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Nintendo NES (Games) Entertainment Games Linux Technology

Nintendo Discontinues the NES Classic Edition (polygon.com) 104

A Nintendo representative has confirmed today that the company will be discontinuing the NES Classic Edition, "a plug-and-play console that became popular with collectors as soon as it launched last fall," reports Polygon. The last shipments of the consoles will hit stores this month. From the report: [Nintendo said in a statement to IGN:] "Throughout April, NOA territories will receive the last shipments of Nintendo Entertainment System: NES Classic Edition systems for this year. We encourage anyone interested in obtaining this system to check with retail outlets regarding availability. We understand that it has been difficult for many consumers to find a system, and for that we apologize. We have paid close attention to consumer feedback, and we greatly appreciate the incredible level of consumer interest and support for this product." "NES Classic Edition wasn't intended to be an ongoing, long-term product. However, due to high demand, we did add extra shipments to our original plans," it told IGN.
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Nintendo Discontinues the NES Classic Edition

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  • by DogDude ( 805747 ) on Thursday April 13, 2017 @06:06PM (#54231283)
    Only Nintendo would discontinue a product due to high demand. Who runs that company, a couple of idiot plumbers?
    • by __aaclcg7560 ( 824291 ) on Thursday April 13, 2017 @06:12PM (#54231313)
      Nintendo probably didn't want a retro console to cut into sales of the new Switch, as they're the only console company that makes money off of the hardware.
      • by Luthair ( 847766 )
        No one is cross shopping a switch and an NES Classic Mini.
        • No one is cross shopping a switch and an NES Classic Mini.

          That's exactly the point :

          - Currently, retro-loving geeks will buy a NES Classic (of which Nintendo only makes a few bucks through licensing and that's about it).
          They would never ever had thought about buying a Switch. The idea would have never crossed their mind.

          - If NES Classic is shut down, retro-geeks will be left without a platform. Some of them might end up biting the bullet and buy a Switch, and then re-buy all the old classics again from the virtual shop of the Switch. (Nintendo thus makes more mone

      • by Anonymous Coward

        They can either have a retro console that THEY SELL to "cut" into sales of the Switch or they can have people download NES ROMs and use emulators.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by thegarbz ( 1787294 )

      Artificial scarcity though limited production runs keeps the value high and keeps the the people wanting it when they introduce it again next year.

      In the mean time the focus is on the Switch. Who runs the company? People who know what they are doing.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Artificial scarcity is great to keep price high and so profit high, but when you don't sell the product, you don't make any profit, no matter the value or the demand. The only ones who will benefit from artificial scarcity are resellers. So unless Nintendo is looking at selling the NES on Ebay, Artificial scarcity in this case is just really, really dumb. As for the Switch, as many people said, it's a different market. I would buy a Classic NES, but there's no way I will buy a Switch.

        • but when you don't sell the product

          Who says they're not selling the product? Emphasis mine:

          NOA territories will receive the last shipments of Nintendo Entertainment System: NES Classic Edition systems for this year.

          Limited production runs per time period is pretty much one of the definitions of artificial scarcity. The run ending at a time when you're pushing an alternative platform is then just good business sense.

          As for the Switch, as many people said, it's a different market.

          It's only a different market to people who are after a certain thing: The latest current console. In terms of general entertainment it's actually the same market only with a bias towards nostalgia vs a bias towards portability (not technology, because

    • The lameness filter is so disturbing. I'll never understand the US and how they treat speech and text there. Say whatever you want but absolutely don't swear! When the filter doesn't inform you what the problem is ... It's so annoying:

      Stuck in it so I'll post in parts until it go through.. Stupid /., you s***.

      Only Nintendo would discontinue a product due to high demand. Who runs that company, a couple of ***** plumbers?

      Well. Valve did their own controller with touchpads to be able to play not-for-controller-game-controller-schemes on their specific controller and then thought it was a great idea to support other cont

    • They also decided that the way to really be able to make PC gaming compete with gaming consoles was to go with the same experience, so hence to even configure your controller at all you have to launch the slow bloated Big picture mode which is slow as **** and ****ed down and ****** just like anything using controllers could be assumed to be to both enable the controller and select the configuration for your controller and launching your game.
      Because to make PC gaming "work" that's exactly what we need! Not

      • You have to use the big picture mode so you can actually navigate your games library with a controller. It's not rocket science and it runs fine
        • by aliquis ( 678370 )

          You have to use the big picture mode so you can actually navigate your games library with a controller. It's not rocket science and it runs fine

          But I don't want to browse it with my controller.

          Just because I have a controller connected to my PC doesn't mean I don't have a keyboard and mouse too.

          It's just a desktop PC with a controller. It's not a gaming console without keyboard and mouse. I want to use the controller for playing the game not for controlling Steam. If I wanted it for controlling Steam then I could always switch to big picture mode voluntarily. Why can't I configure the controller without entering big picture mode? Why do I have to h

    • Of course now Microsoft is in on it too so now we've got Xbox on Windows with their Game bar on top of games too. Push Windows + G to enter it. Because gamers totally like to have the Windows button enabled; it's not like you'd accidentally been thrown out of a game to open up the start-menu by pressing that one before is it?
      And why wouldn't you want even more blo**-ware overlays on top of your games?
      Everyone do their own thing too. Before to use the DS4 controller you could use something like DS4Windows, I

    • So where am I going with all this?
      Well, beyond this controller stuff and ****** overlay, Valve still haven't released Half-Life 3 and the CS:GO updates they do are stuff like music kits with StatTrak to show your MVPs and even more knifes and what not, and maps where you can walk on top of the map, and a $2000 negev with ~infinite ammo which shot straight as * (but to be fair the enemy will at-least know where you are when using it .. so you may still get destroyed.)
      So Nintendo may act like ***** plumbers.

  • by __aaclcg7560 ( 824291 ) on Thursday April 13, 2017 @06:10PM (#54231307)
    I was looking forward to getting this console but haven't found a store that had them in stock. Now I'm pissed.
    • by Luthair ( 847766 )
      Sadly this will just encourage the scalpers.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Why? It's a gigantic plastic PoS. Do yourself a favor and get yourself an Analogue Nt Mini.

      All that Nintendo has these days is its IP, so it's stuck selling the same shit it innovated way back when and haven't created anything worthwhile in some time.

    • Re:WTF, Nintendo?! (Score:4, Informative)

      by Drakonblayde ( 871676 ) on Thursday April 13, 2017 @08:24PM (#54231933)

      I had the same problem, couldnt find one in retail stores, still cant, and I've checked in many different states (I'm a road warrior).

      So I finally said screw it, got myself a Raspberry Pi, installed RetroPi, and it was so stupidly simple I wondered why I'd bothered worrying about the NES Classic. I ended up building a second one to take on the road with me, since my wife and kids enjoy the first one so much that they'd slit my throat if I tried to take the first one with me for weeks at a time

  • Especially in the American market. Of course everyone was going to jump on this gem!
    I thought that was the entire point of this to begin with?

  • Uhhh... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by AAWood ( 918613 ) <[moc.liamg] [ta] [doowaa]> on Thursday April 13, 2017 @06:16PM (#54231345)

    Throughout April, NOA territories will receive the last shipments of Nintendo Entertainment System: NES Classic Edition systems for this year.

    for this year

    for this year

    I would not be surprised if news of the NES Classic's demise is being greatly exaggerated.

    • by zlives ( 2009072 )

      perhaps you have overestimated their writing abilities to actually mean what is said and not implied.

      • by msauve ( 701917 )
        More likely, they recognize they've found a new target market. Expect a Classic II, which includes a few more games, and sells at twice the price. They're not going to give up all the available profit to scalpers.
    • Prepare to be surprised. You don't stop shipping a product in April if you intend to continue selling it the following year. Another NES Classic Edition-like product -- probably with stronger DRM -- may well be back. This one most definitely won't be.
  • by dstyle5 ( 702493 ) on Thursday April 13, 2017 @06:24PM (#54231387)
    I've seen a few comments online where people have speculated this was a bridge product to bring in some $ until the Switch was released. This does make sense in that the Wii U was a colossal failure from a business perspective (Disclaimer: I own a Wii U) and this helped bring in some holiday season revenue. In typical Nintendo fashion they didn't read the market place correctly and didn't make enough units to satisfy demand. I still have friends that would be buy a NES Classic if they were available.

    If they are in fact halting production because of the Switch and it maybe getting virtual console support (which it currently does not have) I think its another big misreading of the market by Nintendo. I can't see a big crossover between buyers of the NES Classic and Switch. Most people aren't going to buy a $300 console to play a few virtual console NES games, but a lot will pay $60 for the Classic. If anything I think the Classic could be a bridge product for people who haven't bought Nintendo games/consoles for a while and get them interested in their products again. Discontinuing the NES Classic seems like yet another blunder by a company who has had a lot of difficulty reading the market.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      My read is that it is because of the Switch, but NOT because they think the NES Classic is cannibalizing sales from the Switch. At least not directly. Nintendo only seems to want to spend X amount of money on manufacturing capacity, so if you want to increase the number of Switch units, something else has to give. So you've got the Switch, 3DS, and NES Classic. Which one do you cut to free up capacity for the Switch? If you ignore the option of simply increasing the budget to buy more production time in som

    • I think its so they can refocus more production into the Switch as its selling very well.
  • I don't own an NES classic, but I grew up playing these games, and I love them dearly. Playing them periodically is a joy, both for myself and my young son. Shall I...

    A) Enjoy my favorite NES games illegally on a PC emulator?


    B) Enjoy my favorite NES games legally on an NES Classic Edition?

    I look forward to your reply. Thank you.

    • by WDot ( 1286728 )
      Other legal alternatives:

      Play them on the Virtual Console for Wii, 3DS, and Wii U (and probably Switch eventually). That is, most Nintendo consoles in the past 11 years.
      Play them in other repackaged forms on Nintendo consoles that have been coming out since the SuperNES (e.g. Super Mario All-Stars).
      Play them on the original hardware that you can find in garage sales or eBay.
      • by Anonymous Coward

        VC games are overpriced, under-featured (compared to emulators), and worst of all, you don't actually own them.
        Most games aren't repackaged for newer consoles (at least not outside of VC).
        Playing on original hardware is legal, but Nintendo don't see any of that money anyway. I'm not a collector, so I don't want a bunch of old crap laying about just to be "legal", and I don't really want to pay collector prices.

        One big problem is copyright is way way way longer than it should be, really it should be around 1

  • Hopefully this means that the virtual console is coming to the switch sooner rather than later.

    • by darkain ( 749283 )

      Technically the virtual console has been there since almost day one. Its just that thus far, it has exclusively been NeoGeo games.

  • by Marc_Hawke ( 130338 ) on Thursday April 13, 2017 @06:32PM (#54231457)

    Shortly after the NES Classic was released, people found out it was easily hacked, and released tools that allowed you to expand the 30 bundled games to over 300 unlicensed ROMs. It all fit neatly into their UI and everything (from what I saw.) I've heard it surmised many times on the Internet (and that makes it true) that they weren't interested in shipping their own 'Kodi Box' equivalent.

    However... there's also the stories of 'how to build your own NES classic' using a Raspberry PI or equivalent, including adding all the ROMS you want. Supposedly it's cheaper than the NES Classic as well. The only thing you don't get is the nostalgic (tiny) little box and the cute ( short tailed) controllers.

    You could ask, 'why don't they decide to own that market, and just write off the 30 vs 300 as irrelevant?' (They'd already picked the best 30.) At least then they'd get their mark-up. (Whatever that was.)

    • by DaHat ( 247651 )

      I'd argue that this discontinuation, like the lack of availability is going to contribute more to piracy.

      Having tried multiple times to find one during the first couple of months it was out, I gave up and simply went the RetroPi route.

      Shame Nintendo didn't want to take my money.

      • Yup, same here. When the NES Classic was announced, I got excited. I knew I could get my own emulator cheaper (I didn't yet know about RetroPi), but would rather go the legal route, and felt it would be nice to support Nintendo for producing something like this.

        I gave up on finding one, and threw together a RetroPi. So I can say that Nintendo caused me to build a RetroPi. Had they not made the NES Classic, I wouldn't have been reminded of the fun NES games of my youth, and wouldn't have felt the desire to p

    • by Osgeld ( 1900440 )

      doesnt matter, the vast majority of people never even saw one in real life, its a unicorn touting piricy on a 30 year old console where every rom has been available for download for 25 years

      nintendo failed, again, to keep track of what actually makes them popular

    • by Megane ( 129182 )
      At a Fry's last month, I saw an end-cap display with what appeared to be a NES Classic running (IIRC) SMW. Looking closer, I saw the roughness of a 3D-printed case. It was actually a display for Nintendo-style USB controllers, using a RasPi in a 3D-printed case.
      • yea there are tons of 3d printed cases on etsy for all the rPI variants. So you can make it look like a mini-nes, snes, n64, atari, whatever you want. Nintendo style usb controllers have also existed for a long long time

        So there really is no point to an NES classic, unless you are that much against downloading some roms that you would now be willing to pay 100-300$ for 30 games. If you are willing to mod an NES classic to insert all your own roms than why even bother

    • People wanted more games on the NES Mini. If Nintendo had put a VC store on the damnable thing, they'd have made a mint. Likewise if they unified their VC platform.

      Too bad it ran at 60fps instead of 59.94. I'd have preferred hardware NES with a proper hardware clock and software mappers. It'd be trivial to add some boot software that comes up with a register mapping to a system controller, giving access to access a flash filesystem, configure Wifi, and make network calls.

      In the best-case engineering

  • Grrrrr (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Frag-A-Muffin ( 5490 ) on Thursday April 13, 2017 @06:35PM (#54231467) Homepage

    I was being casual about trying to get one, now I'm just angry. I think to punish Nintendo, I'm going to NOT buy a Switch now.

    • by Osgeld ( 1900440 )

      I wasnt going to buy a switch anyway, its just a portable wii-u for a pile of money

      why bother? I can play 1.5 gen old games on my phone and not have to carry a fragile brick with me

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Buttons and joysticks. All i want is a phone i can play games on without shitty touch controls. And I don't want to carry a seperate controller.

  • dear Nintendo (Score:3, Insightful)

    by future assassin ( 639396 ) on Thursday April 13, 2017 @06:38PM (#54231485) Homepage

    I have yet to find one unit since its initial release in any store locally. I can get them from CL for $400 and now you discontinue it? Go fuck yourself.

  • This is baffling a lot of consumers and nintendo fans. Here are the possible reasons why nintendo discontinued production, culled from various sources online and conversations in my office
    • Production Costs - perhaps nintendo was not making money on the mini-console. This sounds implausible, due to nintendos track record of always making money off of hardware. More plausible is that at a $60 price point they weren't making ENOUGH money on the mini-console to justify increasing production
    • Production Capacity
  • by joeflies ( 529536 ) on Thursday April 13, 2017 @07:07PM (#54231591)

    Atari Flashback has been released, discontinued, revised, a bunch of times. There are differences in versions, there are changes in licenses but I'd guess that selling memories requires driving up the artificial demand by limiting availability.

  • NES Classic 2 (Score:5, Interesting)

    by mentil ( 1748130 ) on Thursday April 13, 2017 @07:10PM (#54231599)

    I'm guessing Nintendo stopped manufacturing the NES Classic BECAUSE it was such a huge hit. They were probably expecting modest sales far lower than what they were, so they outsourced as much as they could, half-assing the device. Thus why it's not (officially) expandable, has no internet connectivity etc.

    So they're ending production now in preparation of an improved version, likely with longer controller cables, internet connectivity that lets you purchase additional games, and improved DRM (e.g. Nintendo-signed ROM files tied to your device hardware ID.) Perhaps it'll even support Super Nintendo games, or access to games already purchased for Virtual Console. If they kept selling units up to the day they introduce an improved version at the same price, people will be peeved they got the older model; however, pulling it for 6+ months before the new one is out will make it feel more like a 'new generation' and reduce buyer's remorse for those who got the old ones. I'm kind of surprised by the implication this won't be released for holiday '17, though, maybe they're too busy with the Switch.

    • by brettw ( 27391 )

      This could be a pretty good theory. I own one. To be more precise, I have owned 3 of them (2 sent back for warranty due to hardware failure).

      It's wonderful when it works.

      Now I'm left wondering if I should keep it as a collector's item instead of playing it (and then have it fail on me).

    • by tlhIngan ( 30335 )

      I don't know.

      The standalone version works quite well - plug in a controller, plug in the TV, plug in power, and game away. It's super simple to use.

      Add in all the network connectivity and expandability and you've complicated it 100 times. Plus it has to cost more - additional storage, network/wifi equipment, etc. And then there's the whole billing and account stuff that needs to be done.

      The NES Classic as it is right now is perfect. You can be playing games in about 30 seconds. An enhanced version will cos

    • by dj245 ( 732906 )

      I'm guessing Nintendo stopped manufacturing the NES Classic BECAUSE it was such a huge hit. They were probably expecting modest sales far lower than what they were, so they outsourced as much as they could, half-assing the device. Thus why it's not (officially) expandable, has no internet connectivity etc.

      The NES classic sold around 1.5 million units. The Wii U sold 13.56 million over its lifetime. Arguably the Wii U had a much longer lifetime, and you could actually buy one for a larger % of that lifetime. But I wouldn't say the NES classic was a huge success, for Nintendo. It had no continuing revenue stream after sale, was found to be easily hacked to play other NES, SNES, and even N64 games. From an accountant's perspective, that's a negative revenue stream since it may erode Virtual Console sales.

      • by Daetrin ( 576516 )
        Your other points stand, but comparing Wii U sales numbers to NES Classic sales numbers is really apples and oranges.

        The Wii U was out for approximately 52 months before the Switch launched last month. That means sales of 0.26 million per month on average, with the system being easily findable over that period of time.

        The NES Classic has been out for five months, mid-November to mid-April, for an average of 0.3 million sales per month.

        The WiiU was probably selling higher at the beginning of its 52 mon
    • by Osgeld ( 1900440 )

      and once this margical fart classic 2 comes out, you wont be able to buy one of them either, just like all of nintendo's current lineup

  • “We also see the nostalgic interest in these products as an opportunity to draw consumers’ attention to our latest game system, Nintendo Switch.” http://www.news.com.au/technol... [news.com.au]

  • Not a big loss since you can't find one anyway. It's the Unicorn of the Console World.

  • It'll run everything, including PS1 and maybe 2. Costs just as much.

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