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Iwata: people want 3DS, but are waiting

Gamers holding out for more software.

Consumers know they want a 3DS but are delaying their purchase until a wider range of games is available, believes Nintendo CEO Satoru Iwata.

Speaking during an investor call transcribed on Nintendo's official site, Iwata insisted that the new handheld was one of the most coveted machines the company had ever released, but many potential purchasers were biding their time before opening their wallets.

"It is clear from our market research that many people feel that they 'want' and 'want to buy' Nintendo 3DS, and the latest demand for this device is the largest in comparison with our previous new platforms at the time of their launches," he explained.

"But on the other hand, there is a big proposition that not that many people believe 'Now is the time to buy it!' The penetration will not gain speed without overcoming this challenge.

"After all, the way to solve this problem lies in how to communicate 'what kind of games can be played', as long as Nintendo 3DS is a gaming device.

"There might be consumers who are interested in Nintendo 3DS," he continued, "but they are unable to find software which they want to play, and they are in the 'wait-and-see mode'."

Iwata then went on to list off a formidable slate of titles due out in Japan before the end of 2011, including Dead or Alive: Dimensions, Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D, Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D, Tales of the Abyss, Star Fox 3D, Kid Icarus: Uprising (due "after summer"), Super Mario 3DS and Mario Kart 3DS.

"Nintendo will be working with our full strength in order to spread Nintendo 3DS as a mainstream handheld device, along with the third party developers and with our sales partners," he concluded.

During the same event, Iwata revealed that the handheld, which launched last month in Europe and the US, had got off to a "smooth start" selling 3.6 million units.