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Famicom Dojo Podcast: 3DS Price Drop? We Called It

Nintendo’s steep price cut of the 3DS may have taken some news outlets by surprise last week, but we called it way back during E3. When Sony introduced the PSVita at the same price point as Nintendo’s new handheld that was already struggling in sales, we knew a price cut could not be far behind. It looks like Nintendo agreed! SeanOrange and Vinnk discuss the 3DS Ambassador program, the wisdom of deciding not to release the GBA Virtual Console games to the general public, and whether or not these 20 free games will entice us (or anyone) to buy the system at $250 before the price cut goes into effect next Friday, August 12th.

(Listen to the episode after the jump)

[Listen to the episode after the jump…!]

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Nintendo to drop price of 3DS to $170

Purchase Nintendo’s latest handheld for $80 less on August 12. Existing 3DS owners will get exclusive Virtual Console games not sold in stores.

With the announcement of the PSVita at E3 2011, sluggish sales both in and out of Japan, and the possibility of having their connectivity gimmick copied before the Wii U hardware is even released, we predicted Nintendo would need to adjust the price of the 3DS in a big way. It looks like they got the message!

I’m not one to gloat, but– yes I am. We totally called this in our Famicom Dojo Podcast during the week of E3 — not just the need for a price drop, but the exact price point!

For those upset at the severe price drop, Nintendo will automatically enroll all 3DS owners in an “Ambassador” program — if they use the online store between now and August 11. The perks? 10 free NES titles on Virtual Console which will later be available to the public, and 10 free Game Boy Advance games via Virtual Console that Nintendo does NOT plan on ever making available for public sale.

(This smacks of the “no plans to release” the three games that are the focus of Operation Rainfall.)

So what do you think? Will a price drop of 1/3 be enough for you to buy this machine? $170 is within striking distance of an impulse buy for a 30-something with a college degree, but what about the kids? That’s still more than it costs to buy a Wii, but it looks like people aren’t paying for that that either. Are the 10 exclusive GBA games enough to get you to pay the full $250 before the price drop?

Read the entire press release at

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E3 2011: A “Hands” on Approach

It seems like it’s the year of the handhelds at E3 2011, with Nintendo and Sony both debuting their newest portable poster-children.

“Wii U”

The Wii U isn’t as much of a portable handheld as it is a new console with a portable accessory. It’s controller works in tandem and separate of the Wii console as a sort of super-controller to both interact with Wii games, and act as it’s own Wii screen separate from a television complete with a touch screen. Supposed release of 2012. (and yes, I’ll probably not be the first to make the “weeeee-ooooo” ambulance siren sound effect)

Playstation Vita

Sony’s Playstation Vita looks to be the evolution of the PSP, complete with multiple touch screen capabilities, built-in front and back cameras, multiple motion control axis, and 3G and Wi-Fi in certain models with the “near” function to find other Vita players in the vicinity. It was hinted at a few months ago under the codename “NGP”, but was formally unveiled at E3 this year. Will it it prove to be a more versatile successor to the PSP, or end as a flop like it’s predecessor? We’ll see at the end of 2011 when it releases for around $249US.

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