Thursday, July 28, 2011

Leak Sauce #21 Nintendo 3DS Price Drop

Leaking info to you and bringing the discussion.

Desperate times are ahead for Nintendo. The Nintendo 3DS literally hasn't been moving off of the shelves and a massive price cut will be initiated by August 12, 2011 (in about two weeks as of the time of this writing). That's just six months after launch. The current price of $249.99 (in the US) will be lowered to $169.99 which is a substantial $80.

If you already bought a 3DS then don't fret. Nintendo is rolling out their "Ambassador" program. Basically, anyone that buys the 3DS before the price cut will be considered an Ambassador. It's not just a fancy title either. By simply entering the eshop at least once before the price cut, you'll have access later this year to 20 free games (10 NES titles and 10 GBA titles). Nintendo has gone on to clarify that there will be more than 20 games to choose from and that all of these games will be "upgraded" with multiplayer support and other features.

$80 price cut divided by 20 games = $4 per game. Since the majority of GBA titles are $10-20 a piece, this is a pretty great deal.

Nintendo has stated this price cut will not affect the pricing of the DS Lite, DSi, or the DSiXL (though that seems kind of obvious because they want to layer even more incentive to buy the 3DS).

Between the costs of the 3DS launch, the hefty price cut, the lack of Wii console and game sales, and the upcoming release of the Wii U, Nintendo has lost over $320 Million in just the last 3 months. That requires me to say OUCH! Nintendo has lowered its estimated total sales projection for the year by 82%.

To make matters even worse: the PS Vita might be releasing this fall (Sony's new handheld to replace the PSP) and there still aren't any major titles being released for the 3DS or the Wii until later this year.

This is Kylak signing out and wanting to know your thoughts on the 3DS.


  1. So far I haven't heard that many great things about the 3DS. The screen has to be held at a certain angle to be viewed properly, lack of any promising games other than Zelda OoT which was released way after the initial console launch, lack of strong 3rd party games at launch, and silence on news to any being released within the next 3 months...sounds pretty disheartening to a prospective buyer.

    On the up side with the price drop and most of the delays, they should have a crap ton of really strong titles releasing around Thanksgiving and Christmas, game and hand-held sales are probably going to shoot through the roof. Granted with the price cuts they aren't going to hit the profits they thought they would. Nintendo is a strong contender in the gaming market and any setback they have isn't likely to keep them down long. We'll see how the Wii U does when it launches, and if they learned their lesson, they aren't going to repeat the same mistakes they made with the 3DS.

  2. Everything you've said is sadly true. The reason for the lack of releases is all third party titles have been delayed well beyond what was expected and many first party titles from Nintendo actually can't be made because Nintendo feels the 3D effects aren't worth the effort for those titles to be used in any meaningful way. Basically every planned game went down the wash and without any titles, there's no reason for people to buy a 3DS. Everything that could go wrong happened one after another in a horrifying sequence of combos.

    The reason this has such an impact though is when you get right down to it: Nintendo doesn't have anything to fall back on. Sony and Microsoft sell other products beyond games and gaming consoles. Nintendo strictly makes games and after losing out in the handheld market (something they've always dominated), losing out in this last generation of game sales (console sales don't typically make the company any profit), and the Wii U costing an arm and a leg to produce, it's going to be really tough to bounce back.

    The 3DS is going to need a serious kickstart and the Wii U is going to have to compete with two systems that already have about equal horsepower under the hood already with a larger game library. I just hope they're able to get these issues worked out and continue to be the strong company we've known them to be.



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