In spite of denying rumors about this very move taking place about two weeks ago, Nintendo has announced that the Wii U Deluxe Edition will retail in the U.S. for $299 starting September 20th in light of the company’s ongoing trouble with moving units. Read about the rest of the scoop right here:
In a story posted by CVG on August 12th, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata made it clear that a price drop would not solve the woes of the undersold console, stating that “the real issue is the lack of software, and the only solution is to provide the mass-market with a number of quality software titles.” Apparently, they went ahead and re-evaluated that bit of folk wisdom when they realized they’ve only sold 160,000 consoles around the world between April and July. It would seem as though this price slash comes as a response to something called “reality,” and the fact that retailers have already begun taking independent steps to try and sell more consoles. So far, this has included stores no longer stocking the basic model, and unofficially dropping the price in some isolated cases.
Though the price will only come down $50, many industry players and gamers alike see this as a smart but long-overdue move if the Wii U hopes to have any chance of competing with the upcoming Playstation 4 and Xbox One releases, which will price at $399 and $499, respectively. $100 less than the Playstation 4 as opposed to only $50 cheaper could prove to be a powerful incentive for gamers looking to increase their console capabilities. Nintendo issued this statement in support of their decision:
The new price makes Wii U an even greater value, particularly with the strong lineup of Wii U games available and on the way for the system in 2013. These include Pikmin 3, The Wonderful 101, EarthBound, New Super Luigi U, The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD, Super Mario 3D World, and Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze.
Brief, but bold; that should help win back a few disillusioned Nintendo fan, and it looks like the company may be getting back on the right track. They will also be offering a limited-edition Wii U bundle featuring The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker, which will launch on September 20th to coincide with the price drop going into effect. Nintendo of America president and COO Reggie Fils-Aime also had this to say about the fresh tactic:
Nintendo has one of the strongest and most diverse video game lineups in our history. Today we’re making those unique Nintendo experiences more accessible and affordable. However you play and whatever you play, Nintendo has you covered.
Now that guy sounds like a smooth talker. At any rate, fans should certainly feel encouraged that Nintendo is taking concrete steps to address their (many) shortcomings and not bury their heads in the sand too much, as Iwata’s announcement two weeks ago strongly indicated. We’re rooting for you, Wii U, and this could be the start of a real turnaround, but the future of this console remains uncertain at best.