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Nintendo Announces $99 Wii Mini For US Release

Soulskill posted about 5 months ago | from the if-at-first-you-succeed-try-try-again dept.

Nintendo 147

Zothecula writes "Nintendo recently announced that it was ceasing all production of its original Wii video game console. It seemed as if it had run its course, and Nintendo was shifting 100 percent of its focus to the floundering Wii U. Turns out, the Japanese company had other plans, announcing that its previously Canada-exclusive $99 Wii Mini is making its way to the U.S. 'The $99 price has been neglected in this product generation, but in the past, it has been a very successful price for game consoles. More than half of the volume of machines in the PlayStation and PlayStation 2 generations sold at the $99 or under price."

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147 comments

Great! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45339253)

Now I can get a Wii that takes up less room in my closet.

What's the point? (4, Interesting)

mrchaotica (681592) | about 5 months ago | (#45339273)

It's barely smaller than the regular Wii (it can't be, since it has to be big enough to fit a DVD), it does less, and costs pretty much the same. Why not just keep selling the regular Wii?

Re: What's the point? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45339377)

Because they can make this one cheaper, duh. Why do companies ever do anything?

Re: What's the point? (1)

iamhassi (659463) | about 5 months ago | (#45341309)

But why remove the Internet? Nintendo receives $10 to download a few megabytes of a game rom? Yes please! Seems allowing people to buy games online is the one thing they should have kept. It's like Apple selling an iPhone that didn't run apps, Nintendo selling a console that doesn't allow customers to buy games online is completely backwards and can only result in less profit for Nintendo.

Re:What's the point? (1)

Nrrqshrr (1879148) | about 5 months ago | (#45339409)

It's a marketing stunt to spark interest. I don't have one, nor was I ever that interested in it, but when I read the /. headline, the first thought that came to my mind was "I might as well buy one now".

Re:What's the point? (4, Funny)

TWiTfan (2887093) | about 5 months ago | (#45339507)

I don't have one, nor was I ever that interested in it

Ironically, that's the marketing slogan of the Wii U.

Re:What's the point? (2, Interesting)

mwvdlee (775178) | about 5 months ago | (#45339841)

I never quite understood the Wii U.

The Wii was a cheap console with novel controllers and fun, cartoony games.
The Wii U is... what? A Wii with the same dated graphics in HD (extra sharp polygon edges?) and a crippled tablet?

Re:What's the point? (0, Flamebait)

Moryath (553296) | about 5 months ago | (#45340047)

Yeah, you've basically got the idea. The Wii U is a stillborn idea of a console that'll be out of style even faster than previous Nintendo flops. I bet even a new Pokemon couldn't save it (which is what it took to limp the N64 along back in the day).

Re:What's the point? (3, Informative)

blackraven14250 (902843) | about 5 months ago | (#45340517)

What? Pokemon saved the N64? What console are you talking about? You know the only Pokemon games for N64 were Pokemon Stadium 1+2, Puzzle League and Pokemon Snap, right? All games that were released well after most of the the N64 killer games, Super Mario 64, Ocarina of Time, Mario Kart, Goldeneye, Smash Bros...hell, the best selling of the Pokemon games, Pokemon Stadium 1, didn't even beat Diddy Kong Racing in sales.

Re:What's the point? (5, Informative)

_merlin (160982) | about 5 months ago | (#45340531)

Oh come on. N64 had Golden Eye, Turok, various Star Wars games, Mario 64, a decent Star Fox game, some good Zeldas, and even Pokemon Snap was a unique rails shooter.

Re:What's the point? (1)

pr0fessor (1940368) | about 5 months ago | (#45340533)

I thought what limped the N64 along was that the cartridges ran so much smoother than the DVDs... I had PS2 that only worked if you held it at the right angle.

Re:What's the point? (0)

gameboyhippo (827141) | about 5 months ago | (#45340667)

You do realize that Pikmin 3, Super Mario 3D World, The Wonderful 101, etc... don't look like crap, right? Not once while playing Pikmin 3 did I ever think, "Gee this game is fun, but it needs more polygons". Sometimes people want a Prius, other times they want a Mustang.

Re:What's the point? (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45340849)

...and sometimes they want a decent car.

Re:What's the point? (1)

sandytaru (1158959) | about 5 months ago | (#45340195)

That was the same thought I had as well. I decided to hold off on a PS4 because they'll lop off a hundred dollars in a year, but a Wii might actually be a reasonable investment. I blame my parents for starting me on that pattern - I was stuck playing an Atari 7800 until around 1992.

Re:What's the point? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45339417)

this one is also lacking the ports needed to softmod the machine.

Re:What's the point? (1)

alen (225700) | about 5 months ago | (#45339549)

might buy it for the kids

Re:What's the point? (3, Insightful)

TWiTfan (2887093) | about 5 months ago | (#45339677)

You can buy a used Wii for a lot cheaper, and it doesn't come gimped.

Re:What's the point? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45339861)

I recently picked up a referb WII and picked it up for less then the "gimped" version.

Plus as i posted above, its hard to find the "classic" in Canada.

Re:What's the point? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45339711)

It's coming up to Christmas. There's a ton of hype surrounding the PS4 and xbone, but they're likely to be too dear for a lot of parents looking for something new for Jimmy Jr. This Wii is "new", and it's cheap, so a lot of kids will probably end up with one of these and end up thinking Santa royally screwed up this year.

No Internet is a Plus for Parents (4, Interesting)

KalvinB (205500) | about 5 months ago | (#45339725)

The fact it doesn't have internet is going to be a plus for parents. Now they can let their kids play games without having to worry about listening to a tirade of profanity from half way around the world. The older people that play this, probably aren't getting on-line either.

It's also about $50 cheaper than the full size Wii which is the price of a Mario game.

For cost conscious parents whose kids don't have a modern video game system yet, this is a solid option for Christmas. There is a huge library of excellent titles for the Wii. The LEGO games are all about $20 now, there are plenty of very popular Wii games that are $20 now.

If I didn't already have a Wii, I'd buy it. While I use the Virtual Console, I could live without it. It's not an essential feature for the system. I just buy the old classics, Something that most kids don't care about.

So don't hook up the wi-fi! (3, Informative)

mrchaotica (681592) | about 5 months ago | (#45340395)

Just because a regular Wii has the ability to connect to the Internet, doesn't mean you have to use that ability.

It's also about $50 cheaper than the full size Wii which is the price of a Mario game.

I have a very hard time believing that the wi-fi chip is so expensive that by removing it Nintendo can charge $50 less and maintain a similar profit margin. They might as well have just left it in and priced it at $109 or something.

Re:So don't hook up the wi-fi! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45341369)

They also took out component video, and gamecube backwards compatibility. So know we have a Wii that looks as poor as possible, and won't pay legacy games (Wii Console or GC).

Re: No Internet is a Plus for Parents (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45340433)

I care about the old classics. I have a wii. I am offended that nintendo are using it as a cash cow. $5 per game and I will buy lots. $15 and I lose them all when the machine dies? No. At that I can play them on my pc.

Re:No Internet is a Plus for Parents (2)

TechyImmigrant (175943) | about 5 months ago | (#45340453)

>The fact it doesn't have internet is going to be a plus for parents. Now they can let their kids play games without having to worry about listening to a tirade of profanity from half way around the world. The older people that play this, probably aren't getting on-line either.

I'm a parent and I want my child to have the skills to cope with profanity and the internet and the intersection of the two. I don't see a Wii of any form having much relevance to that.

Re:No Internet is a Plus for Parents (2, Insightful)

vux984 (928602) | about 5 months ago | (#45340767)

I'm a parent and I want my child to have the skills to cope with profanity and the internet and the intersection of the two. I don't see a Wii of any form having much relevance to that.

Is your child 5 or 15 ? There is a difference.

That said even the Wii classic presented a very safe environment vs xbox and ps3.

I don't see a Wii of any form having much relevance to that.

The main reason to buy a wii, wii mini, or wii-u is, was, and will remain the games. Despite all the shovelware that got released for it, there is quite a solid games library for the Wii.

Many of the must-have gamecube classics were re-released for the wii so the lack of back-compat in the latest mini isn't as big of a deal.

Meanwhile the value proposition for the U is perhaps harder to make, the core library is still a bit weak, although there's some good exclusives. The back-compat with Wii however means that if you skipped the wii, there's actually quite a lot of great stuff to play alongside the wii-u titles. The real support for HD is nice, and its Yet-another-way-to-do-netflix on your TV although its one of the better ones due to the tablet support.

The tablet controller is more comfortable than most people would expect, and its not heavy or awkward even for extended sessions. Hitting its battery life limit is a bigger problem than anything ergonomic complaints, although you can plug it in and keep playing if you want.

I do most of my gaming on the PC, and there aren't enough unique compelling exlcusives to overcome my distaste for Sony or Microsoft to buy their consoles, but for me the WiiU has been good value. But I have kids, and local multiplayer / party games are a very regular occurence.

But its certainly not the best console for everyone.

FWIW I'm very curious how the steambox turns out.

Re:No Internet is a Plus for Parents (1)

TechyImmigrant (175943) | about 5 months ago | (#45340845)

>Is your child 5 or 15 ? There is a difference.
In between. Very active on the interwebs. I check in every now and then because that's my job.

>I do most of my gaming on the PC
Ditto. Steam. Big Nvidia card. The Wii is in my kid's room. I'll finish Okami one of these years.

Re:No Internet is a Plus for Parents (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45340539)

No wii games let players communicate in a freely typed or spoken fashion. I'm pretty sure that was intentional to mitigate what you describe.

There is either no communication or a predefined set of statements that the player can pick from.

Re:What's the point? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45339803)

Along the same lines, why is this the only one you can find in Canada? They use to carry the "classic" but now they are almost impossible to locate.

At least give me the choice if i want to spend the extra $20 for the classic instead of just pulling them from the shelves.

Re:What's the point? (1)

DarKnyht (671407) | about 5 months ago | (#45339855)

Mostly because they shut all the internet enabled channels with the exception of the Wii Shop Channel. The Wii Mini removes all that from the menu along with the network adapter.

Re:What's the point? (1)

Hadlock (143607) | about 5 months ago | (#45340363)

More importantly, it doesn't have internet access, which blows my mind. Why include Mario Kart Wii when you can't do internet play with it? In 2013? Are they serious?

Re:What's the point? (1)

TechyImmigrant (175943) | about 5 months ago | (#45340461)

I stopped playing online Mario Kart when blatant cheating became the norm.

Have they fixed it yet?

Re:What's the point? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45340617)

They have not and will not. Your first place guy will keep getting star men until the finish line.

I stopped playing after encountering this fluke about 15 times.

And the shit of it is, I have a soft-modded wii. And I bought Mario Kart long before doing it! That is, I could cheat too! Mother fuckers. What's the point, though?

Re:What's the point? (1)

RogueyWon (735973) | about 5 months ago | (#45340661)

It doesn't even have the usual argument in its favour that stripped-down versions of consoles put out after their successor appear usually have; back compatibility.

The Wii-U's back compatibility with Wii games is very good. Not quite perfect (one or two titles are ever so slightly glitchy), but certainly good. On a par with the PS1 back-compatibility on the PS2, certainly. I don't like much about Nintendo (region locking, online restrictions, attitudes to IP that would make Sony blush, game pricing, general arrogance and paternalist ethos), but back-compatibility is one thing they consistently do right.

One of the reasons the PS2 continued to sell so well after the PS3 release was that unless you moved quickly and got a first-generation Japanese or US model, the PS3 basically didn't do back compatibility. Sure, there have been HD-remasters and the PSN "PS2 Classics" range - but those involve paying again for what you may already own. If you had a large library of PS2 games and your PS2 failed, then having a cheapo-stripped down version of the PS2 available to buy as new was a fairly useful safety valve.

Similarly when the PSP headed into retirement, though it had generally been forgotten in the West, it retained a big fanbase in Japan. The Vita can run PSP games purchased via the store from memory stick (and no need to re-buy them if you already bought them online from the store for the PSP), but the lack of a UMD drive means that physical copies of PSP games can't be used in its successor. So a cheapo basic PSP model for Japan made a lot of sense (and is precisely what Sony did).

In this case, I just can't understand the justification for keeping stripped down models of the Wii on sale for so long. Hell, if somebody has a lot of Wii games and their Wii dies at this point, from Nintendo's point of view, that's an opportunity to tempt them into a Wii-U purchase. Maybe Nintendo's internal data on the Wii-U's commercial position is even worse than is commonly suspected and it's preparing to ditch the platform? But that feels "too soon" right now. They've got another roll of the dice with the new Mario and Mario Kart games (although it doesn't help that the PS4 and Xbox One are launching in the same window). A cut-and-run scenario might look more plausible in 6 months if the Wii-U has a bad Christmas.

Mini. Really? (-1, Offtopic)

Russ1642 (1087959) | about 5 months ago | (#45339289)

If that's not a setup for a joke about Japanese people then I don't know what is.

Re:Mini. Really? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45339809)

I got your Wii Mini right here, Pal. Wait.

OK, so what's new in it? (1)

intermodal (534361) | about 5 months ago | (#45339295)

It doesn't really seem like a very traditional Nintendo move. The top-loader NES did away with the click-down cartridge, the Advance SP offered a backlight and rechargable battery. Gameboy Color brought color into the games. The DS Lite offered several advantages over the original DS.

What does the Wii Mini do that brings something new to the table?

Re:OK, so what's new in it? (2)

gstoddart (321705) | about 5 months ago | (#45339329)

What does the Wii Mini do that brings something new to the table?

A $99 price tag, I believe.

Re:OK, so what's new in it? (1)

intermodal (534361) | about 5 months ago | (#45339373)

The least important feature of this particular console. They strip out the Internet capability, which is an utterly stupid move when they don't have a counterpart with that connectivity. Especially when bundling this console with a game that is a lot of fun online with basically no interaction other than actual gameplay with other players. You don't get to spin that as "safer".

Re:OK, so what's new in it? (5, Insightful)

gstoddart (321705) | about 5 months ago | (#45339481)

They strip out the Internet capability

Or, Nintendo has enough data to suggest there is room for a budget console with no internet capability.

If you have a large segment of your market which never uses the internet for gaming, they don't need internet capability.

If you want the big shiny one with an internet connection, you probably already own it. But if you have a 5 year old who just wants to play a Mario game, you may not even want internet connectivity.

Not everyone plays games on-line. I know I don't, so surely in the demographic for a Wii there's plenty of people who don't either.

Online Mario game (1)

tepples (727027) | about 5 months ago | (#45340125)

But if you have a 5 year old who just wants to play a Mario game, you may not even want internet connectivity.

I was under the impression that Dr. Mario Online Rx was available only through the online Wii Shop.

Re:OK, so what's new in it? (1)

intermodal (534361) | about 5 months ago | (#45340187)

Be that as it may, the kids who want to solo game would probably enjoy a lot of the downloadable classics which are unavailable to this Wii.

Re:OK, so what's new in it? (1)

tepples (727027) | about 5 months ago | (#45340149)

They strip out the Internet capability, which is an utterly stupid move when they don't have a counterpart with that connectivity

Is the Wii U incapable of going online in Wii mode?

Especially when bundling this console with a game that is a lot of fun online

What's the practical difference between racing against anonymous online players (no interaction with others without exchanging friend codes out of band) and racing against the CPU?

Re:OK, so what's new in it? (1)

intermodal (534361) | about 5 months ago | (#45340255)

First, the Wii U costs too bloody much, while the cost savings of removing the Wireless capability is negligible. Even an old G-chipset would do fine here.

Second, the practical difference is quality. AI becomes predictable, while a long string of new opponents keeps it fresh.

Re:OK, so what's new in it? (1)

Megane (129182) | about 5 months ago | (#45340181)

But did they really strip out the "internet capability", or just the wifi chips? In other words, will it still support a USB Ethernet dongle? (Not that I care, I already have an old one that can play Gamecube games.)

Re:OK, so what's new in it? (1)

intermodal (534361) | about 5 months ago | (#45340239)

It's a good question. I've got a regular Wii and two Gamecubes, so the answer doesn't bother me as much as the strategy.

Re:OK, so what's new in it? (1)

vux984 (928602) | about 5 months ago | (#45340831)

They strip out the Internet capability, which is an utterly stupid move when they don't have a counterpart with that connectivity

The counterpart is the wii-u.

Re:OK, so what's new in it? (4, Funny)

TWiTfan (2887093) | about 5 months ago | (#45339531)

What does the Wii Mini do that brings something new to the table?

It frees you from Nintendo's awful online experience.

Re:OK, so what's new in it? (2)

Anubis IV (1279820) | about 5 months ago | (#45339609)

A sub-$100 price is about it, since they took out Gamecube backwards compatibility and Internet connectivity. It's really just aimed at the people buying Wii Fit and Wii Sports, not at anyone who's even mildly serious about gaming.

Re:OK, so what's new in it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45340169)

anyone who's even mildly serious about gaming.

I think you're legally required to be a native of South Korea to put those two words together like that.

Re:OK, so what's new in it? (1)

vux984 (928602) | about 5 months ago | (#45340865)

not at anyone who's even mildly serious about gaming.

Agreed.

since they took out Gamecube backwards compatibility

Anyone serious about gaming, wouldn't have waited SEVEN YEARS to buy one.

At this stage, backwards compatibility concerns of anyone serious would be whether the Wii-U is back compatible with with the Wii. (it is). I doubt anyone cares about backwards compatiblity with gamecube titles now. Several of the key titles were rereleased for the Wii anyway, and gamecube is a pretty distant memory for most people.

and Internet connectivity

Yep; I honestly really can't see why they pulled that. It can't be more than a couple bucks worth of parts. But still, anyone buying a wii now instead of a wii-u is doing it for a cheap console, probably for young kids (and that's fine).

For anyone 'serious' looking at a wii, the wii-u has all the bells and whistles, and full backwards compatibility with the wii.

Re:OK, so what's new in it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45341325)

It can't be more than a couple bucks worth of parts.

It's not even a function of the parts, there's an ethernet dongle for the wii that's confirmed not to work with the mini.

Re:OK, so what's new in it? (1)

Kjella (173770) | about 5 months ago | (#45341075)

A sub-$100 price is about it, since they took out Gamecube backwards compatibility and Internet connectivity. It's really just aimed at the people buying Wii Fit and Wii Sports, not at anyone who's even mildly serious about gaming.

Well duh, it's a mini version of a last-gen console released in 2006 so that's the only people who you could sell it to. Even if anyone needed Gamecube compatibility there's now 100 million regular Wiis on the market to 20 million Gamecubes sold. And Nintendo probably looked at the stats and found extremely many Wiis are never online, the only system updates they get are through game discs. Add in a few clueless parents who think anything involving the Internet is a scary place and you got a $99 guaranteed safe kids/family console. No matter how old and boring you think it is, it's always new to some new kids.

Re:OK, so what's new in it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45339691)

There was also a GBA Micro released right around the time the original DS came out for a similarly low price. The Game Boy Light was released (in Japan) only some six months before the Game Boy Color came out. The DSi was basically a trial run of the 3DS firmware.

This isn't new. It's just a smaller, cheaper one for people who don't already have one.

price. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45339319)

the $99 price point is pretty enticing for someone who's not into hardcore gaming..

Re:price. (1)

Russ1642 (1087959) | about 5 months ago | (#45339349)

Mini wiis aren't hardcore.

Re:price. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45339467)

Exactly. And if you're not into hardcore gaming, you don't want to spend $400+ on something that is for hardcore gaming, so instead you can spend just $100 on something that is not hardcore.

Re:price. (1)

P-niiice (1703362) | about 5 months ago | (#45339513)

I think they got all of them with the main console. I'm not sure who they want to catch with this one. I'm sure it will sell a lot though.

Re:price. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45340065)

People are born every day, teenagers become adults every day, every minute people are exposed for the first time to those things which we take for granted.

There will always be a new sucker to buy a Wii console.

Used consoles can still get on Wii Shop (1)

tepples (727027) | about 5 months ago | (#45340161)

People are born every day, teenagers become adults every day

Used full-feature Wii consoles that support buying games from Wii Shop Channel are removed from closet storage and sold on eBay every day.

Re:price. (1)

Chameleon Man (1304729) | about 5 months ago | (#45339683)

If you're enticed by price, go on Craigslist and search for a normal used Wii. You will pay half of that and probably receive additional controllers and games as a bonus. This move by Nintendo doesn't really make a lot of sense to me...but then again many of their moves lately haven't.

Cheap netflix box? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45339347)

"lacks YPBPR (component video/d-terminal) and s-video output, Nintendo GameCube compatibility, online gaming, the SD card slot and Wi-Fi support"

...

Re:Cheap netflix box? (1)

Guspaz (556486) | about 5 months ago | (#45339561)

It also lacks networking support. How exactly will it stream Netflix without a network connection?

Even if it did have a network connection, it's $99 for a box limited to 480p, when there are boxes that will stream 1080p that cost $39...

Wii Mini isn't worth $99 (3, Funny)

Bacon Bits (926911) | about 5 months ago | (#45339355)

The Wii Mini doesn't have GameCube support and doesn't have Wi-Fi. Thus far, that's mainly what my Wii has been: a GameCube that streams NetFlix.

Re:Wii Mini isn't worth $99 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45339421)

Yea, enjoy all 4 worthwhile gamecube games forever!

Re:Wii Mini isn't worth $99 (1)

AvitarX (172628) | about 5 months ago | (#45339553)

I'm contemplating buying another Wii (Mine got lost in a move) for the original Zelda without needing to emulate, Ikaruga (GC) and F-Zero (GC). Unfortunately, without internet or GC compat, it's not going to work.

Re:Wii Mini isn't worth $99 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45339961)

If you are in US, a used Wii at Gamestop only costs you $69.

The Legend of Zelda without emulation (2)

tepples (727027) | about 5 months ago | (#45340185)

The only way to play The Legend of Zelda "without needing to emulate" is by owning an NES. Any NES game stored on a GameCube Game Disc is running in acNES, the emulator that Nintendo developed for the NES games buried in Animal Crossing. I don't know whether the Virtual Console emulator is descended from acNES, but I can identify acNES by the muffled electrocution sound in Balloon Fight.

Re:Wii Mini isn't worth $99 (1)

vux984 (928602) | about 5 months ago | (#45340951)

for the original Zelda without needing to emulate

The virtual console on the wii-u has it. Although its probably emulated still. But at least its official, sanctioned emulation, with a controller that works properly with no hassle. (And as someone who played the original SMB through to the end on VC, the timing is really good... I always had major issues playing SMB in emulation, but I can play SMB on the virtual console with muscle-memory learned at childhood, lol.

Ikaruga -- great game -- you may be interested in:
http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=183195387 [steamcommunity.com]

F-Zero GC -- there were rumours GC titles will show up on the Wii-U virtual console, but i dont' think it's happened yet. I wouldn't hold my breath.

Your best bet for Ikaruga and F-Zero right now are probably a used Wii... or even a used GC.

Re:Wii Mini isn't worth $99 (1)

AvitarX (172628) | about 5 months ago | (#45341165)

I have purchased the original zelda many.

The ability to push a button from the couch and be playing in a couple seconds was well worth it for me, even though I owned it (twice) for the game cube (the black gamecube bundled one, and the wind waker pre order one), and the NES already (thought the NES was getting shaky on actually booting by that point)..

Re:Wii Mini isn't worth $99 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45339955)

My current wii is only used for Netflix, and can only use wifi. If this has built in network ports, I might as well buy one for a cheap Netflix box.

Haha. Captcha is obsolete

Re:Wii Mini isn't worth $99 (1)

Guspaz (556486) | about 5 months ago | (#45340337)

It has no network ports, and the Nintendo USB ethernet adapter doesn't work on it, even if it does have a USB port.

Even if it COULD get connected to a network, $99 to stream 480i Netflix is silly when you can buy devices that will stream 1080p Netflix to your TV for less than half that price.

WTF no internet? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45339379)

So there's only two groups who will be interested in the Wii Mini. Those who don't use the internet, and those who do but were planning on hacking the console (possibly for piracy). The former seems unlikely to be interested in video games, and the latter is the exact market Nintendo isn't interested in.

No SD slot means no homebrew (1)

tepples (727027) | about 5 months ago | (#45340211)

So there's only two groups who will be interested in the Wii Mini. Those who don't use the internet, and those who do but were planning on hacking the console (possibly for piracy).

Since Wii Menu 3.3 fixed the strncmp bug in Disc Channel, all exploits that I know of to get the installer for the Homebrew Channel running use SD cards. No SD slot means no homebrew.

Just Get a PSP (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45339603)

PSP-3000 is $99 on Amazon. It has better graphics and more features, and it doesn't hurt that it's portable too. Like the Wii, it has a great lineup with lots of titles still on the market, and including several beloved classics (especially if you like RPG's).

I love my Wii. I got it two years ago on sale for $99 ($150 plus a free $50 gift card), and it was worth the money. Wii Mini sounds cool, but from what I read it's been butchered to hell: no SD storage, no Wifi, no Virtual Console, no GC compatibility, nothing. This is a terrible mockery of the Wii; you think you're saving a few bucks, but you lose practically all of the Wii's value. Just buy a regular Wii if you don't have one--get a used one if if you want to save money.

Just remember: No Transfers! (5, Insightful)

Ransak (548582) | about 5 months ago | (#45339623)

Any content you've purchased on one Wii is stuck [googleusercontent.com] there forever in most cases. Nintendo won't transfer digital purchases unless you have documentation showing your original Wii was stolen, and that's iffy. Why people keep paying for the same, tired rehash of their game catalog and obvious abuse of the platform is beyond me.

Re:Just remember: No Transfers! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45339751)

It's not like you could transfer it if Nintendo allowed it anyways, the Mini has no internet connectivity.

Re:Just remember: No Transfers! (2)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 5 months ago | (#45339977)

People will accept more abuse the lower the price. If I'm buying an overpriced italian car for like $300k, the dealership had better treat me like royalty, offer free oil changes etc. If I'm getting a decent german car for free, the dealership could have an overweight hairy man moon me and fart at me the whole time I'm there, tell me I'm fucking scum, and have a witch curse me to get warts or something. I'd still take it.

The Wii was always cheaper than the other consoles and broke less often than at least the 360 in most cases. I'm guessing that buying an original wii after launch and then the wii mini would still be cheaper than a single 360 for much of the 360's life. And that's assuming you only had to buy one.

(Disclaimer: I rarely used my wii, bought a second 360 after my first one broke, and only switched to PC gaming recently, so I'm a big idiot. Also if a dealership actually had an obese man fart at me, I'd probably get creeped out and leave.)

Re:Just remember: No Transfers! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45341053)

Yeah. Unless you buy a Wii U and transfer your digital purchases to the Nintendo next-gen system.

And that's exclusive to Nintendo. Try to transfer your digital purchases to PS4 or Xbone. Oops.

PS3 (1)

asmkm22 (1902712) | about 5 months ago | (#45339703)

I'm just waiting for the PS3 and maybe XBox to drop to the $99 price point. I couldn't care less about the a smaller Wii.

Re:PS3 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45340093)

That would be a great deal and maybe you'll see that in the used market, but I doubt that either MSFT or Sony will sell a brand new console at that price point. Remember that the PS3 is a Blu-Ray player, too. That feature alone is worth $50-$70 and the parts to support that are still not dirt cheap.

Like the 2DS, the Wii Mini has a purpose (4, Insightful)

sottitron (923868) | about 5 months ago | (#45340067)

Before you complain about the Mini being a butchered Wii, just realize that Nintendo are not going after serious console buyers here or people flush with cash. Those people might have bought a Wii U or are waiting for the XBox One or PS 4. Nintendo is going after people looking for a bargain but who don't want a used machine (these people do exist). They are serving people who don't demand the latest and greatest from a console and who will pay $99 to play the awesome games you could get on Nintendo's old system. The thing Nintendo knows is that when it sells a console, it will sell games for that console. So a Wii Mini probably represents four or five games going out the door as first sales in the next year as well. And I am pretty sure nobody sells more titles for Nintendo consoles than Nintendo itself. This is a play to make some more money on the backend of the Wii's life. Its a smart move to trim the cost of the Wii and keep selling machines and the games that play on them. And some of these people might turn into Wii U buyers when they have more money.

Re:Like the 2DS, the Wii Mini has a purpose (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45340481)

If this is being done to appease cost conscious buyers, they're doing it wrong. You can buy a certified working normal Wii with a warranty for well under $99 at any used games store. The used Wii has more features and a better resale value than this neutered Wii. This buyer, who does not have anything more than $99 to spend on entertainment is well aware of used prices and equipment, and isn't unhappy to purchase them.

The Wii Mini will not appeal based on price alone until it matches or is cheaper than the trusted used market.

Re:Like the 2DS, the Wii Mini has a purpose (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45341089)

Yup to all that, PLUS there is dire overcapacity at the hardware manufacturers. Nintendo will get sweet deals from all the managers that are desperate for any orders at all that will keep their production lines ticking over.

no Weather... no news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45340245)

I guess they are offering it removing the Weather and New channel :)

The real reason for no wireless is legacy issues. (1)

Nick Lowe (3421741) | about 5 months ago | (#45340277)

I suspect that the real reason that they have dropped wireless networking support is that Nintendo screwed up, royally, with the original design. The present Wii has an 802.11b/g wireless adapter built-in. Due to flaws in its software implementation, however, it is only capable of working when the 802.11 (legacy mode) basic rates of 1 Mb/s and 2 Mb/s are advertised by an access point. This means that 802.11b support, an additive amendment to the 802.11 standard, must be enabled on an access point for a Wii to be able to connect to it. As a cost cutting measure, the drivers were embedded in to the games themselves making this largely unfixable without some incredibly ugly engineering hacks. They have obviously decided not to bother. See: http://nostringsattachedshow.com/2012/01/18/nintendo-vs-cisco/ [nostringsa...edshow.com]

Won't buy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45340625)

"Wii mini is not compatible with the Internet and will not allow online functionality when playing games"

I would have bought one if not for this. I have friends online who play Mario Kart Wii with each other, and I would like to join in too, but I don't want to pay a lot for a Wii that I'd only use to play one game.

Nintendo is missing and opportunity here (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45340839)

Don't strip it down, but enhance it. Enable 720p on the machine and relaunch as a media player AND gaming system. Do it right and you can grab up some of those sales that are going to Roku and the like.

Better name suggestion: The Wee Wii (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#45340841)

just a thought.

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