|Lord Ciansworth said:
Okay, first off, my comparison to SNES pricing is quite relevant to this conversation for two reasons. Firstly it shows that, even at a launch price of close to $400 dollars, the American market was, and remains, willing to see value in a home video games console at this price point or close to it (the PS2, for example, launched at the equivalent of $422 in 2001 and was a smash hit). The comparison is also a pertinent one as the SNES launched into an American market in which the Sega Genesis had been selling for 2 years. The Genesis had a much larger library of games and was available at retail for the equivalent of about $100 (in today's money) less than the SNES at its 1991 launch. Why then was the SNES able to beat the Genesis in the market place? The games.
The point you seem to be missing is that it is always games that sell consoles. Why would someone buy a Wii U when the already own a 360? Simple. To play good games and enjoy gaming experiences that they cannot get on their existing home consoles. It is up to Nintendo to provide those experiences, and if they can't the Wii U won't sell. To suggest the Wii U won't sell simply because it may be priced at around $400, however, is frankly wrong. History has proved otherwise, and I have no doubt that consoles of the future will prove the same again.
You're absolutely right that the games sell the consoles, but even then it will be a tough sell at such a high price point because of the reasons i listed earlier. And going back to the SNES for a minute... while it had a good launch in North America (and it came with 2 controllers and a brand new Mario game for $199... not too shabby), it struggled to keep up with the Genesis in sales until late '93-'94. Also, keep in mind, the PS360 gamers already have access to the games that they love the most... they aren't going to drop money on a Wii U for multiplatform games like the next COD, Madden, and others that they will just end up getting for their existing consoles anyway. Nintendo will have to have some serious exclusives to get them to jump ship... Mario and Zelda alone just aren't gonna cut it next generation. And the casuals already have access to the Wii and 360 w/ Kinect much cheaper than $400, so they might not see a reason to pick one up so soon just because of the tablet gimmick, the same way they initially shied away from the 3DS and its 3D gimmick that Nintendo foolishly thought would create an immediate Wii-like demand for the handheld.
My point is that pricing the console so high initially will prove to be a barrier for many gamers of all types simply because they won't see the console as a good value for what it is, just like what happened to several other major consoles over the years like the Saturn, the PS3, the 3DS (for its first 6 months) and now the Vita too. Making it more affordable right off the bat like around the $300 mark gives Nintendo an immediate edge going into the next generation, where the next batch of Sony and M$ consoles will most likely land at around $350-$400 the following year. Nintendo can't afford to waste their year-long headstart over the competition (a luxury they have never had in the post-NES era) by getting off to a sluggish start and hurting themselves by pricing the Wii U out of its target audience's range.
On 2/24/13, MB1025 said:
You know I was always wondering why no one ever used the dollar sign for $ony, but then I realized they have no money so it would be pointless.