NINTENDO this week marked the 25th anniversary of the Legend of Zelda, one of its most iconic titles. But the fanfare gave way to crisis yesterday as the firm said it would slip to its first ever annual loss after issuing its second profit warning this year.
The former undisputed heavyweight of the video games world has seen its business attacked on multiple fronts. The strength of the Japanese yen, the popularity of rival consoles from Microsoft and Sony and the emergence of cheap gaming solutions on smartphones and tablets have all eaten away at its profits.
Its Wii console is coming to the end of its life-span meaning sales have become sluggish and its portable 3DS device has failed to impress consumers, forcing Nintendo to slash its price.
It now expects an annual net loss of around ¥20bn (£164m), the first in its history, and also slashed its full-year operating profit forecast to just ¥1bn from ¥35bn.
In the last quarter it tumbled to a ¥19.6bn operating loss, slightly bigger than the market had expected and much worse than the company had forecast.
Nintendo, which has seen its stock tumble more than 50 per cent in the last year, has also cut its projected game sales on weaker than expected demand. It hopes the release of the new Legend of Zelda title, Skyward Sword, will help to ease its woes.