Wii U Priced at $450? Why it Won’t Live Up to Nintendo’s Expectations
And now, some international online retail stores are confirming what Iwata said, though no one knows if they got some sort of inside information, or if it’s just speculation on their part.
If you head over to Australian EB Games‘ website (GameStop), you’ll a price of $598. Convert that to US dollars, that would equal to about $601. Of course, for various reasons, things are generally cheaper in the US — especially electronics.
For instance, a Nintendo Wii that includes Mario Kart has a retail value of $150 in America right now, while in Australia, it goes for almost $200, or about 29%.
If the $600 price tag in Australia is correct, and if we used the same math as a current Wii, with what we did with the Wii U, than we’d be looking at about $450 US dollars. That’s still pretty darn expensive for a Nintendo console.
Since Nintendo’s first console was released in 1986, with the NES, Nintendo has always maintained a price point of around $200. The only exception to this rule was when they debuted the Wii, which cost $250 on launch day in 2006.
And besides the Super NES, Nintendo has always maintained a lower price tag than it’s viable competitors.
Whenever the Wii U is shipped, it will be considered the first, eighth-generation system, and will compete against whatever Sony and Microsoft has up their sleeve, and who knows when that will happen exactly. But if the $450+ price is correct, this could seriously damper Nintendo’s expectation.
Sony has gone on record and confirmed that they’re not investing as much for the PlayStation 4, as they did with the PS3. That doesn’t mean the system will be underpowered, it just means they won’t introduce a new technology, like they did with the PS3′s Blu-ray drive. That should also help keep the cost lower at launch, and should be cheaper than what the PlayStation 3′s price tag was in 2006.
And when the Xbox 360 first hit stores in 2005, it sold for $400, and later the Elite model went as high as $480. You have to figure that their next-generation console SHOULD hoover around the same price point. Of course, this is just me guessing.
But if this all holds true, then yes, the Wii U is still cheaper. But to a consumer, is $50 that huge of a difference — especially since you have to figure the graphical power and processing power of Sony’s and Microsoft’s machine should exceed the Wii U, which up ”til now, looks on par with an Xbox 360 or PS3. We’re talking visuals that are compared to games from 6+ years ago.
Nintendo’s philosophy has always to bring some kind of new innovation into gaming with each generation of system. We had rumble and an analog stick with the N64, small discs, which cut on load-times with the Gamecube and of course motion controls for the Wii. This time around, the company is betting that the touch-screen tablet-like controller will help decide consumers to purchase the Wii U. Unfortunately for the Big N, that’s hardly enough.
With Smartphones, tablets and other various devices, the novelty of touch-screens has worn off a bit. Heck, even Nintendo has helped the decline of people’s excitement of touch-screens, thanks to their DS handhelds.
I’m not saying the Wii U is a failure before it even ships, Nintendo has already solidify its legion of fans, who, will always support them through thick and thin. But they might loose that casual gamer, you know, the ones who helped Nintendo set record the breaking number of how many systems they sold with the Wii. This doesn’t bold to well for them.
With a possible high price, to the uninspiring touch-screen controller, Nintendo might be digging themselves a huge hole.