Did Nintendo Cut The Price of the 3DS Too Soon?

On August 12th Nintendo will officially drop the price of the 3DS from $249.99 to $169.99, less than 6 months after its initial launch in the US.  There has been a strong upset among early adopters of the system and many of them have voiced their feelings.  But was this move by Nintendo truly premature or a required sacrifice?

Back when the price was announced for the 3DS the public seemed evenly split.  Neither side seemed overly upset with the price and it was perfectly on par with what most analysts predicted for the launch.  But Nintendo banked too much of the handheld’s success on its 3D capability.  Without a solid launch line-up most gamers passed on the system at launch and chose to wait for better games to release.  Games like The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time have gained a little more support for the system but the game was still only a remake from the N64 classic.

Jump ahead to this upcoming holiday and we will see the release of Sony’s newest handheld the PS Vita.  Unlike Nintendo’s price announcement, Sony wowed the audience at E3 with a price of $249.99 at launch.  It seemed as though this was on purpose to avoid the chance that gamers would choose one system simply based on price.  Now the handheld war would come down to games and hardware power, something Sony appears to have the upper hand in.

A combination of slow sales and fears of health issues related to glasses-free 3D have put the 3DS into a sour spot.  With any new console, the success of its future lies in the adoption rate and install base.  You can’t sell a lot of games if nobody owns the system to play them on.  The previous generation DS is quickly becoming a dated system and Nintendo needs this to become the successor, otherwise they will lose the dominant hold they’ve had in the handheld market for so many years.

That’s why I personally feel this move was all too necessarily for Nintendo.  Being an early adopter of the 3DS myself, I can’t say I’m not upset with the news.  Nor are the 20 free games a huge excitement for me since I own most all of the offered titles that will be given to people that bought the system and connected to the eShop prior to August 11th.  But I still see the corner Nintendo was squeezed in (or squeezed itself into) and needed to make a move.

So what do you think of Nintendo’s decision to drop the price?  Were you among the 4.3 million to buy a 3DS since launch?  Are you happy with the free games you’re getting or would you rather get your $80 back?  Let us know in the comments.

Written by Bryan

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  1. […] and it there was a lack of hit titles to go along with it.  Nintendo quickly made the decision to cut the price on the 3DS, but it wasn’t until the end of the year that the system saw increased sales due to the […]

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