Chibi-Robo seems destined to be a Nintendo character that never gets much attention. The character certainly has his supporters out there, but he's definitely one of the lower-tier brands the company has. That's not a comment about game quality by any means. I'm talking about public knowledge of the character. That could be related to poor marketing. There's also a factor of release timing. On top of all that, Chibi-Robo games are extremely quirky and odd. The character's universe and handling just aren't going to set the world ablaze when it comes to popularity.
While that may be the case, Nintendo and Skip haven't stopped trying to expand the character's familiarity with consumers. You could arguably say that Chibi-Robo! Zip Lash is the biggest push we've seen for the character yet. While many Nintendo fans ignore or don't even know who Chibi-Robo is, now the little guy is getting a brand-new game with an amiibo. The fact that Nintendo made an amiibo for Chibi-Robo is a very obvious ploy to get some attention on the character. You can see that those involved with creating the games really do want more for Chibi-Robo. Sure, bigger sales would be nice, but this seems to be more about getting the character recognized.
That desire to spread the word also seems to fall right in line with the decision to switch up the traditional Chibi-Robo gameplay. This is the first time we're seeing Chibi-Robo get a true gameplay overhaul in a mainline title. Chibi-Robo has gone from free-roaming 3D adventure to traditional side-scroller. We all know that Nintendo's bread-and-butter comes from the side scrollers, so why not let Chibi-Robo have a go at the genre?