted for a shortfall of about $80 million.""

I think that we should include this. — Preceding unsigned comment added by SuperDopeBass (talkcontribs) 14:57, 10 April 2012 (UTC)

Also found a Wall Street Journal article. Will add myself. --MASEM (t) 00:39, 11 April 2012 (UTC)

Duke Nukem Forever

duke nukem should be added to this list — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:06, 18 August 2012 (UTC)

Why? ID Software and Apogee Games both considered it a solid success, enough so that they almost immediately followed it with two sequels, both of which were even more successful than the original.--NukeofEarl (talk) 16:24, 20 August 2012 (UTC)

You beat me to it. I was about to suggest the same thing. FOURTEEN YEARS from the very first announcement to its release! Not to mention that the sequel turned out to be offensive in ways that the original wasn't. This is an even bigger flop than Daikatana, because after 1 year, it is now selling at bargain bin prices, $9.99 or less. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:45, 21 January 2013 (UTC)

Added this -- but an editor instantly reverted as no link was provided to its unprofitability. However, very few of the other games on this list have this so I have readded. It's obvious the game was a huge commerical failure. The sales are reported as low and the game was fifteen years in development. It seems a much clearer case of commercial failure than many here. Richard Clegg (talk) 00:12, 18 February 2013 (UTC)

All the other games describe something that is clearly identified as some form of commercial failure - generally measured as poor sales, meeting their marks, or the like. The source given for DNF says that the publisher said it sold well. That's not acceptable for this list. --MASEM (t) 02:20, 18 February 2013 (UTC)
Correction, the source for DNF publisher says that it sold disappointingly and reduced their profit estimates for that year as a result of those poor sales. These continual reverts are very unproductive. The DNF section now has more references to its poor sales and to developers who lost money than almost any other section of this page. Richard Clegg (talk) 13:46, 18 February 2013 (UTC)
The previous problem was that the sole source used for the article from, has zero indication of it being poor sales for DNF; "this hasn’t translated into poor sales." Further, games selling million+ copies aren't certainly bad - it just didn't make it a best-selling title. That said, the fact that the game had a protracted history and developers losing millions on it is what should be highlighted. When Take Two is saying they turned a profit, that is likely likely only there costs into it and discounts anything 3D Realms or others spent. You can probably find more sources to better justify it from that angle (ala how Shenmue is presented) as from a strict game sales side, every source I'm seeing says it did fine, just not as high as expected, and from sales only would not be a commercial failure. Its those dev costs you need to include to make this stronger. --MASEM (t) 14:10, 18 February 2013 (UTC)
I have now included a reference to the alleged loss to 3D Realms (specifically to the boss of 3d realms). As always with these correct figures are hard to get. As far as I can see, 3D realms made a huge loss. Take Two made a profit but not so large as the loss by 3D Realms. It's unclear as Take Two did pay 3D Realms for the property (but not as much as the loss 3D realms made). However, it may be that this payment went to Infogrammes not 3D Realms anyway. The story is told in more lenght on an existing page so it is as well not to add too much here. Plus, tracking it down in complete detail would be Original Research which puts us in a bit of a "no win" as far as pinning it all down as to who won and who loss. There's a multitude of sources saying that the boss of 3D realms put in $20-$30 million of his own money. Richard Clegg (talk) 15:47, 18 February 2013 (UTC)
We don't need exact figures but some numbers (which you are getting) that showed that the game hit 3DR hard and they considered it a financial disaster for themselves (but not necessarily Take Two or Infogrammes). For some reason, I thought that 3DR had to downsize after DNF's release but I can't find anything immediate - maybe I was just thinking that. But this is way better and not less a problem for inclusion than the first take added. (remember, this is not just necessarily games that were critically panned, but that were financial failures) --MASEM (t) 15:53, 18 February 2013 (UTC)
OK... I think we now have enough to establish commercial failure (the omission of DNF came up in the context of a discussion of commercial failure in games). Anything more (e.g. gathering who spent what from various sources and collating to try to establish the exact winners and losers would probably be WP:NOR Richard Clegg (talk) 16:46, 22 February 2013 (UTC)

uDraw and Red Faction

The reference for the failure of THQ's uDraw leading to the discontinuation of the Red Faction franchise is being misinterpreted. Careful reading shows that one is not being linked to the other. Most sources claim that the sales of the most recent Red Faction game led to the decision to end the franchise: — Preceding unsigned comment added by Dgpop (talkcontribs) 03:16, 26 June 2013 (UTC)

It is probably a combination of RF:A being unsuccessful and the uDraw's financial hit on the company, but I've made it clear we were talking the less-successful franchises that were shelves like RF. --MASEM (t) 03:43, 26 June 2013 (UTC)

Star wars

"Star wars TOR was released at the start of 2012. This game is a complete flop and has now gone free to play. Just like every single other star wars MMORPG, it is a failure. What the world needs now is a new jedi knight game. It has been long enough."

This is not up to standard, it's clearly someones opinion. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:03, 5 September 2012 (UTC)

Yea, I removed it. The same editor made another unsourced changed too. --MASEM (t) 06:08, 5 September 2012 (UTC)

Why not Sega Saturn, Dreamcast and 32X? Why not Atari 5200, 7800?

I really don't see why these aren't on the list. A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 18:51, 1 December 2012 (UTC)

There has to be references that say they are commercial failures. GamerPro64 20:19, 1 December 2012 (UTC)
Also, the Sega Saturn was only a commercial failure in certain markets, and the Atari 7800 was actually a commercial success.--NukeofEarl (talk) 16:32, 3 December 2012 (UTC)
I'm sure that there are references if we look for them. A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 22:48, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
Probably, but we can't add the consoles to the list until we find them.--NukeofEarl (talk) 15:10, 6 December 2012 (UTC)

How about Outcast?

Afaik was also considered quite a commercial failure though it had previously received high ratings from various magazines ... — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:00, 2 June 2013 (UTC)


Ubisoft said it was unprofitable, meaning that there will be no sequel. Also it flopped so hard that Rayman Legends was delayed and made multiplatform. It wasn't anywhere near profitable, even when it was sold in a bundle. --DrDevilFX (talk) 10:56, 27 October 2013 (UTC)

1.5 million copies = failure??

Brutal Legend sold 1.5M copies and it's included in a list of failures? What about the games that sell less? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:40, 22 November 2013 (UTC)

We need sources to identify games as commercial failures, it's not strictly based on sales numbers. --MASEM (t) 14:50, 22 November 2013 (UTC)

xbox 360 HD-DVD

this is not mentioned in the list. although, it was a complete flop, and came right before the format war ended. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:03, 30 December 2013 (UTC)

That's probably more a failure of the HD DVD format, not the attachment for the 360. --MASEM (t) 01:27, 30 December 2013 (UTC)
More importantly, this is a peripheral. We explicitly do not index peripheral's on this page with the odd exceptions (which I still don't quite agree with) of the 64DD and 32X. BcRIPster (talk) 21:07, 14 May 2014 (UTC)

Definition of Commercial Failure for Software

This article does not do a good job defining what it means by commercial failure for software. A number of these games either were profitable or ended up so after a period of time. This article could be redefined to just be hardware or failure could be better defined for the software section. (talk) 14:34, 12 March 2014 (UTC)

A profitable game is not always a successful one, if it was developed expecting a certain profit margin. (Eg a game expected to make $50M but only bringing in $20M is a failure). Further, downstream sales, like in the case of Psychonauts, doesn't matter, we're looking at games that, at some point, have been called "commercial failures" by sources. --MASEM (t) 14:56, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
That second definition seems pretty weak to call something a commercial failure outright. The first point makes sense but needs to be elaborated in the article. (talk) 15:03, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
Wikipedia goes by what sources say. For most games out there, we have no idea of the development costs or the revenue or profit margins, so we have no idea how to classify games based on the actual monetary value. But there are plenty of games that are called out as failures by secondary sources or through primary ones (the people publishing the game), even if they pulled a profit. That's how WP works so that's the definition we go by, and for all the games included there's sourcing to support that. --MASEM (t) 15:10, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
A necessary point is that those sources are factual and accurate. Without that this no longer becomes an encyclopedia but just an amalgamation of things people have said in the past. By your logic I could cite a source saying Christopher Columbus discovered America because I have an old source saying so, even though by the modern definition of discovery this is untrue. My problem is not with the sources or citations it is with the definition and elucidating what the definition is in the article. (talk) 15:28, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
It's no problem to say something was a commercial failure but later became successful (again, Psychonauts is the example here), as long as 1) at some point sources called it as such and 2) we're clear that this situation has since changed. Both of course need sources to affirm that. --MASEM (t) 15:39, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
Regarding the Columbus idea, I'm leaning toward the overall gist of your comment, and you're partially correct, but there are major fundamental Wikipedia policies on how to assess the due weight of individual sources (WP:RSUW) within the scope of a subject, and even how to generally identify and define common or evident knowledge (the earth is generally round) or a prevalent viewpoint in the world as a whole (Columbus officially discovered America for Europe) or a controversial viewpoint (WP:CONTROVERSY some sources say this and some sources say that). There are policies describing what Wikipedia is and is not, such as how it's not primarily about the absolute truth but rather primarily about the aggregation of sources -- for better or for worse. And we individual editors do try to make it resemble the truth if possible, and we hope that the world is fair and rational on a given subject! Ha. However, it would seem to me that, in all fairness, in as far as that fairness is prevalent on Wikipedia, the article should reflect in its name or in its first sentence, that it is a "List of what has been deemed by prevailing sources as having been deemed as commercial failures by way of the manufacturer's established expectations at some point". I mean, sure, every article implies Wikipedia's mission to synthesize sources instead of representing the absolute truth, but the title is so literal that maybe it bears qualification. I hope this helps. Also please create an account so that your voice will stick! — Smuckola (Email) (Talk) 08:48, 15 March 2014 (UTC)
Here's my thoughts on this. I've always been a bit uncomfortable about the software portion of this page (I'm not saying strike it though). In my mind, the software section in it's historical form has generally felt more like a tribute to "games considered failures in popular opinion" than anything else. This has always been a problem and why a clear sub-heading description has never been formalized for the software section. This is ok mind you, but we really need to come up with a clean way to codify this situation. It would go a long way to help in regulating what gets added to the page and would also help in framing the presentation of information on each entry. BcRIPster (talk) 01:43, 14 May 2014 (UTC)
Just in case it helps, please feel free to to read the archive where we've talked alot about this over the years. BcRIPster (talk) 01:48, 14 May 2014 (UTC)

BTW... this talk boiled over into the next section on Earthbound sorry... BcRIPster (talk) 02:52, 14 May 2014 (UTC)

Formerly there was a subtopic break here == Earthbound as a commercial failure? ==, It's being struck to help consolidate the talk since it's on the same subject. BcRIPster (talk) 18:05, 14 May 2014 (UTC)

Ok, so let's talk about this. Earthbound as a "commercial failure". 140,000 units hardly smacks of failure for a non SquareSoft/Enix/Capcom RPG in 1994. While the publisher felt it didn't sell as well as they had liked (which is commonly cited as a reason by people advocating it being a failure) I don't see how that really has any bearing on the idea, especially without any unit sales numbers for comparable titles to contrast it with. The only people I hear refer to this as a "commercial failure" are pundits. In fact, when I look at the NPD numbers (June/95- May/96: 77,642 -- LTD: 139,654 for just the U.S.! This is a misquoted figure. Japanese sales were double that number, so International sales were somewhere in the realm of just under half a million), they really aren't that shabby. In fact, I think the biggest problem with the game that I ran into at the time was people not wanting to pay the high price for it and because the game had a strange, oversized package (because it included the Strategy Guide, which frankly, you needed in order to really enjoy the game) retailers pulled it from high profile placement because shelving space was such a premium, which caused it to quickly become hard to find. So... Personally I don't think this really belongs on this page. But I'd like to get some impartial discussion going on the topic. And we're not even factoring it's cult status and how it was outperforming modern releases when it was finally re-issued as a Virtual Console title. BcRIPster (talk) 00:29, 14 May 2014 (UTC)

We cannot determine "commercial failure" based on only sales figures. We need someone to say the words "commercial failure" or a near equivalent. As such I do agree this is not appropriate for this page. --MASEM (t) 00:31, 14 May 2014 (UTC)
Of course, but I think sales figures can certainly go a long way to negate a statement of "commercial failure". Obviously Nintendo is going to think a first party game that doesn't break a million is a failure. But that's some serious personal bias on behalf of the company going on there. BcRIPster (talk) 00:37, 14 May 2014 (UTC)
A title that sells a million units can be a commercial failure to the company if it was planned on selling 5 million. That's why sales figures alone are not sufficient. (38 Studios and Kingdoms_of_Amalur:_Reckoning, anyone?) A title could only sell 50,000 units and be considered a success if they only expected to sell 25k and were forced to make another run. That's why we need the source to affirm a commercial failure. --MASEM (t) 02:14, 14 May 2014 (UTC)
(warning sarcasm) I know but here's the major problem with this. Let's say, I become a major software publishing studio. I then release a game. I sell TEN bajillion copies of this game to every man, woman and child on the planet. Everyone loves the game and plays it for years, but then I'm not happy. I go blather to ever PR flack I can find about how, "gosh darn-it, I promised everyone that I would sell ELEVEN bajillion copies, this game was a failure, I'm never making games again!". Are we seriously implying that this fictional game would now be granted failure status worthy of this page? BcRIPster (talk) 02:23, 14 May 2014 (UTC)
No one would consider that a failure, realistically. Game publishers (the ones that usually front money for development) have set sales expectations, the developers hope to meet and/or exceed that. Expectations may move up and down during and after development, but yea, it's not going to be the case where there is that much back tracking. A case in point I'm aware of - The Beatles Rock Band had very high expected returns, but as the game neared release, it was clear that the market wasn't going to support the original estimates, so they knocked them by half. The game still made a nice profit, so no it wasn't a commercial failure. This is generally why the label of "commercial failure" is either going to come from the publisher (not developer) or an otherwise independent source. --MASEM (t) 02:40, 14 May 2014 (UTC)
Ok, but the situation we have right now is literally a list where many of the games are listed in part because we happen to have a publisher on record complaining that they didn't make enough money from game. This is a yucky metric and it certainly leaves off the table an untold number of "failed" games where everyone kept their mouth shut. BTW, great discussion, let's keep going. BcRIPster (talk) 02:50, 14 May 2014 (UTC)
Consider that nearly everything we have is well-established as a commercial failure, and more importantly, as a result of that failure, something on a large scale happened - a company closed, key figures removed from positions, etc. What we want to document is the equivalent of movie "bombs", where there is fallout because of the poor commercial performance, and not just because it slightly underperformed. --MASEM (t) 16:51, 14 May 2014 (UTC)
Nicely stated idea. That being said, how do we codify this into an elevator pitch for the page that both explains the vision and constrains it. I think if we run with your idea of movie equivalency, and expand it to media in general, our high bar would have to be Box office bomb combined with List of box office bombs where the other extreme is List of commercial failures in music which I we're way ahead of (lol). I'm going to think on this see what I can come up with for an idea. Too bad we don't have more people engaged in this conversation. After I write this I'm going to move this conversation up into the one above for helping people follow along. BcRIPster (talk) 18:02, 14 May 2014 (UTC)
You know, the more I think about it, I'm wondering... Since popular opinion, as I've observed it, now considers the video game industry as mature if not comparable to the movie industry, do we really have a case to restructure this whole approach, break the software off into it's own set of pages as you see with movies. I know financial and sales numbers are much harder to come by still for gaming, but I think it really is worth consideration. There is certainly enough historical time involved for the possibility of other movie style pages such as List of films considered the worst and List of highest-grossing films. If the movie topic can cover this, I don't see why we can't have this under video games as well. BcRIPster (talk) 18:14, 14 May 2014 (UTC)
I also agree with Masem's solution. Otherwise, what constitutes a failure is far too nebulous. Tezero (talk) 20:08, 14 May 2014 (UTC)
To try to qualify it - the software/hardware has to be called a "commercial failure" or some equivalent language by one of our better reliable sources, and the effect should be more than just that they didn't make as much money as they thought they would have - it should be something affecting jobs, or the viability of a developer or a publisher to a significant degree. That line won't be overly objective so we'll still need to discuss if there's debate on the issue. --MASEM (t) 20:59, 14 May 2014 (UTC)
Unless we can come up with a clear definition that can be consistently and equally applied to each case there will always be debate on the issue of what constitutes fair WP:NPOV. This is why I mentioned the Movie page references above. BcRIPster (talk) 21:04, 14 May 2014 (UTC)
We should be afraid of the fact some debate may be needed to decided whether to include something. We do want a minimum level where no debate is needed (typically for those that would fail to be on this list.) --MASEM (t) 21:42, 14 May 2014 (UTC)
If I read your comment correctly then yes, the idea is that the scope is framed in such a way as to give potential editors pause enough where they elect to bring their addition to the talk page first for discussion when there is an grounds for question. BcRIPster (talk) 21:53, 14 May 2014 (UTC)

Re: Earthbound- I'm currently reading EarthBound (Ken Baumann, Boss Fight Books, 2014), and on page 95 he says "Nintendo executives thought that EarthBound had the potential to sell three million copies.", just after saying that there was "a reported two million dollar marketing push by Nintendo of America", though it looks like he's sourcing that from here, which does not in turn give a source for the quote/picture. --PresN 21:33, 14 May 2014 (UTC)

None of the sources given are anywhere near strong enough to deem EarthBound a commercial failure. If you're going to tar a game with negativity, you need clear strong sourcing, the EarthBound entry lacks it. I would also remove several other games from the list:
  • Beyond Good & Evil (video game) - Not selling well enough for a sequel or disappointing its publisher /= commercial failure
  • Brütal Legend - Not selling well enough for a sequel or disappointing its publisher /= commercial failure
  • MadWorld - Disappointing sales /= commercial failure
  • Ōkami - "least commercially successful winner of a game of the year award" /= commercial failure
hahnchen 21:06, 19 May 2014 (UTC)
For Brutal Legend, this caused Double Fine to go into panic mode because they had though EA gave them the green light to work on a sequel. Suddenly they were told no, and had to scramble for money, luckily hitting on the Amnesia Fortnight games; if they didn't have those, we likely would have had no Double Fine today. For Okami, that basically killed Clover Studios. --MASEM (t) 21:34, 19 May 2014 (UTC)
Panic mode /= commercial failure. Grin died when Square Enix cancelled Fortress, this doesn't mean their last game was a commercial failure. It just means a lack of planning. Clover was shut down when its principals resigned. - hahnchen 22:10, 19 May 2014 (UTC)

Commercial Failure of the Software vs Management Decisions

I believe that e.g. in the case of Pac Man, one needs to distinguish between an actual failure of the game (both by its reception and commercial success) and management decisions that were, simply put, stupid.

On an install base of 10 million consoles, Pac Man sold 7 million copies within a year. That's 70% of all existing consoles, two out of three users bought the game. The development costs were easily covered by these sales. That is a clear success.

The decision to blindly produce 12 million cartridges up front (2 million more than there existed consoles!) without doing any market research, hoping that some miracle would happen was an immensely stupid management decision. This indeed resulted in a net loss for the company, but it is neither related to the game in any way, nor surprising. If management had decided to plate the company building in in gold, hoping that this would magically create revenue, one wouldn't consider this a commercial failure of any game in particular, either. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:17, 18 July 2014 (UTC)

That is a fact. The moniker of "commercial failure" applies to games that have significant technical flaws such as 2600's Pac-Man, fairly well made games that don't have significant technical flaws such as 2600's E.T., and to totally perfect games alike. I mean heck, some games like the Mother series are awesome, get completed or nearly completed on supermassive R&D budgets, and yet are never released, so $0 in revenue might be failing even harder than an actual release. I had taken that kind of thing to be implicit common sense trivia, but one shouldn't assume prior coherency of the general readership. This article may be their introduction to the concept.
I wish there was a definitive algorithm by which to comprehensively define the concept of "commercial failure" so that this could be more explicit, but it may be a lost cause due to subjectivity. It may be foolishly naive to even hope that, especially here in the WP:NEUTRAL zone. I guess if we could identify some singular entity as a WP:RS, but it'd have to be some unfathomably rigid stalwart institution with algorithmic record-setting protocol, like Guinness or TwinGalaxies, and they don't do this particular stuff. And I guess it'd have to be policy-defined by Wikiproject Video Games.
It may fall back to the concept of a list of case-by-case WP:CONTROVERSY and WP:SYNTHESIS or whatever, at least to state whether it was due to the product or the business. I'll revisit this later. — Smuckola (Email) (Talk) 11:40, 18 July 2014 (UTC)
  • I think it's rather a bad idea to assign blame in a general sense besides the very few cases where it's actually analyzed by reliable sources. Companies don't like to talk about failure and when they do it's usually in blandly polite terms like "The title didn't quite live up to our expectations due to a tough marketplace but we're proud of what the dev team accomplished." Most of the time only people within the company know what really happened, and going down that road leads to WP:OR and other problems. Andrew Lenahan - Starblind 21:08, 22 August 2014 (UTC)

"Superman" (N64)

Why isn't Superman for the N64 on this list? (talk) 03:19, 5 August 2014 (UTC)

I would imagine that it's because of the fact that, outside of some sad faces at Christmas, Superman didn't impact the world at all. Just take a glance at the table of contents and see that they were all defined by notably high commercial expectations, and their performance shaped the industry as we know it. — Smuckola (Email) (Talk) 03:56, 5 August 2014 (UTC)

Inclusion of Indie games?!?

I'm not really sure Indie games have a place on this list. Indie games by definition are expected to not be commercially successful and therefore it is more the surprise when they succeed commercially. In relation to the addition of Sunset to the list, 4,000 copies in sales is pretty good for an Indie title. Not meeting developer's over inflated sales expectations does not constitute commercial failure. BcRIPster (talk) 17:17, 24 June 2015 (UTC)

So even when there are articles about how Tale of Tales is quitting the video game industry because of its failure it doesn't make it count as a commercial failure? GamerPro64 17:32, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
No I wouldn't think so. Again, success and persistence in the industry are the exceptions for Indie studios. Indie historically is defined as being more about creative freedom and publisher independence than about the sales. Sales are the avenue that allows an Indie to convert to "legit" status. If we were to start tracking every Indie shop that folded because they didn't make a profit, and every Indie game that didn't sell well, we'd blowout this page with more content than you could process. Also, related to Tale of Tales. An interview with a developer commenting that they didn't meet sales expectations falls more under POV than a larger market statement and this applies for AAA studios and Indies alike. We've applied this rule to other additions to this page in the past... just read the discussions above for clarification. BcRIPster (talk) 18:40, 24 June 2015 (UTC)


Can the Sega Dreamcast be added to the list? How it performed in the market, and the number of units sold are nearly the same as the Sega Saturn which was also unsuccessful. (talk) 00:06, 26 September 2015 (UTC)

Sega CD

Perhaps the Sega CD can also be included. Although it was an add-on, it was expensive as most consoles of its time. Throughout its run in the market, the Sega CD sold only 2.7 million units, far less than the units sold by the Sega Saturn which is also a commercial failure. (talk) 03:23, 28 September 2015 (UTC)

The Sega CD may be Sega's best-selling add-on but it's still a failure based on the units sold in comparison with other consoles. (talk) 13:43, 2 October 2015 (UTC)

Just comparing #s is not sufficient. There are high selling games on here that far outsold other titles but are commercial failures because they didn't meet expected sales marks. --MASEM (t) 14:02, 2 October 2015 (UTC)
According to the Sega Saturn article, the sales of the Sega CD were "commercially disappointing." There's also a source. Rattatast (talk) 15:36, 6 October 2015 (UTC)


Where's the Ouya? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:22, 20 January 2016 (UTC)

I don't see any sources that mention it being a commercial failure. It's a disappointment, but that's different from being a commercial failure. --MASEM (t) 02:52, 20 January 2016 (UTC)


I believe the ColecoVision does belong in this list of commercial failures. In fact, one of the two sources I added pretty much explains it. (talk) 23:17, 17 February 2016 (UTC)

Having weak sales after two years of strong sales is not immediately a commercial failure. That's just poor sales, and particularly if those sales were from fall out of the video game crash. --MASEM (t) 00:22, 18 February 2016 (UTC)
I'm starting to think that I shouldn't have use the word "strong" in the description. Perhaps "promising" is more suitable. Anyway, if the ColecoVision was, in any ways, a success, then it should have sold at least 10 million units. However, the console only sold 2 million, a number commonly associated with consoles that are deemed failures. (talk) 01:05, 20 February 2016 (UTC)

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The eight generation is a commercial failure?

This would be only for the home consoles of that generation, and the exception is the handsome consoles (3DS and PS Vita).
The sales of the Wii U (the great commercial failure) are 12.83 millons, but for Nintendo GameCube was 21 millons (considered a commercial failure for Nintendo's fans) and for the N64 was 32 millons.
The actual sales of the Xbox One are 10-20 millons of consoles, but for the Xbox 360 was 85 millons!

On money earned approximate in dollars (taking into consideration the launch sell price):
Nintendo 64: 6,4 billons (5th gen)
Nintendo GameCube: 4,2 billons (6th gen)
Nintendo Wii: 20 billons (7th gen)
Nintendo WiiU: 3,6 billons (8th gen)

Microsoft Xbox: 7,2 billons (6th gen)
Microsoft Xbox 360: 25,5 billons (7th gen)
Microsoft Xbox One: 10 billons (8th gen)

Sony PlayStation: 30,6 billons (5th gen)
Sony PlayStation 2: 47 billons (6th gen)
Sony PlayStation 3: 43 billons (7th gen)
Sony PlayStation 4: 15,2 billons (8th gen)
--Valkrjem (talk) 13:38, 20 March 2016 (UTC)

Besides needing a lot of sources to back this up, not to mention you fail to account for inflation among other business expenses(like if each console was sold at a profit or loss). We have a rule of NOR.FusionLord (talk) 10:51, 6 April 2016 (UTC)

I find this article highly dubious

Apologies to those who have put work into this article, but I want to be clear - how are we judging "commercial failure"?

Case in point - the article lists the Neo Geo Pocket Color.

It is true (beyond any doubt) that the Neo Geo Pocket Color was less successful than Nintendo's Game Boy. However, can it be called a "commercial failure"? It may have preceded the downfall of SNK but this article would suggest it was a cause, not a symptom of their decline.

I am concerned that this article often lists consoles/platforms that were the "loser" among their peers, but not necessarily outright financial failures. For instance, the Vectrex is here, which is fine - because in the end, their backer lost millions when they invested in the machine.

Part of me feels this article needs a better definition of "commercial failure". — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:53, 10 June 2016 (UTC)


How can anyone possibly deny that the Dreamcast was a commercial failure? The Dreamcast sold fewer units than the Saturn which was considered a failure. (talk) 19:32, 29 August 2016 (UTC)

Wii U

Shouldn't the Wii U be here? Its sales are appalling, it consistently fell short of sales expectations, sometimes by 50%, its one of the slowest selling consoles in history, developers pulled out of developing games for it, its sales are being destroyed by consoles that have been on the market 12 months less. In a few months it will be on the market for 4 years and if it's lucky it will have 15 million sales. The Dreamcast was on the market for about 30 months, and only 19 months worldwide, and sold 10 million units. That's between 3.3 and 5.2 million per year depending on what count you want to use. The Wii U, at the last report, its sales would be 3.1 million per year, 200k less than the Dreamcast. Even if it somehow reaches 15 million by November (Nintendo predicted sales of 800,000 for the next financial year, so that seems very unlikely) will have sold only 3.75 million per year, and its going to top out at that, because the NX console will succeed it in 2017. Even at the last report, its sales would be 3.1 million per year, 200k less than the Dreamcast. If the Dreamcast is on here, the Wii U has to be, as its sold even more poorly. Bomberswarm2 (talk) 13:21, 6 June 2016 (UTC)

We can't just use what were expected market numbers - we need either a statement by Nintendo or a reliable third-party that asserts the Wii U was a failure. We have sources that state the Dreamcast was a failure, but nothing for the Wii U. --MASEM (t) 13:37, 6 June 2016 (UTC)
I'm not saying it should be there on its expected numbers, it should be here for is abysmal sales in general. Bomberswarm2 (talk) 06:08, 7 June 2016 (UTC)
And that would be original research without a source to say that the Wii U's sales were low and made it a commercial failure. --MASEM (t) 13:40, 7 June 2016 (UTC)
I didn't do any original research, i used maths. 5.2 is greater than 3.1. Bomberswarm2 (talk) 02:09, 8 June 2016 (UTC)
You're missing the point. The WiiU is only a commercial failure if Nintendo release figures to say that it has made less money than it cost to produce. We have no way of knowing, overall, if this is the case - unless Nintendo tell us. The console has sold in the millions so it isn't simply "obvious" that it has been a *commercial* failure. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:56, 10 June 2016 (UTC)

Then - Acting President of Nintendo Shigeru Miyamoto: Why the Wii U crashed and burned Nintendo declares failure through interview. Bomberswarm2 (talk) 11:48, 26 June 2016 (UTC)

Nothing in that says it was a commercial failure (the headline is the only place that gives that impression, and we don't consider headlines to be a reliable part of an article). It didn't perform in sales as well as Nintendo hoped, but that itself is not a sign of failure. --MASEM (t) 12:15, 26 June 2016 (UTC)
Still made money off it though184.91.99.69 (talk) 00:12, 7 December 2016 (UTC)
How about this? This system failed to sell even half of its predecessor, it is the lowest selling device of a company's certain product lines, and showed steady decline for 4 years after peaking 2 years after launch. What is it? The Nintendo 3DS! It's following up the DS's near 155 million with likely 70 to 75 million (assuming its steady decline stops and it sells the same for the next 3 years as it is only 61 million now, while averaging 5 to 6 million the last 2 years), has been in steady sales decline since peaking in 2012 (selling over 13 million), and unless it sells another 20 million units will fall short of Game Boy Advance as Nintendo's lowest selling handheld! However, you only hear good news about the 3DS, no one is calling it a failure despite doing all those aforementioned things. Why? The Wii U is only the lowest selling console for Nintendo (note, the Virtual Boy is the lowest selling anything by Nintendo), it also failed to live up to its predecessor, and has also been in steady decline, but so many jump on the Wii U hate bandwagon, when in reality those very same sentiments are also echoed by the Nintendo 3DS! I also bring up the case of ColecoVision. The Wii U has already surpassed the ColecoVision, but if the Coleco isn't called a commercial failure, why is the Wii U after selling 6 times as many? I'll just leave it with that question.2602:304:CFD3:2EE0:2915:E8BF:7084:D453 (talk) 03:10, 16 December 2016 (UTC)
I'm going to reopen this in light of several comments made by various N execs over the last few days (following the Switch's tech reveal) that there's enough sourcing since ~Nov 2016 to state the Wii U was a commercial failure. Many of these N execs acknowledge things they are doing with the Switch to avoid problems they had on the Wii U, and coupled with the sales numbers, most journalists seem to be calling the unit now as such. It might have turned a profit but Nintendo is definitely reacting to low sales with how they are running with the Switch. --MASEM (t) 15:35, 17 January 2017 (UTC)
I oppose the arguments made back last June, but would be okay if something could be formulated around what Masem is proposing. Sergecross73 msg me 14:10, 18 January 2017 (UTC)

Proposed section for Wii U

To discuss before adding:

Nintendo's Wii U was released in November 2012. It was designed as successor to the Wii as to provide a more challenging experience as to draw back "core" gamers that had dismissed the Wii as they felt it was aimed for casual gameplay.[1][2] The Wii U features the Wii U GamePad, the unit's primary controller that had a touchscreen that allowed for dual-screen play similar to the Nintendo DS line, or could be used to remotely play games on the GamePad away from the television screen.[3] While the Wii U received positive coverage, it failed to gain significant consumer draw, selling less than 14 million units compared to the Wii's 101 million units by the end of 2016.[4] Nintendo executives attributed the poor sales of the Wii U to a combination of factors. They felt their messaging of the Wii U's abilities was not clear, leading to a general perception that the unit was primarily a tablet system and not a home console.[5] They also recognized that they did not manage their release schedule for games well, nor had significant support from third-party publishers and developers, leaving the Wii U with gaps in software releases.[6] Nintendo stated they had expected to sell 100 million Wii U units,[7] and this over-estimation of sales contributed to several financial quarters of losses through 2016.[8] The development and marketing of their next console, the Nintendo Switch, announced in 2015 and to be released in March 2017, was done to avoid several of the pitfalls that occurred for the Wii U. [6][5]


  1. ^ "Iwata Asks: E3 2011 Special Edition". p. 7. Archived from the original on September 27, 2011. Retrieved June 9, 2011. Iwata: The other things is, shortly after the Wii console was released, people in the gaming media and game enthusiasts started recognizing the Wii as a casual machine aimed toward families, and placed game consoles by Microsoft and Sony in a very similar light with each other, saying these are machines aimed towards those who passionately play games. [...] It was a categorization between games that were aimed towards core, and casual. 
  2. ^ "Iwata Asks: E3 2011 Special Edition". p. 7. Archived from the original on September 27, 2011. Retrieved June 9, 2011. Iwata: On the other hand, I certainly do not think that Wii was able to cater to every gamer's needs, so that's also something I wanted to resolve. [...] The keyword for our presentation at this year's E3 is "Deeper and Wider". With Wii U, I would like to offer this proposal with that idea 
  3. ^ "Nintendo Unveils Wii U, Controller With Built-In 6.2" Touchscreen". Gamasutra. Retrieved June 4, 2012. 
  4. ^ Kohler, Chris (December 22, 2016). "A Farewell to Wii U, the Game System for Nobody". Wired. Retrieved January 18, 2017. 
  5. ^ a b Baig, Edward (January 14, 2017). "Nintendo's Reggie Fils-Aime: Why Switch is different from Wii U". USA Today. Retrieved January 18, 2017. 
  6. ^ a b Makuch, Eddie (January 17, 2017). "Nintendo Exec on the Two Reasons Why Switch Won't Struggle Like Wii U Did". GameSpot. Retrieved January 17, 2017. 
  7. ^ Brightman, James (July 7, 2016). "Wii U was expected to sell 100 million units". Retrieved July 7, 2016. 
  8. ^ Byford, Sam (July 27, 2016). "Nintendo records $49 million operating loss as Wii U sales crumble". The Verge. Retrieved January 18, 2017. 

(Sourcing taken from both Wii U and Switch article among others). --MASEM (t) 17:16, 18 January 2017 (UTC)

I think that sounds really good. I have no qualms. Sergecross73 msg me 18:59, 18 January 2017 (UTC)


Ōkami was not a hyped title, and the article claims that "the game sold fewer than 600,000 units by March 2009." That may have been below expectations, but 500,000+ units sold for a sleeper game is hardly a failure. There are many PS2 games that sold fewer than 100,000 copes, and I don't see them listed here. My recommendation is to remove Ōkami from the list. 02:19, 24 January 2017 (UTC)

This list does not require the title to be "hyped", just that it is considered a commercial failure. The fact that Guiness highlighted this merits on the list. --MASEM (t) 02:35, 24 January 2017 (UTC)
Agreed, coverage by Guiness would be a relatively high-level source to make such a claim. Also, all sorts of factors beyond "hype" influence these sorts of cases - things like budget for development, marketing expenses, external expectations, etc. Had Final Fantasy 15 only sold a million units, it would have been a massive failure due to its decade-long development period and promotional campaigns, but at the same time, small publishers like Atlus or Xseed Games can crack a profit off of selling 100,000 copies of these small niche JRPGs, because of much smaller costs and far less marketing costs. It all depends on the scenario. Which is why we depend on what reliable sources say. Sergecross73 msg me 15:08, 24 January 2017 (UTC)

Epic Mickey: The Power of Two

This game was the second in the planned trilogy of Epic Mickey games, but it sold poorly and the series was cancelled afterward. The dev studio who made it also was shut down. If I find sourcing for this, should we add it? TheJoebro64 talk 16:30, 23 February 2017 (UTC)

Those are the signs, but we definitely need sources that consider it a commercial failure. Just because a series is cancelled or a studio shuttered after a game doesn't necessarily make the game a failure since there may be other reasons (for example, the studio behind Ghostbusters 2016 shuttered after a few days after release, and though the game was poor, the reason was due to debts they had and some legal issues, so we can't call the game itself a commercial failure). --MASEM (t) 21:52, 23 February 2017 (UTC)
Those were the sources I found stating the game was a failure/done for. Also, the game was available for nearly every major platform (the original was a Wii exclusive), but it barely even sold a quarter of the original's sales. TheJoebro64 talk 17:11, 23 February 2017 (UTC)

3 new potential hardware candidates

[4] Of this list, we do not include the PSP Go, the Tiger R-Zone and the Philips Videopac + G7400. However, I would not add them only because of this Gizmodo article; if more sourcing can affirm commercial failure (probably going to be easy for the PSP Go, harder for the others), then we can add them. --MASEM (t) 14:09, 4 March 2017 (UTC)

As a heads up...

One IGN writer considers the NES Classic a failure. However, I've not seen this at all shared by others, and the reason the writer considers it a failure is not so much about commercial aspects but that it couldn't keep demand up, which... really doesn't define a failure. In other words, I would absolutely not include the NES Classic on this list just because of this, but I suspect we might have other editors try, so this is just a heads up on this. --MASEM (t) 14:07, 18 April 2017 (UTC)

I agree, for the reasons you've just stated. Sergecross73 msg me 14:12, 18 April 2017 (UTC)

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Neo Geo AES

I'd hope to not see the Neo Geo AES ever on this page. SNK never released it with the intention of gaining a huge share of the market. It was a premium console, and they sold it as such. Failed consoles don't get support for 14 years. Chandler (talk) 09:21, 28 May 2017 (UTC)

Game Cube needs to be added

Since original research is being used to add Wii U to this article, GameCube needs to be included as well. Please add the failed GameCube to the list. Thank you. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

No, not without proper sourcing. You should probably read WP:POINT too. Sergecross73 msg me 23:40, 23 September 2017 (UTC)

Wii U needs to be taken off

Nintendo never said the Wii U failed, all this is speculation by reporters, and none of the sources ever say Nintendo lost money on it, they only compare it to Wii, which by that definition means Nintendo 3DS needs to be added to this list too, as it also failed to live up to the 150+ million sales of its predecessor. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2602:304:CFD3:2EE0:2915:E8BF:7084:D453 (talk) 19:27, 19 May 2017 (UTC)

A commercial failure does not mean it needs to have lost money for the company, only that the company did suffer financially from it. N has made it clear (in talking about the Switch) they had been expecting similar lifetime sales of the Wii U compared to the Wii, and planned financially on that. The Wii U failed to make those goals, so the company suffered a handful of years running at a loss because they were anticipating more revenue from Wii U sales. It is thus a commercial failure. --MASEM (t) 19:31, 19 May 2017 (UTC)
Yes, Masem is exactly right on this. Reliable sources have documented how Nintendo expected it to sell on par with the Wii - 100 million - but it only sold around 13 million. That's selling 13% of their goal. You're going to have a hard time spinning only 13% of a goal achieved as anything other than a failure. Sergecross73 msg me 19:39, 19 May 2017 (UTC)
No, you're both wrong. According to investments, commercial failures are those who are financially losers. As shown by this credible source (of which your original research does not count):, it states "financial Collapse or bankruptcy"- neither of these happened with Wii U during its lifetime. Since you're using original research in your sources, I'm flagging this to be taken down, you're both non-credible in your arguments. By the way, here's one of your "credible articles" stating otherwise. You can easily pick varied articles to push an agenda, and this is one both of you are clearly pushing: — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)
Please read the article. That is not the definition of commercial failure the article currently uses. This article documents video game related commercial products that did not meet financial expectations. It's very easily documented that the Wii U sold around 14% of the expected amounted, and caused many financial quarters of losses. Do not try to make this personal - I own a Wii U, and love it. But there's no denying it failed to live up Nintendo's sales goals by a lot. Not sure what exactly is trying to be conveyed by presenting that Eurogamer source. It's being written by a fan who is writing about how much they enjoyed it, not a financial analyst discussing its sales. (It literally states this even.) Sergecross73 msg me 23:50, 23 September 2017 (UTC)
The EG article clearly realizes the Wii U didn't sold well, but acknowledges some good steps in innovation that N did for it, so as such they're praising those positives. But the device was considered by N at the time of the Switch's release as a commercial failure due to far underselling what they had anticipated from the Wii's 100M+. --MASEM (t) 00:07, 24 September 2017 (UTC)

Atari 7800

I unfortunately can't find the source, but I have read or heard in a video that the 7800 - while it failed to make a dent in the video game market - did make money for Atari. If this is the case does it belong in a list of "commercial" failures? Jethro 82 (talk) 17:21, 31 October 2017 (UTC)

A system can be a commercial failure even if it makes money (Wii U also falls into this bucket). It includes things such as missing company predictions and expectations, losing market shares (even if the company doesn't lose money per say), etc. The bigger issue I think in regards to Atari 7800 is not its profitability, but it's lack of any sourcing here. The main article doesn't seem to describe it as a failure anywhere either. -- ferret (talk) 17:29, 31 October 2017 (UTC)