Mario + Rabbids Sparks of Hope was one of the highest-rated Nintendo Switch exclusives in 2022 and a sequel to a surprising and widely beloved game. But Ubisoft said it had disappointing sales, unlike its predecessor. And according to the company, the game was put out one generation too early.
Mario + Rabbids Sparks of Hope underperformed, according to Ubisoft
Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot talked about the silly strategy game to GamesIndustry.biz. He brought up how inflation is generally affecting gaming across the board before honing in on Sparks of Hope.
“Although, I think it was a different issue with Mario,” admitted Guillemot. “We had already released a Mario Rabbids game [on Switch], so by doing another we had two similar experiences on one machine. On Nintendo, games like this never die. There are 25 Mario games on Switch. Nintendo [has advised] that it’s better to do one iteration on each machine. We were a bit too early, we should have waited for [the next console].”
Guillemot’s comments leave out some specifics, but it’s clear that Sparks of Hope did not do as well as Kingdom Battle, despite garnering similar review scores. As of August 2022, five years after its launch, Kingdom Battle had amassed over 10 million players. Sparks of Hope claimed the sixth, 14th, and 13th spot in its first three months on the NPDs, but it seems to have not made the impact Ubisoft wanted.
However, that same financial update noted that Ubisoft thinks Sparks of Hope will “do good numbers over time.” It still has two expansions to go, too. The Last Spark Hunter is releasing sometime soon while the Rayman-oriented DLC is slated for later in 2023.
Ubisoft would have been waiting for a long time for a new Nintendo console, though. According to Japanese financial outlet Nikkei, its sources claim that the next Nintendo console is “progressing well” but won’t be out until 2024 “at the earliest” and won’t happen until at least spring.?Shuntaro Furukawa, Nintendo’s president, also said that “no new or upgraded hardware” was factored into Nintendo’s annual forecast and suggested that no new hardware would release before spring 2024.