Aw cripes, if you aren't going to pay attention, what's the damn point? I and another poster here have both gone to great lengths to illustrate how, why, and indeed that the Wii and DS were statistical anomalies. Since the NES and Game Boy, Nintendo has been on a gradual sales decline only broken by the Wii and DS, and
immediately after the Wii and DS, their hardware
continued on the exact same downward trajectory.
These numbers are extraordinarily easy to look up.
The GameCube, by the way, had better 3rd party support than the N64 precisely because
for once, Nintendo delivered hardware on-par with the standards of the generation, which you'll note is exactly the opposite of the N64, Wii, and Wii U. However, even Nintendo largely considers the GC a failure, as Iwata
very clearly stated that selling less than the GC would be considered such--
The GC was ultimately profitable, but it was not a success, and to pretend it was is borderline delusional. It sold worse than the Xbox and way worse than the PS2.
Nintendo even resorted to trying to sell the GameCube as a companion console to the PS2 or XB rather than a competitive machine on it's own.
However, the GameCube did manage far better third party support than the N64 and the Wii U. But again, it was because it was the only post-SNES hardware Nintendo made that was actually, largely, equivalent to the generational norms of the time.
Is the 3DS a statistical anomaly? Hell no,
because it falls right back into the trend that was moving before the DS launched. The GBA/Micro line sold worse than the Game Boy/Color line, and the 3DS is selling worse than the GBA/Micro line. It is continuing the downward trend.
It makes perfect sense that the Wii and DS would be anomalies at the same time. One helped boost popularity of the other, and they shared similar design sentiments that got lucky and struck a chord with consumers at that time. After that, though, the evidence that they were nothing but anomalies, fads, or trends is that--as has been painstakingly noted by more than just me on this site--the 3DS and Wii U returned to the downward trend.
NES > SNES > N64 > GC < Wii > Wii U
GB/Color > GBA/Micro < DS > 3DS
The Wii and DS were anomalies. The pattern is still one of ever-decreasing market share and hardware sales numbers, and the Wii U and 3DS continue the trend that was followed by the previous generations. Because the Wii U and 3DS didn't just fall to "below Wii and DS" numbers, they
actually fall below pre-Wii and DS numbers.
It is actually like this:
NES > SNES > N64 > GC > Wii U
GB/Color > GBA/Micro > 3DS/New
In every way, the Wii and DS were anomalies. Flukes. Fads. Trends. A temporary lucky strike. After which, Nintendo returned to their "normal" which is, unfortunately, a lengthy history of gradually becoming irrelevant.
And the point about the games on the N64 box was to directly address the deliberate stupidity that Nintendo "never relied on 3rd parties." Yes, yes they totally did. They relied on 3rd parties to the point of
promoting the games on the damn box for the console. Without revenue from sales of 3rd party games, Nintendo's strength and reach is severely hampered.
Source : http://www.nintendolife.com/news/2015/05/exclusive_slightly_mad_studio_head_ian_bell_sets_the_record_straight_on_project_cars_wii_u