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Bill Loguidice's picture

Nintendo 3DS Getting Massive Price Cut - Existing Owners Getting Free Games

This has been widely reported, but here's the story on IGN. Essentially, the Nintendo 3DS will now retail for $169.99, and existing owners who paid the launch price of $249.99 will get 20 free virtual console games, which consists of 10 NES and 10 GameBoy Advance titles.

I'm glad they're taking care of their existing owners. Clearly Nintendo priced this not at a price point they had to, but at a price point they thought they could get away with. If they were able to back up the 3DS launch with positive buzz and great software (i.e., software that would excite the masses), they *might* have gotten away with the $250 price point (though I continue to argue the buzz remains with smartphones and tablets, not gaming handhelds), but really, it makes you wonder why this wasn't $199.99 to start with, let alone $179.99, particularly since they're making such a huge drop of $80 already. That's a major mea culpa, and certainly not indicative of business-as-usual for Nintendo, who classically really, really hates to admit that they're wrong about something. I've been talking about this frequently, but there have certainly been some unusual goings-on at Nintendo HQ, from the lack of new titles for their existing platforms to a somewhat unusual presentation of their upcoming Wii U console. Perhaps this will be the first of several steps that Nintendo needs to regain momentum.

Rob Daviau's picture

Make it stop!!!!

OK first of all where did this come form all of a sudden?
Secondly, I cannot afford yet another open source handheld already!

GamePark's GP2X Caanoo handheld hits this August, picks up where the Wiz left off.

Bill Loguidice's picture

Sony Continues to Bungle the PSP Line - Flips the Proverbial Bird to US Customers

In an effort to goose sales of the PSPgo - which any way you look at it, has been an abject failure for Sony, even regularly placing last in weekly sales in Japan (yes, even behind the Xbox 360 and PS2) - Sony has taken positive steps by lowering prices on a batch of top titles and offering free games for new purchasers of the system. But hold on a minute, in a stroke of corporate bravado the likes of which we haven't seen since the news first broke on the BP oil spill, Sony is only offering new purchasers of the system in the US just three free games only days after offering UK buyers 10 free games. See anything wrong with that math?

Of course, none of this addresses the more serious issue of a justification for the PSPgo's existence in the first place, since it's more expensive than the regular PSP model with fewer features. However, I know I would have been more likely to purchase one with an incentive for 10 free games, along with the reduction on the other top hits. As it stands now, because of their unbalanced generosity towards one territory over another, it all remains too much to swallow. Way to go Sony! Maybe you'll get it right with the PSP2, unless Nintendo and Apple obliterate you in the marketplace first with their next generation of handhelds that will release earlier and almost certainly with better software support and marketing. Maybe by then you can give UK buyers 20 free games and US buyers 6 free games to really push your sales over the top and continue to foster good will for your brand...

Bill Loguidice's picture

Casual Photos: Milton Bradley Microvision

Shown below are a set of four new casual iPhone photos, this time of a boxed and partially complete Milton Bradley Microvision handheld game system with an additional Star Trek Phaser Strike cartridge (among the first ever licensed games, though it would also be re-released sans license). The Microvision debuted in late 1979 and was the first interchangeable cartridge handheld, and the only such form factor that would see release until Nintendo's legendary GameBoy almost 10 years later.

Bill Loguidice's picture

New Contest at Armchair Arcade with Great Prizes - GRID for Nintendo DS from Codemasters!

We're proud to introduce a new contest for Codemasters' latest entry in their critically acclaimed GRID racing game series, this time for the Nintendo DS (and boy, does it look great!). The contest begins August 1st and ends August 15th at Midnight EST, so get your entries in now!

Bill Loguidice's picture

Feature Article: Defining Past and Present Game Genres


Why past and present?  Certain game types, while still alive through the efforts of thousands of active hobby programmers, are no longer available in mainstream retail outlets and thus don’t knowingly exist to large portions of the game playing public.  Therefore, described in alphabetical order is what has been and what is still available.  Keep in mind, however, that one of the beauties of gaming is that many games don’t fit neatly into one specific category.  When example software titles are listed, only the publisher or developer is noted in parentheses, along with one of the systems or platforms the game appeared on.

Bill Loguidice's picture

Feature Article: Defining Home Videogame, Computer and Handheld Eras


What is often lacking in casual discussion of eras or time periods when certain systems or types of technology dominated is an agreed upon definition of what these really encompassed.  Below is one attempt at defining the significance of eras in the key classifications of home videogames, computers

dragon57's picture

Coleco resurrected?

Could this be the product Coleco has been talking about for a while? I hope not, but until a unit is issued that includes real Coleco games it will have to do.


Bill Loguidice's picture

Atari Jaguar, L y n x and store updates from Songbird Productions

Ocean Depths game packaging: for Atari Jaguar CDOcean Depths game packaging: for Atari Jaguar CDAmong other updates, prior Armchair Arcade interview subject Carl Forhan and his Songbird Productions is making, among other things, the "Ocean Depths CD" and "Bomb Squad CD" homebrews more widely available for the Atari Jaguar and its CD attachment. Both games are from Starcat Developments in Germany and require a modified Jaguar that can play encrypted CD's or the use of a bypass cartridge (which is the solution that I implement).

The full update with more information is here:

Bill Loguidice's picture

Atari 2600 Plug 'N Play Keychain - Expect More, Get Less

Basic Fun's Officially Licensed Atari 2600 Plug 'N Play Keychain Series: {Image from the Basic Fun Website}Basic Fun's Officially Licensed Atari 2600 Plug 'N Play Keychain Series: {Image from the Basic Fun Website}While this is hardly breaking news, it's been interesting to follow some of the drama around the "Atari 2600 Plug 'N Play Keychain" series from "Basic Fun". The first part of the drama involves the company's falling out with engineer Curt Vendel, most famous for being the lead on the "Atari Flashback" and "Atari Flashback 2.0" products, and launching "Awesome Arcades". The second and more relevant part of the drama involves the simple fact that these products, amazing form factor and low price aside ($15 each), are awful simulations, seemingly ignoring all the progress made over the past few years in TV Game quality (in fact, reverting back to the NES-on-a-chip of the first Flashback, which has been proven unable to properly simulate Atari 2600 games!). Perhaps "Basic Fun" should have just went with the quality product that Curt had originally delivered for them, rather than scrapping it and doing the products on the super cheap!

While the "Atari Flashback" was a weak simulation of both the Atari 7800 and 2600 systems using the readily available NES-on-a-chip as the platform, the "Atari Flashback 2.0" rectified this by incorporating a clever Atari 2600-on-a-chip, almost perfectly emulating the original hardware. After that and the prior "Commodore 64 30-in-1" (which essentially featured a C-64-on-a-chip), it's hard to go back to the kind of innaccuracies that are present in these keychain devices. Bottom line, the bar has been raised and we truly have the right to expect more, based simply on precedent and the countless other TV Games devices out there that do offer more authentic experiences, even of latter day systems like the Sega Genesis or arcade machines.

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