Retailers want Wii U to be priced at £250 when it launches.
But Nintendo could be prepared to set a cost price that will allow shops to sell cheaper than that – and ensure the machine is this Christmas’ must-have gaming item.
One senior publisher confidently told MCV that the price “will definitely be less than £249”.
And retailers hope that Nintendo has learnt from the difficult 3DS launch.
“It’s important we don’t go down the 3DS route of retailer-led discounting both pre- and post-launch,”
said Play.com games buyer Keith Sharpe. “I’m really impressed with Wii U, it’s got a good mix of insanely addictive mini-games and traditional ‘gamers’ titles.”
The Hut Group’s Sarah Jasper added: “The software looks fantastic, but Nintendo needs to press its messaging hard to ensure the public know this isn’t just an add-on for the Wii. Some don’t realise it’s a standalone machine.
“Hopefully, lessons have been learned from 3DS and pricing sits between £200 to £250. Then we’re onto a sure success.”
However, retailers are most keen to see a strong launch line-up.
“As with Vita, which had over 20 titles for launch, the line-up has to be strong and it’d be great to see Mario on Wii U sooner rather than later,” said Blockbuster assistant games buyer Anthony Darling.
HMV games buyer Nick Ashley continued: “We’d be keen to see Nintendo Land bundled as this will really show off Wii U’s functionality, and concentrating on the key Nintendo franchises helps to keep everyone involved.
“New Super Mario Bros U, Pikmin 3 and Wii Fit U at launch would provide an excellent foundation for Wii U’s success.”
The High Street hopes Wii U will be part of a blockbuster Christmas that can help lift the depressed boxed
“It is nice to have new hardware to inject some life into the games market,” said Tesco games boss Nick Cooke.
“It seemed from E3 that the software studios are advancing faster than the hardware platforms, so any new consoles are overdue to support the market.”