By Jonathan Davies

Nintendo has surprised market analysts after posting a profit in its first quarter.

The Japanese video game maker reported a profit of 8.28bn yen ($67m; £43m) in the three months to June, compared with a 9.9bn yen loss in the same period a year ago. Market experts had predicted losses of more than 6bn yen.

Nintendo was boosted by a 20% rise in sales, with double-digit growth for new releases for the Wii-U.

It also saw strong growth in its "amiibo" figures, which are sold as accessories to a variety of games.

Nintendo has struggled to make a profit in recent years, largely due to the poor performance of the Wii-U console and its lack of mobile gaming.

Former chief executive Satoru Iwata, who died from cancer earlier this month, led the company towards developing mobile games as one of his last major acts with the company.

The Wii-U, which launched as a next generation successor to the extremely successful Wii console in 2012, struggled to hit the same heights and has even been pulled off the shelves by some retailers due to poor sales.

However, excitement has been building around Nintendo's next console, codenamed NX. Reports have suggested the console, which could be released next year, could be seen as a genuine rival to PlayStation and Xbox, which dominate the video games market.