Nintendo achieves record sales during Black Friday week

It may be hard to believe, but Wii hype could be greater this holiday season than during the same time last year.

Nintendo said that it sold more product during the Thanksgiving shopping week than at any other time in its history – an achievement thanks to more than 653,000 DS systems and 350,000 Wii consoles sold in the week.

Sales of the Nintendo DS hit a record high for the company, surpassing the previous mark of 600,000 Game Boy Advance systems sold during the same period in the U.S. in 2005.

Although the DS will easily be the top selling game system of the year, all the attention is still on the Wii. The 350,000 sold for the week represent the highest one-week U.S. sales total outside since launch more than one year ago.

"As shoppers look for ways to maximize their limited holiday spending money, they turn to gifts that can be used by the entire family," says George Harrison, Nintendo of America's senior vice president of marketing and corporate communications. "Wii and Nintendo DS offer something for every member of the family. They're the most fun video game experiences at the most affordable price."

Even with the Wii being the top selling console of this generation, demand for the machine is still at an all time high. Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime reportedly spent last Friday and Saturday doing some holiday shopping at Wal-Mart, Best Buy, GameStop, Target and Toys “R” Us, unable to find stock of his company’s hot product.

"I couldn't find a single Wii system on the shelves — literally as I was walking into a Wal-Mart at 11 a.m., someone was walking out with the last one," Fils-Aime said in an AP story. "Consumers are buying every game we can put into the system."

Fils-Aime dismissed the idea that Nintendo was intentionally constraining supply of the Wii as a sales tactic. "A shortage benefits no one," he said. "We're disappointed. This was all about how we didn't accurately estimate demand. We need to be more bullish about the potential for the Wii."

Nintendo is currently producing 1.8 million Wii consoles monthly, but still expects that demand to outstrip supply throughout the holiday season.

"So, I think the same thing of the music industry. They can't say that they're losing money, you know what I'm saying. They just probably don't have the same surplus that they had." -- Wu-Tang Clan founder RZA

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